LG Viewty KU990 review. Introduction
There wasn’t a whole lot of new cellphones displayed during IFA Consumer Electronics show in Berlin. But among those that were there, LG KU990 Viewty certainly was the most impressive.
Then it’s the specs:
- 3.6 Mbps HSDPA connectivity
- 3â€³ 400Ã—240 px touchscreen
- 100MB of internal memory
- microSD memory card slot extendable up to 2GB
- dimensions 103.5×54.4×14.8 mm
- Weight: 112 g
and, of course, 5.1 mpx camera with Schneider Kreuzenach optics, Xenon Flash, manual/autofocus modes, image stabilzer, ISO800 SmartLight, face tracking and high speed 120 fps video recording capability.
With a specs like these, how can LG KU990 go bad? And it didn’t.
LG KU990 Viewty review. Camera
Here’s the picture made by LG Viewty in manual focus mode:
As you can see the quality of the picture, that was taken from about 70 cm, is really good for camera phone. The other shooting options for LG Viewty KU990 camera include: autofocus, panorama, burst shots (9 fps) and a frame shot.
Another cool thing about taking pictures with LG Viewty is the speed with which they are saved. On your usual cameraphone it can take from 5 to 10 seconds between the moment you hear the click of picture being taken and when it appears on screen. LG Viewty does that in less then 2 seconds.
And that circle that you see around the camera lens? It’s actually a jog dial, that you can use to (digitally) zoom in and out in a camera mode or focus the camera in manual focus mode. And it doubles as a volume control when you are talking on the phone, or a scroll wheel to scroll through music tracks and menu options.
In video camera mode, in addition to shooting VGA resolution clips at 30 fps, you can also take pictures in 120 fps fast video recording mode and then play video in slow motion at up to 15 fps. LG Viewty also has a dedicated microphone to capture sound during video recording.
Here’re the effects that you get with video recorded at 120 fps on LG Viewty and played back at 15 fps:
It’s been made under pretty lousy lighting conditions, but you should get the general idea how slow motion effects can look on LG Viewty, even in a low light.
LG Viewty KU990 review. Multimedia&Navigation
For your media, in addition to all traditional formats like Mp3, AAC, 3GP and others, LG KU990 Viewty has the media player that supports MPEG4/Divx video file playback, so you’ll be able to watch downloaded clips, TV shows and movies on your phone.
Between the touch controls and the Jog Dial, the overall navigation and interface of LG Viewty is very intuitive . I was easily browsing through the media files collection and menu options within minutes.
LG KU990 Viewty review. Text entry&dialing
Dialing numbers with the onscreen numeric keypad is no harder then on a normal phone. Writing SMS or e-mail with with onscreen QWERTY keyboard is even better.
The best thing about the number and text entry on LG Viety KU990 is the tactile feedback. You can feel vibration every time you press a key on Viewty, making the process as intuitive as on any normal phone. Thank’s to incorporation of Immersion’s VibeTonz technology, LG was able to solve the problem of tactile feedback, that plagued early touchscreen devices, pretty well.
LG KU990 has onscreen drawing/handwriting recognition feature too. You can draw pictures on a touchscreen, and Viewty will even recognize the numbers and characters, if that is your preferred data entry mode.
LG Viewty KU990 review. Other
LG Viewty KU990 model displayed at IFA was still a prototype, so there were some things missing to it.
E.g. it was really awkward to try handwriting or draw pictures with a finger on a touchscreen. And there was no stylus available. But LG manager told me that stylus will be added in LG Viewty sales package. Unfortunately there’s no place for it in the body of the phone, so carrying it around might pose some problems
LG KU990 Viewty and other LG phones on display at IFA were not connected to GSM network, so I was unable to test phone/data functions for now. Among the features that Viewty will support, but were not available for testing are:
- Full HTML browsing via Obigo browser
- Tight mobile Google apps integration. Following Google applications will be preinstalled/integrated in LG Viewty:
- Google Maps
- Google Search
- Gmail Mobile
- Blogger Mobile
- YouTube, with a single click video uploads
Also, from discussions with LG representatives it looks like some cellular carriers are not too enthusiastic about integrated Google apps. So do not be too surprised if your carrier subsidized LG KU990 Viewty will be missing some of them.
LG Viewty KU990 review. Conclusions
LG KU900 Viewty is a great mobile phone with outstanding camera capabilities, easy navigation and operation and lot’s of other cool features, like on screen editing and drawing, MPEG4/Avi file playback, tactile feedback, tight mobile Google apps/YouTube integration and high speed data transfers.
It may not have Multi-Touch features or the sleekness of the iPhone, but touch interface combined with JogDial on LG Viewty KU990 is still is very easy to use. And what it lacks in fancy gimmicks, LG Viewty certainly makes up in features and overall functionality.
There is one drawback to Viewty phone as well. LG Viewty KU990 is not a smartphone. It is a very good phone with good collection of additional applications, fast Internet browsing and the best camera features I’ve seen. It will also be able to run mobile JAVA apps. But if you are looking for rich third party software ecosystem like Symbian or Windows Mobile phones have, LG KU990 Viewty is not for you.
On the other hand, how many of us do really need a smartphone in their pocket? I got my wife Nokia E65 a few months back. She likes the form factor, but really hates the complexity around it. According to her, there’s too many options, too many choices and very often it’s just too hard to find the one simple thing she needs at the moment.
I usually end up fixing the things that got somehow messed up, every couple of weeks. Oh, and she never asked me to install a single third party software app.
According to LG, KU990 Viewty is due to be out by mid October in Europe. So I think I know already, what I’ll be getting my wife for Christmas.
Overall LG Viewty KU990 is one of the best phones I have tried and certainly the best one among the phones displayed during IFA Consumer Electronics show.
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