Cell phones are just as much about sending text messages as they are about making regular voice calls, and as such, QWERTY cell phones have become much more popular in recent years. Cell Phones with QWERTY keyboards are highly functional in that they recreate the experience that you would have sitting in front of a computer keyboard, making it much more efficient to send longer messages. For business users, for example, keeping in touch with the office via mobile emails is an absolute breeze when equipped with a QWERTY cell phone.
Not sure what a QWERTY cell phone is in the first place? Well, these are mobile phones that come with keypads that mimic that on a computer. They are called QWERTY keyboards because if you look down at your computer keyboard, you will notice that the top row of keys spells QWERTY. But which phone is best for you?
Three Styles of QWERTY Cell Phones
Generally speaking, there are three different styles of QWERTY cell phones available on the market, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. Choosing the right form factor is largely a matter of personal preference, so go to a store and get a feel for each of the different types.
PDA Bar Style Phones
Several of the most popular examples of QWERTY cell phones used by those in the business community are those that have a typical PDA shape. This means that they do not have any moving parts, per se, in order to gain access to all the main features. You don't need to flip, swivel, twist, or slide any component. Instead, the large color display and full QWERTY keyboard are easily accessible right from the face of the phone.
Some common examples of this kind of QWERTY cell phone are the Motorola Q, Samsung BlackJack, and most BlackBerry models. The main advantage to this type of handset is that everything is easily accessible, and in the case of the Motorola Q and Samsung Blackjack, you can achieve a relatively slim profile as well. The downside is that the footprint or dimensions of the phone must be on the larger end of things in order to accommodate the screen and the keyboard.
Flip Style QWERTY Phones
Just as more people today use regular clamshells and flip phones than ever before -- some say that this trend started with the Motorola RAZR -- many companies are starting to release a good variety of flip-style QWERTY handsets. The LG enV from Verizon Wireless, for example, is a hot item among teens and other hip, younger users because it gives the utility of a conventional candybar phone when in its closed position, but then you can also open it up like a book with the left-aligned hinge to reveal another full color display as well as a QWERTY keyboard. You'll need to turn the phone on its side and use it much like a tiny laptop.On the upside, these phones maintain a smaller form factor and are much more pocketable than bar-style handsets like the Motorola Q. On the downside, these phones are usually very thick, and given the rising popularity of ultra-slim mobile phones, it may be difficult to accommodate thicker phones. The internal color display may also be significantly smaller than bar style phones.
Slide-Out QWERTY Keyboards
The third main style of QWERTY cell phone features a slide-out keyboard. The most popular versions of these are typically created by High-Tech Computer (HTC) of Taiwan, and the rebranded by a number of different carriers and brands. In the United States, you'll find versions like the Cingular 8525 and the T-Mobile MDA. In some ways, slider phones like these marry the biggest advantages of bar style phones (large color display) with the advantages of a flip phone (slightly smaller dimensions). Like the flip-style QWERTY cell phones, however, sliding handsets can be on the thick side as well.
Other QWERTY Cell Phones
The three above styles are what you'll find most commonly, but there are also other alternatives. One of the best known is the swivel/rotate mechanism found on the T-Mobile Sidekick 3. This is similar to the slide-out phones described above. Another alternative is a touchscreen phone like the Apple iPhone
Shop around and you'll surely find the best QWERTY cell phone for you. There are lots of options out there!