Contact management is fairly straightforward on the Motorola XOOM. Your contacts get automatically synced with your Google account unless you explicitly disable this.
The larger screen has allowed some modifications that reduce the needed clicks for some tasks and thus improve usability.
You now get your contacts listed by either first or last name in the left part of the screen, while the details of the currently selected contact appear on the right. There is a handy search field on top as well as a shortcut for adding a new contact or editing the selected one.
Since the XOOM has no telephony clicking a phone number does nothing, but tapping an email address or a website automatically launches the email app or the web browser.
Editing a single contact is not the best-looking part of the contact management on the XOOM, but at least it’s easy to use. You get the available fields organized in groups, with plus and minus signs on the right that let you remove or duplicate details.
There’s also an Add another field button at the bottom that lets you insert a filed that hasn’t existed so far for the specific contact.
Custom filed names aren’t available at this stage.
And here come the XOOM results from our traditional loudspeaker test. The device did pretty well getting a very good Mark. You can find more about the test itself here.
|Speakerphone test||Voice, dB||Ringing ||Overall score|
|Apple iPhone 4||65.1||60.3||66.2|
|Samsung P1000 Galaxy Tab||66.7||64.6||68.6|
|Apple iPad 2||65.9||65.6||75.0||Average|
|HTC Incredible S||66.5||66.1||76.7||Good|
|Dell Streak||70.1||75.7||80.8||Very Good|
|Motorola XOOM||74.0||66.6||78.9||Very Good|
Emailing on the go is one of the things that make people buy tablets in the first place. The XOOM does pretty well here, coming with two optimized email applications out of the box – one for your Gmail and one that you can use with any POP3/IMAP account.
They both have split-screen interface, much like the contacts app. Initially your folders are listed on the left and the emails in the currently selected one appear on the right. Upon clicking on a single email the list of emails moves to the left tab while the body of the selected one pops up on the right.
Bulk actions are supported too, so you will easily manage mailboxes that get tons of messages.
You can setup the automatic check for email interval or you can disable that completely and retrieve mail manually. There’s also a handy setting that makes your client automatically download attachments only when you are connected over Wi-Fi.
It’s basically the treatment you get on Android smartphones with a few optimizations permitted by the large screen and higher resolution.
Writing emails is reasonably comfortable with the virtual QWERTY keyboard occupying about half of the 10.1” screen. Now this is no match for a hardware keyboard, but you won’t notice any big difference when handling short emails.
There’s auto correction and auto capitalization available and you can enable sounds on keypresses. There’s no haptic feedback this time so it’s not perfect just yet, but the overall experience is pretty decent.