LG Chocolate 3 Review
The main menu is basically the same as all other Verizon non-smartphones, with categories for media center, messaging, contacts, recent calls, and settings & tools. There are four themes included (slick black, white, dark chocolate, orbis) and you can change the layout of each between tab, list, and grid view. All of the themes operate quickly and without any noticeable delay.
The Phonebook allows up to 1000 entries to be stored, each with their name, mobile 1, home, work, email 1, group, picture, ringtone, mobile 2, fax, and email 2. After a contact is saved, you can assign them to one of 999 speed-dial locations.
2MP camera instead of a 1.3MP, but the picture quality is still sub-par. Images taken outside looked over-exposed and slightly out-of-focus, with inside images looking dark and grainy. Even though the camera is not the major selling feature of the device, it would still be nice if it produced better results (such as the enV2 or V9m).
- Resolution: 1600x1200, 1280x960, 640x480, 320x240, Picture ID
- Self Timer: Off, 3 sec, 5 sec, 10 sec
- White Balance: Auto, Sunny, Cloudy, Fluorescent, Glow
- Shutter Sound: Shutter, Silent, Say Cheese, Ready 123
- Color Effects: Normal, Negative, Aqua, Sepia, B&W
- Night Mode: On, Off
- Save Options: Internal, External
- Photometry: Average, Spot, Spot Multiple
- Preview: Actual view, Full screen
The Chocolate 3 is also the first Verizon phone to come with the new Dashboard software, powered by Adobe. When launched, it shows you a list of “channels” that you can scroll through (mobile web, search, VZW showcase, news, music, games, tones & extras, community, entertainment, weather, business, ESPN, and get channels). Choosing one of those selection, such as news, will show the top stories of the day and can link you to other news outlets via the mobile web. Selecting the channel for weather will show the current temperatures in three preselected cities, which can be customized by typing in a zip code or city and state. Going to the Get Channels menu allows you to add or remove channel listings. A total of 10 basic channels can be added and viewed at once, even though 15 are available. This means that 5 channels cannot be viewed, but at anytime you can replace a current channel with one of those 5. There is also a category for Premium channels, but the list is currently empty. Once premium channels become available, they are billable monthly, if you select one of them to be added. Overall the Dashboard is a nice addition, as it shows content and information categorized into different themed channels. One option we found missing was the ability to change the order of the channels on your list. Unfortunately, because of the addition of the Dashboard software, the Chocolate 3 can only be purchased and activated on one of Verizon’s Nationwide calling plans. This is due to the data that is used for “pushing” information to the channels. Current Verizon customers who have older plans, such as America’s Choice, and are looking to purchase this phone, must change to a Nationwide plan.
Other software features include Mobile Web 2.0, VCast Music and Ringtone downloads, VCast Video streaming, and VZ Navigator for GPS guided directions. You can also download a wide variety of games and other programs using the Media Center. Applications open fast and there is no noticeable delay when using them. Since the browser is a standard WAP, it cannot properly render or display most HTML sites. We also tried using it with the Mobile YouTube site, but it was unable to stream video.
1. jl3297 (unregistered)
For me, one of the key characteristics that made the phone a "Chocolate" to begin with was the fact that it was a slider. Without that aspect, calling this phone the next Chocolate is a huge disappointment/frustration for me. It just doesnt feel like a Chocolate. Sure it may be a nice phone technically and functionally but it should have stood alone as a different series and not the Chocolate family. Specifically in terms of this phone I like the sleekness of the exterior, but the interior just makes me cringe. It looks like the interior of a cheap $50 phone or one of the phones that Verizon gives you for free when you buy a more expensive phone. Bottom line for me, this is not an LG Chocolate.
i agree with you actually this should have been the next generation of the chocolate flip give it the slide form factor, and ill consider it part of the original chocolate line that i fell in love with seriously the phone looks amazing on the outside but the inside does look pretty ugly
3. wetwet (unregistered)
i would suggest using the 30day policy before you vent frustrations with the form of the phone. most people complained about the slider of the orig choco, which were somewhat resolved on the 8550, but still issue arose. making it a flip phone expands the audience since everyone can use a clamshell phone (some biz types might not want a slider, younger audience) plus the phone performs absolutely amazing. better than an iphone. just joking fanboys....calm down.....caaaalm down.
we arent saying that its a bad phone its just that we think it shouldn't be considered part of the 85xx series but part of the 86xx series since that was the flip form chocolate phone
5. izdale (unregistered)
There never was a Chocolate flip. The VX8600, contrary to what is thought, was NOT a chocolate flip. It was not released or advertised as a "Chocolate" phone. There are 2 things that made the chocolate the chocolate. 1. that it was a slider and 2. that it was a top of the line music player. The chocolate 3 may not be a slider, but it is still a chocolate in being such a great music player and in being able to multi-task. The Chocolate 3 is a great addition to the chocolate family. I never would have gotten a slider chocolate, but I love my chocolate 3.
6. Dan (unregistered)
I like this phone, but the people at the verizon store don't know a damn thing about it. So anyway, a few questions to any owners: first, can you drag and drop music files or do you have to buy the $30 verizon music kit? does it take 3.5mm or 2.5mm headphone or require the music kit adaptor? and i'd be interested to know anyone else's experiences with the FM transmitter?
I think all of your questions are anwered in the review if you take the time to read it.
10. Dan (unregistered)
Thanks. I read the article, but in instances in which the facts in the article conflict with facts told to me by Verizon salespeople, I thought it would be prudent to solicit the opinions of individuals who already own the phone. But apparently you were under the impression that I was soliciting smart-ass comments... Anyhow, thank you to the individual who added comment #9 for the input about transmitter.
8. RollerCoast (unregistered)
I just ordered a new Chocolate 3 and it should be arriving Monday. I'm so glad they finally made the first chocolate flip. I like slider phones but I wasn't crazy about the first chocolates. The first one seem to have all kinds of software bugs. And the second one although didn't have as many problems still wasn't something I could use. I didn't like the heat sensitive buttons it had on the front because when you were in a call and had the phone against your face the buttons constantly would vibrate and that can be extremely annoying. And because both of the previous two chocolates were sliders the keypad was very tight and small which could make it difficult to text even for me and I don't have huge fingers. Although the new chocolate may not be as flashy as the sliders it's replacing I think it's a step in the right direction. And I wanted to make a comment. I don't think the phone was called chocolate because it was a slider. I think it was called chocolate because everybody loves chocolate and it was more so a marketing ploy for LG to sell their new music series phone and now the name carries on no matter what the form factor is.
I've had this phone for a week and a half now and just got finished driving 1000 miles in a Budget Rental Truck. I used the FM transmitter extensively. The long and short of it is that you _really_ do need to have 3 channels clear in a row (for example, 88.1, 88.3, and 88.5) and go with the middle one (88.3). In that scenario it works perfectly. However, when we'd get into a large metropolitan area those channels were impossibly hard to find. Thankfully, I have Bluetooth in my real car (JVC KD-BT1), and the phone and audio functions work flawlessly there.
I currently have an LG 8300 and the only thing that is making me not want to change is that I have a bunch of ringtones I purchased and don't really want to have to buy them again. IBut since my phone is 3 years old, it doesn't have the updated VCast software so am very limited on what I can get as opposed to what is available on new phones. None of the phones that are currently offered really thrill me but this new "chocolate" has me thinking....if anyone has any thoughts they would like to offer, I am all ears! Thanks.
Too keep your ringtones call customer service. They will credit you for each of the ringtones so you can download them again as long as they are the same as before if you download a new one instead it will cost you. Download what you already had and there's no cost. They also credit you for the MB that you use to download previous ringtones.
I have had the phone for a month now and love it. The one thing I do hate is that there's too many damn radio stations in my town. I have to switch the FM transmitter back and forth for different parts of town. Besides that the phone is great.