UBiQUiO – 503G review

bulky PDA with touch-screen and mini keyboard
Photo of UBiQUiO – 503G

The UBiQUiO 503G is a Windows Mobile 6 Professional PDA. It is brimming with features and – very unusually for a Windows Mobile device with a touch-screen – incorporates a miniature QWERTY keyboard on its front fascia. More usually these types of keyboards are found on non-touch-screen, Windows Mobile 6 Standard PDAs.

The presence of the keyboard means this is quite a bulky device. It measures 123mm tall, 65mm wide and 17mm thick, and weighs 157g. The screen is relatively small at just 2.4 diagonal inches, with by far the bulk of the front fascia given over to the keyboard and a bank of shortcut buttons that allow you to do things like jump to contacts or your e-mail.

A scroll wheel on the left-hand edge is accompanied by a Back button and you can use the pair together to move through lists of items on screen such as e-mails or SMS listings.

The device supports 3G with HSDPA, allowing for data download speeds at up to 3.6Mbps where your network supports that speed. It’ll drop down to GPRS and GSM as required, and is quad-band GSM so should work throughout the world.

There is a front-facing camera for video calling and a 2-megapixel camera on the back of the casing for shooting stills. This lacks self-portrait mirror, autofocus or flash, but does have a manual switch that will pop it into macro mode for close-up shots. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are both built in, and the UBiQUiO 503G will even send stereo output to a Bluetooth headset.

A 520MHz processor ensures that the device put in a fair turn of speed during testing. With a reported 43MB of storage you may find yourself in need of a microSD card if you want to store lots of data, for example music files. The slot is readily accessible on the right-hand edge of the casing and has a protective cover.

Very unusually these days, the UBiQUiO 503G comes with a docking cradle. These were once all the rage but have slipped out of fashion. Their great advantage is that you can sit your PDA in it and it can both charge and synchronise while it sits at an upright angle so that you can see its screen. This is a big advantage over leaving your PDA or smartphone resting flat on a desk, particularly if you like to glance at it for information from time to time.

Company: UBiQUiO

Contact: 0161 918 3473

Overall, the UBiQUiO 503G is a well specified device. It is a bit of a beast for the pocket, but those who find some PDAs a little small and fiddly should appreciate the large keyboard.