Hands-on with the T-Mobile MyTouch 3G Slide

In a perfect world, every phone would be like the T-Mobile MyTouch Slide. It’s small, it’s light, it has a keyboard, and it’s easy enough for almost everyone to use even if it’s running one of the most powerful mobile OSes out there. Built by HTC to T-Mobile’s specifications, the MyTouch Slide with full QWERTY keyboard is, in actuallity, one of the best feature phones I’ve seen in a long time.

The second in T-Mobile’s MyTouch line, the Slide adds a keyboard and a unique user interface to the mix. Instead of My Faves, the phone allows you to create “cards” for each of your favorite contacts. From these cards you can dial them, read all their messages, and text them instantly. This, in short, “pops out” your favorite contacts with a single click.

The Slide comes in three colors and runs HTC’s sense UI with a few special T-Mo tweaks. It is, in short, a T-Mobile phone and if you’re looking for something to for texting, music, and emailing, this may be the successor to the Sidekick you’ve been looking for.

Pricing and availability will be announced later.

T-Mobile USA is announcing a new addition to its exclusive line of Android-powered T-Mobile myTouch 3G smartphones – the T-Mobile myTouch 3G Slide. Anticipated to be available in June, the new myTouch 3G Slide combines a roomy slide-out QWERTY keyboard with an incredibly crisp, high-performance touch screen powered by the latest Android software (Android 2.1). Designed to help families stay connected to those they care about most throughout their busy days, the myTouch 3G Slide offers several new, exclusive features, including:

Faves Gallery: Life is hectic so it’s easy to miss opportunities to connect with loved ones so Faves Gallery presents up to 20 of your favorite people and all of their communication – calls, texts, email, instant messaging, social networking updates – in a dedicated application accessible through a soft button and an easy-to-use widget complete with photos, contact information and one-touch ability to respond. All of your Faves get special status on your myTouch 3G Slide; anytime they communicate with you or update their social network you get a notification in the notification pane. Even if you’re not using your phone, a custom green light lets you know you’ve got a communication waiting from one of your Faves. And you can respond right from the Faves Gallery, without launching mail or social apps, so you connect more quickly and more often with the important people in your life.

myModes: myModes helps you draw the line between work and home by creating different themes with home screen apps, widgets and wallpapers to empower people in the different roles they play daily. You can program myModes to switch at a designated time, by location, or manually with the option to create and store up to 10 customize modes. myModes removes clutter and makes you more efficient both at work and at home. Want to forget about work on the weekend? No need to hide your “work phone” or switch to another device; just put away your work tools, like e-mail and your calendar by switching modes, and bring forward all the things you love to do on Saturday.

Genius Button: With the Genius Button, you press one button, talk, and it delivers. The Genius Button is an easy-to-access button on the front of the new T-Mobile myTouch 3G Slide (powered by Nuance’s Dragon Dictation solution) allowing the use of voice commands to control the phone and it’s features including making calls, compose and send texts and emails, search the web or your surroundings. The Genius Button will also read text messages aloud.

With the Android 2.1 software, the myTouch 3G Slide offers a rich mobile Web experience and access to thousands of applications on Android Market from games to location-based social networks to on-the-go shopping and more. Like the original myTouch, the new Slide was designed to facilitate personalization. A 5-pane home screen, with the option to increase to 7-panes, offers plenty of real-estate for your favorite widgets, applications and themes.

Designed by HTC exclusively for T-Mobile, the myTouch 3G Slide features a 3.4-inch HVGA touch-screen display with virtual keyboard as well as a roomy, slide-out QWERTY keyboard. Less than 15mm thick, the elegant design slides easily into your pocket proving that Android brains don’t have to come in a sci-fi box. The myTouch 3G Slide also features a 5-megapixel camera, a music player with a pre-installed 8 GB microSD memory card, and enhanced video capabilities to make it easy for users to record and share pictures and videos, whether via e-mail, MMS or one-click upload to sites such as YouTube™ and Picasa™.