Dell has been well known to a be PC manufacturer and it is interesting that it had joined in the smartphone foray with the launch of Dell Streak – a 5 inch smartphone/tablet on early 2011.
One interesting fact is that it is marketed as a smartphone in the US/Europe but as a tablet in Singapore, which I guess it may be a good move since Singaporeans are so ‘tablet-obsessed’ ever since the launch of iPad and no one accepts any other smartphone than the i.
The 1st question that came to our mind when we receive the handset is – Why 5 inch? In our opinion, it is too big a phone compared to HTC Desire HD, but too small as a ‘full-fledged’ tablet as compared to Samsung Galaxy Tab.
As for handling it, we have to say that it is a little too big for us to handle it with 1 hands, as what we usually do with our mobiles. I guess that it is a right move that Dell market it as a tablet instead of a smartphone for this device.
It took 40 seconds to start up, which was a reasonable timing for us to wait.
Comparison with the ‘benchmark’ HTC Nexus One
The Dell Streak comes with the ‘almost latest’ Android 2.2 (Froyo), which we have no complains for it as there’s only 2 Google phones that runs on 2.3 anyway.
As per every handset manufacturers that adopted Android, they will skin it with their own proprietary software to differentiate themselves, in this case for Dell – Dell Stage.
What I like about Dell Stage is that is does not give an overhaul to the home screen and it retained the original ‘favour’ of the Android platform, but of course this may be a statement that comes from the developers view. It is easy to understand and get the hang of it and it certainly make full use of the widgets screen appropriately.
Browsing the apps when you click on the apps drawer button shows you a rather ‘Apple-ish’ apps display -where you swipe left and right to browse for your apps. This may come as a good news for those who had switch from iPhone to Android (Welcome!)
There is a particular feature which I enjoyed about the Dell Stage – when you swipe across the bottom of the screen , you can browse and navigate the 7 screens without lifting your fingers! It is a simple feature, but we deemed it useful for people who are as lazy as us who do not bother to lift our fingers at all.
After using it for several days, having a 5 inch smartphone/tablet is useful if you like to read/surf/browse a lot when you are on the move, and are not bothered to carry a super-thick cardboard on your hands with the risk of misplacing it.
However, it may take some time for you to get used to the 5 inch size and once you got over that, there should not be much issue.
Dell Streak is now exclusively available with StarHub Mobile in 2 colours – Red & Black at S$398.00 with a 2 year SmartSurf 100 contract plan.