The LG Bliss (also known as the LG UX700) is a new product in the CDMA and touchscreen range from the company’s stable and it doesn’t disappoint, to be sure! Compatible with Virgin, Bell, and Sasktel, the Bliss comes in two different colors, that is- black with a lime green trim or white with a gold trim.
The Bliss comes with a beautiful and large 3-inch touchscreen with three keys just below it. The phone is quite a piece of eye-candy and it supports 262,000 colors at a 240×400 pixel resolution. Plus, its screen displays texts and vibrant images with good saturation in colors.
No matter, in what state your phone is lying, be it idle or locked, the built-in handy screen goes on showing the time, date and notifications like missed calls, messages and the daily scheduler. In addition, the device brags of a power save mode that can easily and manually be fine tuned as per the user’s needs. The menu styles and fonts can be easily customized. This offers an amazing hands-on personalization and feel.
Design (4 out of 5)
The Bliss is just 2.28 inches wide, 4.23 inches long and 0.47 inches thick. This is one of the thinnest touchscreen handsets, which is made even skinnier with its tapered edges, and at 3.42 ounces, it is lightweight too. Although its all-plastic build does make it feel a bit cheap.
The large 3-inch touchscreen display dominates the front surface of the phone. It offers support for 240x400 pixel resolution and 262,000 colors that brings sharper images and text as well as vibrant color. Similar to the LG Tritan, the Bliss also comes with 4 built-in home screens such as the Shortcuts screen, the Main home screen, the Multimedia screen and the Contacts screen. And if you want to switch between the home screens, just swipe horizontally across the screen, or just tap on the navigation bar of the homescreen. Other than that, the bottom of each homescreen has got four shortcut icons for phone dialer, the messaging menu, the contacts list and the main menu.
You are also allowed to fine-tune the look of the calendar and clock on the home screen. The screen also comes with an Edit button at the lower right corner for the Multimedia screen, Contacts and Shortcuts. The Edit button keeps the screen in editing mode & helps you add, rearrange or remove the new shortcut icons. Plus, an Align button on the upper right allows you to snap icons to a grid. There is also an option of different wallpaper for each home screen.
The touchscreen interface has got a mixed reaction, but we preferred the haptic feedback that helps vibrate the handset to tell us when our touch has registered, besides, we hadn’t any trouble with overall touch accuracy, whether we’re utilizing our fingers or the built-in stylus. But, we didn’t like the response time, it’s slightly slow. Moreover, a little delay was noticed while touching the screen and the resulting function. Although we, at last, got at ease with it, it won’t be pleasing to all.
The messaging interface and phone dialer look a lot like other LG touchscreen phones. Its dialer comes with a big virtual number keypad that allows you to dial the numbers with a lot of ease. As to messaging, there are 3 input choices for you. The 1st is through the number keypad, along with both the ABC and XT9 input; the 2nd is hand-writing recognition; and the 3rd is a full virtual QWERTY keyboard.
For exposing the QWERTY keyboard, the phone has to be rotated to landscape mode, the internal accelerometer rotates the display.
Other than that, the LG Bliss has three physical keys underneath its display such as the Clear or Speakerphone key, the Talk key, and the End/Power key. It comes with volume rocker and 2.5-millimeter headset jack on the left spine, whereas the screen lock key, the charger jack, and the camera key are on the right side. On the back is the camera lens. There isn’t any self-portrait mirror, thus taking a self-photo gets a bit tricky. The device also brags of a microSD card slot at the backside of the battery cover. Last but not the least; there’s the proximity sensor of the LG Bliss beside the speaker and above the display. It shuts off the display when you put your face adjacent to it to save battery life.
The Bliss has 107.5 x 58 x 11.95mm dimensions along with a standard weight battery, being 95 grams (3.4oz). The handset is built-in with a large external touchscreen (262 TFT 3.0” HVGA Touch) that allows easy navigation. It is precisely due to this that one can blissfully navigate through the Menu even while on the go. Further, the absence of a key-pad prevents the occupation of unnecessary screen space!
User Interface (4 out of 5)
It would be unfair to brand it as a geek’s delight because it’s solid value for money when one considers its price tag of $99. Compared to the LG Scoop, the Bliss comes with a built-in 2MP camera and camcorder that allows easy capturing of photos and videos at 200x400 pixels.
The LG Bliss has a contact book of 1000 numbers. Against each contact, there is a provision for saving around five contact numbers, two mail addresses, and a website URL. In addition, one can also add a memo note to each of the contacts. These contacts can further be grouped and assigned one of 25 ring tones, or one of eight message tones. The Bliss also brags of a host of other features such as the speaker phone, multimedia messaging, alarm clock, world clock, unit converter and stop watch to name a few. One interesting attribute is a drawing panel application that can be used to sketch doodles and send to buddies!
Plus, the higher end functions such as the GPS, HTML browser, Bluetooth streaming and USB mass storage make the LG Bliss a great pick. It also touts wonderful call quality, a nice music player and an RSS reader.
Features (4 out of 5)
Feature wise, the LG Bliss has to offer a dual-band (CDMA 2000 1X 1900/800) crystal-clear reception and decent call handling capabilities. The interface itself is fast enough, allowing call functions and Java-based apps to load and run quickly. Another important feature is the handwriting recognition software. But the battery backup is pretty long, 3.5 hrs that’s more than what some others offer! So, for a solid touchscreen handset, the LG Bliss is an above-par performer.
Performance (4 out of 5)
While testing, the LG Bliss was found to have an amazing and impressive call quality. The voice of the caller was quite clear and loud. Though a bit of background buzz was heard, it wasn’t distracting at all.
The call quality of the handset was not only good at our end, but the same was also noticed on the caller’s end. While turning on the speakerphone, the voice quality was found to be a bit harsher.
The speakers of the phone also did not do any justice for audio playback. The music had a rather flat sound and lacked bass to a great extent. So, if you want to enhance audio listening experience, better use a headset.
The rated battery life of the LG Bliss offers around 13 days standby time and 4hrs and 30 minutes talktime. The tested talktime of the Bliss is up to 5 hrs and 53 minutes. The FCC says that the LG Bliss comes with 1.21 watts per kg digital SAR rating.
Pros and Cons (3 out of 5)
The good: The LG Bliss scores over the others in terms of performance, user-friendliness, superior styling and design, the attractive features and the high quality materials that have been used in the making of the phone. It is designed in slim form including a 3-inch touch screen, EV-DO, a 2MP camera, GPS, and a HTML browser. The device also offers good call quality.
The bad: The only downside in the construction of the phone is just the cheap plastic feel that could have been done away with.
The bottom line: The Bliss is an amazing midrange touchscreen phone for U.S. Cellular.
Verdict (4 out of 5)
The LG Bliss is an above average performer, and manages to catch everyone’s attention with its avant-garde features and cutting edge technology. The handset stands apart on a lot of fronts, and is definitely true value for money. So those who are still weighing the pros and cons should jump for the Bliss immediately to experience blissful telephony!