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7/10

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LG KF600

The tri-band LG KF600 is a slider and my review sample came from Orange, but you can find it elsewhere too.

It is immediately marked out as different from other mobiles because it has two front screens. One is a 2in display offering 320 x 240 pixels that does the usual kind of stuff you would expect from a mobile phone offering access to information, applications and services.

The other screen, sitting beneath the main one, is the unique selling point for this handset. It measures 1.5in across and displays 240 x 176 pixels. It is what LG calls the InteractPad.
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The LG KF600 has a side-mounted button for launching the camera, another for launching the phone's music player, and a side-mounted volume rocker, but they are the only buttons on this phone when it's slid down, and so the InteractPad will make or break this handset for you. It is provided instead of front fascia navigation buttons and offers finger-touch access to the phone's features. What it displays varies depending on what you are doing at the time.

So, for example, let's say you are on the main screen. The InteractPad shows a grid of two rows of three icons. Tapping one icon takes you to messaging (email, SMS, MMS and voicemail are all integrated here), another to the contact book, another to missed and made calls and another to profile setting. A further icon takes you to the phone's main menu, while the final one turns the grid off and provides, instead, an extension of the graphic that is showing on the main screen.
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Pop up the music player and the InteractPad changes to offer three rows of information. In the middle one a progress bar shows how much of a tune has played. You can carefully drag the indicator to a point in the tune you want to repeat. The bottom row has pause/play, forward and back icons. The top row offers a back to tunes listing, options menu and an all important back button.

One more example. Run the camera and the InteractPad re-orientates so it can be used with the phone held longways in your hand. Now you have a large capture button, one for fiddling with image brightness, one to get you to the main camera menu, and a back button.

Quite often you get a general navigation control. It offers directional movement arrows, an OK and a back button. And finally I should mention that you can use the InteractPad in conjunction with the number keys to get to the detailed options on the handset.

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