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    Dell Axim X50v PDA
    Author: Talon
    Date Posted:06/04/2005 13:44.39
    SLRating: SLRating: 8/10
    Bottom Line: The Dell X50v PDA is a powerful mobile device with a brilliant VGA screen. It does have some performance issues, but if you are in the market for a handheld should strongly consider the X50v.

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    Functionality

    The X50v's on-screen interface is much like any other PDA running its OS, except for one obvious difference: The VGA screen. This is no QVGA or other attempted knock off, this is true high-resolution VGA in all its glory. The distinction between a QVGA and a VGA handheld such as the X50v is more than a more vivid screen and the ability to read smaller text, it is a completely new experience. Games that you play are graphically superior, web sites are rendered more correctly, and movies attain a new level of realism.

    Besides the VGA screen, the X50v has several other useful features. A handy voice record button captures audio at a custom quality level, and a wireless enable button allows you to easily make use of the integrated WiFi and Bluetooth. Be warned that wireless functions drain battery life (which is not very long in the first place) like crazy, so it is best to enable wireless only when necessary, and to disable it immediately afterwards. Oh, and I do miss the jog dial that I had become accustomed to on other PDA's.

    Another annoyance is the circular directional pad. This thing has been characteristic to the Axim line since their original inception, but it seems that with every generation, it gets smaller and smaller. My thumb is bigger than the X50v's directional pad, and consequently, navigating with it is often a pain. Also, the X50v suffers from intermittent stability issues; at times, the screen will freeze up for around 20 seconds or so. Bearable? Yes. Convenient? Not exactly.

    My last complaint lies with opening and closing programs. Basically, if you open a program it remains open, meaning, if you tap the "X" in the top right had corner, the program does not actually close, it is just sent to the background. This makes it easy to call back up a program instantaneously, but hogs memory space like none other. So after enough programs are open, the X50v simply will not let you open any more. To close any program, you have to, believe it or not, go into the settings screen, navigate to the memory page, and manually "End Task" each program.

    But the X50v does have some redeeming features. Video and audio playback are excellent, though again the weak batter somewhat compromises this. Cross-platform compatibility of Microsoft Office files is very convenient, but it is standard nowadays. And the new mobile Outlook is impressive; I even managed to configure it with gmail so that it would download my email every time I am near a WiFi hotspot.



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    1. Introduction
    2. Introduction
    3. Specifications
    4. First Impressions
    5. Software
    6. Design
    7. Functionality
    8. Conclusions

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