Motorola MOTOSURF A3100 mobile phone

The TelstraOne Experience interface makes Motorola's MOTOSURF A3100 one of the more pleasant Windows Mobile smartphones to use

Motorola MOTOSURF A3100
  • Motorola MOTOSURF A3100
  • Motorola MOTOSURF A3100
  • Motorola MOTOSURF A3100
  • Expert Rating

    3.75 / 5

Pros

  • Curved design, trackball, TelstraOne Experience interface, responsive touch screen, 3.5mm headphone jack, HSDPA, Wi-Fi, GPS

Cons

  • Mediocre screen resolution, text input is frustrating

Bottom Line

Motorola's MOTOSURF A3100 is one of the most pleasant to use Windows Mobile devices we've tested. The screen is mediocre when compared to other phones and text entry will frustrate, but the TelstraOne Experience and Moto Homescreen skins make this smartphone intuitive to use.

Would you buy this?

Exclusively available on Telstra's Next G network, Motorola's MOTOSURF A3100 is a competent touch-screen smartphone that features the new TelstraOne Experience interface. TelstraOne Experience aims to simplify access to the most popular applications and services and it makes the Windows Mobile operating system less painful to use.

We love the way the Motorola MOTOSURF A3100 fits into the palm of your hand. It has a similar shape to the iPhone, but the edges are much more curved. The phone is finished in a combination of brushed metal and plastic, with the gloss black plastic that surrounds the display and the silver edging looking distinctly iPhone-like.

The Motorola MOTOSURF A3100 has a resistive 2.8in touch screen and includes a stylus for input, along with a trackball that looks very similar to the one found on the BlackBerry Pearl. The screen is responsive and most actions can be performed without the stylus or the trackball, but it has a low resolution and possesses poor viewing angles. When compared to most current phones, it comes off looking decidedly second-rate.

The MOTOSURF A3100 runs the Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional operating system, so it includes productivity features such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint document viewers, a PDF reader and Microsoft ActiveSync.

TelstraOne Experience features a range of commonly accessed applications on the interactive home screen, including quick shortcuts to contacts, call history, Web browser, e-mail, messaging, Telstra services and a shortcut menu. Most Windows Mobile interfaces simply feel like a layer over the top of the frustrating operating system, but the TelstraOne Experience completely transforms the usability of the MOTOSURF A3100 and means you will rarely need to use the Start menu.

The transitions between the screens are smooth and responsive. Users can swipe through applets, scroll through lists and drag and drop icons in certain shortcut menus. You can also customise what applets, applications and services are accessible. If you choose not to use TelstraOne Experience, the Moto Homescreen is also a great option. The default home screen offers access to calls, settings, messages, e-mails and appointments. There are icon carousels at the bottom of the screen that can be flicked through to access contacts, Internet shortcuts, weather, pictures and videos, favourites and Telstra's My Place.

Unfortunately, messaging on the MOTOSURF A3100 is mediocre. Motorola has included an on-screen keyboard that is much larger than the default Windows Mobile keyboard, but despite the predictive text feature we found typing messages with any sort of accuracy to be a frustrating experience. For effective text messaging or e-mailing you'll need to use the stylus.

The MOTOSURF A3100 is a capable multimedia phone, though the poor resolution of the display detracts from its use as a video player. Despite this, streaming mobile Foxtel through the Telstra portal was surprisingly effective. The phone has a standard 3.5mm headphone jack and a 3-megapixel camera with flash that captures reasonable photos. The MOTOSURF A3100 also includes a front-mounted VGA camera for video calling and has the A2DP Bluetooth profile (so you can listen to music with wireless headphones, for example).

Mobile Internet browsing is efficient, largely thanks to the inclusion of Opera Mobile. Though not as intuitive as Safari on the iPhone, the browser is quick and responsive and it is a huge improvement over the standard Internet Explorer Mobile. Opera automatically displays full-screen Web pages and renders pages well, including images. Speeds when using the Next G network were impressive. The MOTOSURF A3100 is an HSDPA 7.2Mbps mobile, and it also includes Wi-Fi and GPS.

Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?