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Was it really as long ago as May 2007 that I reviewed LG's Prada? Back then, we still had six months to wait for Riyad's review of the first iPhone, too, and touchscreens in general were the domain of business oriented smartphones. How things have changed.
LG has been as active as any in pushing touchscreens for consumer handsets and has presented us with another helping of Prada-esque marketing in the shape of the Prada II KF900. It will cost you more than £400 SIM-free though as I write Orange has it listed as 'coming soon' on a pay monthly contract and you can bet it'll be a lot less expensive there.
The Prada II looks very similar to the preceding model. The Prada branding sits above the screen, while beneath it lies a short silver bar nestled in the otherwise black front casing. The bar offers Call and End buttons, the latter doubling as the on/off switch. Between the two is the Clear key.
Included in the accessories package is a cleaning cloth for wiping finger marks off the screen and what its box proclaims to be a leather case. This is most disappointing. It is a rigid design and about the least stylish phone case I've ever seen. The Prada II slots into it, but not all the way. Instead, either the Prada branding or the Call, End button bar protrudes. Nasty.
The screen measures three inches diagonally and has 240 x 400 pixels, the same as the original Prada. Where the Prada II does vary from the previous model in terms of physical design is the keyboard, which slides out from the side.
It does increase the phone's bulk and weight making it 104.5mm x 54mm x 16.8mm and 130g as opposed to the original Prada's 98.8mm x 54mm x 12mm and 85g. However, it is very well put together as far as ergonomics go. The keys are relatively large and well spaced, and they are raised slightly, making a click when pressed. Accuracy was not a problem and I managed a fair turn of speed too. There is no separate number row, though, and unfortunately you need to use a shift key to get to the ‘@' symbol.
The screen drops into wide format when you slide the keyboard out, and a carousel menu of keyboard supporting functions pops up. There is an accelerometer, too, which can be used in some of the on-board games.
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