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Review Alcatel OT331
New model from Alcatel emphasizes the changes of model range, the displacement of more expensive models in low segment, but not the novelty of technologies and decisions. Judge for yourself, new serial number of the model is 331, but we see the same functions as in Alcatel OT 525. The changes have cosmetic character, by and large it is the same device. But the positioning has changed, now the device does not concern to mainstream segment, it's positioned as inexpensive and budgetary device. Certainly, this model does not open the model range, because are produced such devices as Alcatel OT 310, 320. Conditionally this device can be related to middle class among the low-end phones.
The sizes of the phone are 98х43х20 mm, its weight is 77 grammes. The device is small, it can be easily in a pocket of shirt or jeans, let alone the outer clothing. On the market the device will be supplied in six color variants, they are white, grey and dark blue, and also transparent white, transparent dark blue and transparent green. In all cases around of the screen and the keyboard area there is a metal insert. The back part of the case is always made of light grey plastic. On the middle of lateral surfaces there is a metal edging.
The screen in this model has orange backlight, the information is read rather easily. The resolution of the screen is 96х65 points, that allows displaying up to 4 text lines. In the majority of the menu it is three texts lines and one service line. For some countries and operators are supported displaying up to 6 text lines, the Russian users don’t have such opportunity. In the menu there is an opportunity to enable inversion displaying, i.e. the most part of the screen becomes black, and letters become white. The mode is designed exclusively for fans, the classical displaying is more preferable.
Under the screen locates joystick, it is not hard, but also has no free wheeling. Using the joystick you can scroll vertical lists, it also reacts to pressing. Send call key and release combined into one. The digital keyboard is made of rubber, the keys are average by the size, rather close located. There are no any problems at dialing number. The backlight of the keyboard is orange, the backlight is uneven, the font on the keys is practically unreadable, it's because the font's size is small. In case if on the keyboard there are no second lines of local symbols the designations are visible, but not in all conditions.
On the left side there is handsfree connector and charger connector. On the back surface there's aerial adapter connector.
The back cover covers battery compartment. The manufacturer installs the lithium-polymeric accumulator with capacity of 600 mAh. According to the manufacturer, the phone is capable to work up to 280 hours in standby mode, and up to 6 hours in talk mode. In conditions of the Moscow network Beeline the device worked about 4 days at 1 hour of talking. If to use the device not so heavy it can work about 5 days. The time of the full charge is about 1.5 hours.
There are no features in menu, it is the typical representative of the model range from Alcatel. To enter the menu in standby mode, it is enough to press navigation key, its movement upwards call "Messages", and downwards - phonebook. There's no fast navigation through the menu using shortcut numbers, it necessary move through the menu manually. Russian reduction of the menu are still not so good, the words are cut off.
Phonebook. In memory of phone can be saved 250 numbers, for one name it's possible to store up to 3 telephone numbers - office, home and mobile. To call from phonebook it is enough to press call send key on name. In addition it is possible to organize all entries in three categories: service, personal and other, it is also possible to leave the number without any category. For first three types of numbers it is possible to choose personal ringtone, it's impossible to do this for individual entry in phonebook.
Messages. The picture set for messages has been updated, however, standard emoticons are present. By the way, these images can be used as screen savers. To pluses of the devices concerns T9 dictionary for Russian and an opportunity of Russian input, there are two lines of symbols on the keyboard. There are some standard tempalres for messages. An interesting option is the opportunity of sending one message to several addressees. The phone supports EMS.
WAP. Standard wap-browser, nothing interesting.
Ringtones. The phone has 35 melodies and tones, plus you can create up to 2 melodies. It is possible record melody using microphone. The melodies are polyphonic, but sound rudely. On the other hand, the loudness of a ringtone is sufficient, you can hear the phone from under clothes. There is an opportunity to choose some types of ring: sound, only vibration alert and mixed mode (first the phone vibrates and then plays melody).
In phone there is an alarm which, as well as other reminders, works when the phone is switched off. The alarm clock is extremely simple: you can adjust only time and that's all. It's possible to choose any melody for the alarm, the same is for organizer (up to 5 events) and for reminder of birthdays (also up to 5 dates). The organizer can be adjusted for single operation, for repetition within each day or for weekly operation.
In the phone there are also calculator, currency converter and three games. All games are very much sated by graphics, they remind the first games on PC. So, Killer Exp is classical arcade in which it is necessary to fly on spacecraft in the tunnel and to kill all alive on a way. In Eyes*Star it is not necessary to offend anybody, it is a remake of daggers-zeroes. In Run Run it is necessary to run in a heap of labyrinths and to collect different stuff.
In My settings is available the choice of pictures for screen savers expectation. Right here are the settings of ringtones.
As you see this model is only variant of already known Alcatel 525. The device does not have any problems with sensitivity. The presence of the built-in handsfree function is a plus, the sound in the speaker is clean. The main thing is not to cover during talking, the microphone, located on the bottom edge, otherwise the interlocutor won't hear you.
Polyphonic melodies sound simply, but there are quite good melodies in the phone, which draw attention. The loudness of the polyphonic ringtones is average, it's possible to hear the ring in the street, and it is possible and miss it. The vibration alert will help in this case, it allows not missing incoming call.
As a whole this device is the typical representative of model range from Alcatel, there are no any extras in the device except for the increased operating time. At price about 100 dollars this phone is typically budgetary purchase, which will be claimed first of all by the regional markets.
Published 05 May 2003
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