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Review GSM phone Motorola V171

Motorola V171. Live picture

Standard kit

  • Handset
  • Battery
  • Charger
  • Manual

Motorola is known for creating a clamshell form-factor and being the first from the biggest five manufacturers to offer clamshells in a low-end segment. Let's remember Motorola v150 that haven't become a bestseller but had sure sales. A year after the company decided to renew its offer in this segment and represented Motorola v171. The main difference of the new device is another design. The total form similar to previous solutions remained the same but any evident similarity was refused. One of the main advantages of the new model is a variety of colour solutions, the company refused from traditional silvery body colour. And speaking about software the models are completely similar.

The device has the dimensions of 87x45.6x22.7 mm and weights 87 grams. It has an external antenna and that is characteristic for today low-end solutions. There are no any problems with carrying the model; the quality of the plastic is standard for this class products by Motorola (looks a bit more expensive than it actually is).

There is an insertion with the number of the device on the front panel and external screen is absent here. There is a charger connector on the bottom end and a service indicator is also here. A headset connector may be seen on the top end of the device. Here is also a strap hole, thus using a strap you may carry the phone on your neck or your arm. You'll also see a loudspeaker gap on the bottom of the back panel and it serves for reproducing call melodies.

The device may be opened with one hand and the process is easy enough but the cheap mechanics is felt (rubbing of plastic, strange sounds). The STN screen with the resolution of 96x65 pixels shows up to 4096 colours. It may show up to 3 text lines, lines with tips for soft keys use and a service line with icons. The screen fades in the sun and information is not seen though in the room it makes no problems. This screen is known not only by v150 but also by the evident bestseller Motorola C350. Unfortunately, now the screen is not modern and it is a low-end solution being the plainest and outdated morally.

The keypad is made of plastic and there is a blue backlighting that is not even. The keys are average in size and are distanced well. In general the keypad seems to make no problems. Unfortunately, a menu button but not OK is integrated into a navi one. And choosing this or that menu item is possible with a left soft key.

A 650-mAh Li-Ion battery is hidden behind the back panel (has a slight backlash) of the device. According to the manufacturer the battery works for 180 hours in the standby mode and up to 3.5 hours in the talk mode. In Moscow the device worked for about 3 days in case of 15-20 minutes of talks a day. Full recharging takes about 2 hours.


The main menu is represented with a circle of icons with tips and this is a typical organization for a model of this class by Motorola. Fast navigation using number series is not provided. A MyMenu function is present to replace the fast navigation. You may create a tag for any item and then get into it with two pressures.

Phone book. Minimum of capabilities. One number for a name, there is a search by the first letter in a list. All the numbers are stored on a SIM-card and the total number of them is 230.

Messages. Up to 80 SMS may be saved in the internal memory. SMS-chat is supported and templates may be created. The device supports EMS and it correspondingly has pictures and melodies used when creating a message.

Alarm clock.You may set an alarm clock, set the time for alert and give a name to it. There are several alarm clocks.

Chat. SMS-chat is hidden in this menu; the fact a separate menu item is created for this function is dubious enough since little people use it frequently.

Parameters. All the security settings, wap-browser, selecting a menu language and time for backlighting work are traditionally combined in this item. There are screensavers that are usual or animated images. A time period for a screensaver to start working may be set (from 1 to 5 minutes). When the screensaver starts working screen backlighting turns on for some time and that is done on purpose otherwise it is impossible to make out the image on the screen.

Ring Images. A user may find all the settings concerning call signals here. Nothing special.

Recent Calls. This very item is highlighted when entering the menu, you may view call log of last 10 dialed and 20 incoming and missed calls from there. A curious peculiarity of the device is that when pressing the Call button in the standby mode you get a list of last dialed numbers. And to see your missed calls you need to go to the menu and make three or two (if you set this item into MyMenu) pressures. A disadvantage is that all the missed calls are indicated as missed only until you view the log and then they are shown as incoming and you can't get to know they were missed.

Browser. A wap-browser version 1.2.1 is installed into the device, all the functions are standard.

Extra. A plain calculator, stopwatch with intermediate results (up to 9 of them).

Games. There are three games - Racing, Torpedo (shooting) and Magic (a variant of Tetris).


The device rouses no cavils as for the quality of connection, it's enough reliable. The quality of voice transmission is also good and without any drawbacks, the sound is clear. The volume of 16-tones polyphonic call alert is average but is not enough to hear the device in the street sometimes. But the last chance is to set a usual trill that is heard in every condition. The power of the vibracall is lower than average and is felt not always.

The price of the model will be about 100 USD in retail networks in the end of January. It's a typical low-end solution in a clamshell form-factor. As for me, considering the presence of Siemens CF62 with the price of 122 USD the product by Motorola seems overpriced greatly. An appropriate price equals 70-75 USD not more. Motorola C155/C156 are copies of the device in a classic form-factor.

Eldar Murtazin (eldar@mobile-review.com)
Translated by Maria Mitina (maria.mitina@mobile-review.com)

Published — 16 January 2005

Have something to add?! Write us... eldar@mobile-review.com



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