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 Motorola ZINE ZN5 Discontinued
23rd June 2008

The Motorola ZINE ZN5 (also called the MOTOZINE) is an advanced camera phone featuring some very clever Kodak technology, combining very clear high-resolution images with some intelligent integration with web applications.

The five megapixel camera has autofocus and a Xenon flash, plus low-light capabilities, panoramic stitching, multi-shot picture taking and a number of other proprietary Kodak imaging enhancements to ensure that the ZN5 delivers high quality results when it comes to stills photos. The results are impressive (as you can see from the Kodak gallery), and one clever thing is that the Motorola ZINE ZN5 can upload pictures directly to the Kodak gallery through the handset's data connection. The ZN5 also supports Bluetooth printing to compatible devices.

So, the camera technology looks impressive. The problem with the ZN5 is that the rest of the phone is extremely disappointing.

 Motorola MOTOZINE ZN5 The biggest problem of all is that this is not a 3G phone, and is stuck with GPRS and EDGE data transfer while on a cellular network. That's just stupidly slow for a multimedia phone, although it does have WiFi. In a market segment where 3.5G is almost standard on new releases, the limited speed of the MOTOZINE ZN5 is likely to be a real turn-off. OK, so the ZN5 will initially be launched in China which doesn't have much in the way of UMTS coverage, but even so it is no excuse for a phone that will eventually be sold worldwide.

The lack of 3G is not the only serious problem. The high-quality camera would indicate that this should be a very high-end phone, competing against the Nokia N95 8GB and N96, but the ZN5 doesn't have GPS and the 2.4" display is significantly smaller than the Nokia's 2.8" panel.

 Motorola ZN5 There are some nice features though - the MOTOZINE ZN5 has a similar ModeShift keypad to the ROKR E8, comes with a TV-out port, FM radio, stereo Bluetooth and has 350MB of internal memory and a microSD slot. The interface appears to be broadly similar to most new top-end Motorola phones, in other words it is much, much better than handsets of old. It's also a pretty good looking device, and the long battery life will be useful for many. But if you ignore the camera, the technical features of the Motorola ZN5 are hardly impressive.

What we appear to have then is an excellent digital camera welded to a mediocre mobile phone, a combination that we don't think serves anybody very well.

If you really care about photographs, then you can buy a Kodak C613 camera for just £60 / $120 / €70 which is much better than the ZN5 when it comes to being a camera. Although the ZN5's camera is very good, the overall ZN5 package seems to be quite poor.

We would dearly have liked to have told you that the Motorola ZINE ZN5 was the device that had once again made Motorola a class leader, but we can't. If Motorola could put this quality of camera in something like the MOTOMING platform and then breathe some of the magic they had when the original RAZR came out, then Motorola would have a winner, as it is.. we think that the Motorola ZN5 won't be the success that Motorola really need.

Motorola say that the MOTOZINE ZN5 will be available in China from July, with the rest of the world following before the end of the year.

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Motorola ZINE ZN5 (MOTOZINE) at a glance


Q3-Q4 2008


GSM  850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900




240 x 320 pixels


5 megapixels


Tall monoblock
51 x 120 x 16mm / 114 grams



Memory card:










Battery life:

5.8 - 9.5 hours talk / 13 - 24 days standby


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