The AT&T 8525 is the first UMTS/HSDPA smart phone to be offered in the United States. It has integrated Bluetooth 2.0, Wi-Fi, and supports AT&T’s new music, video, and location-based services. The Windows Mobile device also has push e-mail capabilities, a 2-megapixel camera, a spacious QWERTY keyboard, and good call quality. — CNET Editors’ Review of the AT&T 8525
HTC 8525 Review
Thusly inspired, I recently purchased an AT&T 8525 Pocket PC by HTC. The device now serves as my virtual satellite, keeping me connected to the internet, networked to the office, and prepared for serious business. With its many features and streamlined functionality, the AT&T 8525 enables me to operate in maximized fashion, increasing efficiency and improving productivity. This article presents a concise rundown of how each of the phone’s primary features helps me to succeed as I fight a hellish battle everyday.
- High-Speed Wireless Data Support / QUALCOMM 3G HSDPA
- By far, one the fastest mobile devices I have ever used, the AT&T 8525 keeps me connected to the Internet at the fastest speeds possible. Using Tri-band UMTS/HSDPA network support, the 8525 provides access at 850/1900/2100 MHz, depending on service availability. In areas covered with EDGE signal, the device performs almost as fast DSL. Even better, when 3G coverage is available, I surf the Web at near-broadband speeds (average download speeds 400-700 kbps). Obviously, greater speed means greater productivity.
- Quad-Band GSM/GPRS/EDGE (850/900/1800/1900 MHz) Worldphone
- As a cell phone, the 8525 provides a crisp, clear signal virtually everywhere. Cingular/AT&T provides the best coverage here in the U.S., and very rarely is unavailable. I have sent and received calls in the middle of nowhere and deep within industrial zones. Of course, having reliable cell service is a necessity in today’s fast-paced business economy.
- Stereo Bluetooth 2.0
- Absolutely essential, the Bluetooth functionality of the 8525 is razor sharp. I connect seamlessly to myriad devices, including a macbook laptop running OSX, as well as other cell phones, headsets, microphones, and earphones. Bluetooth simplifies my life by enabling me to easily transfer files and synchronize devices. With Bluetooth, wires are unnecessary, freeing up space, reducing clutter, and streamlining connectivity.
- Wi-Fi (802.11b/g)
- The 8525’s 802.11b/g Wi-Fi functionality is blazing fast, keeping me connected at home, in the office, at the airport, in the library, and anywhere else that provides wireless access. The speed and ubiquity of wi-fi make it possible to access files and network resources in an almost omnipresent manner. Further, Internet connectivity via wi-fi is considerably faster than via the data network, greatly enhancing your capacity to work online in areas providing a wireless connection.
- Mini-USB Connectivity
- For superior speeds, and in cases where Bluetooth or wi-fi is not available, the 8525’s Mini-USB feature makes it easy to connect. USB connectivity is perfect for synchronizing, backing up data, and bulk file transfer. Plus, USB enjoys universal support, enabling unlimited possibilities for networking devices. Best of all, the 8525 battery is recharged via its USB port, and thus charges during periods of USB connectivity.
- Push to Talk
- Although this feature theoretically provides many beneficial uses, AT&T charges extra for its use unless it is included as part of your service plan. Needless to say, I declined this option during registration and activation, but have been told that the feature remains available whenever it may be needed. Good to know, just in case.
- 2.0 MP Camera with built-in Flash and Video
- Extremely beneficial, the 8525’s 2.0-MP Camera features both Flash and Video. The still camera produces clean, clear and well-focused photos. The video camera captures decent-quality videos with good sound quality. Combined with Internet and network connectivity, the 8525’s digital camera serves as a powerful tool for capturing and sharing visual information. Upload images directly to your website or Flickr account. Email Aunt Bessie that cute shot of the Ditch Witch. The possibilities are endless. Plus, with online image-editing and vector-drawing tools, it may well be possible to take over the world.
- 50+ MB Available Memory for Persistent Storage
- Plenty of storage for several browsing sessions, data backups, email downloads, and more. I use the 8525 constantly and have yet to experience any shortage of available space. Even so, it doesn’t matter because the 8525 also handles SD-format memory cards. Such cards are currently available with capacities as great as 2 gigabytes. Plenty of storage removes barriers and eliminates unnecessary memory concerns. With daily system backups stored locally on the device, synchronizing and transferring files is necessary only once a week or less. Nice.
- 128 MB Flash ROM / 64 MB SDRAM / Samsung 400 MHz Processor
- As mentioned previously, I surf the Web and connect wirelessly at breakneck speeds (well, almost). Plus, the phone itself is fast — as fast as I have ever needed. Often, I work with several applications running simultaneously, such as Mobile versions of Outlook, Opera, Notepad, and Calculator. Indeed, the 128-MB Flash ROM and 64MB SDRAM optimize functionality, enabling you to work faster, more efficiently, and with fewer crashes and errors.
- Windows Mobile 5.0 with Direct Push Technology & ActiveSync
- Running Windows Mobile 5.0 on the AT&T 8525 enables great flexibility and customization. The 8525 comes equipped with a wide range of applications preinstalled and integrated with the Windows-Mobile operating system. Mobile versions of Excel, Word, Powerpoint, Explorer, Acrobat, and many others are included. One of the benefits of running Windows Mobile involves granular control over installation and removal of additional software. Further, it is dead simple to network the device with any machine running virtually any version of Windows.
- Xpress Email (POP3/IMAP) / Good Mobile Messaging
- One of my favorite features of the 8525 is its ability to handle multiple email protocols. The device supports POP3 and IMAP accounts and also provides Good Mobile Messaging. Plus, access to the Internet provides access to online email applications such as Gmail and Hotmail. The ability to manage emails during off-moments throughout the day greatly simplifies my routine. Currently, I check several accounts via Xpress Email and then log into Hotmail for a few junk accounts. Now, staying on top of email is a breeze — no more email avalanches!
Other Great Features of the AT&T 8525:
- Upgradeable to Windows Mobile 6.0
- Multimedia support — MP3 and MPEG
- Up to 5 continuous hours of talk time
- Up to 10 days continuous standby time
- Integrated trackwheel for ease of navigation
- Tethers to your laptop as a high-speed modem
- Full QWERTY keyboard w/backlight for easy text entry
- Additional Security features, including S/MIME support
- Large 2.8-in. 240×320 64K color touchscreen with stylus
- Hands-free communication with speakerphone and headphone support
Overall, the AT&T 8525 by HTC is an exceptional Pocket PC that features a media-rich collection of multimedia tools and software. I now enjoy simultaneous voice, data, and email as well as text and instant messaging along with multimedia support for photos, music, and video. By far, the most comprehensive and liberating mobile device I have had the pleasure of using. I look forward to learning more about this device as I continue integrating its functionality into my daily routine.