LG enV3 VX9200 Review

LG enV3 VX9200 Review
Introduction:

Verizon’s enV series of phones by LG have been popular devices among texters for years, thanks to the internal QWERTY keyboard.  When the enV2 VX9100 came out a year ago, it was noticeably smaller than its predecessors, but lacked any amount of style.  That has now changed with the introduction of the LG enV3 VX9200.  Not only is it more stylish, but has an improved keyboard, camera, and displays.  The device is mainly targeted to the consumer who does not need or require a touchscreen, such as the LG enV Touch or Samsung Glyde, but still wants the convenience of an integrated keyboard.  Its main competition comes from the Samsung Alias 2, as it offers a unique e-ink keyboard and dual-hinge display.

Included in the retail package is the LG enV3 phone, 950mAh battery, combination wall charger/microUSB cable, and user manual.

Design:

Most popular phones today come in a choice of colors, and the enV3 is no exception as it is available in Slate Blue and Maroon.  As you can see, our review unit is the Slate Blue model, where that color is used throughout the device, including the keyboard and on the soft-touch coating on the back.  The phone’s overall construction feels sturdy and should hold up to normal daily use.  It is also about the same size as the enV2 and Alias 2, but actually feels smaller in your hand due to the more rounded edges.  When placing it in your pant’s pocket it is also less noticeable than its larger brother, the enV Touch.



You can compare the LG enV3 VX9200 with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.

The first improvements you will notice are with the front of the phone.  The external display is now larger, up from 1.45” to 1.56” and with a resolution of 160x96 pixels.  Though this may not sound like much, it does make a difference when using the phone and external menus.  The up/down arrows from the enV2 have been replaced with a standard d-pad, which we are glad to see.  It is chrome in color and works well when navigating through the various menus.  The dial pad is also more stylish with slightly curved lines, instead of looking like a calculator on the enV2.  The buttons are larger than the ones found on the Alias 2 and provides good feedback when pressed.  They are easy to use for dialing numbers and typing a text message with T9 entry.  The dedicated front music button has been replaced with a contacts button, but you can still access the music menu by pressing the up-arrow on the d-pad.  Located on the left side of the device is the camera button and volume rocker, with the 2.5mm headset jack and microSD card slot on the right, microUSB port on the bottom, and 3MP camera with flash on the back.



Just like with all other enV models, the LG enV3 VX9200 has the familiar 2-stop hinge when opening up the device.  The internal display has increased in size form 2.4” to 2.6” and retains it’s QVGA 320x240 resolution.  This makes it the same size and resolution as the one found on the Alias 2.  Images look good on the internal display, as it supports up to 262K colors.  It also features a sensor that will automatically adjust the brightness of the backlight based on the surround light levels, but it can be disabled and the user can select from 7 brightness settings.  We like the ability to select our own backlight level, and wish this feature were included on the enV Touch.

The QWERTY keyboard and d-pad has been redesigned, and is actually just a scaled-down version of the one used by the enV Touch.  The buttons and d-pad are slightly larger than ones on the enV2, and there is now a center space key instead of two on either side.  When comparing the enV3’s QWERTY keyboard to the one on the Alias 2, we found typing message to be easier with the LG enV3 VX9200, since the buttons are spread out more and not cramped together.  But if you have large hands, the enV Touch still provides the best keyboard experience.



LG enV3 VX9200 360 Degrees View:




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