Gifts Under $30 Gifts Under $50 iPhone Emergency SOS Saves Man MyHeritage 'Time Machine' Guardians of the Galaxy 3 Trailer White Bald Eagle Indiana Jones 5 Trailer Black Hole's 1,000 Trillion Suns
Want CNET to notify you of price drops and the latest stories?
No, thank you

Sidekick Slide: Perfect for, well, no one

Ronn finds the new Sidekick Slide is remarkably uninteresting, even for its target market.

Rarely have I looked forward to trying a phone and had more disappointing results. I don't want to trash the Sidekick Slide; let's just say it's one I'll never carry after living with it a couple of days.

The Sidekick Slide is slimmer and has a screen that slides up instead of swiveling.
The Sidekick Slide is slimmer and has a screen that slides up instead of swiveling. T-Mobile

With almost all new cell phones, thinner is a given and just happens with each new model. For whatever the reason, that's barely the case with the Slide. It's about 0.6 inch thick, which is about 25 percent thinner than the traditional Sidekick, but that was a brick! For comparison, 0.6 inch is about the thickness of a Treo 650/700. Not exactly wafer thin.

And the Slide just feels like a Toys R Us phone for your 10-year-old. In spite of the spacious keyboard, it doesn't seem weighted for an adult. You don't feel the stability you'd get from a BlackBerry Curve, for example. And it's a good thing if you don't need to use numbers; the standalone keys snuggle right up to the base and are uncomfortable to punch unless your fingers are small enough to have just finished fishing the toy surprise out of a box of cereal. (The electric blue and purple color choices don't do much to distance it from Barney either.)

Using the phone reminds you that calls are not why you get this device. Even with all the bars, it still sounded hollow and uneven at times. Far better, of course, is its IM capability; no complaints there. AOL, Yahoo and Windows IM clients are all built-in, as is POP3 and IMAP e-mail.

The music and camera features are a bit below average, but OK. But the big hitch is the lack of video playback--that makes the Slide seems dated already. And at $300 with activation, yikes!

Here's my overview: You'll like the Sidekick Slide--as long as you're not old enough to get a driver's license.