Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Koodo LG Optimus One Review

I've had my LG Optimus One from Koodo for a couple of months now. I have to say, I'm very impressed with this phone.
With NO CONTRACT, this phone was only $150. With Koodo, I was able to put the entire $150 on my tab, which gets paid bit by bit each month. At any time of my choosing, I can pay out what I owe on my tab and walk away. No contract, no fees, no hassle. They also gave me a $100 visa gift card, so in fact the phone only cost me $50. Service with them has been great, and their data plans are excellent. I opted for the "data saver" plan, which simply only charges me for the data I use each month. Check out the page about it here.
It comes with Android 2.2, a 3.2" touchscreen, 2GB microSD card and WiFi hotspot capability. The guy at the kiosk tried to tell me this phone would be too slow to play any games on, because it is just an introductory phone, but I haven't had any issues yet. It plays Angry Birds just fine! :)

One of the things I truly love about this phone is the voice commands. These are available in most Android builds, as far as I understand. In the picture above, you can see the google search bar. At the right side is a microphone icon. Just touch that, speak what you want, and the phone does it! "Send text to John Henry, what time are we meeting tonight?" will bring up the text window and insert the text you want! It's awesome for when you're driving (hands free, right?) or when you just don't feel like typing out a big long message. You also get the same little microphone icon right on your keyboard, so if you start typing then change your mind, you can hit the icon and start speaking what you want to text instead.
These voice commands also work for web searching, placing calls, travel directions and more. This is how using your computer at home should be!

The camera does a fine job in normal lighting conditions, but suffers in poor light conditions. This is one of the things you sacrifice when buying a cheaper phone I guess. For the most part I am still happy with it, as I usually am taking pictures during the day in normal light conditions. The camera is 3.2 megapixels. There is no front facing camera, which I was also disappointed about, but again, it IS a cheaper camera so sacrifices must be made.
Here is a pic I took of us setting up for a gig my band played this summer:

and here is a pic from about the same angle, but after it has gotten dark:

So, poor light, poor pictures. This is true of many cell phone cameras though, so it's nothing I cry too much over.

Battery life is fair. I can get through an entire day, even with pretty heavy usage, but I have to charge every night. If I don't, I'm likely going to run out of juice before the end of the next day.

This is my first Android phone, and so far, I'm quite happy with it. The app store (Marketplace) is easy to navigate and stocked with plenty of things to play with. Live wallpapers, where the home screen background picture can actually show moving pictures, movies, and be interacted with, is lots of fun, and a cool "wow" factor to show off to friends. For an "introductory" phone, I find it reacts reasonably well to my touch (although it does sometimes take a little bit force to get a reaction), and seems quick to load up apps and switch from screen to screen.

So, all in all, for what turned out to be $50, no contract and an excellent monthly plan, I'm very satisfied with my LG Optimus One from Koodo Mobile. If you're thinking about an Android phone, but haven't tried one yet, this is an excellent way to test the waters.