Motorola V525 Review: Originally released in 2003, the Motorola V525 was the latest in a long line of flip mobile phones from Motorola. No doubt at the time, they were the leading manufacturer of ‘flip’ phones. The choice of using such a design over a candybar device had many advantages. The screen was protected as it was covered when not in use, and the fold function meant that more space could be given to phone functions. In effect, a larger screen could be achieved without increasing the overall footprint of the phone.
This was evident in the Motorola V series. Their screens were much larger than the dominant Nokia series at the time. It became a matter of personal taste which design was preferred. The V525 also started to solve some of the downsides of the phone by adding a small LCD to the outside. A drawback of the previous series is that when the phone was ringing, there was no way to know who was calling. This nicely brought a solution as well as being able to display other useful information such as the time or text messages.
With its round shape, there was full marks for style.
It’s hard to imagine that this phone was released in 2003. This was still an early-generation flip phone. Models such as the Motorola V60 and Motorola V66 came before it and roughly among its cohort were models Motorola V600, Motorola V220, and the Motorola V300. These were all quite similar in design but catering at different price-points. But these lines were soon to die out, as far as the V-series went. The later flip phones Motorola made were more variations of its very successful RAZR series. This all was before touch-screens were largely adopted.
Motorola V525 Review: Pros
The design of the phone is great. This is a matter of opinion, of course. But the phone is solid, yet folds down small enough to easily fit in a pocket. The larger surface area of the screen is much better than the Nokia versions of this era, for example the Nokia 3510 and offered more colours and a clearer resolution.
The camera also was a boost for this model. The resolution of it was standard for the time. The larger screen and flip made this much easier to take photos than other models.
As mentioned before, the secondary LCD was hugely useful. It was not colour, and therefore consumed much less power. It also provided an instant information display even when the phone was not in use.
Motorola V525 Review: Cons
This was not a phone that was easy to customise, in an era where phones could have interchangeable housings. The aerial part of the phone was ungainly and hard. It later proved to be unnecessary as you could purchase aerials which were shorter in length with no degradation.
The uses of the phone were slightly compromised by the lack of memory card (a feature that was becoming common). This really limited the amount of photos you could take. Video recording was also not active, although with the camera being a 0.3MP this was perhaps just as well.
The phone also suffered from the Motorola navigation system. With Symbian the dominant force in this age, Motorola’s systems were less intuitive to use.
Future Prospects and Current Pricing
Motorola classic flip phones already carry a significant premium over others. The Motorola Startac, for instance is very collectable, although this was perhaps a model of more significance than the later ones.
Given the large range of Motorola flip models that appeared in close proximity to each other. these are less likely to do as well as the older models or the more quirky phones. The Motorola V70 for example will achieve far better prices. However, these phones were popular with the networks and there will be a large supply of them.
Despite this I would say there is a premium for this phone over a Nokia of the same age and price point. The nature of the flip means the inside of the phone is more likely to be in good condition, although housings are now very rare.
Where can I get one?
Both eBay and Amazon have regular sellers offering second-hand models.
Interested in more phones? See a list of phones I own here.