Casio G'zOne Boulder Review
The G’zOne series of phones are unlike any other found in the U.S. market, and the new Boulder steps up the game. Known for their rugged nature- the phone meets Mil Spec 810F standards for water, shock and dust- the Boulder brings new innovations like a digital compass and flashlight feature that would provide useful to the outdoors crowd. It also runs over Verizon’s EVDO Rev. A network, and along with the Motorola Adventure launches their second generation Push-to-Talk service.
Included in the box you’ll find:
- 800mAh Lithium Ion battery
- AC Adapter with charging cradle
- Splitter for 2.5mm headset and charging
- Customizable ring
- Device lock tool
The G’zOne line has never been known for its size, but the Boulder does a good job of becoming a bit more compact. Gone is the unsightly antenna, and the phone dips below the 1” mark in thickness.
You can compare the Casio G'zOne Boulder with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.
two color variations: orange with black accents and black with silver accents. It has a somewhat pointed design, almost reminiscent of the faceting on the Touch Diamond, that gives the phone a very masculine look. With the flip closed the front features a large circular white-on-black display that is easy to see in any sunlight. The display is outlined by a removable ring: the orange version has silver and black rings and the black version has black and red. Above it is the 1.3 megapixel camera with flash, which is up from VGA on the Type-S, but still not the 2.0 originally found on the Type-V. The black version is available also in a camera-less variant. The front and back housings are held on by visible torque screws that enhance the bold appearance.
The left side features a small PTT key near the top, with a volume rocker and multi-function key below. When the flip is closed the key activates the compass with a press and hold. When opened a press initiates voice command and press and hold records a voice note. The right side is button-less, and has only the covered microSD slot at the top. On the bottom the charging/data/headset port is covered to ensure water resistance. The back of the phone features a locking mechanism that holds the battery in place. Flanking the lock are speaker cutouts, though only the one on the right is functional.
2” QVGA display. The display is only 65K colors, but images look sharp on it. The five way directional pad has two keys to each side; soft keys sitting atop the camera key and speakerphone/flashlight key to the left and right, respectively. The keys are backlight in a reddish orange color that looks much better on the black keypad of the orange unit than the silver keypad of the black. They aren’t terrible, but are very soft feeling and we would have preferred a more definite feedback when pressed.
As you’d expect from a Mil Spec phone the Boulder is built to the highest quality. Though constructed of plastic, the fit and finish are excellent and we have no misgivings about the phone’s long-term durability. The overall in-hand feel is pretty good, though it is a bit on the thick side. The black of the black and silver version is soft touch paint, which makes for a much better feel than the hard plastic found on the orange variant. The internal antenna makes the phone feel a lot smaller than previous G’zOne iterations, and it is indeed lighter this time around. With the bold design lines we prefer the orange version aesthetically; black and silver just look too plain for a phone of this nature.