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Hands-on with Sprint's Motorola i1 rugged Android PTT smartphone

Gallery by Todd Haselton on Tuesday March 23, 2010.

ctia 2010 · motorola i1 · sprint · galleries · motorola news · android news · smartphone news · todd haselton

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Today during CTIA our own Michael Oryl had a chance to go hands-on with the first iDEN(INFO) push-to-talk (PTT) Android device, the Motorola i1.

The Motorola i1, which runs on Sprint Nextel's network, offers a 3.1-inch touchscreen display, WiFi, the Opera Mini 5 browser, and a Mil-Spec 810 rugged design. It also has a 5 megapixel camera and flash with geo-tagging support, the Swype touchscreen keyboard along with XT9 input, and Flash Lite support in the browser. Michael found the Flash Lite support was only practical with a WiFi connection, due to the slow data speeds found on the iDEN network connection.

Michael thought the device was similar to the Motorola CLIQ XT, but with gaskets and other rugged treatments. It runs a generic Android 1.5 build without MOTOBLUR, which means it only had three homescreen panels to customize instead of five. There are push-to-talk and Direct Connect widgets. The PTT speaker was loud and PTT performance was solid overall, but Michael thought the audio was a bit harsh at higher levels.

Under the hood the i1 runs a 600MHz Freescale processor, which is not found in the DROID, CLIQ, or the DEVOUR. The device also runs on a slower iDEN data network (25kbps), which is why the Opera Mini browser, which is optimized better for slow connections, was included.

Sadly, the phone lacks multitouch and it doesn't support iDEN platform Java apps like older iDEN phones. The i1 does have Motorola's custom built-in Microsoft Exchange support, which is integrated into the phonebook, however. Check out our video hands-on below.


timmy @ 9:21:07AM EDT on Tuesday March 23, 2010

Why can't think make a hybrid phone that uses Sprint's data and voice and NEXTEL iDen PTT only. I would love to have NEXTEL PTT on an Android phone, but could not survive with iDen for web browsing, and no app downloads except for wifi. Fail!!

Steve Larison @ 9:26:51AM EDT on Tuesday March 23, 2010

Does this i1 have 2nd line capability?

phil @ 1:04:29PM EDT on Thursday May 13, 2010

do you have a release date for the new motorola android iden phone

christina @ 2:26:30PM EDT on Monday June 7, 2010

what is the cost of the phone?

keylow @ 6:38:00PM EDT on Monday June 14, 2010

jun 20... 350 to 400

About the author

Todd Haselton
Todd is a senior editor at MobileBurn and works out of his home in New York City. He covers news for us and also writes reviews. You can follow him on Twitter at @RoboTodd

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