LG U400 – Music Phone Review


LG’s 3G and Tri band GSMU400 doesn’t look much like a phone at first glance. This is down to its most distinctive feature – a large silver navigation wheel surrounded by a big blue frame and three other buttons. This unique design is to provide controls that enable you to easily play and control music.

My review handset came from 3 and it is exclusive to them for a limited period. If you’ve noted the lack of a value score, this is because at time of writing, 3 has yet to announce pricing.

It’s a slider phone and takes advantage of the best facilities the format offers. It is small in the hand – just 99.8mm tall, 48mm wide and 20.4mm deep, and it weighs an acceptable 114g. The slider mechanism is spring loaded and extremely comfortable to use. The number pad inside the sliding keyboard is large and there is a styling to the keys that offers a visual as well as a tactile cue when you are number dialling.

The front screen isn’t vast at 30mm wide and 43mm tall, but it displays 262,000 colours at a fairly high 320 x 240 pixel resolution and is as clear and bright as any I’ve seen.

The front and back of the phone is made of shiny black plastic very reminiscent of the company’s KG800 Chocolate handset. It looks lovely for the first five minutes, then, just like the Chocolate, starts to pick up finger marks: I was forever cleaning it.

The edging of the upper part of the slider has a more matt finish, the edging of the lower part has the shiny finish and a silver band around its top, left and right sides which houses various connectors and buttons.

On the bottom edge is the slot for mains power and the provided PC connectivity cable. It is proprietary at the phone end and like all the connectors, has a protective cover.

On the left edge is the volume rocker, and a slot for microSD cards with which you can augment the 68MB of onboard memory. A 512MB card comes with the handset. There is also another proprietary connector – this time for the two piece headset provided. On the handset section is a nicely designed music controller with large buttons and a clip to affix it to whatever part of your clothing seems most appropriate. A 3.5mm jack connects the earbuds section, so you can substitute LG’s large in-ear buds with your own headset.

On the right edge is the ‘music key’ which when pressed runs 3’s music portal. The camera shortcut key is also here. Twin stereo speakers sit on the upper left and right edges.

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