The Acer M900 is the third handset of the quartet announced by Acer after it took over the Glofiish brand of Windows Mobile smart phones last year and it's the chunkiest of the bunch thanks to its slide-out QWERTY keyboard.

But while its box-like proportions won't win any beauty contests, it's still a well-specced device for a relatively modest price, with quad-band network connectivity, 5 megapixel camera, 3.8-inch LCD touch screen, A-GPS, Wi-Fi and FM radio.

It also livens up the basic Windows Mobile 6.1 OS with the Acer Shell user interface, which looks good and is easy to use without the need to resort to the stylus.

Acer's first phone, the DX900, had a quirky feature in the shape of its dual SIM capability, and the M900 also has an attention-grabbing conversation piece with its fingerprint sensor, of the kind you're more likely to find on some laptops, which protects it from being accessed by anyone with the wrong fingerprint.

Design

Like the other Acer phones we've seen thus far, the M900 is no beauty queen. Sober and functional are the watch words, which is all well and good on a business-oriented phone, but when the likes of HTC and Nokia are producing phones with both business smarts and style, that approach is starting to look a little dated.

Acer m900

The M900 is the biggest of the bunch, due mainly to its slide-out QWERTY keyboard, measuring 119x62x17mm and a pocket-sagging 188g – it's quite a handful, and is even slightly bigger than HTC's recent brick, the Touch Pro2.

Fortunately, Acer bundles it with a leather belt clip, which should help save your suits any unnecessary wear and tear

Acer m900

Around the sides are a power button, a programmable key which defaults to voice control, hard reset button, camera shutter button, mini USB socket, microSD card slot with plastic cover and a jog wheel. On the bottom is the slot for the stylus, which is metal, telescopic and of pretty good quality.

On the front is the impressively large 3.8in touch screen, with speaker, VGA camera for video calls and a light sensor above it, while underneath there's just enough room for call start and stop buttons, back button, GPS services shortcut key and a touch-sensitive nav pad cum fingerprint sensor (more on that later).

There's a chunky flash of chrome-look trim running all the way around the sides and there's a metallic back plate for access to the battery and SIM card. Just above this on the back is a large protruding roundel which contains the 5 megapixel camera lens, LED flash and loudspeaker.