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Review GSM phone LG C2100
The LG C2100 is one more middle-class model by LG. It is based on the LG C3400, but has no camera and though is equipped with a lamp instead (that is a flash in the elder model). Little memory, only 1 MB, and a lack of support for mp3 files are also disadvantages. In all the rest the models are equal and offer similar functionality. The phone design is kept up in the style of the latest LG models, C2100 has typical dimensions, a bit thick though. But the body thickness is quite comparable to the ones by Motorola, Siemens and Nokia in this form-factor, there are no any serious differences. The weight forms 90 grams.
A LED (and it is a lamp also) is placed above the screen. It looks as a camera gap from afar. As different to the latest stylish tendencies, the external screen is monochrome. As for me, that is exactly what a working horse should posses, since bringing some style is only the second role of this device. The external screen backlighting is softly pastel, the resolution is 96x96 pixels. Digital clock, date, signal level and battery charge icons are shown on the screen.
There is a standard interface connector on the bottom end and a service indicator is also here. A headset connector closed with a rubber shutter fixed to the body is on the left, a coupled volume button is a bit lower. A separate lamp button is on the right, and in the elder model it is responsible for the camera. A strap hole is close to the right top corner.
The device is easy to open with one hand, inside we see a large screen, the manufacturer claims a 65K STN one. The resolution is 128x160 pixels which allows showing 7 text lines and one service line (short message mode).
The keypad is made of rubber, which is another one difference from the C3400, the keys are large and well-distanced, but sunk into the body. They are on the verge of the height, which makes them uncomfortable to work for some users. An Ok button is inscribed into the navi one. The keypad backlighting is blue, well seen in various conditions. Working with the pad makes no troubles.
The back panel closes the battery compartment with no backlash. The battery is 950-mAh Li-Ion. According to the manufacturer the device can work for 200 hours in the standby mode and up to 3 hours in the talk mode. In Moscow the phone worked about 4 days (40 minutes of talks, up to 20 minutes of using other functions). You can achieve 5 days' battery life with total talk time forming 25-30 minutes and no using other functions. Full recharging takes about 2.5 hours.
A SIM-card holder is standard.
The main menu is represented by three rows of icons which got traditional for the last models. The pictures are qualitative and look good that makes the device pleasant to use. Submenus look like lists and the items that may not be disposed on the screen are scrolled automatically in a horizontal line. There is a fast navigation with the help of number sequences. Also it is possible to choose up to 9 functions for a personal list that is called by moving the navi button up.
There is only 1 GB of dynamically shared memory.
Phonebook. There is a possibility to save up to 200 names in internal memory, up to 5 fields for a name (4 numbers, one e-mail address). Also you may choose a users' group and an icon. The icons are preset pictures of people faces and animals. During the call a chosen picture will be displayed besides a name on the screen. There is a possibility to assign a photo to a name but it should be saved in a minimal size first.
When entering your data you'll have to choose the main number and only then add others one after another, by the way, some of them may be missed. The total list may contain both numbers from SIM-card memory and from the internal one. Also an assigned picture may be displayed opposite to a name.
There are 7 users' groups and it is possible to set a personal melody and a picture for each one (that is another set of pictures).
Messages. There is a support for EMS that allows attaching melodies, pictures to messages, formatting text and sending concatenated messages. The phone supports predictive text input T9 (a possibility to add your words into the dictionary). There are several dictionaries for different languages and up to 6 editable templates.
The device supports MMS, and the company made it possible to format several pages, insert several pictures instead of one.
All the messages are stored in the internal memory, first SIM-card memory is filled with SMS and only then the internal one is used. In general it is comfortable to work with messages, the device is up-to-date.
Call lists. Here one may view standard lists of outgoing, incoming and missed calls. Each one contains 10 numbers, for some entries date and time of the call are specified. Similar numbers are summed up but not displayed in order.
There is a general call list, 20 last entries from all the lists are summed up there. And it is this list that is displayed when pressing the Call button from the standby mode.
Profiles. All the sounds may be adjusted from here, from a call signal to a key press sound and alert type. Everything is traditional.
Settings. Phone settings such as the screen, call signals and what is the main alarm clocks are adjusted from this menu. There are 5 of them in the phone and each may be set for once, everyday and every week. The presence of such a number of alarm clocks will satisfy even the most demanding user.
There are decoration schemes like themes changing the appearance of the windows and not only their colors.
Organizer. It is possible to save up to 20 events in the organizer and a date and time for the alert are set. You also may set it recurrent (every day, week, month, and year). The calendar displays the whole month, the dates with set events are distinguished with another colour and a sign indicating the type of the event (meeting or a memo) appears in the bottom. The main minus of the organizer is a limited number of entries.
Tools. Here is a standard calculator, a unit converter, world time function, a dictaphone (works only in the standby mode with up to 15 seconds for a record) and an automatic answering. The last item is interesting for all the records are stored on your phone with no operator service, you can choose personal greeting and record it. The general memory status may be viewed from this menu. Musical composer allows both entering notes from a number keypad and from a note stave, choose the most comfortable for you.
Downloads. Uploaded images, melodies and programs are stored in separate folders. There is a set of plain melodies, one game created specially for Russian gamers are installed in the new device. The name of the game tells for it "Games from life". There are three such games (or three subdivisions of the same game), they are alike in something. The first game is a Throw, you are a man taking a run and then throwing a monitor. Naturally, the one who throws his monitor farther. Also there is a game for equilibrium, driving a moped. The direction the company forwards - creating local applications - is right, but the realization rouses at least a grin.
Karaoke. The screen possibilities applied for the karaoke are not high, it hold only two lines and more, the second line is shown on the top causing confuse. No points are given as the result of your singing, the manufacturer thinks you can estimate your possibilities by yourself. The function is predicted for entertaining in the company and may draw attention to you for a while. It's not a break for a mobile phone in any way. New melodies are downloaded from the LG site. As we said earlier, the application gets mass on all the LG phones not only those equipped with several loudspeakers.
Service. The device supports GPRS class 10 that is why I'd recommend adjusting wap-browser using batch communications, which will be cheaper. The only thing to add is that the wap-browser is 2.0 version. The thing that disappointed is the absence of history, it is often necessary to enter the same address again. Downloading melodies and pictures makes no troubles and the same for applications.
We measured the productivity with JBenchmark 2.0.2. And got the following results smilar to the ones for LG F2300:
The total score is rather low that shows not high productivity of the processor and memory subsystem. That is clear that such productivity is characteristic for the previous generation devices but not current, an old platform tells upon.
The quality of the sound is typical for LG phones and no problems appear in the majority of cases. The volume of the 40-tones call signal is enough not always, it's loud and comparable to other models by the company. Well assembling quality is an advantage to mention. The internal screen is relatively good but takes an intermediate position and is inferior to Motorola, Samsung, Sharp. The external screen is monochrome but it can't be treated as a shortcoming, the model wins more from that since information is readable under any conditions.
The solution is not bad for the price of 145-150 USD, there is the main functional kit, unusual for this price group design, a blende lamp, which brings some more expensive appearance to the device and resembles a camera. No great problems with the provided functionality will appear, since the platform is well developed and makes a base for many products.
Unlike the LG C3400 the keypad here is a troublemaker. You won't feel any discomfort, but key notes and their structure will be destroyed with time. That is typical of rubber keypads. This disadvantage will be critical if you want to use the device for two years or more. However no problems will bother you in the course of the first year. In general the phone is rather nice, and the price is appropriate.
Published 20 June 2005