Originally Posted by Onegai:
I recently got an LG KS360 on upgrade from my Samsung E250. My primary motivation for choosing this phone was the QWERTY keyboard. However, I wasn’t prepared to downgrade on any of the features that my previous phone had. At the time this seemed like the perfect choice but it did not come without some flaws.
Let’s start with the QWERTY keyboard. It’s by far the KS360’s best feature. Since I’m a heavy Mxit and mobile internet user this keyboard is great. Apart from the basics, the keyboard also has many of the most common symbols like @ and asterisk that could usually only be accessed on the “Insert Symbol” function on a regular keypad or by pressing a key nearly a million times. Admittedly, it was a little difficult to get used to using this keypad at first but once I got the hang of it, texting got a lot simpler and faster and this reduced my thumb cramps significantly.
The MP3 player is great too. There are virtually no limits to the number of songs you can place on a playlist or the number of playlists you can have. The player “can play” AAC, WMA and MP3. I would like at this moment to point out there is a difference between codecs and containers. I tend to get verbose explaining things so you’d best check Wikipedia if you want more info. Basically, much like the E250, the KS360 does not support all codecs. You may possibly never come across an MP3 that this phone cannot play, but they do exist. (Just an aside hint here: If you are encoding your own MP3’s use ID3v1 for the ID3 tags and not ID3v2 as it seems to have some compatibility issues with this phone as well as the E250).
Now lets take a look at the 2 Mega Pixel camera. The camera isn’t bad but it’s no Nikon. At the end of the day you shouldn’t expect any cellphone camera to be. Still, it does its job for those unexpected moments at parties or when your kid starts walking and you don’t have anything else that takes pictures handy. The maximum resolution for photos is 1600×1200 and for video it’s 320×240. There are a few features to enhance the quality of your photographs like White Balance and Exposure Value control. Unfortunately there’s no flash and the thing about cellphone camera’s is this: you need a very bright light-source for images to come out decently. There’s a few effects like Sepia, B&W and negative but nothing that Photoshop® can’t do better.
Regarding the battery-life and charging the phone, there are three things I really like. Firstly there’s the fact that the phone switches off a little before the battery is completely depleted which prevents the need for resetting the date and time provided you plug it in to charge relatively timeously. Secondly, the USB connector allows you to charge the phone from your PC’s USB port. This is very useful as, especially in South Africa, there are not always compatible power points to plug in a charger. It also makes life easier since you can charge the phone while you sync with your PC. Thirdly is the battery life itself. The phone is very conservative with power and lasts reasonably long between charges. I only charge it every third day on average despite the fact that I use the MP3 player a lot and spend lots of time on Mxit (whereas my E250 needed charging everyday under the same circumstances).
Everything else is pretty standard. It supports Java, has an internet browser, stores about 1000 entries in the phone book, supports up to 2GB mini-SD, has 14MB onboard memory, FM Radio, MP3 ringtones, photo caller ID, Voice Recorder, Calendar, Calculator, Alarm Clock, Converter, Memo, Picture Viewer / wallpapers (PNG, GIF, JPG), in other words the standard stuff.
My first real bitch is the video player. The phone’s native resolution is 240×360 (or 360×240 depending on what mode it’s in). However, the video player chokes when play video files of this resolution. It only just handle low resolution video files. In fact at the start-up screen, there’s an animation that precedes the LG logo. This animation doesn’t even play smoothly; it freezes, skips a few frames, plays a few frames, freezes and so on until the end of the animation. This is basically what happens when trying to view video files.
My second bitch is the logon screen at the startup. It forces you to use the touch screen to enter your pin number. While many people wet themselves over this touch screen innovation in the mobile industry, I find it an unnecessary annoyance. As a person who doesn’t have hobbit-sized fingers, I find it difficult to accurately press the touch screen.
My third bitch also involves starting up the phone. When the phone shuts down due to lack of battery power; you naturally plug it in to charge and try to switch it on again. When you switch it on though, it enters its standby mode. So then you try to switch it on again and nothing happens. Logically you assume it’s being non-responsive (It’s actually not, we’ll get to that) and you try to switch it on again. This time, it switches off. This is because for some reason, irrespective of the battery life (it has done this to me even on full battery), when this phone is switched off and the switched on again, it takes a while to start up. This becomes tedious after a while to say the least.
My last bitch is that the phone takes a long time to access files. My E250 had reasonably fast file access but the KS360 pauses nearly every folder I open, even with thumbnails turned off.
Apart from the few negatives, all in all it’s a good phone considering its price. I’ve examined some phones of similar specs and they are all nearly double the KS360’s price. As the Nokia 3310 once reigned supreme as the most common phone, followed by the Motorola 360 and finally succeeded by the Samsung E250, so I believe that the KS360 will be South Africa’s next most popular phone, despite its few flaws.