Top critical review
152 people found this helpful
on 12 October 2013
This Philips shaver delivers its core functionality effectively but falls below the line in some important areas - it might be a "no frills model" but the cost cutting has gone too far. On the positive side the three "Comfort" cutting heads are sprung and give a reasonably close shave, plus, do not seem to irritate my skin like some other shavers do. Ergonomically, the shape is good making the shaver easy to hold and manoeuvre. Also,the fact that the unit is waterproof means that you can simply rinse it under the tap and let it dry out - this is a genuinely useful feature but common on most shavers now.
On the face of it all sounds positive so far but there are a number of downsides to the Philips AT899/16. Firstly, the charging time is 8 hours to give you 45 minutes of shaving time - most rechargeable appliances now work for as long as they take to charge or even longer - this aspect of performance is not in line with contemporary standards/expectations. In addition, the battery charge remaining isn't clearly indicated - given the length of time charging takes you need to plan for it so a clear indication of an impending depleted battery is essential. Also, there's no built in trimmer for sideburns etc. - in the past few shavers have been made without this feature and its absence takes cost cutting to a new extreme. The same also applies to absence of a case - yes, a flimsy plastic cover is supplied for the cutters but no case, again, this is a new low.
I had a look round at other brands of shaver in this price range and whilst it is hard to know how well they actually shave, most of them do incorporate a trimmer and battery indicator plus significantly shorter charging time. In summary, the shaving performance of this unit is good but it is simply too austere even allowing for its price and market position.