Pros Touch screen, thin, lightweight, design/beauty, high quality mp3 player, great display, tons of bundled accessories/wallpapers/ringto nes (PC Contents Bank), excellent user guides/manual
Cons no speakerphone, no expansion slot, fingerprints easily
Summary This is a great little phone...extremely attractive and packed with features. The PC Sync software works fine, but you have to pay attention to the manual otherwise you might miss the instructions for the Modem (key to using the software). The user interface takes a little getting used to, but once you've played with it a bit, you get the hang of it.
I listed the lack of an expansion slot as a "Con", but in fact, for me it is a non-issue. I didn't buy this phone with the intention of replacing my mp3 player anyway. However, I am amazed at the quality of the sound that comes out of it (via the bundled headphones).
This phone is very unique and beautiful.
"LG VX8500 Chocolate"on by juanriv
Pros Speaker phone option; yes, you heard it: SPEAKER PHONE OPTION. Go to your Verizon store and they will program your Chocolate's speakerphone option! Awesome MP3 player.
Cons Sync software not very good. Bluetooth voice command response volume is low; hard to hear phone commands in loud enviorment.
Summary I've had this phone for 5 months now and all I can say is that it is what it is. A great looking phone with some great features. Perfect, NO, by no means; no phone is perfect that's why there are 1,000,000 different phones out on the market. Finally we see the intentions of cell carriers at work. No speakerphone meant you'd have to shell out the extra $$$ for a Bluetooth headset with the phone. Verizon now offers to hack your phone for you if you'll just take it by the store and they'll enable the SPEAKERPHONE option. Folks, it's all built into the phone by the manufacturer; it's the carrier that holds us hostage (Verizon).
If you are a text message geek all you have to do is look at the small keys and you'll know this phone wasn't built with text messaging in mind. I don't text message so it's more than good for me.
The music essentials kit is worthless. I just put my memory card in my reader, transfer my mp3's to the card and stick it in the phone, works for me at no extra cost.
If you'll just read the manual first you will save yourself the headache and time of writting ignorant reviews.
If you go to settings and disable the backlit timer, you won't have to tap the mic button twice to unlock the phone everytime you want to answer a second call (If you own this phone you know what I mean.) yes it will use up more battery but it will keep you from having a head-on collision with that truck because you're trying to fiddle with that dumb unlock button.
Again, the steep learning curve C/net talks about can be minimized if you'll take the time and read the manual first.
Pros Nice form factor, like the slider aspect, good keys
Cons Not very flexible; menus are tricky
Summary OK, first off, I do like the phone. I am such a gadget geek, when I saw it I had to try it out. That being said, after a week of using it, I'm fairly disappointed.
I am using this phone through the Verizon service in the US, which, while they have very good call service, the music and ringtones available are so-so. You have to use their "Buy it now" service on the phone, although you can use third-party providers on the Web.
I like the form factor and the dialing buttons. It gets lots of ooos and ahhhs when I use it. The dial keys, hidden by the slider form factor, are easy to use and click nicely when pressed. It's pretty easy to text with them, too.
As far as texting goes, it's pretty good. But this is where it gets clunky, and begins to show the Chocolate's clunkiness in the menu structure and overall useability of the phone. For example, you can word text quickly, but if you run into a word it doesn't understand, you're stuck accessing the text-style menu selecting letter input, accessing the text menu then going back to word. Needless to say, slows things down considerably. There is no on-phone help, so if you are scratching your head about how to access any features, you have to then refer to the user manual (also rather user confusing). Getting frequently used symbols is likewise unhandy. If you think you can access the ! or ? by rotating the 1 key, that's not here.
The touch buttons are a nice idea, but they are a bit finicky. You can touch them lightly and it will bring up your menus at one time, next time you have to nearly press.
The round ipod-like dial is just superficial design. It has no mechanism and no rotary purpose. The four compass-point touch buttons and central all-purpose OK button are the key aspects. But be careful! It's easy to push the OK button and one of the other buttons at the same time.
Some of the simple stuff you can program in other phones is not even avaailable on the Chocolate that I can find. Want a sound when you slide it open? Too bad. Same for closing. Want to change the sound set for key presses and menu access? Nope, no go. How about a speaker phone? Nada. A "most frequently called numbers" list handy? I can't find it. Tapping on the Call button just brings up a list of the most recent calls. Wanna change that? Too bad. And what you can change the buttons to activate is very limited.
The menu structure is unhandy, too. Things that should be easily acccessible are buried. Push the Music button on the side, and you get the "Playlist" menu. No playlists? Start over, go to "My music" then build one. Why not just have access to the total library? How about multiple presses on the Music buttn cycle through the options, like playlists, genre, etc.? Nope, nope and nope.
It has great sound, though, but if you want to play any type of collection, get a microSD memory card *right away.* The built in memory is pretty small (I think it's only 128mb, and that is shared with all aspects, including music).
I'm looking forward to getting the Motorola Bluetooth headphones to go with it. Otherwise, it's just an ok phone.
Pros Looks cool, Good camera, long battery life
Cons Everything else is lacking. Gets dirty and scratched easily, terrible navitation menu.
Summary I was excited to get this phone when it was released.
5 months later, I'm wishing I had waited. Sure, it looks cool, I love the sliding, good camera and bright display.
Just keeping it in your pocket alone will scratch it, and since it's super slick the tiniest flaws show. The silver paint around the 4 circle buttons is flaking off just from normal use.
The touch buttons are slow, the operating system menus are complicated, ugly, and the simplest functions are buried.
The number pad is awkward to use for entering numbers or texting.
Getting information from your phone while you're making a call is almost impossible, since all the keys go off 3 seconds after you start calling, so you don't hit them with your face. You have to unlock the keypad, and then navigate the menus. Sometimes I just want to see what time it is, and it's IMPOSSIBLE when you're making a call.
Verizon also likes to cripple all bluetooth functions on their cameras, incase anyone actually wanted to use the bluetooth for something other than a headset. To load pictures contacts or songs to your computer, you have to send it to the verizon "pix place" website, and then download it from the website.
All in all, this phone could have been so much more. I'm very disappointed. I'll be trading this in as soon as I can... that'll be a year and a half....
Pros Great style, easy to use, 3 different menu systems that are all great
Cons No speakerphone, end key in strange place
Summary the chocolate has very good features, such as Vcast and expandable memory. The touch pad takes some getting used to, but once you do get used to it, it is a lot easier to use than normal buttons. The end key is on the side of the phone, so unless this is your first phone, you're going to be pressing the back button all the time when you're trying to end calls. It doesn't have a speakerphone, but the sound is so good that it almost makes up for it. Word works great, and it's a lot faster than abc mode. The chocolate has 3 different menu designs, and which one you use depends on your preference. I personally like the rock and roll menu, because it's a nice contrast from the normal verizon menu, and I like how you can see the whole circle at one time. It also comes with very good wallpapers, especially for music lovers.
One of the best things about the phone is how it looks. It's very noticable and stylish, the camera isn't in a place where your fingers are always in the way, and it's very sleek. Overall, this is a very good phone.Updated
I just got the upgrade that includes a speakerphone. I really like the subtle things that they changed this time. So far, I've noticed that instead of pressing the audio key twice to unlock the keypad when it's closed, you just press any of the side buttons (except end) and you only press it once. Another thing that I like is that now, from the main screen in camera mode, just pressing up and down adjusts the brightness. Before, you had to go to options to reach that feature, which is very important. Now to the speakerphone. The speakerphone can be accessed only during a call, by pressing the camera button. It is turned off the same way, and it automatically turns off after a call, which is very convenient. I've only used the speakerphone a few times, but from what I've noticed, it may be a little bit quiet, but even from about 4 feet away, the person I was talking to could hear me just fine. Overall, it's a very good speakerphone. Nothing has gone wrong with my chocolate at all since I got it. The only complaint I have had is that it attracts fingerprints, but that's really minor. Thanks for reading!