Pros: Stylish design, tactile QWERTY board, generous widescreen, decent camera, exceptional ease-of-use, CDMA, 3G, EV-DO, GPS, Bluetooth
Cons: Occasionally slow switching between apps/inputting data, no 3.5 mm headset jack, expensive
Ladies with an attitude, fellas that are in the mood... Let's get to it.
The Lotus, a morsel of deliciousness courtesy of LG, is -- in a word -- sublime. Why, you ask? Because it's easy to use, it works well and it looks good. (Such a simple formula, yet so elusive, especially in the mobile phone industry.)
The first thing you notice about this stylish little gizmo is its unique design. It's about the size of a makeup compact and roughly the same square-ish shape, at 3.3 inches tall by 2.4 inches wide, and 0.7 inch thick. Being purple and vaguely reminiscent of a cosmetic, this cell might keep some guys away, so if you're one of them, check out the matte black version instead. Consider this too: The Lotus feels better inside a jeans pocket than the slimmest of wallets, is light enough to carry anywhere (yet doesn't feel like a toy) and offers an awesome, unencumbered texting experience.
And did I mention that it looks good? (Yes, I know I did, but it allows me to bring up that it won a Red Dot Design Award.)
The form factor has everything to do with what's inside. Not only does the dedicated QWERTY keyboard feel great to the touch, thanks to the raised little domes on each key, but the handset's width (which is bigger than today's typical flippies) offers enough physical phone to hold with both hands and type comfortably. It also enables miniature widescreen action, which helps when using the Web or Sprint TV (though I'm not a fan of the carrier's TV service on any of its phones).
What I like is that it doesn't try to be all things to all people. It's not a shrunken laptop or wannabe multimedia hub, which is fortunate since it has no Wifi or video player. But it does offer all the standard features average cell phone users expect these days, plus a few extras.
You can personalize the One-Click interface so the homescreen displays weather, news, sports, finance and horoscope info. Accessing the 2.0 MP camera is easy too, though it would be better if it were one of the custom carousel options. And the pictures are good, which didn't surprise me, given the good execution of the phone's other features. What I didn't expect was a respectable camcorder. I wouldn't record my wedding on it, but it's more than fine for YouTube uploads. The music player works great and can even go to the background while you do other stuff. Call quality is also clear, both on my end and on the other end (so I'm told). The handset has 80MB of built-in memory, which is adequate, but also offers a microSD-card slot, in addition to email, web, GPS, and Bluetooth, which paired with my Mac seamlessly. This makes sending files to my computer not only straightforward, but fun! I keep fishing around for more pics and other stuff to transmit.
And best of all, I rarely need to consult the manual, which means that the layout and UI are very clear and logical. This superb ease-of-use blows my stylish, yet affordable boots right off.
I'm hard pressed to come up with any downsides, except for some lagginess, lack of a 3.5 mm headphone jack (it has a 2.5 mm) and $150 price tag (with 2-year agreement). But beauty is rarely cheap, and in this case, it's not just skin deep.
Verdict: Thumbs WAY up