written by: Robert Faustus•edited by: Simon Hill•updated: 5/19/2011
The Motorola Cliq 2 is the successor to the original Motorola Cliq. Designed to once again target the mid tier and teenage market this smartphone is packed with features, but does it have what it takes to stand on its own in a highly competitive market in the U.S.?
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The Motorola Cliq 2 is the successor to the somewhat popular Motorola Cliq. Like its predecessor, the Cliq 2 is available from T-Mobile in the U.S. The Motorola Cliq 2 has upgraded in quite a few ways from the original. The Motorola Cliq 2 does still have a design that seems to be aimed towards the mid market, and the teenage market, but it is also attractive enough to appear higher end and classier than its predecessor.
Motorola Cliq 2 Specifications:
Dimensions: 4.58 x 2.35 x 0.58 inches (116 x 60 x 14.9 mm)
Weight: 6.25 oz (177 g)
Display: 3.7 inch LCD capacitive touchscreen display, 480 x 854 pixels
The Motorola Cliq 2 has a very similar design to its predecessor, the biggest difference being that the Cliq 2 looks to be a bit more upscale. It has a beautiful silver border around the black face of the phone. The 3.7 inch LCD screen dominates the front of the phone. The 3.7 inch display of the Motorola Cliq 2 is actually quite vibrant and has a decent view angle. Below the display are the four familiar Android shortcuts for menu, home, back and search, all capacitive buttons.
To the right edge of the phone resides a mute slider, the volume rocker, and a dedicated camera button. Opposite, on the left resides the microUSB. On top are the 3.5 mm headphone jack and the power / lock button. Rounding out the rubberized back of the Motorola Cliq 2 is the 5 megapixel camera with dual LED, and the speakers for the phone.
Slide the display over and you'll be met with a physical full QWERTY keyboard, with quite an interesting design. Spider-Man would be proud of the Motorola Cliq 2's QWERTY keyboard. It's an interesting design, giving the keyboard a unique spider web look with jagged lines. The design is definitely catering more for the younger generation that the Motorola Cliq 2 is targeting.
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Hardware and Software
The Motorola Cliq 2 comes with an ultra fast 1 GHz processor, which is not new in the highly competitive smartphone market. It's a definite upgrade from the original Motorola Cliq and puts it in a competitive position to take on smartphones such as the Samsung Epic 4G and Motorola Droid X. Running on this powerful processor is a preloaded version of Android 2.2 with Motorola's third party proprietary overlay, MotoBLUR. The Motorola Cliq 2 also has storage up to 1 GB internal and is preloaded with a 2 GB microSD card. The Motorola Cliq 2 can use up to a 32 GB microSD card for storage.
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The Motorola Cliq 2 has an easy to use interface thanks to it having Android 2.2. MotoBLUR has definitely been lightened, no longer making the phone seem claustrophobic with the amount of information layered onto the home screens. The larger screen also helps, unlike the Motorola Charm which had a much smaller screen. The cleaned up MotoBLUR, in conjunction with Android 2.2, gives the Motorola Cliq 2 a nice, clean interface, very similar to all other Android powered handsets. It is a bit disappointing that the Cliq 2 does not come with Android 2.3, however.
The full QWERTY keyboard, while having a unique design, is not very well laid out for use. The keys have very little room between them, and there is an empty space on the sides to help grip the phone. It would have been nicer to add some spacing between the keys as the keyboard seems very cramped. The keys are also just slightly bubbled up and provide little to no tactile feedback. For a smartphone that is touting the QWERTY keyboard, the Motorola Cliq 2 has made the keyboard just a bulky annoyance.
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The Motorola Cliq 2 comes loaded with the usual Android goodies, including the Android Market, allowing you to access thousands of applications and games. The Motorola Cliq 2 also comes with Adobe Flash Player, meaning you can play Flash video on your web browser and load Flash embedded sites. The Flash videos do come out choppy, however, and if you plan on watching Flash videos, you may want to stray away from using the Cliq 2. It also has the ability to become a mobile 3G hotspot, like many of its competitors. Unfortunately, it does not have 4G capabilities.
The Cliq 2 also comes with FM radio and the 5 megapixel camera with dual LED flash. The pictures on the Motorola Cliq 2 are decent, but do still come out a bit artificial looking. The dual LED flash definitely comes in handy for night shots or slightly shaky shots. The dedicated camera button also helps in grabbing that special moment when you can't find your digital camera.
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The Final Verdict
Overall the Motorola Cliq 2 ranks in as an 'Average' phone in today's highly competitive market. Motorola has been on a rampage launching some amazing smartphones but the Motorola Cliq 2 would not be considered a part of that machine. The Cliq 2 seems to be a break from the harder hitting smartphones, which could be why it's being released on T-Mobile's network. The Motorola Cliq 2 doesn't have access to T-Mobile's 4G (HSPA+) network, which could have been a big differentiator for the phone. However, even with all the flaws, like its predecessor, the Motorola Cliq 2 will have a place in many teenage hearts as a feature filled smartphone with a full, uniquely designed, QWERTY keyboard for texting friends.