The Dell Streak, I have been looking forward to trying out this little beauty, and I know a lot of you have been eager to read a review of it. I am extremely impressed with the device and everyone else that played with it (specifically at the HTC Wildfire Launch Party) also liked the look and feel of it. I hope I cover most things in this here review, if not, please leave a comment so we can get a discussion going 🙂
Click “Read More” to get into it!
- Desktop browsing (no mobile sites needed)
- Quite fluid
- Great on-screen keyboard
- It looks sleek
- Well designed UI
- Front-facing Camera
- Android 1.6
- No trackball/trackpad
- Multitouch only in the Browser
- Proprietary USB connection
- 1530mAh Battery (LG Optimus has 1500mAh)
Unboxing & Design
Dell has done everything they can to make everything about this device look sleek yet playful. The box is larger than the typical box as it needs to accommodate the larger device. As you will find with everything related to the device (box & accessories), it’s all dark and sleek . The use of a dark background and vibrant colours looks ver nice.
In the box are the following:
- Dell Streak
- 1540mAh Battery
- Proprietary USB Cable
- Wall Charger
- In-Ear Earphones (w/ Call Answer/End button & mic)
- Instruction Manual/Health & Safety Manual etc..
The Streak is extremely sleek, as I keep saying, and fits very well into your hands. Each button is placed nicely to where you normally hold the device, so not much stretching is needed to reach the power & volume buttons placed on the side of the device. The first thing people thought of when they played with it was: “wow, it’s kind of like the iPad”. And they’re right, it kind of is, but it’s much smaller and can make calls.
The screen is made from toughened Gorilla Glass and if you’re not familiar with it, check out the video from Engadget below.
As usual, this is where all the buttons are located:
- Menu (Long press for search)
- Front facing Camera
- Ambient light sensor & proximity sensor
- Right Side
- Power/Lock button
- Volume Rocker
- Camera button
- 3.5mm Headphone jack
- Left Side
- Proprietary USB input
- 5MP Camera
- Dell logo
- Dual LED Flash
The Streak features a 5″ TFT display which is nothing short of amazing, it’s amazingly clear given the 800×480 resolution. Personally I would have liked to have seen the res bumped a bit more, but it’s no big deal. The viewing angle is quite decent, allowing you to use it perfectly as an in-car GPS system or watch movies on the go. I did have some problems with the display not completely turning off when you lock it. When you look at it you can still notice it being on but with no back light.
Does this baby have Multitouch? Yes, but only in the browser. Although it’s only implemented in the browser at present, it’s exceptionally smooth, once it’s implemented system wide it should be amazing. Android 2.1, anyone?
The screen is very responsive but it held back by the subtle lag of Android 1.6. I could tell Dell has tried to eliminate lag where possible, but scrolling though the home screens makes the lag seem apparent. Other than that it’s very responsive.
I don’t believe Dell has a name for the UI, but they should. It’s clean, efficient and it’s not over the top like Sense UI. It’s basically Vanilla Android with a new layout to better suit the larger display and a new colour scheme to match the device. I give Dell a massive thumbs up for their work here as it’s brilliant, I’m really impressed.
Dell have implemented a few of their own widgets as well, such as: Facebook, Twitter & RSS. All of which work very well, with basic interfaces to update
The Dell Streak at the moment running 1.6 isn’t the fastest device on the planet, but you have to remember that 1.6 does not feature hardware acceleration.
Note: Higher is better on Linpack & Neocore. Lower is better on BenchmarkPi.
|SE Xperia X10||3.881||7061ms||29.5fps|
|Samsung Galaxy S||8.406||2793ms||54.6fps|
|SE X10 Mini||N/A||11484ms||42.9fps|
Although quite large, the Streak can indeed make calls, and I had no problems with clarity or anything like that. I don’t recommend the Streak for people who will just use it for calls due to the large form factor.
The contacts application has been changed around to make it more finger on the large screen, I quite like it as it presents all ways you can communicate with that person, ie: Call, Text, Email, Website, Gtalk, Facebook etc..
If you set up Facebook it will sync all Facebook contacts to your contacts list as well.
The loudspeaker is quite loud and clear, nothing ground breaking, it just works.
Camera / Video
The Streak packs a 5MP Camera on the rear with dual LEDs and a VGA Camera on the front for video calling. The 2 LEDs do an alright job at lighting objects up at night if they’re within close range. Anywhere over 3-4 metres away and it’s almost useless.
There are a handful of options to play around with such as brightness, colour functions etc.. Stabilisation is pretty good given how tricky it can be to focus and take the photo. Test photos below in low light.
The quality isn’t the greatest, but I don’t see why Dell wouldn’t enable 720p in future software updates. See the video below to make up your own mind, remember this was shot in the late afternoon. There are also a handful of options as with picture taking.
The front-facing camera does a great job for video calling people, I tested this by calling my brother over WiFi and was mostly lag free and clear.
After taking a video, uploading it to YouTube is as simple as always & is processed almost immediately by YouTube for viewing worldwide.
The Streak runs on UMTS bands 900MHz & 2100MHz, meaning that it will run perfectly on all networks except Telstra NextG (850MHz). It is capable of 7.2Mbit down and 5.76Mbit up so it will make the most of any 3G connection you give it.
The battery in the Streak could be bigger, no doubt, but I had no problems getting a full day out of it with basic browsing, wifi & music. Not too bad considering it’s only 1530mAh.
The Dell Streak is absolutely amazing, no doubt about it. The screen is perfect for browsing full site on the go, the only let down there being no Flash 10.1 support yet. I don’t recommend it for someone who just wants to use it as a phone, as it’s too big to be just that. If you like the idea of the iPad but still want it to be portable and make calls, the Streak is perfect.
The price is worth it if you’re going to make the most it.
Buy the Dell Streak
A big thank you goes out to MobiCity, for supplying me with these awesome devices to review for you guys. They also offer pretty competitive prices for a massive range of Android Devices.