There hasn't been a lot of change to PhoneDog's Top Messaging Phones list, but now we've got a big one. Our AT&T list not only has a new phone, but this phone immediately shot all the way to number one, ending the long reign of the Pantech Laser.
The HTC Freestyle is a very unique phone. It looks like a smartphone, is built like a smartphone, and almost functions like a smartphone, but it's not a smartphone. It's a featurephone. How did it manage to pull all of that off? Well, it's made by HTC and runs their custom UI called Sense. Because of this, it basically looks like HTC's other phones that run Sense, all of which happen to be smartphones. Not only is Sense UI a huge deal with this phone, but you're also given a fantastic capacitive touchscreen, which makes using the virtual keyboard much easier, and great customization features.
The Pantech Laser is still one of the best featurephones on the market, but it just couldn't hold up to the Freestyle. Check out our updated list below and tell us what you think. (Not that you needed any encouragement to voice your opinion on our list.)
1. HTC Freestyle
- Because of Sense UI, it seems to function like a smartphone.
- Capacitive touchscreen for better performance in scrolling and using the virtual keyboard.
- Aluminum build gives the phone a high-end feel.
- Great customization features
- Decent camera
- Battery life is decent, but could be better
- The camera is acceptable, but it would have been nice to see a flash or autofocus, especially once you consider the price
Simply put, the Freestyle is the closest thing to owning a smartphone without actually owning a smartphone. If you want the same experience, similar performance, and a phone that you can actually show off without having to pay enormous amounts for it and for the monthly data, the Freestyle is the way to go. HTC Sense UI adds so much to the device in terms of options, functionality, and performance, and features like a capacitive touchscreen and 3G data for web browsing make the Freestyle the best non-smartphone option on AT&T.
2. Pantech Laser
- Beautiful AMOLED display
- Super-thin profile. The phone is only .4-inches thick.
- Fresh and fun UI with great customization features
- Awesome keyboard. One of the best, simply put
- Great battery life
- Resistive touchscreen
- No 3.5 mm headphone jack. Because the phone is so thin, the only port or jack it has is a microUSB port
- Though it does have a 3 MP camera, it is not equipped with an autofocus or a flash
The Laser is the thinnest full-sliding QWERTY keyboard phone ever offered on AT&T. Yes, you will have to make a few sacrifices in order to have such a thin phone, but it looks awesome and has a UI that offers a lot of fun features and very useful features for reaching the things that matter most to you. Not only that, but no other messaging phone on AT&T has a display that can compare to the Laser's 3.1-inch AMOLED display.
3. Sharp FX
• Capacitive touchscreen display is rare for a messaging phone
• Speaking of the screen, the Sharp FX has a WQVGA display that shows colors crisp and vibrantly. In a word, it looks beautiful.
• 3.5 mm headphone jack
• Memory is expandable up to 32 GB
• Though it ships with a 1240 mAh battery, you'll only get about 1.5-2 days of normal use
• For the price, we would expect something better than a 2 MP camera with no flash
• Though the phone looks very sleek, the sliding mechanism on the keyboard is a bit loose
The Sharp FX is one of those phones that just looks cool. The design of the phone and the buttons give it a sleek, smartphone-esque feel to it. Not only that, it has a great QWERTY keyboard and plenty of additional features for social networking. Top it off with the beautiful display and we have a solid device.