OVMumPMekXQW8/uI7JcaqA== A L L 4 M O B I L E: new review :Motorola Cliq 2 (T-Mobile)

new review :Motorola Cliq 2 (T-Mobile)


The original Motorola Cliq looks tired now, but back in the day (in October of 2009) it was pretty cutting-edge. The Android slider was the first to run Motorola's Motoblur software, which makes it easy to keep tabs on social networks using widgets, and it backs up your info to the cloud. Now the sequel has finally arrived: the Cliq 2 ($190). This Android 2.2 handset sports a larger display, a faster processor, and a very funky keyboard. Is it too little, too late?


Oval-shaped and sculpted with chrome accents, the Cliq 2 has a higher-end look and feel than its predecessor. We also appreciate the ridged battery cover, which makes for a sturdy grip, though this piece of plastic feels flimsy when detached. The 3.7-inch (854 x 480-pixel) screen represents a major step up from the original Cliq (3.1 inches, 480 x 320 pixels) and is quite bright and sharp.
Up top you'll find a small power button next to the standard 3.5mm headphone jack. A pair of volume buttons grace the right side, along with a dedicated camera key and ringer toggle switch.
Measuring 4.2 x 2.3 x 0.5 inches and weighing 6.2 ounces, the Cliq 2 is heavier than the Cliq (5.7 ounces) because it features a larger display. The T-Mobile G2, another Android slider on T-Mobile, is slightly heavier (6.4 ounces) but has a more luxurious brushed aluminum rear cover.    


Sliding open the Cliq 2 reveals its QWERTY keyboard, which is unlike anything we've seen or touched before. Motorola used a skin-tight membrane with a honeycomb-like look. The bubble-like, rubberized keys are small and somewhat stiff, but they popped up and down, providing decent tactile feedback. The nicely backlit layout includes dedicated Search and @ keys, as well as arrow keys for finer cursor movements.

As for the touch keyboard, the Cliq 2 uses Swype as the default choice. This text entry method, which involves drawing lines through letters, makes it simple to type one-handed. The Swype keyboard can be used for touch typing, but the spacebar is placed oddly on the right side of the screen.

Software and Apps

Running Android 2.2, the Cliq 2 features Motorola's Motoblur service layered on top of the OS. Motoblur pulls in information from your choice of social networks, be it Facebook, LinkedIn (not available on the original Cliq), or Twitter. Users can also link multiple e-mail accounts to Motoblur, including Gmail and Yahoo. Unfortunately, to configure Motoblur you must first create a Motoblur account with yet anther e-mail and password.
The Cliq 2 features seven customizable home screens. A number of Motorola widgets inhabit these windows, along with the standard Google applets bundled with the OS. Handy offerings from Motorola include Social Networking tiles that display data from Twitter and Facebook, Weather, and switches for toggling Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS. Some may find that these widgets add too much clutter; in that case we'd recommend the T-Mobile G2, which has a cleaner install of Android 2.2.
Other useful apps bundled with the Cliq 2 include Amazon MP3, Blockbuster, Kindle for reading eBooks, and T-Mobile Wi-Fi Calling. 

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