Not everyone needs a smartphone or even a messaging phone. Sometimes you just need a phone that can place calls and send text messages. But what if you also want one that adds a little style? Enter the Sanyo Vero, a sleek flip phone with great features and an awesome design. It even has a camera for quick snapshots!
Design and Features
Like most flip phones, the Vero has an external display that will show basic information like the time, date, caller ID, battery life, etc. The Vero's 1.3-inch external display is a monochrome OLED display so there is no color. However, I do like that you can lower the ringer volume while the phone is closed and it shows the selected level on the external display. On some flip phones you have to actually flip it open in order to do this.
The internal 2.4-inch display is where it's at. It is a basic QVGA display, but it looks great. Text is very clear and colors show up beautifully. You have different options for the type of clock and/or calendar that is displayed while in the homescreen and there are two shortcuts at the bottom of the screen which are accessed with each one's corresponding soft key.
The main panel has a D-pad for navigating with a Menu/OK button in the center and keys for the camera, Back, Speaker, Talk, and End/Power. The number keys are very large and the numbers are easy to read. The phone is equipped with a microUSB charging port and a 2.5 mm headphone jack. The camera is on the back of the phone.
Usability and Performance
The Vero's UI is pretty standard, with a Main Menu to access all of your apps, settings, call history, messages, photos, etc. The colors are Sprint's standard dark blue and yellow, which I wish was changeable, but it's not. You can, however, change the wallpaper, brightness and greeting.
Surprisingly, the Vero has threaded text messaging. I say "surprisingly" because a lot of messaging phones don't have this feature so it's interesting that Sanyo decided to include it with this flip phone. For texting, you are relegated to using the T9 keyboard, but it wasn't to difficult to adapt to. I would, however, recommend turning the button sounds off, because it couldn't quite keep up with the speed of my typing so I often got confused between how many times I had pushed the key and how many beeps there were.
The 1 MP camera was decent enough for taking quick snapshots. It doesn't have an autofocus or a flash, but it nice to see a camera on a flip phone. It does have a self-timer, digital zoom, and some fun frames to play around with.
Call quality on the Vero was excellent. A lot of this will depend on Sprint's coverage in your area, but I had no problems in Dallas. In testing, I could hear the caller very well and they could hear me. The design of the phone also makes it very comfortable to talk on. It only weighs 3.4 oz so it wasn't cumbersome at all during long conversations.
I was very impressed with the battery life on the Vero. The 840 mAh battery lasted about five days with standard use and nearly a full week on standby.
Not only is the Vero a great basic phone, it also has a great price tag. It is currently only $9.99 from Sprint when you sign a new 2-year contract. I would definitely recommend it for those seeking a phone for calling and texting, but don't want a brick flip phone.
The Good: Stylish design sets it apart from other basic flip phones; beautiful internal display (it actually does look really good); threaded text messaging; large numbers on the dialing pad are great for elderly users.
The Bad: 1 megapixel camera isn't going to satisfy everyone; standard UI with not a lot of customization options.
The Verdict: If you need a phone for basic calling and light texting but you want one that still has some style, the Vero is a perfect option.