HP iPAQ Data Messenger £500

15th Jan 2009 | 10:51

HP iPAQ Data Messenger

Sleek smartphone with some interesting features

TechRadar rating:

3.5 stars

Despite a couple of minor complaints, we found this a good-looking and well-featured smartphone


Controls are a pleasure to use; Power save mode; Looks great; Slide-out keyboard


No 3.5mm headphone socket; No front-facing camera for video calling

HP's iPAQ Data Messenger will appear first via Vodafone and later on should be available SIM- and contract-free.

HP has tried to come up with a device which covers the bases but also innovates.

So there are the usual smartphone features of Wi-Fi and GPS here alongside a couple of neat extras.

Touch-sensitive controls

One is a power save mode that can be set to kick in at low battery status to conserve energy. Another is the optical navigation pad.

Much smaller than a standard D-pad, you swipe your finger around it for cursor movement. It is responsive, and using the full finger pad means you can complete long sweeps in one motion.

We also like the minimalist front fascia design. Underneath the 2.8 inch screen are just Start menu and OK buttons – again touch-sensitive.

Nifty keyboard

The HP iPAQ Data Messenger is aimed at those who need to use data while on the move. A sliding keyboard helps out in this respect. Its keys are slightly concave, which we suppose is meant to help you with accuracy and speed. There are two flaws though.

Despite being 3G, there is no front-facing camera for two-way video calling. Just a standard 3.1 megapixel camera with autofocus. And the side-mounted headset jack is 2.5mm. We really think 3.5mm should be a universal standard by now.

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