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LG Accolade VX5600 Review

Software and Features:

One area that hasn’t changed much is the Main Menu, with categories for Media Center, Messaging, Contacts, Recent Calls, and Settings & Tools. What really bothers us is that the only real difference from year-to-year is with theme choices, with the LG Accolade VX5600 including Classic, Urban, and Metal, as well as being able to display them in Tab, List and Grid view. Other than that, you can also select wallpapers, three different fonts and sizes, and seven clock formats. Even in such a low-end phone, we would have liked to see some innovation, at least here, in the interface department. Maybe next year...

Up to 1000 contacts can be stored, each with their name, 5 phone numbers, 2 emails, IM screen name, picture, ringtone, group, and street address. You can easily access the list by pressing the right soft-key or by going into the contacts menu and it will show the saved contacts in alphabetical order. From here you can scroll through the list, or enter in the first few letters in the “Go to” felid to perform a search. There is also the ability to assign saved contacts to one of 999 speed-dial locations.

Most other software features remain unchanged from the previous years, such as the appointment calendar where you can save alerts, text and picture messaging, Mobile Web 2.0, VZ Navigator for GPS guided driving directions, and the ability to download other ringtones and games. Since the device lacks a microSD memory card slot, and only has 34MB of internal memory, there isn’t a music player included. One new feature we were surprised to see was the Microsoft Bing search, where you can perform searches on the Web, Local (GPS), or VZW Media. If you do just a standard search, it will search the Web for results, where the Local search is good for restaurants and local places, and the VZW Media search will scan for matching Verizon ringtones, wallpapers, games, etc.

The LG Accolade VX5600 is the first in the series to have a 1.3MP camera that supports taking images at 1280x960 resolution, instead of a VGA camera with 640x480 resolution. However, this increase in resolution is almost useless as image quality is still lacking, and since there isn’t a memory card slot to save the pictures, you are forced to send the pictures to your PC via MMS. Because of this, if the file size is larger than 300KB, the phone will automatically reduce the resolution from 1280x960 to a mediocre 426x320, thus lowering the file size. We were not aware of this to begin with, as we took several sample pictures outside and indoors. Once we began sending them to our PC, we noticed that some stayed at 1280x960, while others were downsized to 426x320. A quick check of the original file size showed that all the images larger than 300KB were reduced when sending. Because of these limitations, don’t expect to take any award-winning pictures with the Accolade. And in case you were wondering, video recording is not supported.

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