Early Hands-On with AT&T Moto Z9

Z9 hands 1So I was walking through the CTIA Emerging Technology Awards pavilion in the LVCC’s Central Hall today and what do I see? The 3G-enabled Moto Z9, complete with AT&T branding. Sure, this phone has been leaked already, but it was nice to see it in the flesh.

Although we couldn’t pick up the Z9 because it was tethered to the display, we did play around with it for a few minutes and snapped some pics. We don’t know pricing or exact availability yet but I can tell you what the little info card said next to the device and what we saw running. Here our impressions so far.

It has a huge display. Measuring 2.4-inches, this is a really good phone for watching video at full screen and for using as a navigator. Smooth sliding action and intriguing dialpad. We liked the way the Z9 felt in our hand and appreciated the tactile feedback of the silvery buttons. There are little metal nubs below each number, which heavy texters will appreciate. AT&T Navigator support is in full effect, making this the first consumer device in AT&T lineup to have this capability. CrystalTalk is on board. This noise suppression technology is what makes the RAZR2 one of the best voice phone on the market, so we’re glad to see it on a slider design, too. It’s Video Share capable (Not that we’d use it). This is a nice feature to have I guess but one-way video calls (and expensive ones at that) don’t get me too excited. cnn z9Cellular Video a bit blurry. While we like the ability to go full screen on the Z9 when watching CNN and other clips, the video quality wasn’t stellar. Then again, signal strength inside the convention center could have been a factor. And keep in mind our camera isn’t the best quality. Overall, the z9 looks like a solid slider. It’s a bit on the bulky side, but it packs a lot of features. Stay tuned for more details.

Mark Spoonauer
Mark Spoonauer
Responsible for the editorial vision for Laptop Mag and Tom's Guide, Mark Spoonauer has been Editor in Chief of LAPTOP since 2003 and has covered technology for nearly 15 years. Mark speaks at key tech industry events and makes regular media appearances on CNBC, Fox and CNN. Mark was previously reviews editor at Mobile Computing, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc.
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