Now here's a nice looking piece of gear ... phoneArena posted some photos of the LG VX8800, which they say is headed for a Verizon release within the next few months. The handset is a slider with what looks to be a front-mounted main display with a secondary "touchpad" display (i.e. mini touchscreen) just below. In other words, it's like LG's Chocolate slider, but with a little touchscreen instead of a scroll wheel.
According to phoneArena, the touch-sensitive area of the VX8800 "has text icons that change depending on which application you are using. You can "slide" you finger across the display's arrows to scroll thorough the menus." Interesting.
While I'd like to see the entire display made touch sensitive, it stands to reason that LG and/or VZW didn't want to position the 8800 too close to the enV-successor VX10000, which is said to feature a full touchscreen display on the outside and a QWERTY board on the inside. The use of touchscreen displays can go a long way towards creating user-friendly interfaces to help wrangle the growing functionality of next-gen multimedia phones. A touchscreen can literally take the place of dozens of context-specific buttons, with configurations changing depending on what functionality the user selects. What's cool about the 8800 is the combination of touch controls for menus and actual buttons for dialing and texting - forgive the inevitable comparison, but it makes me wonder if iPhone would be better with a slide-out keyboard.
Review some photos and the article by Phonearena from here.