Pantech Link Review
Following suit to what we've already witnessed on both the Pantech Reveal C790 and Impact P7000, the Link utilizes the same AT&T interface that has a much more modern look than the one on the Slate. Navigating as a whole is a simple and straightforward experience that is accompanied with no lag to ruin the experience. Personalization is few and between because the phone offers a limited amount of options to modify – such as the wallpaper, main menu layout, color scheme, and font style.
We're digging that AT&T is now on the bandwagon of offering a free sync service for address books on some of their feature phones. The Pantech Link allows you to sign into your account and have all of your contacts automatically synced – so it beats having to manually input each one by hand and becomes beneficial in some instances like losing a phone.
As we've seen already with the Samsung Strive A687, the Pantech Link also offers AT&T Mobile Share which essentially gives owners the ability to save media content online or share them via MMS or social networking web sites. It makes for a decent solution for those who prefer not having to worry about managing or losing their precious media, but there is a $10/month cost for 50 media transfers or $0.35/transfer.
There are actually two web browsers loaded on the phone – Opera Mini as the default and the Media Net browser which can be accessed through the Applications folder. You don't even want to bother with the latter as we experienced extremely long load times and laborious scrolling. Thankfully Opera Mini does provide for a supreme experience on the handset due to its quick page loads and automatic text fitting that adjusts to the width of the display. One thing we found annoying was the need to go back to AT&T's home page to type in a web address – there just isn't an option for it in the menu.
Messaging and Multimedia:
Not missing a beat, the messaging experience doesn't stray far from the path that other devices before it have followed. Composing text messages is a breeze now that they are displayed in a threaded view; there's no confusion anymore as to who you're talking to now. The email application offers a handful of popular providers which simply requires your email address and password for setup. In addition, you can manually put in some specific pieces of information regarding your provider if it isn't found on the list. Lastly, you'll have your choice of either AIM, Windows Live Messenger, or Yahoo Messenger as your instant messaging client. All in all, the messaging experience is typical as the QWERTY keyboard allowed us to quickly respond to emails or compose a text without any problems.
Photos produced with the 1.3-megapixel camera were definitely better than what most other similar sensors can produce. Of course, they are definitely not the sharpest out there, but it's warranted for a device like this. Images taken outdoors in perfectly lit conditions resulted in colors sometimes coming out a bit on the bland side while indoor shots taken with spotty lighting lacked fine details and looked muddy. The need to wait for the camera shutter animation to finish whenever you take a shot was a bit annoying, because if you move the phone slightly before the animation completes, you'll be greeted with a blurry image.
Allowing only a maximum video capture resolution of 320x240, recordings looked pixelated and colors were bland. The frame rate looked steady enough, but we can't think of it being used for anything serious. Finally, the Link is enabled for video share with other compatible handsets – but we were unable to test this feature out.
There is nothing new with the music player as it's the same exact one featured on the Reveal and Impact. It's quite basic at its core and displays common items such as the album cover, artist, song, and some on-screen functions. Hitting the end button will bring you to the home screen where the mini-player will continue to run and play music. Sound from the speaker phone lacked any serious power which made it sound strained at times; especially on the loudest volume setting.
Thankfully playing videos on the handset was no problem as we loaded a movie trailer coded in MPEG-4 at 320x240 resolution. There was little slowdown during playback and the overall experience was decent enough, but watching videos on the 2.4” display made it difficult on the eyes over time.
1. networkdood (Posts: 5505; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)
ok, again, we have plenty of these types of model phones on AT&T's network....where are the phones that can rival IPHONE?? oh, nevermind, STEVE JOBS forbids it.....I wonder with all of that extra cash if he will buy AT&T.
2. oni_brandon (unregistered)
This is absolutly the WORST phone I have ever owned! DO NOT BUY!! It freezes constantly. It has a low text memory. you have to empty your Inbox almost everyday or it freezes up. And even in the process of emptying it may still freeze and you have to removed the battery. The internet rarely ever works. I'm sitting at home with all my bars and 3G and still won't connect to the internet. Save your money for a phone that works like it should.
3. Mongo (Posts: 1; Member since: 15 Nov 2010)
How weird that oni_brandon posts the exact same comment on all the Internet reviews for the Pantech Link. Word-for-word. It's like he cut-and-pasted this comment, as if he's got some sort of interest in spreading negative rumors... Almost like he's getting paid to do it or something.
It's really odd considering that most pro reviews give the Pantech Link good marks, and say nothing about the issues oni_brandon mentions in his copypaste comment.
4. washPA (unregistered)
I picked this phone for two reasons: 1) I liked that the keyboard had raised keys (vs. the sliding phones that had flat keys) and 2) I liked that the messaging showed up conversation style. Unfortunately, I will be returning this phone two days after getting it because it is no good for texting, my primary purpose for having a phone. It held very few texts (less than 100 for me) and the messaging feature froze when the inbox was full. Definitely not ideal if you're someone who texts a lot.
6. cautourathync (unregistered)
7. Kate (unregistered)
ONI_Brian is right. We have this phone and it does exactly what he says. I can't even find this phone on the Pantech site. Terrible waste of money. Wish I could return it
8. Real User (unregistered)
I have this phone, and love it. I researched a LOT of phones as I wanted a capable feature phone that could work like a smartphone, but without the smartphone charges. This is it - it is an improvement over my Blackberry.
9. Josh (unregistered)
Is true... it fils ups with text messages quick and it freezes constantly. Don't buy this phone
10. david-webb (Posts: 1; Member since: 15 May 2012)
i agree, this is an okay phone, except for the freezing part. It drives me crazy, for me it has a capacity of 30 text messages, and whenever i use the "auto-delete" function, all it does is freezing. Constantly having a frozen phone, actually everything works fine, except acessing the text messages, is really frustrating. Only solution i found so far was taking out the battery, restarting the phone or deleting the text messages by hand (which isnt possible until you use one of the two methods for restarting the phone).
maybe using an SD card for increasing the storage capacity for text messages could fix the problem, but that would just be a temporary fix until the storage is full. Postponing the problem, but not fixing it.
i am not sure if i can return it, but i considered it more than once
11. fenmar (Posts: 1; Member since: 09 Sep 2012)
I see alot of people talking about low memory for texting, The internal memory for this phone is only 80 mb, you can put a micro SD up to 32 gigs into this phone. problem solved...................
12. VioletV (Posts: 1; Member since: 10 Oct 2012)
I have owned this phone for over 2 and a half years. It worked great at first, never froze. I didn't have a problem. Then just a bit ago, maybe 6-7 months ago, it started having problems. Starting with CALLING people. By itself. I can leave the text message page up, and it will call whoever I was texting. If I didn't have the text message page up, it call whoever called me last. To make sure I wasn't calling people myself, I left my phone at home. It still did it. Even before that, the sound didn't work. I'd get a text message, it wouldn't sound. It wouldn't even vibrate. I'd get a call, it won't sound. It would sometimes, but usually doesn't. Then , just a week or two ago, it started shutting down by itself. Having a full charge battery, I was surprised. I couldn't even turn it back on without putting it on the charger. Maybe my battery died, I thought. Oh, but no. It was just the phone being stupid again. "Fully Charged".
I know someone who has the upgrade of this phone. A nice touch screen with a sliding out keyboard. I thought I should just upgrade my phone and the problems could go away. I had asked my friend how the phone was working, she had just gotten it that day, not even 2 hours ago. She had said she programmed her contacts, and started texting her friends. The first problem was her not receiving text messages instantly. We can send a text at 8:30 and she won't get it until 9:00. She checked her phone settings, everything was right. It was the phone being stupid. Then it started calling people. Same way mine does, and the way her old phone (downgrade of this pantech) did. But this one had a new feature! Texting people by itself! She can leave a text message page open and that person gets a text from the "quick reply's". And if it doesn't have a text page open, it will just send it to whoever it wants too. Even a random number, that she has never used.
So basically what I'm saying is, the phone is good for about a year. Only buy it if you are looking for a short term phone. And don't get a upgrade pantech version. I wouldn't even get the phone version below this.