EE Kestrel Review

tombourlet 5 years ago Travel Tips

I bought an EE Kestrel in January 2015, while I now sit here on the 7th June 2015, debating how I could have made a worse choice! While I’ve never written about phones and I probably never will again, I thought it was important to share my experiences for anyone who is potentially considering purchasing one and to WARN THEM NOT TO!

Below I have broken down the main areas I felt were important. I’m not an expert on mobiles, so I’m sure you would have many more questions which I might not be best to answer, but this should give you a general idea around the phone.


When I first bought the phone, I stated to my friends that the life of the battery resembled a Nokia 3310, it seemed to last the entire week on one charge! I was amazed at how powerful the battery was. Unfortunately, this didn’t last. Saying the battery died quickly would be a severe understatement. The battery life now is 1 hour. After 3 months of use it was about 4-5 hours (without any use).

I simply cannot believe how poor it is. It also switches off and claims to have an empty battery when it is showing about 50%. Clearly it is a faulty battery, but a friend who bought the same phone had the same result, a cheap knock-off phone which isn’t made to last the year. What a scam!



When typing on my previous phone, a Samsung (God I miss my Samsung), if you typed in a word on a regular basis, it would remember this term and would start to offer it as the predicted term as you type. This doesn’t occur with the Kestrel. The words I type in every single day will never show up, which I find bizarre.

But it doesn’t stop there, if you type in a jargon term, or slang of any sort, I’m used to the phone understanding over time and adding the word to the dictionary (I type ‘ayup’ at the start of all my texts), yet the EE Kestrel never learns. If you want to add a ¬†word to the dictionary, it is around 6 clicks, which is a huge amount of hassle when it can’t understand a single word I type. I’m not willing to waste my time correcting everything, this is a basic functionality that all other phones seem to cope with, so I’m really surprised a phone can’t handle this detail in modern times.

Another issue with the keyboard is that the tap button to go back is just below the space bar, meaning 50% of the time when I try to make a space in a text, it actually exits the text. As you can imagine, it takes me a ridiculous amount of time to make a text nowadays, to the point that I actually go onto Facebook instead.


Issues & Errors

After 3 months of use, I stopped being able to receive texts. Upon entering the EE store in Brighton, they recommended I backup all my data, save all my phone numbers and contact details and then restore back to factory settings. I didn’t see a way around, so alongside them I restored the phone after fully backing up. Quite remarkably, none of the contact numbers saved and I lost everyone’s phone number!

Since then, I can now receive texts, but it seems to be a different issue each and every week. For one week, every time I text, each button was clicked twice, making it impossible to text. Randomly that went away. Next was it would try and turn off and then would just vibrate and keep restarting non stop. This happened consistently for 3 days.



Despite how faulty the phone is, because I didn’t purchase insurance, it is ‘tough luck’ in EE’s perspective, a disgusting way to treat their loyal customers. I have been with T-mobile for 10 years, but there isn’t a chance I will be continuing.

I am 1.5 years into my phone contract, after staying loyal for ten years. I checked to see if I can get an upgrade and they stated not until the entire two years is up, an odd outlook as I obviously wouldn’t stay with them once it is up, so the only way I would consider signing up for a further two years is if I got a good offer. I would even be willing to pay more per month and get a decent phone, but clearly the customer is once again not their main focus.



You would be better off with a rock in your hand than using an EE Kestrel. This is hands-down the worst phone that was ever made and ever will be made. With a gun to my head, I still wouldn’t purchase one again. Goodbye EE!

Written by | tombourlet

Tom Bourlet is the creator of Spaghetti Traveller and has been addicted to travelling ever since taking a roadtrip across the USA.

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