Vodafone 845 review

Android 2.1 stuffed in a budget package

Vodafone 845
The definitive Vodafone 845 verdict

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If you're used to using some of the more capable Android phones, the one thing that will be immediately apparent about the web experience on the Vodafone 845 is the lack of a capacitive multi-touch screen, so there's no pinching to zoom.

On a 2.8-inch screen, there's not really much room to showcase a web page in any great detail. Pages open with the top third of the site visible, with a double tap zooming out to show everything you'd usually see above the fold.

Vodafone 845

You can obviously use the zoom controls and scan around the page using the touchscreen, but it's not quite the same.

That's not to say it's a bad browser. The WebKit Android browser is very intuitive, easy to use and logical.

When typing in the URL bar, there's a dedicated "www.*.com" key, which highlights the cursor on the star character, allowing you to just type the site name and you're good to go. That's a really neat, time saving feature.

Frustratingly it's a feature of the TouchPal keypad, rather than the Android keypad, so pick your poison there.

You're also just one touch away from bookmarks and most visited pages, which are highlighted as a neat icon of the last impression you visited.

Bookmarks is also a handy widget to dedicate one of your 35 Home screens to, but you'll have to delete all the Vodafone nonsense from there if you want your actual bookmarks to appear at the top of the menu, instead of languishing beneath the network's news services.

Vodafone 845

The phone comes loaded with Vodafone's Live 360 web service as a homepage, and the My Web custom Vodafone icon rather than the Android browser.

That's something you can dispense of from your Home screen instantly. Does anyone actually use these bespoke network web services? At least we're not burdened with Vodafone's hopelessly desperate 360 social networking interface on this device

A pleasant surprise when we plugged the device into our PC was the opportunity to use the phone as a mobile broadband dongle. It's extremely simple to set up and the interface is extremely similar to that of your dedicated mobile broadband dongles.

Vodafone 845

It will cost £15 a month extra for a 3GB of data though, which refuses to allow voice calling data or file sharing. Boooo!

Sadly the phone doesn't support Adobe Flash, so there's that rules out enjoyment of a good few web pages and a hell of a lot of web video.

Chris Smith

A technology journalist, writer and videographer of many magazines and websites including T3, Gadget Magazine and TechRadar.com. He specializes in applications for smartphones, tablets and handheld devices, with bylines also at The Guardian, WIRED, Trusted Reviews and Wareable. Chris is also the podcast host for The Liverpool Way. As well as tech and football, Chris is a pop-punk fan and enjoys the art of wrasslin'.