AU$1500 can buy you a lot of things -- a moderate range laptop, or a high end mobile phone, for example. It could also buy you ten Sagem MyC2-3 mobile phones, with change left over for a takeway burger to boot. From that, you could assume that the MyC2-3's something of a cheap and cheerful phone, and for the most part you'd be right.
The exterior of the phone hides the rather plain design reasonably well; it's a small phone with a blue front face for the clamshell; otherwise the colouration is a rather plain metallic finish. Weighing in at 75g and measuring 73mm x 42mm x 21mm, it's an extremely small phone, although the illusion of size is somewhat ruined by the extruding mobile antenna which gives the phone a rather "five years ago" feel to it.
Flip open the clamshell and you'll find a standard array of phone buttons, with a central navigation pad surrounded by four primary selection buttons, including call answer and end. In an age where many phones carry as many additional program buttons as they do dialling numbers (and sometimes more), it's something of a culture shock to come back to a phone that just carries regular phone feature buttons. That culture shock is further enhanced by the MyC2-3's display screen. It's a 101x80 pixel screen -- for the non-technical types, think "small" -- capable of only 4096 colours. While it's on the plain side to look at compared to some of the larger screened mobiles we've examined recently (such as the Nokia N90, for example), the display is bright and reasonably easy to read for basic telephony usage.
Like its design -- and somewhat befitting its price range -- the MyC2-3's feature set is on the basic side. It's a basic GSM phone with WAP and SMS functionality -- including T9 predictive text input -- along with support for polyphonic ring tones. Needless to say, if you're after a major business tool, or figure that a mobile phone no longer counts if it doesn't have an embedded camera, then the MyC2-3 isn't for you.
Like many smaller mobiles, users with thicker fingers may find the MyC2-3 a touch challenging at first for basic telephony purposes, especially as the tapered button design means that the lower numbers have smaller surface areas than the buttons directly above them. The Sagem MyC2-3's menu structure continues this half-decade-old feeling, as it's a very simple bit of software, both in terms of functionality and presentation. The last time we saw something this visually simple, it was running on Windows 3.11.
Sagem rates the MyC2-3 as being capable of up to 240 hours standby time and three hours talk time. In our testing, we found the battery tended to drop out after roughly six days of moderate usage.
The Sagem MyC2-3 isn't a designer phone, and it omits many of the flashier parts, both in design and features that other modern mobiles offer. Then again, Sagem's priced it accordingly -- in the sub-AU$200 space (excluding plan mobiles and those locked to a specific pre-paid carrier) you can't expect to get every last new feature. If all you want out of a mobile phone is a handset that you can carry around with you, the MyC2-3 will suffice nicely. Those who've owned (or wish to own) more advanced phones will invariably notice all the things it can't do, but for the basic phone user on a tight budget, it's a good option.