LG Mini GD880 Review
Let’s get down to brass tacks. The LG Mini GD880 is a feature phone running the famous S-Class interface. The 3D cube with sides hosting separate home screens is rather conspicuous in its absence and it seems LG has given up on it. Still, the contemporary version of the software does bring several pleasing novelties and improvements alongside of the iterations on models like the LG ARENA KM900 and LG Crystal GD900. The home screen no longer comes with four dedicated pages and their number has been reduced to three. You are allowed to place whatever you like on any of them, including widgets, shortcuts to all phone functions, links to websites, etc. Finally, you’ve got the option to download more widgets and we are as happy as can be. At the time of the current review, the widget catalogue is rather limited and features but a few, most of them dedicated to online stores (Amazon and eBay), news like CNN, Fox and New York Times and... well, that’s pretty much all. At least all of them are completely free.
The main menu consists of three pages (similar to that of Samsung devices) and all entries no longer appear in relevant categories as they did with the prototype of the Mini GD880. The software version of the interface on our handset disallows other themes, given the option is active on almost all contemporary cell phones of the manufacturer (the LG Cookie Fresh GS290, LG Cookie Music KM570). The LG Mini GD880 offers more than decent task manager that is accessible via dedicated shortcut placed in the main menu.
Occasional lagging is all common with LG cell phones, but it’s less pronounced here, at least alongside of the LG ARENA KM900, which does not mean it’s unnoticeable. The other software issue we encountered relates to the lack of QWERTY keyboard in certain applications and functions. All told, the layout is only available when you compose messages/emails or use the browser. Other than that, the interface of the LG Mini GD880 is quite motley and cool, although said shortcomings mar the overall enjoyment the handset brings.
Contacts and Social functionality:
The phone book stores up to 1,000 separate entries and all of them can be assigned various personal details, such as several phone numbers, emails, addresses, etc. We like the fact the handset searches in both parts of the name, but we are disappointed at the missing integration of social profiles, a feature that is becoming increasingly common with cell phones today.
At least the device comes with applications (and widgets) to use your Facebook and Twitter accounts. They are quite snappy and save you the hassle of opening the mobile page of the relevant service. In other words, they are usable. However, we need to point out the handset will not recognize account passwords that contain “&” and (most probably) any other special symbols. You have been warned.
Similarly to most contemporary devices, the LG Mini GD880 offers automated setup for popular email service providers. The application for text and MMS messages is quite capable indeed and visualizes written correspondence in threaded style.
Typing away itself is, however, a bit of pain in the neck. The portrait alphanumeric keypad sports large keys, but the lag is most annoying. On the other hand, the QWERTY version comes with overly tiny keys. It’s the first time we’ve felt like a resistive screen would have been the better option (so as people could use their fingernails to type away). All told, we just cannot recommend the LG Mini GD880 to people who text a lot.
Internet and LG Air Sync:
It’s obvious that LG has gone to great lengths to make the LG Mini GD880 a user-friendly device, at least in terms of surfing the Internet. First off, the handset supports both HSDPA 7.2Mbps and Wi-Fi, so you’ve got all the bases covered.
Second (and more importantly), the handset is equipped with a brand new WebKit-based browser called the Phantom (because the application is sometimes there and sometimes not). We are kidding, of course. Having had the chance to test it thoroughly, we can safely say this is one of the best browsers to be found on a feature phones today and it supports multitouch and double taps. Zooming could have been smoother, although this is not much of an issue really. Moreover and thanks to the high screen resolution, webpage text is easily readable even if you don’t zoom much. The integrated Flash support is a plain disappointment. All told, it’s limited to YouTube videos and you will have to put up with annoying stuttering whenever you try to watch online videos in the web browser. Watching content with the built-in YouTube player is not pleasing either, since the image quality is rather low. Still, the browser of the LG Mini GD880 is suitable for internet surfing.
The service LG Air Sync makes its debut on the LG Mini GD880. It isn’t something innovative and allows for synchronization of contacts, calendar, tasks and notes to an online server that can then be browsed via a normal computer. In case you install additional software (LG Link Air), you will be able to share your PC files and browser history with the LG Mini GD880 without connecting them physically. As a whole, we do welcome the service, since we are pretty fed up with all the wiring you typically need, even if it’s just a standard microUSB cable.
1. skybucks21 (Posts: 16; Member since: 01 Dec 2009)
A little bit awkward design. Seems the designers was not able to find time to improve the overall design. @phonearena - change your video recorder. the video quality is perfect but the audio part has been compromised. all i hear is echo, echo, echo!!
4. ojas (unregistered)
no dude the design is just perfect if one like the minimalistic designs...no unnecessary curves, button crisp and edgy design... Though design is a very personal choice, i love its design. And planning to buy one
2. Lukander (Posts: 1; Member since: 23 Jun 2010)
Nice review. Just a question. How did you do to take the screenshots? Is there an app or a secret shorcut to do that? Hope you can tell me. Lukander.
3. AladdinSane (Posts: 12; Member since: 10 Jul 2010)
This handset is interesting, speaking for myself, but will AT&T carry it any time soon? I bet NOT! This device must be available somewhere, but in the U.S. not so. Wotta pity! I'd go for it. Peace