This post is a review of the Motorola Defy Mini XT320 that was so very kindly sent to me for review. I was absolutely over the moon when the Motorola PR team offered me this phone to review and keep. Up until that point I had been using a basic cheap mobile phone that I had bought for £15 with £10 top up! It made phone calls just fine but if I wanted to go on the net or take a photo…I may as well not bother!
I’m going to start this review off by saying ,from the beginning, that I don’t have much of a clue about the technical side of mobile phones. All I know is the basics and that is what I am going to be commenting on in this review. If you would like to know the technical stuff you can click this link here to be taken to the Motorola website. Although I have also added some images to this post that explain the full specification of the Motorola Defy Mini so that you can find out all you need to know about the phone in this one post. (They are screen shots taken from the Motorola site.)
The Motorola Defy Mini is a fantastic phone and I am extremely happy with it. I will be honest in saying that until it was offered to me for review …I had never before heard of the Motorola Defy Mini nor it’s predecessor the Motorola Defy. However I have now been using the Motorola Defy Mini since the end of June and I absolutely love it! I highly recommend it and I cannot imagine not having this phone.
As with all phones there is the odd couple of things I would change if I could but overall I am delighted with the phone as it does what I need it to.
I have been promising the lovely PR lady all week that I would publish this post but every time I think I’ve finished writing it I think of more things to add. That is the problem with someone like me reviewing things, I’m very chatty and like to mention everything I can think of that might be useful for you, my readers to know. :o)
The Motorola Defy Mini is described as being ‘lifeproof‘ as the screen is made from tough Corning Gorilla Glass that will resist scratches and all the sockets (usb, headphone) have special little rubber plugs to block them off so that dust and even water doesn’t get in to them. A phone that should hopefully withstand you making a phone call in the lovely wet weather that we always enjoy here in the UK…now that is a phone that we could all do with! I will say that I haven’t actually tested out the waterproofness of this phone…but by making sure that I always put the rubber bungs back over the usb slot etc I am quietly confident it would survive me talking on it in a rainstorm :o) If you look on You Tube you will find lots of people dropping their Defy Mini phones in water to prove they are waterproof. I’m just too much of a scaredy-cat and I like my phone too much to try and drown it.
- It is easy to make a phone call. The volume is just right and the calls are crystal clear. This to me has to be the most important aspect of a phone. I love that the phone has all the other extras like camera, radio etc but the ability to make an ‘essential call’ without any problems will always be the most important thing to me. You can add the a phone shortcut to one of your home screens which is great as it means you don’t have to scroll through a menu to call someone.
- The phone runs Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) which doesn’t mean all that much to me I’m afraid. Whatever it means, the phone is just right for me. :o)
- The battery on this smart phone lasts for ages in comparison to other smart phones. This is really vital as when you are a busy mum it is all to easy to forget to keep charging your phone every couple of nights and thankfully you can rely on the phone battery in the Defy Mini to hold it’s charge. Even when you use the internet, use apps and make calls the battery still lasts ages. I am going on holiday soon and I am happy that I can rely on my phone battery to last the duration of the travelling day even with me and my daughter playing on my games and apps during the journey.
- The contacts list is easy to look through and it has a ‘search bar’ to make it easy to find the person you are looking for. If you want to save a new contact you go to the phone tab, input the number, press the button I highlighted in the above photo, select add a new contact and then choose where you want to store it (google contacts, sim card or on the phone). I always save my numbers to the sim card in case I ever have to swap the sim card into someone else’s phone. There is an option of having the phone add a list of ‘most called’ contacts to one of your 7 home screens and you can either choose these contacts yourself or let the phone do it for you instead by noting who you call most often and then putting those numbers on your screen. I just opted to choose the names myself though.
- It is easy to download apps from the Google Play store but you will need to use an existing google email address or create one so that you can use the app store. This isn’t a problem as such except for some reason you have to always be logged in to the account on your phone. I have tried to log out of the account but I can’t find a way to do this so that means that if someone clicked on the ‘gmail’ app they could see my emails. I have tried un-syncing everything but that doesn’t change anything. You still stay logged in. It’s not a problem to me though as I have created an email address solely for my android phone use and so I never receive any emails in that account anyway. :o) The app store is absolutely packed full of free and paid for aps and I love spending time downloading new apps to the phone! So far I have downloaded the following:- Hootsuite, Burger, Cake Craze, Flashlight, Solitaire, Ebay and much more. It is easy to delete apps if you no longer want them…all you have to do is hold down the ‘app’ icon of your choice and it will pop up with uninstall. Nice and simple.
- I love how easy it is to upload music to the phone. The phone charger has a removable data cable , just like you get on other phones such as the iphone, and all you do is connect the phone to your computer using a usb port and then add the music to the DCIM (memory card) folder on the phone. I have copied lots of music to my Motorola Defy and my daughter loves listening to her kid’s songs on the phone. Some of the songs will even display lyrics on the screen when it is playing. I’m currently singing along to Adele – Make you feel my love.
- The camera is great at taking photos of still objects in daylight but not the best I have seen at taking photos of children that don’t stay still for the camera for very long. The camera does work well and the photos can be quite clear if you spend some time altering the settings to take a good photo. It has a 3 MP camera with a fixed-focus plus it has an LED flash and digital zoom. The resolution is up to 2048 x 1536 and there is a front-facing camera so you can take photos of yourself or use it for Skype or Tango, etc. If I was looking for a phone with a top of the range camera then this would not be the phone for me but that is not what I am looking for. I am looking for a phone which is easy to use with the option of going on the internet, good battery life and the ability to download apps. I’ve found all of those things in the Motorola Defy Mini. The camera to me is just an added extra and at the end of the day it does take clear pictures that are good enough for what I would need which is uploading to the blog or sending as a picture message.
- The Motorola Defy Mini comes with a 2 GB Micro SD card but I am now finding that with all my downloaded songs and apps on the phone I am running out of space so I have just ordered myself a 32 GB memory card to use in the phone. The memory card will be worth the money as it should allow me to store lots of new apps on it. I can’t wait to download some more free games apps in the Google Play store! :o)
- The on-screen keyboard is okay to use but if I am absolutely honest I do struggle a little with pressing the letters. I have got better with time but now I have it sussed……I bought a special stylus on ebay for £2 and it has made using the keypad a breeze! It’s basically a little pen shaped device with a soft pad on the end that you use instead of pressing the letters with your fingers. I so wish I’d known you could buy a stylus sooner. Don’t get me wrong, I am perfectly able to type on the on-screen keyboard without the stylus but I do have to type quite slowly. I have now discovered when I use a stylus I can type super quick! Just what I wanted. The on-screen keyboard can be set as normal (android) or Swype. I haven’t really tried the Swype keyboard yet but maybe when I have some spare time I’ll give it a go in case I get on with that better than the usual keyboard.
- The phone has a calendar and up until today I hadn’t actually entered any dates in my diary but now that I have I think I will use it quite often to write down my appointments, things to do, etc. The next up-coming event in your diary is even visible on your locked screen which to be honest I am not too keen on. I can’t seem to see an option to remove this from the locked screen but if I find a way to remove it , I shall. Some people might find it useful to see the next diary appointment at a glance but I would prefer not to. I wouldn’t want anyone to be able to glance at my locked phone and still be able to see my personal plans. The calender allows you to set reminders which is a useful feature.
- I am pleased that the phone has an alarm feature on it. This is always handy when you are on holiday without your reminder call from your home phone or when you don’t have an alarm clock. You can set a few different alarms at any one time.
- There are loads of different ringtones to choose from. I think there is a ringtone to suit each and every one of you. I have picked my all time favourite to use on my phone – ‘Hello MOTO’!! I used to have it on one of my old phones from a few years back, the Motorola Razr and I missed the dancy little tune. You can hear the ringtone in this video here –
- The screen is locked by pressing the button at the top of the phone and it is also unlocked in the same way but you also need to swipe through the unlock button on the screen. The locked screen has a button that allows you to use the camera and there is also an option to swipe the phone from ‘ringing on’ to ‘silent’. I like that you can do this easily from the locked screen but my only niggle is that sometimes the phone can accidentally be turned to silent when you have the phone in your bag as something in your bag swipes against it…except you don’t realise until you look at your phone and see missed call or you notice that vibrate/silent is highlighted instead of ‘ringing on’. The only way I have found to combat this is by keep checking my phone. If I could remove this option from the locked screen then I would.
- The ring volume is controlled by a rocking button on the side of the phone and this same button also controls the media volume when you are playing apps or watching a program on You Tube.
- I have downloaded a free torch app for my phone and I love that this gives me the ability to turn the flash on and use it as a flashlight. Very useful for finding your dropped car keys in the dark!
There is so much more I could say about this phone but I would be sitting here all day writing. If you have any particular questions please feel free to ask them in the comments and I will help you out with an answer if I can. :o)
Here is a link to the full instruction manual for the Motorola Defy Mini. I’m now going to go and have a read of it to see what features I have left as yet undiscovered on my new gadget. :o)
Like I said at the beginning, this phone is fantastic. I am so grateful to have received this for review. I can highly recommend it to all you busy mums out there who want a phone that is easy to use and reliable. It is a smart-looking smart phone that is robust and built to last.
You can buy the Motorola Defy Mini from lots of different stockists and the price does vary a lot depending on where you shop. The cheapest I found so far was Unlocked Mobiles who are selling it for £138.97. They are a stockist that is mentioned on the Motorola Stockist page under the button ‘How To Buy’.
A big thanks to Motorola for sending me the phone to review and the same goes to all of you for taking the time to read this post.
If you do decide to purchase this phone…… I hope you enjoy using it.
* Please note that this is an honest review of the phone and it is all my own personal opinion.