CNET Reviews My Phone

I subscribe to CNET’s cell phone reviews. I’m not sure why. It was interesting reading them while I was shopping around. I should cancel it now.

Today, around three months after I got it, CNET reviewed my cell phone, the LG-G4010. It wasn’t mentioned in the review, but it should be noted that LG stands for Lucky Goldstar. I’m not sure how much confidence is built by having Lucky in your businesses name!

I have a love/hate relationship with this phone. It is as tiny as any phone I’ve ever had, and lightweight. It sits in my pocket most of the day at work. The vibration is strong enough that I seldom miss a call.

There are very few accessories for this phone. I’d like a clip to carry it on my belt. There is none. I’d like a data cable. There is none.

I’m afraid, though physically robust, the phone’s software is not. From time-to-time the phone forgets where my phonebook is stored. Is it on the SIM card? Is it in the native memory of the phone itself? Set it – it forgets it! The numbers aren’t gone, just lost. But, if you’re in the car, pressing a single speed dial number to reach someone and the phone says that entry is empty, you’ve been inconvenienced. It’s doubly true if you no longer know someone’s number, just their speed dial entry.

I’ve set the ringtone, only to have it revert to some other ring tone! This happened during my stay in Florida. I tried to use the least outlandish tone. What I got was the sampled sound of a bell from an old phone. I must have reset this feature a dozen times without success.

Astoundingly enough, the phone doesn’t have one feature that I though every cell phone had. There’s no way to have it wait while dialing. With all my previuous phones, voice mail meant pushing one button, waiting, pushing it again and hearing messages. Now, to get voice mail, I hit the first button, but must dial all the other codes myself – even while driving. That’s not right, since this seems like such a mature feature. Let’s call this ‘forgetware.’

The phone’s grayscale display features a wallpaper pattern. I’d rather not have it. Too bad. There’s no way to turn it off. It can be changed, but not turned off. Strange.

Last, but certainly not least is the manual. The manual is so beautifully designed and printed that when I originally had trouble following what it was saying, I though the problem was mine. This seems like a manual that might have been written in Korean and then poorly translated into English. Whatever the story, it’s a puzzle. I’m surprised Cingular let this get by since it increases their support costs.

All this being said, I still like the phone. I’ve learned to work around some of its weaknesses (like lack of external display) and enjoy its diminutive size. I had read some people complain of short battery life, but that’s not been a problem for me.

Of course there’s still no cell service at home. I am hoping Cingular is successful in its bid for AT&T and that it is AT&T’s cell site that I hear (but can’t use) from my house. That would be huge.

The Vegas term for this is ‘parlay’, a series of bets, each of which has to come true for you to get the payoff. Parlay players seldom win.

3 thoughts on “CNET Reviews My Phone”

  1. About the manual… exact same thing on my Verizon LG VX4400, and apparantly on all the LG phones. I eventually gave up on reading the thing, and figured it all out myself. Less painful that way.

  2. Re: The “Korean/English” Manual! I had the same thing with one of my first cars – a Hyundai. If I wanted to know about the kind of engine oil to use…I found the answer in the index under “C”…”changing the engine oil”! With that set-up virtually everything was under “C” for “changing the….”! Kind of funny….

  3. While the manuals may stink, and sometimes features may have been dropped (who knows why??) I have to say that the LG phones are pretty good. Much better than the 3 Nokias that I’ve had…

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