Motorola Dext MB200 review

Is this Android offering enough to save the ailing brand?

The definitive Motorola Dext review
The definitive Motorola Dext review

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We're sure Motorola would love to take credit for the browser functionality, but it's very hard to see beyond the excellent Android browser.

Internet browsing on the Android platform has always been one of the best mobile experiences on the market, and that is thankfully mimicked on the Motorola Dext.

The springy and responsive screen lets you move web pages around as easily as if you were using a mouse, and the zooming in and out, admittedly not as good as multi-touch pinch and zoom, still works well.

Motorola dext

The internet on the Dext will give easy access to full HTML options, and the phone has a similar smart-fit ability to the HTC Hero, with text quickly resized at the correct column size even after zooming in heavily.

There's also an easy option to resize back to the normal zoom level thanks to the '1x' virtual button in the bottom right hand corner, and the excellent mini-magnifier mode is there once more.

The latter is a particularly cool function as it allows users to drag a little pane around a highly zoomed-out view of the web page to find the text you want, before automatically focusing back in on it.

Motorola dext

The Motorola Dext can also handle multiple web pages, with a nice animation for each change showing the new windows opening a new pane. These panes can be accessed through the menu button, giving users easy access to all the pages they currently have open.

We had six open at once at one point, with no hint of slowdown if you're only using the web browser – start listening to some music, though, and things start to judder a bit.

The Motorola Dext, through the Android 1.5 Cupcake update, also features intelligent bookmarking as well. When holding down the back key (for quite some time, it has to be noted) new tabs are brought up, with bookmarks, most visited and history all listed for your prodding pleasure.

Motorola dext

This screen can also be seen when heading through the bookmarks option, although it's not a patch on the visual bookmarks from HTC on the Hero.

Copy and paste is also supported, activated by opening the menu and choosing to select text. There's no option to just hold down the screen to call up a menu to copy and paste, so you have to navigate through a series of menus. The accuracy isn't the best at normal screen sizes, so if you really need some text then it's best to zoom in heavily.

Motorola dext

There's no Flash support, unlike the HTC Hero, so the Dext doesn't quite manage to duke it out with the best Android phone just yet – it may get updated in the future, but given the excellent YouTube application it's not necessarily missed that much just yet.

If you click a video link you'll get asked if you want to try and view it in the Browser or YouTube – it's a simple pop up that's been around on most Android handsets for a while, but we still love it.

Other Android phones let you share pages to Facebook, Twitter or other locations from the menu, but you can only share these sites to email and text on the Motorola Dext – considering the integration with Facebook and Twitter we can't understand this decision.

Motorola dext

Another real problem we encountered was the inability to download – well, anything. A long press on internet pictures will bring up a menu asking to save or view the image – but when we asked to save it, the Dext simply told us that the download was unsuccessful. Whether there are some settings we accidentally disturbed that stopped us being able to download we don't know.

The internet experience on the Motorola Dext is very good thanks to a great Android browser and the screen responsiveness puts it on a par with the iPhone, with the superb mobile Safari application on the iPhone, and easily the peer of the HTC Hero and Magic in terms of speed and performance.

Gareth Beavis
Formerly Global Editor in Chief

Gareth has been part of the consumer technology world in a career spanning three decades. He started life as a staff writer on the fledgling TechRadar, and has grown with the site (primarily as phones, tablets and wearables editor) until becoming Global Editor in Chief in 2018. Gareth has written over 4,000 articles for TechRadar, has contributed expert insight to a number of other publications, chaired panels on zeitgeist technologies, presented at the Gadget Show Live as well as representing the brand on TV and radio for multiple channels including Sky, BBC, ITV and Al-Jazeera. Passionate about fitness, he can bore anyone rigid about stress management, sleep tracking, heart rate variance as well as bemoaning something about the latest iPhone, Galaxy or OLED TV.