LG Viewty Smart GC900 Review
World used to be a much better place two years ago. If anything, we were younger and better looking. There were no bad, bad things like financial meltdowns and a credit line to get one of these beautiful 40-meter yachts looked near at hand. It was the time when the LG Viewty KU990 came out, a touch sensitive screen phone equipped with powerful camera delivering DivX video support. The model managed to make it big and gained enviable popularity, although high quality wasn’t exactly on the list of its strengths. The LG Renoir KC910 appeared last year and looked like successor to the KU990 at first, but never really came even close to winning as much fame as the Viewty.
Today we are introducing its brand-new, true-blood relative that even dares bear its name – the LG Viewty Smart GC900. It sports 8-megapixel camera, utilizes S-CLASS 3D interface (that first appeared on the LG ARENA KM900 that we have reviewed), delivers Wi-Fi support and comes with multitouch, WVGA resolution screen. Well, you must be wondering where the “Smart” part of its name came from, given the device is not a smartphone. Well, we´ll tell you. That´s just another way its manufacturer has chosen to hint at the intelligent camera of the phone and the Intelligent Shot function it delivers. The phone also looks like gifted multimedia device with its DivX and Xvid video support. All the slicks sound pretty well, aren’t they? Well, read the whole review to find out if there is a catch or not.
What is in the box: LG Viewty Smart GC900, Earphones, Wall charger, USB cable
We might have been slimmer (and better looking) two years ago, but the LG Viewty KU900 was neither. Although in reality the difference between these two is mere 2.8 mm, the Viewty Smart doesn’t create the same feeling when you hold it. The new model fits into your hand much better and is, despite its length, really comfortable to carry around in your pocket. Unfortunately, it lacks fancy elements such as the rugged back of the LG Renoir KC910 and is easy to take out the wrong side up, since the device is almost perfectly symmetrical.
|LG Viewty Smart GC900 fits into the hand much better than its predecessor|
Having seen the Cookie, PRADA II and ARENA and now the Viewty Smart, we are seriously beginning to think LG must have a load of surplus 3-inch screens they are scratching their heads how to get rid of, meaning what device to integrate one into. This particular size is OK, but let’s just say one more time that we would have liked to see something that is, at least, 0.5 inches larger, not to mention the screen of the Viewty Smart delivers WVGA resolution and the colors look richly saturated indoors. Thanks to the light sensitivity sensor display remains usable even in direct sunlight, although things get rather worn-out and disagreeable to look at. Fortunately, screen is really sensitive, reacts to your even slightest touch and gives both vibration and sound feedback (either can be switched off). The only gripe we have is the lack of kinetic scrolling, available on the iPhone that allows you to browse through even stunningly big lists really fast.
Unlike the LG ARENA, there are no send and end buttons below the display – their functions are available via the phone screen. The only hardware key on the front side is used to quit menus and reject calls. It doesn’t have much of a travel and needs to be pressed right in the middle, otherwise it simply won´t work. Buttons on the right hand side of the phone are too small. Camera shutter is prominent enough and easy to grope your way to, but both volume rocker buttons are unpleasantly flat and hard to use. Charger port is on the same side, protected with a small flap and here we come across another difference from the LG ARENA and its sliding charger cover that is really enjoyable to use.
|Right side||Left side|
The microSDHC slot on the left hand side is protected in the same manner and there is but one button below it that calls up the S-CLASS 3D interface cube when pressed and the multitasking menu if you keep holding it for a while. The key is easy to feel with your fingers despite its small size and the same goes for the button that locks/unlocks the LG Viewty Smart GC900, located on the top side of the phone. We are unpleasantly surprised to find out the phone lacks 3.5mm jack, especially given the manufacturer´s claims that the phone is a multimedia device.
As we mentioned already, there are no distinguishing features on the back of the phone, aside from the 8-megapixel camera with Schneider KREUZNACH optics it houses. It´s just too bad it´s not protected with a cover, so the glass can get damaged easily. The back panel looks like made of metal, but is actually entirely plastic. Fortunately, the battery cover is easy to remove, without the necessity to overexert yourself, study rocket science or obtain enough knowledge to finish the first two parts of Myst, the PC game. The battery has is covered in painted, flowery pattern that makes it look pretty cool.
As a whole, the LG Viewty Smart GC900 has a modern and likeable overall look. We don’t really think the latter will turn out to be a decisive purchase factor to many, not that it doesn’t look great, but we find what´s under the pretty face of much greater interest.