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 (Phone Review) LG KF700/SH650

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PostSubject: (Phone Review) LG KF700/SH650   Tue Dec 07, 2010 1:43 am

So here it is, the first of the series of my reviews of random crap.

I'll start with the first cellphone I bought, the LG KF700/SH650. They are basically the same thing, but designed for different, eg SH650 being designed for Korea, and the KF700 for NZ.

It may be, since it's my first phone, I was VERY excited. It's a slide touch phone, one of those phones here in NZ, are pretty damn hard to get.

As for the bulk, it measures 102mm tall, 51mm wide and 14.5mm thick. It weights 104g.

Touch phones being on the rage, these days, this phone is no exception, according to LG.

BUT, what makes this phone distinctive, is the three way input system.

First, we have the touch screen. Just pure touch screen, 3-inches wide, and has a resolution of 240x480, which for most smartphones nowadays, it's pretty common.

Spoiler:
 

The touch is easy to use, with a very simple UI. The little vibrations, which you can set, help you in alerting you whether you've pressed it or not.

On the main screen, there are 4 buttons along the bottom, Call, Messaging, Contacts, and the Menu.

The status menu is entered by touching the status row at the top. It opens up to show you the memory, gives you the option for bluetooth, and pretty much what you need. Not to forget the handy multitasking button to manage the applications you are running.

There is a slide out panel whose touch icon is on the right of the screen. Hit this and you can see the date, analogue and digital clocks, and what looks like a blank yellow Post-It note. Tap the note and you can write a memo, tap the calendar and you can view appointments, tap the clocks to change city and set alarms.

The main menu arranges icons in four groups with phone and messaging in one group, multimedia stuff in another, personal organisation and Internet stuff in the third and settings in the fourth. Four icons ranged down the right hand side of the screen let you switch between the groups.
There is a screen lock button on the right edge - and you will need to use it if you want to avoid things happening accidentally while you are carrying this phone around.

The other two input methods are rather less exciting. One is the bog standard keypad that is revealed when you slide the screen upwards. The keypad is flat and the keys large.

But, I guess thats still usable. I dealt with it.

The other input method is the novel one and LG calls it the Shortcut Dial. On the back of the phone is a sliver wheel which stands out against the rest of the casing's black plastic. It is positioned to fall under your left thumb.

You press a side button sitting immediately beneath it on the left edge of the phone and a carousel pops up on screen with five options you can scroll though using the wheel. You select what you want by pressing the side button or tapping the screen. There is a sixth option that lets you change the presets to suit your preferences. When you activate the carousel, the screen you were previously on fades into the background but does not disappear.

What makes this mobile a winner is the great screen which flicks into landscape format to make the most of its 480 pixels at useful moments. You can use widescreen for Web browsing, for example, and switching is a simple matter of tapping an icon. You can drag a finger to scroll around a webpage and user the Shortcut Dial wheel to zoom. When browsing photos, which are shown wide screen, you can scroll through a sequence dragging the screen and use the Shortcut Dial wheel to zoom too. This all works well enough, but it doesn't feel quite as smooth as the touchscreen on the standard-setting iPhone.
There is a front-facing camera for two-way video calling, and the main camera has a 3-megapixel lens with autofocus and a flash. LG has done better with 5-megapixel cameras, and the one here is passable but not wonderful.

Spoiler:
 

The autofocus is a little slow to function and it did no always deliver spot on results. The coloured dish, for example, photographed indoors under household lighting is not as sharp as I would have liked. The same can be said for the hanging basket which has good colour reproduction but some fuzziness in the image itself. The chair's glaring whiteness causes problems for some cameraphones but here the highlights are more controlled than others, despite some heavy softening and a bluish tone.

There is a music player of good quality, and the headset, while proprietary at the phone end, is two-piece so you can use your own 3.5mm headphones if you prefer them. Other applications include an FM radio, messaging including mobile email, voice recorder, to do list, calculator, world clock, unit converter and stopwatch.

EDIT: FYI, the SH650 features DMB.

The Verdict.

Pros
- Good touch interface. A sandwich for you LG.
- Good web browser
- The java is above my expectations.

Cons
- No Wi-Fi. Adding that would make a big difference.
- Pricey. $500 NZD is certainly not worth this.
- LG has still managed to disappoint us with the slow speeds. Waiting 3 seconds for the menu to pop up is a little too much!

7/10
A good entry-entry-level smartphone, that still has room for improvement.

some parts retrieved from trustedreviews.com, since Sun is a lazy boy.
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