The newly released Nextel i85s includes Sun Microsystem's Java 2 Micro Edition (J2ME) software. The Java environment offers developers to create customized applications for all industries - all available from a phone. As new applications are developed, users will be able to download them to their phones from the Nextel.com Web site. Applications actually reside on the phone and are not network dependent. The phone we reviewed came with version 1.0 of the software and included an expense pad (for storing travel expenses), a calculator, and a Sega game.
Similar to PDAs and other all-in-one models, the i85s can connect to company networks through the Nextel Mobile Office E-mail service, offering workers access to their office e-mail, phone lists, and calendars from their phones. Employers can, using the MyView feature, custom tailor which sites employees can visit and the information to which individual workers have access on individual phones. By the time of publication, the software will be upgraded to a more secure platform (including SSL) that Nextel hopes will encourage more business owners to give workers access to their networks from the phones.
This line of Nextel models is for busy professionals who need to stay in touch all day, in all locations. Nextel is shooting for a complete all-in-one device. The Nextel solution to the wireless communications conundrum may just be a better bet than what the Palm OS and PocketPC platforms have yet to offer.
Nextel i85sRating: 95
Manufacturer: Nextel Communications Inc.;
Configuration: Battery time: 75 hours standby time, 3 hours of talk time; supports WAP (wireless application protocol) in addition to new Java technology; PIM (phone and date books); voice recorder (memos/notes); voice-activated dialing; speakerphone; one-year limited hardware warranty
Pros: Easy to use and navigate through features; great user's guide
Cons: Problem with battery