Most helpful positive review
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Entry-level, but solid.
on October 6, 2011
Had a hard time deciding between 4 stars and 5 stars, so I gave it 5 because it is what it is. Clearly, it's not an Evo or an Atrix, but it doesn't pretend to be.
Hardware shoulder buttons: One is a quick access list, the other is screen lock and power. I use them constantly.
Keyboard: I can't manage to use on screen keyboards accurately. The hardware keyboard provides tactile feedback. The keys are large and nicely spaced, easy to see and feel. The sliding action is smooth and solid. All of the symbols accessed by the Alt key are also clearly printed on the keys, and I almost never need to go into the deeper symbol menu. The keyboard has the four direction keys as primary keys, essential to text editing for me.
Screen: Bright enough to be usable in direct sunlight. I turn this down to conserve battery.
Interface: Lightly skinned Android. The lock screen adds instant access to missed calls and messages by dragging an icon to the center. Permanent onscreen buttons for calls, texts, web, and installed applications cover most of my use.
Calls: Call clarity seems decent, as does signal reception for WiFi.
Battery: Easily lasts a day with moderate use, and it can last almost two if I shut off 3G and WiFi radios. Playing games for more than a couple hours will prevent the battery from lasting the day.
Applications: Support for Amazon App Store out of the box. Netflix now supports this version of Android.
Charging: Standard MicroUSB socket. Yay for standards!
Data Storage/ Data Transfer: The SD card can only be removed by removing the battery cover and battery. The USB connection to the computer is extremely slow when using the connection software provided by Pantech; it may be USB 1.1. Wireless network between the phone and PC is difficult to troubleshoot when it does not work properly. I have not been successful yet, and now rely on a microSD card reader to transfer hundreds of megabytes of podcasts a day to the phone.
Speaker: Speakerphone is too quiet for environments with much noise. Ring sounds are easily muffled, but it is plenty loud if left on a non-absorptive surface like a desk or dresser.
Screen: Auto-orientation is wonky, sometimes requiring a vigorous shake or manipulation of the keyboard to change from portrait to landscape. I turned it off. The size of the screen is on the small side, and that can interfere with use of on-screen buttons in games and productivity applications. The physical keyboard makes up for this to me.
Processor: Slow, and the reason why this is a free, entry level smart phone. It sometimes interferes with snappy operation of the touch screen and results in slow switching between applications. When the phone is freshly booted and running only one application, it will handle surprisingly demanding apps, such as large games. (e.g. Zenonia 3 is usually good but occasionally laggy.) This did not detract from my star score because I did not have higher expectations.
Overall, it's an unpretentious phone great for everyone who's *not* an early adopter and power user. It suits my needs perfectly as a productivity tool. I listen to podcasts, track job hours, exchange business e-mail in the Gmail app, and even game a little. If your use is similarly undemanding, you should be satisfied with it.