LG Optimus 7 - Rolling Out the Mobile Evolution

Launch SRP: S$888

Features

Optimizing the Experience

Microsoft's strict policies and guidelines for Windows Phone 7 is essentially a double-edged sword. While it does not suffer the fragmentation dilemma faced by the Google Android platform, it also limits the customization level for the devices. However, that's not to say that manufacturers have their hands tied. Tapping onto their existing resources, LG introduces apps that are unique to their devices.

Panorama Shot, as its name implies, is a stitching program that joins multiple images into a single panoramic shot. Once you've taken the first shot, you can choose the direction towards where your stitching will take place. We've tested the app, which gives us a maximum of five images before it starts the stitching process. Of course, you can choose to stitch less images by pressing on the OK button when you're done. While you can't expect quality images, the panorama accuracy is well done. This is mostly thanks to the arrow indicator that guides you to the next image.

While DLNA isn't exactly a new technology for the mobile platform, it's still a notable feature. With the Optimus 7's sizable storage space of 16GB, the device can double up as an effective multimedia device. With the use of its Play Now app, which essentially hooks up the Optimus 7 to any DLNA-enabled device such as Microsoft's Xbox 360 or even Windows 7 PCs, we see a tighter integration of the mobile platform to its larger, and display-friendly tech cousins. Setting up Play Now can be a walk in the park if you're familiar with how DLNA works. In particular, we tested it on our lab's Wi-Fi network, hooking up a Windows 7 PC to the Opitmus 7. Streaming is quite smooth, and this is thanks to the phone's 1GHz Snapdragon processor working in tandem with a stable Wi-Fi network.

LG is definitely going on a app spree by providing not just one, nor two, but three homegrown apps. The last of which is ScanSearch, an augmented reality app that targets your current location and reports any points of interest near you. We've also managed to get weather updates from the ScanSearch app by pointing the Optimus 7 towards the sky. Admittedly, this could be an algorithm for the ScanSearch app to know when it needs to report on the weather, thus pulling the necessary data from the weather app.

These are just three of the unique apps that are available on this LG Windows Phone 7 device. But in a move to introduce more unique apps, we've also noticed the LG apps shop within the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace. This isn't unique to LG, since each manufacturer will have its specific app store housing its unique apps on their Windows Phone 7 device. According to a LG spokesperson, these LG apps are currently available on their Windows Phone 7 devices, but there are plans to bring these apps to its other LG devices across various platforms.

8.0
Design
8
Features
8.5
User-Friendliness
8
Performance
8
Value
8
The Good
Simple and well designed with good weight
Panorama Shot, SearchScan and Play To apps enhance user experience
Fast autofocus and image processing speeds
The Bad
Flat volume and power buttons
Low battery mileage