The LG Optimus 7 is a smartphone based on Microsoft Windows Phone 7.
LG is perhaps better known for its feature phones and its budget Android devices, but it’s done a great job here. Surprisingly, LG has stuck with the Optimus tag we’ve come to associate with its Android phones, but perhaps that’s to show the hardware is more important here than the OS on which it runs.
In any case, the E900 manages to be every bit an equal to the consistently dependable HTC models in the Windows Phone 7 line-up, and actually surpasses the Trophy and Mozart models.
In its favour are the standard 480x800-pixel display, 1GHz processor, 5Mp camera and sleek styling. At 11.5mm thick, this handset is appreciably slimmer than the HTC devices and the chunky Motorola Milestone 2 on Android. Looks-wise it’s no Samsung Omnia 7, but it’s certainly a more attractive piece of gadgetry than the HTC Mozart or Trophy. Although dominated by that 3.8in WVGA screen, LG has found space to include hardware navigation buttons - a sensible move that some users will prefer.
Getting around the Window Phone 7 interface is pretty much the same on all the handsets; Microsoft has learnt lessons from Google Android here: overlay interfaces help distinguish devices but can cause problems when it’s time to upgrade to a newer version of the mobile OS. (The first Windows Phone 7 update, released in February, was not without its issues.)
LG does, though, include its own visual spin in the form of ScanSearch. This combines the Google Maps data with GPS information to provide an augmented reality element in much the same vein as the vaunted Layar app found on some Samsung Android handsets. Can’t see the bar you’re meeting at for looking? ScanSearch will show it to you. As with all such clever, clever apps, though, it’s dependent on solid 3G and GPS signals and the information that’s fed in to it in the first place.
The other notable feature here is the panorama stitching feature for the 5Mp camera. Fire off a series of overlapping shots and the LG will make sense of them. The 1GHz CPU and the generous 16GB of internal storage help make this likable, surprisingly effective, feature viable.
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