LG Encore Review
Vu Plus for AT&T wasn't all that awe-inspiring when you consider the fact that it didn't necessarily scream anything compelling with its average performance and expensive price tag. Instead of attacking the upper echelon of the feature category, the LG Encore GT550 is considerably more fitting from the manufacturer when you throw in its easier to swallow $49.99 on-contract price. Although this handset might look more like a fitting successor to the original LG Vu, since it's a touchscreen only device, let's just hope it can prove itself to be a decent modern offering.
The package contains:
- LG Encore
- Wall charger
- Quick Start Guide
- User Guide CD
The LG Encore can best be summed up as being an LG Vu Plus minus the keyboard because it literally incorporates a few similar design elements from that handset. Easily the first thing to come in mind when grasping the device is that it's extremely compact which doesn't take away from its solid construction; despite being crafted out of plastic. But don't let its choice of materials dissuade you because it has a sturdy feel to it which is complemented with the faux-pas metallic looking bezel outlining the handset. The gunmetal color scheme does add a modern look to it that easily makes it radiate as being a more expensive looking handset than what it's priced at.
You can compare the LG Encore with any other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.
Now one of the many reasons for the lower price tag of the Encore is due to its implementation of a 3” resistive touchscreen as opposed to the capacitive one on the Vu Plus. When combining that size with its resolution of 240 x 400 pixels and support for 262k colors, it proves to be adequate with its legibly sized text and acceptable looking colors. However, it's not the most viewing friendly device outdoors since it does lose some visibility with its poor viewing angles. Still, setting it to its maximum brightness and a quick shade with the hand will remedy that problem. As for responsiveness, it's actually pretty good, but still requires the occasional firm push to get it to do what you want it to do.
Three resistive touch buttons are built into the the display which makes the whole surface clean looking – these include the send, back/clear, and end keys. At a first glance, we didn't notice them when the device is turned off, but quickly realize they're there when it's powered on. To the left edge, we've got the microUSB port and skinny sized volume rocker which still has a good clicking feel to it.
While on the right side, we only have the dedicated shutter key and task menu key – the latter of which is extremely tiny in size. The deceptively hard to feel power button can be found alongside with the 3.5mm headset jack directly on the top portion of the phone. Flipping to the rear, we're presented with only the 3-megapixel camera with nothing else. Finally, you'll get access to the slot loading microSD card slot, battery, and SIM card slot by simply sliding off the rear cover.