The TracFone Motoroloa W376g is a flip phone that features a camera and (limited) internet access whose main claim to fame is that it is the first TracFone to allow (limited) bluetooth access.
I bought a TracFone Motoroa W376g to review for my faithful fone-review readers like you, so keep reading to get the full scoop on what I've learned about the phone.
If in you're in the market for a bluetooth-enabled TracFone, you might also want to check out my review of the TracFone LG 600G, which was released not long after the W376g.
TracFone Motorola W376g Features with Keith's Comments
- Flip Phone - This is nice because it protects the screen and the keyboard. The phone also feels solidly built, more so than my wife's TracFone Motorola V170 flip phone.
- VGA 4x Zoom Camera - The camera has more features than I first thought it would. Pressing the menu button while the phone is in camera mode brings up the camera menu. The Pictures Setup menu lets you adjust the white balance, implement several special effects (such as inverse, black & white, sepia, etc.), set the resolution (maximum is 640X480), set exposure compensation, and adjust a few other setting. The Auto-Timed Capture menu lets you set a delay before the picture takes so that you can run to be in the picture yourself. Maybe most people wouldn't ever use many of the features, but the phone's camera definitely has more features than I expected. You can store the pictures on the phone and use one as your wallpaper, but your options for getting them off the phone seem limited. Since the bluetooth and usb port can't be used to transfer data, the only way I can find to get the picture off the phone is to send it as a picture message to another phone, or to send it as an email attachment to an email address. Remember, though that you are charged 1 airtime minute for sending an MMS message plus 0.5 minutes of airtime for every minute it takes to transfer the data. The picture of my daughter below was taken at medium quality (320X240), and I was only charged a grand total of 1.5 airtime minutes to send it to my email address. It did, however, take nearly 4 hours for it to arrive in my email inbox.
- Bluetooth Enabled - Yes, the TracFone Motorola W376g has bluetooth, but you can only use it to connect to a headset, or another hands-free headset connection like the type built in to some cars or gps units. You cannot use the bluetooth to connect to a computer or another phone to transfer files. I was able to get the phone connected to my bluetooth-enabled desktop computer, but when I tried to send a file to the phone, it gave me an error saying that the OBEX File Push profile must be installed on the phone. So no, you can't download a ringtone or picture to your computer and then transfer it to your phone. Since I don't have a bluetooth headset, I didn't try to connect the phone to one, but from the instructions that come with the phone and from my experience with connecting the phone to my computer, I have no doubt that the phone could be connected to a bluetooth headset with little difficulty.
- Internet Enabled - Yes, the TracFone Motorola W376g has internet capablity, but you can only use it to access data services from TracFone. You cannot, for example, use the phone to access Google or Yahoo. TracFone has services where you can buy ringtones and graphics and a subscription to sports, entertainment, weather, and other news. You are charged 0.5 airtime minutes for every minute that the OpenWave browser is open on the phone, and the browser opens whenever you access any of TracFone's data services. You have to be really careful to not accidentally hit the browser button, because it is right below the left select button on the keypad. I've done that a couple of times, and I always seem to get charged the 0.5 minute no matter how quickly I close the browser.
- Ringtones - The TracFone Motorla W376g can play mp3 ringtones, but you have to buy them from TracFone to get them to the phone. Click here to read my full report on TracFone ringtones. The phone comes with a long list of generic ringtones to choose from, or you can set the phone to vibrate only or vibrate & ring.
- Double Minutes For Life (DMFL) - You get one minute free for every minute you add to phone for the life of the phone. This is a great money-saving feature, and it comes standard on the phone. You don't have to do anything to get it, just add an airtime card and the minutes will automatically be doubled!
- Text Messaging - It costs .3 airtime minutes to send or receive a standard text message (SMS), and 1 minute for multi-media messages (MMS). You are also charged for the browser time to download the muli-media file with the message.
- Games - The TracFone Motorola W376g comes with Soccer, Sudoku, and Tetris to help you pass the time when stuck in line somewhere. Personally, I have used cell phone games to help pass the time while my wife decides which blouse looks best, and the games do come in handy at such desparate times. :-)
- FM Radio - The TracFone Motorola W376g comes with a FM radio tuner, but you have to have a headset plugged in to use it because it uses the cord as an antenna. The gym where I workout uses FM radio signals to broadcast the audio from the TV's, so this feature could come in handy while pounding away on the treadmill. You do not get charged airtime if all you're doing is listening to the radio.
- Battery Life - The package says approximately 6.15 hours talk time and approximately 15 days standby time. Interestingly enough, the TracFone website says up to 7.5 hours of talk time and 10 days of standby time. So far, I've only been able to get about 5 or 6 days out of the battery, but I've been playing with the phone some trying out the features for this review. Soon I'll give it a full standby test by charging up the battery and then set the phone on the desk not touch it and see how many days it goes before needing a recharge. I will, of course, report the results here.
- Headset Port - Although the phone can connect to bluetooth headsets, there is also a port to connect to standard wired headsets. The headset jack accepts 2.5mm plugs. Note that the W376g manual from Motorola says on page 37 to plug in a 3.5mm headset to use the FM radio, but the port on the phone is definitely 2.5mm.
- USB Port - The USB port is only used for charging up the battery. The phone doesn't come with a USB cable that you can plug in to a computer, and even if you have one, the phone won't transfer data through the port. Note that the charger plugs into a standard wall outlet for charging, not a computer's USB port. If you're technically savvy, and if charging your phone through your computer's USB port is important to you, there are some instructions here: http://www.sudhian.com/index.php?/forums/viewthread/103433/#902906. Please note that I have not tried these instructions myself.
- Hearing Aid Compatible - Rating: M3
- Ring Volume Buttons - These are on the left side of the phone and allow you to easily change the ring volume. At full volume the ringer is quite loud, much louder than my TracFone Nokia 2600.
- External Call and Message Icons - There are are three lights on the face of the phone. The call light comes on when you receive a call and keeps flashing if you don't answer so that you know you have a missed call. The message light will flash if you have a text message, and the battery light comes on if your battery is low. It's neat because they are behind a strip of mirror-like plastic, and you can't even tell that a light is there unless the light is actually on. I know, I know, I'm easily impressed, but it's still kinda cool.
- The Manual - The TracFone Motorola W376g manual is split into four basic sections. The first section gives a general overview of the phone's features and talks about how to install the battery and activate the phone. The second section is about how to add airtime to the phone, and the third sections is about how to make calls, setup voicemail, send and read text messages, setup bluetooth devices, and make international calls. Note that the manual only mentions making bluetooth connections to headsets or hands-free car kits. The fourth section is actually the longest, and it contains all the fine print with the terms and conditions of service and the "important saftey and legal information." Click here for the official Motorola user's guide, which has more detailed information about how to use the phone's features.
Here are some additional features that I won't comment on because they just work as advertised and expected.
- Voice Mail, Call Waiting, Caller ID, Alarm Clock, Stopwatch, Calculator, Calendar, Recent calls and messages lists, Phonebook with up to 500 entries, hands free speaker.
- All the standard TracFone features such as the Airtime Balance and Days of Service display, minutes that never expire as long as the phone is active, etc.
Overall, TracFone Motorola W376g is a nice phone, and at
$49.99 (now $29.99!) it's a great value when you consider that the Double Minutes For Life feature is worth $49.99 on its own.
It's no iPhone, to be sure, but then it doesn't come with the iPhone's $200 price tag and $70+ monthly bill. If you can live with the W376g's limitations on bluetooth and internet access, then you'll be happy with the phone.
The goal of Fone-Review.com is to share what I know about TracFones, and I hope that this review has helped you learn more about the features and limitations of the TracFone Motorola W376g. Happy Shopping!