Motorola SLVR L9 review: Not much has changed

GSMArena team, 13 April 2007.

Connecting with the world is easy

First, let’s start with connecting to a computer. Since there is a miniUSB port on the handset synchronization is easier than ever. You just have to install the PC Suite which comes in the box and then everything works just fine. You can transfer you contacts, messages and calendar entries to your PC and of course you can transfer files to your phone too. There is also the Mass Storage option which enables you to transfer files like images and sounds without using the PC Suite - just connect the phone via the USB cable and it appears as a storage device.

GPRS and EDGE are no longer considered a luxury extra on your phone as almost every phone coming out on the market these days supports these high speed data transfer protocols. It’s uncommon though to see them both in class 10 on a budget handset. The only bad thing here is that there is no 3G support. Why have Motorola decided not to implement it, remains a mystery. The last connectivity protocol that the L9 supports is the Bluetooth v2.0 with A2DP profile, meaning you can connect a wireless stereo headset. There is no Infrared port which cannot be considered a drawback as it is already a pretty old technology and is rather useless these days.

Time organizing is all these days

The organization tools in Motorola SLVR L9 are in the Tools folder of the main menu. This sub-menu contains the Calculator, Datebook, Alarm Clock, Dialing Services, Activation List and World Clock. The Calculator is a normal Motorola calculator and works just fine. It is not a complex one, just the basic operations.

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Tools menu • Calculator

The Datebook is actually the Calendar. It can be viewed in monthly, weekly and daily view. There is also a filter to see only the Organized events, showing you the upcoming events this week, next week and the unfiled events. This is a good option and it would be nice to see it in more phones. You can create an Event and set its Subject, Location, Type (Personal, Meeting, Appointment, Birthday, Anniversary, Phone Call, Vacation, Holiday, Entertainment, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Education, Travel or Party; this may be a bit too much of categorization…), Start Time, End Time, Start Date, End Date, Reminder and Notes. You can also set whether the event will go on during the whole day or not. There are repeat options to set when you want the same event to occur again.

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Datebook views

The Alarm clock application is working alright but there is one big fault here. There are no repetition options. You can set many alarms with different times and type of alerting but you cannot set a repeating alarm. A good thing is that you can put a name on the alarm so you could easily orientate what the phone is alerting you of.

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Alarm details and list of alarms

The World Clock application shows you the exact time in different time zones of the world. Voice recording application can also fit in the category of organization tools. It works pretty well and the only limit of recording is the free memory. It can be accessed by a long press on the key on the left side of the phone.

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World Clock with digital and analog clocks • displaying a graph of the current time zone selected • recording sound

One very disturbing issue is the lack of Notes application. There is no way you can write notes to yourself or save some important information without having to write a message and store it.

Internet is crucial

The integrated web browser in the phone works ok but only if you browse WAP pages. As we found opening complex HTML pages such as is not among its strongest sides. You might want to install an additional browser as the phone supports Java applications. Opera Mini is a good choice and you will find no difficulties with it.

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Googling with L9 • the browser fails to open

Additional applications and games

Let’s first start with the Digital Audio Player which can be found in the Games & Apps sub-menu. It is a Java application and by our opinion does nothing more than the default player. The only difference is that you can filter tracks in a number of ways – by track names, album, artist or genre. There are also Shuffle and Repeat options, but regrettably the player cannot work in the background.

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Digital Audio Player by Motorola • the main menu of the player • Now Playing

There are a lot of games preinstalled on the phone but we doubt that all of them are going to be in the market version of the device. Lumines, Midnight Pool, Mystery Mansion, Platinum Sudoku and Splinter Cell were preinstalled on the phone. The first is some tetris-like game. The Midnight Pool is a pretty basic billiards game. The Mystery Mansion is a flipper game. You all know what the Sudoku puzzles are and the Splinter Cell is a popular hit-and-run type of game.

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Asphalt Urban GT • Lumines • Midnight Pool • Mystery Mansion • Sudoku • Splinter Cell

Depends on the price

This phone surely impressed our team in a number of ways - regrettably most of which negative. The slow menu speed, the lack of 3G, Notes application and any significant improvements over L7 and L7e made us very skeptical on its market success. There were also good aspects like the great construction and attractive design, but there are not much differences compared to the L7 and L7e model and thus this handset must have a low starting price in order to attract new fans.