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The LG Optimus T is an entry level Android smartphone available from T-Mobile currently. Priced at $29.99 on a two year contract after a mail in rebate, the LG Optimus T is definitely an affordable Android powered smartphone. It's quite interesting to see LG take the Optimus name brand and place it in a position to capture the entry level market. LG may be taking a similar route to another Korean cell phone manufacturer, Samsung, marketing the Optimus line as a broad line. Similar to how the Galaxy line from Samsung is split among entry level, mid level and high end markets. The LG Optimus T will be competing with the likes of the Motorola Charm, Motorola Flipout, and the Samsung Transform.
LG Optimus T Specifications:
- Dimensions: 4.46 x 2.32 x 0.52 inches (113 x 59 x 13.2 mm)
- Weight: 4.48 oz (127 g)
- Display: 3.2 inch LCD Color TFT capacitive touchscreen display, 320 x 480 pixels
- Memory: 150 MB + Expandable microSD up to 32 GB
- OS: Android OS 2.2
- Processor: 600 MHz Qualcomm MSM7627
- Camera: 3.2 megapixel camera with VGA video recording
- Connectivity: GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
- Data: HSPA 7.2
- Bluetooth: Bluetooth 2.1
- GPS: GPS with A-GPS
- Battery: Li-Ion 1500 mAh
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Design and DisplayRating
The LG Optimus T has a fairly standard design for an Android powered smartphone. Dominating the front is the 3.2 inch LCD color TFT screen. The display, for an entry level phone, is very vibrant and clean, though it does feel a bit like plastic. The viewing angle is actually fairly good for an entry level phone. Below the display are the four familiar Android shortcut buttons for menu, home, back and search. The buttons on the LG Optimus T are actually physical and not touch sensitive, which is a bit of a welcome addition. The LG Optimus T is also available in Burgundy as well as Titanium Gray
The right edge of the LG Optimus T is bare, opposite on the left edge is the volume rocker, going below, you'll see the microUSB and up top will be the power/lock button and the 3.5 mm headphone jack. A very familiar design but at the same time a bit disappointing as there's no dedicated camera button. Rounding out the back of the phone is a rubbery textured back and 3.2 megapixel camera. The microSD card location is actually under the back cover, so you'll have to pop off the back of the phone to place a microSD card into the phone. Luckily you won't have to pull the battery out to place the microSD in place.
Overall the design is very much a familiar and average design for an Android powered smartphone. For an entry level phone, it's fairly well built and feels solid in the hand.
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Hardware and SoftwareRating
The LG Optimus T doesn't have the highest specs for an Android smartphone, but that's to be expected with the price and the market LG and T-Mobile are going for. The LG Optimus T features a 600 MHz Qualcomm MSM7627 processor, which is a far cry from the 1 GHz processors found in higher end smartphones such as the Samsung Vibrant or the Motorola Droid X, but the Optimus T still performs surprisingly well.
Running on the 600 MHz processor is, surprisingly, Android 2.2 (Froyo) with slight T-Mobile modifications. LG and T-Mobile have made the right choice in running the latest available version of Android on the LG Optimus T. Samsung and Verizon just recently made a slight mistake in releasing a higher end smartphone, the Samsung Continuum with Android 2.1. The 600 MHz processor runs Android 2.2 fairly well and lag was not a common occurrence.
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The LG Optimus T has a very easy to use interface. The stock version of Android 2.2 is a very easy OS to pick up for new and old users alike. T-Mobile has only changed the interface slightly, adding a call and messaging icon to the left and right of the application shortcut key. Beyond that, the LG Optimus T has the familiar Android OS layout and features, including the Android Market, where you can download thousands of applications to your liking. The T-Mobile LG Optimus T is lacking some standard Android widgets, such as the clock, that they replaced with LG widgets that give a bit of a SenseUI feel to the widgets.
Another interesting addition T-Mobile has added to the LG Optimus T is the DriveSmart application. Like the name suggests, the DriveSmart application allows you to drive more carefully and safely without being distracted by your LG Optimus T. The application actually allows you to have an auto-response for people who call or text you while you drive. The LG Optimus T also supports the DriveSmart Plus application which allows the auto-response to kick in when you hit a certain miles per hour speed. This application is also easy to use and is a great way to drive without feeling like you're ignoring people.
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The LG Optimus T comes equipped with the usual features included with Android. Like other Android handsets, the LG Optimus T has access to the application store, allowing you to download helpful addition applications as well as games. Many of the applications and games are free, the higher quality or enhanced versions of many applications do have a small cost attached.
The LG Optimus T also features a 3.2 megapixel camera which takes fairly decent pictures. One thing to note is that it does not perform HD video recording, rather it can only record VGA, which means the video is a bit under par when it comes to quality. The sound quality on the video also suffers a bit, but once again, with the low price, it is to be expected.
The media player is easy to use and plays decently well. Audio comes out clean when using headphones but the quality does drop if the phone's stereo speakers are used. Video play back is decent with lower resolution videos. Once you load up higher quality videos, there is a bit of noticeable lag and stuttering as the video plays.
Similar to other higher end smartphones such as the Samsung Captivate or even possible competitors like the Motorola Flipout, the LG Optimus T features Swype. Swype is a great addition to this entry level handset, allowing you to type quickly without lifting a finger.
Overall for an entry level Android powered device, the LG Optimus T has an average feature set and performs fairly well for a smartphone priced at $29.99.
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The Final VerdictRating
The LG Optimus T ranks in at a solid 'average' rating for an entry level Android powered smartphone. The solid and sturdy design coupled with Android 2.2 make the LG Optimus T a good choice for new users to smartphones. Though the 600 MHz processor does have a bit of lag, even while browsing, it isn't too bad. Priced at a low $29.99 with a two year contract from T-Mobile, the LG Optimus T is a great phone for new smartphone users or as a gift for family members both young and old.
LG Optimus T Reviewed
A series of reviews on the LG Optimus Series of smartphones from Korean manufacturer, LG. Though not quite as popular as Samsung, LG has been pumping out sleeker and newer smartphones with the Optimus brand.