Review: Motorola Defy XT
While the Defy Mini dented our appreciation of Motorola's 'life-proof' smartphone range, the Defy XT steps up to redeem it a little.
Zara Baxter | Monday, August 27 2012
Product type: Smartphone
RRP incl GST: $599
- IP67 certified rugged smartphone handset
- Good screen resolution and camera
- Keyboard feels a little poky
A rugged phone with a great screen and good battery life.
Until last month’s budget phone roundup, I would have quite happily said I was a fan of the Defy series of phones, but the Defy Mini dented my appreciation. Fortunately, the Defy XT redeems it a little.
Let’s start with the good. The Defy XT has great battery life. For many people, that’s almost all the information they need. We got more than three days out of it on light use – no Wi-Fi, occasional internet and phone calls.
Adding to the Defy XT’s strengths is the 1GHz processor and 512MB RAM that help to give apps decent zippiness, and to keep the Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) OS navigation feeling responsive. Even demanding apps such as Monsters Ate My Condo ran without errors and didn’t feel slow.
For those wanting a robust phone, the Defy XT is IP67 certified – that is, it’s both dustproof and waterproof – and has Corning Gorilla Glass to help protect the screen from scratches and breaking.
I was pleased with the 5MP camera, which has image stabilization and delivers images very light on noise, even in relatively poor light – such as the PC World Dungeons – and the secondary camera is useful.
But what about the XT’s flaws?
The Defy XT’s screen feels surprisingly small given that it’s 3.7-inch. The keyboard seems poky, and although the keys glow orange when you press them, it’s easy to make errors. Much of the frustration is able to be overcome, thanks to the presence of Swype. The reason for the cramped feel? It’s a narrower screen than, say, the iPhone, even though it’s longer. Still, 854 x 480 pixels makes for high pixel density and a nicely crisp, clear screen.
I feel as though I’m being picky, but it just doesn’t quite win me over, despite the affordable price. It’s just a little heftier, less appealing and more costly than the Sony Xperia P. But if you need ruggedness, this is your phone.
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