The LG GD900 Crystal is a stylish slide-out phone with innumerable easy-to-access functions and applications. The most striking thing about this phone is the crystal-clear numeric pad, which allows for smooth navigation without having to touch the screen, just like the optical pad of a laptop.
The 8MP camera, multi-touch capability, audio-video player, HSDPA connectivity, Wi-Fi, USB ports and a good number of multimedia options make the LG Crystal one of the most distinguished phones today. In short, the Crystal is a smart choice for those who want their phones to be stylish and full of features.
Design (4 out of 5)
The LG GD900 Crystal bears a very high style quotient – thanks to the clear keypad that will catch everyone’s attention. Made with tempered glass, the keypad exudes a bluish-white light along the edges and on the lens cover that looks amazing in the dark. The glass used is quite hefty and gives a solid feel. However, the flimsy plastic cover mars the beauty of the phone.
The 3-inch WVGA touchscreen display supports a resolution of 480 x 800 pixels. The 16 million color display renders images and videos in true-to-life quality. Also, the screen works perfectly even under direct sunlight and projects crystal clear images. The compact dimensions of 52.5 x 13.5 x 105 mm and weight of 127 g make the handset quite handy. Available in two models – Optus and Telstra – LG GD900 Crystal is sure to make a style statement.
For its unique design, the LG Crystal earns 4.5 out of 5.
User Interface (4 out of 5)
The multi-touch sensitive LG GD900 Crystal is also unique with respect to having its crystal keypad act as a touch-sensitive controller. The keypad registers gestures and hence users can just swipe their fingers on the keypad (or conventionally on the touchpad) to navigate through and access various applications loaded on the main menu. Multi-touch capability can be used to zoom into the images. Also, web pages can be enlarged by similar gestures (such as rotating the fingers) on the keypad.
The LG GD900 Crystal is packed with several touch-sensitive features as well. You can open the contacts by just drawing a circle on either the touchpad or the crystal keypad. However, this might also lead to some mishaps such as scrolling through various icons at the same time besides opening your contacts menu. Since the entire screen is touch-sensitive, it is your responsibility to be really careful while accessing a particular application.
The homescreen can be customized via an exceptional function called ‘water drops’ that turns the shortcut icons into water drops. However, it does not speed up the application start-up time and it might take a while to open the calendar. Another interesting aspect is that the phone offers 12 gestures to access 9 applications on the main menu.
Plus, the LG GD900 Crystal is the first of the S-class handsets with a hand-writing recognition feature. Users can have the text typed by just swiping their fingers either on the touchpad or keypad. Moreover, deletions can be done by just a simple swiping gesture on both the pads. However, there is an alternative on-screen QWERTY keyboard that leads to better typing owing to the more discernible letters but still you need to type slowly.
The phone has a camera shutter button and a volume rocker on the body that prove to be easy and quick shortcuts.
A few more apps accessible through gestures would have been a more welcome change, but looking at the immensely smooth user interface, the LG GD900 Crystal deserves 4 out of 5.
Features (4 out of 5)
The LG GD900 Crystal packs in a bunch of useful features and meets the standard of any contemporary smartphone. The phone offers excellent connectivity via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth and makes web-surfing seamless via 7.2Mbps HSDPA. The USB port, on the body of the handset, is well protected by a covering lid. Also, the handset supports networks such as GSM 2100, 1900, 1800, 900 and 850. Additionally, the phone packs GPRS and EDGE data services. As has already been mentioned, the handset offers ample multimedia options like games, FM radio, audio player, and a video player that supports Xvid and Divx. It also has a voice recorder and allows for video calls – a must in today’s world where social networking has become a craze. The cell phone also offers support for MMS along with text messages. Moreover, POP3 and IMAP4 e-mail protocols never let you stay away from important mail receipts.
The 8MP camera of the phone is rich in features like white balance, auto focus, flash, ISO settings, color effects, image stabilizer and various focusing modes.
For sporting a whole bunch of useful features, the Crystal deserves 4 out of 5.
Performance (4 out of 5)
A holistic approach towards examining the performance of the LG Crystal will lead to the conclusion that it performs in the best possible manner. The phone registers crystal clear and loud voice quality. The Bluetooth works fine enabling smooth transfer of data.
However, some users might find it difficult with the on-screen gesture-enabled texting and with the predictive text but that can be ignored with the unique feature of handwriting recognition it offers. Instead of using the pad as with buttons, users should smoothly glide their fingers over the touchpad.
The 1000mAh battery offers 4 hours of talk time and 300 hrs of standby time. The phone can go on without charge for two days. However, the frequent use of multimedia as well as web-browsing will definitely cut short the life span of the battery.
The worst part of the phone is the image quality despite sporting an 8MP camera. But for the microshots where the image is considerably better, the camera leaves a blurring effect and purple fringing on the images. The colors produced are also thin and shooting gets even worse indoors with the flash not casting proper light on the subject.
Performance wise, LG Crystal earns 4 out of 5.
Verdict (4 out of 5)
To sum up, the LG Crystal typically prioritizes features and design over functionality. With loads of features, a superior and rare stylish look, the phone is ideal for those who want to make a style statement with their gadgets. But thinking beyond that will only shatter your expectations. However, as a phone the LG Crystal won’t attract too many complaints.
Overall, the LG Crystal gets 4 out of 5