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My Thoughts (and Personal Review) on the LG Shine

We finally decided to dump Verizon and make the switch over to AT&T.  During this process, we of course, got new phones.  After a long, arduous search, we both decided on the LG Shine.   (We really wanted the Blackberry, but we didn’t want to spend the $$)…. anyway … it’s been over a month now, and I have formed some pretty solid opinions about this phone.

First of all, it’s sleek, it’s gorgeous, but most of all, it’s a sturdy phone.  Unlike the other phone options, this phone is heavy and built very well.  All the others seemed flimsy and slapped together, and I feared breaking it within a week.  (Yes, I can be quite brutish with cell phones).   Kudos for making a phone feel like it’s built to withstand.

It’s packed with loads of features that we’ve opted not to use right now.  But, we figure when we’re ready, there’s the web, music, video and broadcasts we can enjoy.  It certainly has a lot of bells and whistles to it.  It has a task manager, to do lists, calendar scheduling, yadda yadda… you get the idea.

I can’t really provide any feedback on the web services they provide, but from what I understand – it’s pretty decent.  I can watch movies, music videos, youtube, whatever – and it serves as a music player as well.  It has an XM Radio feature which I think rocks.

It’s very shiny.  TOO shiny.  I find myself polishing it frequently as it loves to collect fingerprints.   This is definitely a crime scene investigator’s dream phone.   But, I guess that’s why they call it the Shine.  Hey – it comes in handy when you need a mirror.  (Also a narcissist’s dream come true).

The center button is very weird.  Sometimes it’s very sensitive, other times it’s not.  You have to administer the right pressure to get it to cooperate.  It’s also very easy to select an item menu in error.   I think they should have put a smaller version of a directional touch pad there, but I think that would have been way too small to navigate.  So, needless to say, it gets very annoying when you select the wrong thing and end up on the web.

The lock feature on the phone downright sucks.  I’ve pulled my phone out of my case a few times to find that I signed on to the web.  And yes, they charge you for things ike that, so …. It doesn’t seem to stay locked.  They implemented a feature that allows you to unlock it in a “sequence” – but if you have it in a case, or if you put it on your pocket, apparently, it isn’t hard to unlock the sequence.   They really need to fix that.

The numbered buttons are decent.  They aren’t very big, but they aren’t that small either.  They are the flat buttons, so if you aren’t a fan of that or if you have big fingers or tend to be a bit clumsy on a keypad, you’ll dial the wrong number.  But overall, it’s decent.

The volume on this phone is not so hot either.  I’ve been struggling with being able to hear the phone ring with their ringtones, so I decided to make my own.  That seemed to have worked a charm.  Now, not only do I hear it, but the rest of the office hears it too.   Essentially, it’s not very loud, so if you need something that will ring over regular, every day noise – this phone is going to disappoint you.

Speaking of ringtones, each day I am more and more glad to have dumped Verizon.  Our niece came over for her weekly dinner visit and brings me her Verizon LG Dare phone with a list of songs she wanted as ringtones.  No problem right?  Wrong.  Verizon has a nasty habit of making it very difficult for you to transfer ringtones to their phones.  With the Shine, it was so easy it actually amazed me.  I transfered it from a micro-SD card, and BOOM – instant ringtone.  With the Verizon phone – I found out you either had to email them to yourself (which can reduce the sound quality of the ringtone, and you may have to pay charges for file transfer) or find software to transfer it from your PC to phone.   What a stinker.   I loaded her SD card and told her she’d have to decide what to do.  American Idol was about to come on.

The bluetooth set up was a snap.  I thought I’d have to go through a lot more than I did – but nope.  Easy Breezy.

The camera?  They could have done better.  There is a slight delay when you take a picture.  I attempted to take a picture of one of my cats who doesn’t like to sit still for too long, especially for picture taking.  Let’s just say that I kept getting profile pictures, even though I pressed when he was looking dead into the phone.  You can literally count to two before the pic is snapped.   Not that I take a lot of pictures or expect a cell phone camera to work like a digital one, but it would be nice to know that if you had to take a quick shot of something, you wouldn’t have to wait two or three seconds before the picture is taken.

I’ve played with the video a little bit, and really have nothing to say about it.  I don’t usually judge a camera by it’s video quality, but it seems to be okay.

Overall – the worst I think of the LG Shine is the lock feature, the center button, camera and the volume.  Otherwise, it really is a decent phone and I am pretty comfortable knowing I am going to have it for the next two years.   I haven’t had any issues with sound quality, range or dropped calls (so far).   I give it a thumbs up (mostly).

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