The HTC TyTN is proving to be a popular phone with consumers and networks alike. T-Mobile and Vodafone have own-brand versions and now so does Orange, with the SPV M3100. In terms of design, Orange's version of the TyTN is very similar to T-Mobile's version, the MDA Vario II.
The M3100 has the same silver backwards-C-shaped border on the front as the Vario II, but there are some aesthetic differences. For example, the handset comes in a standard black and grey casing, unlike T-Mobile's burgundy and silver. For details of the features common to both devices, see the review of the MDA Vario II.
The M3100 supports Orange's own push-email service, meaning you can send and receive emails instantly. There's also a service called Orange World, Orange's mobile Internet portal. Orange World gives you access to a wide variety of information, including news, sports, chat, email, pictures, film, travel and weather among other things.
One service that stands out on Orange World is Orange Local, a location-based service that gives you information on surrounding amenities. When you access it, a map pops up showing you where you are and what services are around you. You can also use it as an on-foot navigation device if you ever get lost and don't see any road signs about.
The M3100 runs on Windows Mobile 5.0 and so comes with all the benefits of Microsoft's pocket OS. You can access and edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents, browse the Web using Internet Explorer, and even play music and video on the mini Windows Media Player. Windows Mobile also gives you the ability to use MSN Messenger and Hotmail.
One of the best features of the M3100 is its range of connectivity options. There's tri-band UMTS (3G), quad-band EDGE (enhanced GPRS), infrared, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, so you won't be lacking in ways to keep in touch.
Other variants of this handset offer HSDPA for faster 3G connections. However, Orange isn't planning to roll out an HSDPA network until the start of 2007 and couldn't confirm whether the M3100 supports HSDPA.
Relative to its size, the M3100 packs in a panoply of features. However, it's not as slim or small as other mobile phones. Coming in at 58mm wide by 112mm tall by 22mm thick and weighing 180g, this isn't a phone that will slip into any pocket or rest lightly at the bottom of a bag.
Another issue is that if you're not used to the Windows Mobile interface then it can take some time before you feel comfortable handling this phone. While it is crammed full of useful applications and connectivity options, they're not always easy to figure out.
A small niggle that has been mentioned by certain users is that the slide-out Qwerty keypad can be difficult to get to. This is because it isn't spring-loaded, so rather than popping out with a little nudge, you have to slide it out all the way. Finally, the M3100 might cause problems if you're working for (or visiting) a company that doesn't allow camera phones in the building.
If you need to keep your eye firmly on the ball at all times, the M3100 is worth looking at. With the slide-out Qwerty keypad and a plethora of other connectivity options, this is a Pocket PC to be reckoned with. However, if you don't have a bag or large pockets, you might want to look at a smaller alternative, such as the Orange SPV M600.
Edited by Mary Lojkine
Additional editing by Nick Hide