On the left side of the Q 9 there's a handy expandable microSD slot that supports up to a 2GB card, which will hold around 400 songs and plenty of shots from the built-in camera.
Other Q 9 features include light-sensing technology that optimises the screen's brightness depending on the ambient light, USB 2.0 connectivity for quick data transfer with your PC, and quad-band connectivity, which means you can use it in any country that supports a GSM network.
Audio quality during calls was good and unlike many other smart phones didn't sound distorted or muffled. The speaker-phone mode is loud and easy to access using a dedicated key on the keypad. The stereo Bluetooth works fine -- we used a pair of Philips SHB6102 Bluetooth headphones without any problems.
The picture quality from the 2-megapixel camera was, as expected, not great and most pictures looked blurry when printed out at full size. Looking at pictures and videos on the Q 9's screen, however, was good and you can use Sling Media's SlingPlayer Mobile in conjunction with a Slingbox to watch your TV on it too.
There are two processors inside, which means there wasn't much lag while starting and using various applications at the same time. Relative to other smart phones running Windows Mobile, the Q 9 was quick to respond and seemed pretty smooth overall.
Battery life was acceptable, lasting for over a day without needing to recharge. Motorola quotes it at 260 minutes worth of talk time and 510 hours of standby.
There are loads of rivals out there -- the BlackBerry 8800 has GPS, and the Samsung i600 and Palm Treo 750v also have Qwerty keypads, but the Q 9 beats them all on the strength of its keypad alone. It's one of the best we have ever used.
Add to that HSPDA connectivity and a decent-sized screen and you have a worthy rival to RIM and Palm's offerings. Our only niggles are the lack of a scroll wheel and Wi-Fi, but otherwise this is one of the best smart phones around.
Edited by Jason Jenkins
Additional editing by Nick Hide