If you're new to the world of smartphones, the Android-powered LG Vortex for Verizon Wireless offers an excellent blend of easy functionality and handy mobile features that keep you connected to all your social networks. It's also preloaded with Bing Maps so you know where you are and how to get where you're going as well as Bing Search, which helps you find what you're looking for without typing thanks to Bing Voice Search capabilities. The Vortex features a large 3.2-inch touchscreen display with virtual QWERTY keyboard (plus access to the easy-to-use Swype keyboard enhancement; learn more about Swype below)
The LG Vortex provides mobile features and easy functionality for first-time smartphone users (see larger image).
The Vortex includes a 3.2-megapixel camera/camcorder, Wi-Fi networking (with 3G Hotspot capabilities), and the Android 2.2 OS (see larger image).
In addition to high-speed connectivity on the fast and reliable Verizon Wireless 3G network, you can also share the built-in 3G Mobile Hotspot via Wi-Fi among five devices--laptop, another phone, MP3 player, and more (additional service charge). You can also choose enhanced navigation capabilities with the optional VZ Navigator GPS turn-by-turn direction service. And with the optional Visual Voice Mail service, you'll be able to quickly and easily scroll through your messages and pick the ones you want to listen to. (See more details on optional Verizon Wireless services below.)
The phone comes preloaded social networking widgets that allow quick access to your Facebook and Twitter accounts, and you'll be able to view the full web thanks to the HTML 5-based Android browser. Other features include a 3.2-megapixel camera/camcorder with DVD-quality video capture, a pre-installed 2 GB memory card (with optional microSD expansion to 32 GB), Bluetooth for hands-free devices and stereo music streaming, access to Skype Mobile, and up to 7.5 hours of talk time.
Powered by Android 2.2
The LG Vortex runs the latest Android operating system--OS 2.2 (aka, Froyo)--which provides a faster overall Android experience as well as greater multitasking capabilities. You'll be able to receive notifications, listen to music, and even record GPS data without keeping the application open. And it features a plethora of new enhancements, including an improved QWERTY keyboard, full push corporate e-mail, and Adobe Flash Player 10.1 for access to the full Web. It also offers enhanced Exchange support, with Calendar syncing, Global Address Lookup, improved security, auto-discovery, and more.
With integrated Google technology, the Vortex brings one-touch access to the popular Google mobile services millions use every day, including Google Search by voice, Google Maps with Street View, GTalk instant messaging (with presence capabilities), YouTube, and Picasa. The Vortex also provides easy access to both personal and corporate e-mail, calendars, and contacts supported by Exchange Server and Gmail. And through Android Market, you'll get access to thousands of useful applications, widgets, and fun games to download and install on your phone, with many more apps being added every day.
- Fast 3G connectivity thanks to the reliable Verizon Wireless EV-DO, Rev A network
- Powered by the Android operating system (version 2.2, Froyo) with deep integration of Google services and access to thousands of apps to customize your phone via the Android Market.
- Advanced multitasking capabilities allow you to receive notifications, listen to music, and even record GPS data without keeping the application open.
- Full Suite of Google Apps including Google Maps with Street View, transit, and Wikipedia information; GTalk with Presence; Gmail; YouTube; Latitude; and more.
- Google Calendar app syncs with the Web-based version, so any event that you add to your phone will show up on the Web-based Google Calendar (and vice versa).
- 3G Mobile Hotspot capability allows you to create a Wi-Fi hotspot using your Verizon Wireless 3G EV-DO connection, which can then be shared among up to five Wi-Fi-capable devices. The 3G Mobile Hotspot is the perfect family vacation companion, and at $20 for 2 GB and 5 cents per megabyte overage, it provides an allowance big enough for sharing with the entire family for downloading games, Internet access, and more.
- Skype Mobile compatibility provides unlimited Skype-to-Skype calls and IM while in the U.S. to anywhere in the world. Plus, with Skype Mobile you get low rates to international land lines and cell phones (requires Skype account).
- Real HTML Web browsing provides more pages and better Web content delivered efficiently to your phone (Android Webkit HTML5-based browser).
- Swype input system allows you to input text faster and easier by gliding your finger around the keyboard, moving from letter to letter in one continuous motion. The Swype technology then calculates what word you're intending to type (learn more below).
- GPS navigation capabilities via VZ Navigator service and Bing Maps plus downloadable Google Maps
- ThinkFree Office Mobile: The award-winning ThinkFree Office is a Microsoft Office compatible application suite comprised of word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation graphics software--all usable online and offline. You'll be able to view, edit, and create Office documents (compatible with Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint) as well as view PDF documents.
- 3.2-inch touchscreen display (320 x 480 pixels; 262K color depth)
- 3.2-megapixel camera with multiple shot modes (including panorama), white balance control, and color effects
- DVD-quality video capture (up to 640 x 480 pixels)
- Music player compatible with MP3, WMA, and unprotected AAC formats. Create and manage playlists on the phone.
- Video playback with compatibility for WMV, MP4, DIVX and 3GP/3G2 formats.
- Wi-Fi networking (802.11b/g) for accessing home and corporate networks as well as hotspots while on the go.
- Bluetooth connectivity (version 2.1) includes profiles for communication headset, hands-free car kits, and the A2DP Bluetooth profile--enabling you to wirelessly stream your music to a pair of compatible Bluetooth stereo headphones or speaker dock.
- 2 GB microSD card with support for optional cards up to 32 GB.
- Text (SMS) and picture/video (MMS) messaging
- Instant messaging support for Google Talk, as well as AOL, Yahoo! Messenger and Windows Live Messenger.
- Speaker-independent voice commands plus voice-activated dialing
- Airplane mode allows you to listen to music while the cellular connectivity is turned off
- Bilingual interface: English/Spanish
- Hearing aid compatible = M4
- TTY/TDD support
- 3.5mm headset jack
The LG Vortex weighs 4.44 ounces and measures 4.47 x 2.32 x 0.52 inches. Its 1500 mAh lithium-ion battery is rated at up to 7.5 hours of talk time, and up to 500 hours (20+ days) of standby time. It runs on the CDMA 800/1900 frequencies as well as EV-DO, Rev A 3G frequencies.
What's in the Box
LG Vortex handset, rechargeable battery, charger, 2 GB microSD card, quick start guide
Verizon Wireless Services
- Reliable 3G Network: With support for the EV-DO high-speed data standard, you'll enjoy fast access to the Internet and Verizon Wireless multimedia services (additional charges applicable), with average download speeds ranging from 400 to 700 Kbps and peak rates up to 2 Mbps. (Learn more about where EV-DO coverage is offered.)
- VZ Navigator Capable: With this GPS-enabled phone, you'll be able to access the Verizon Wireless VZ Navigator service (additional charges applicable) for voice-prompted turn-by-turn directions, heads-up alerts, local search of nearly 14 million points of interest in the US (such as landmarks, restaurants and ATMs), and detailed color maps.
- Visual Voice Mail: This innovative service enables you to delete, reply, and forward voice mail messages without having to listen to prior messages or voice instructions. Visual Voice Mail is the ideal tool for the busy mobile professional who may need to prioritize which messages he or she listens to first. Features include on-screen access to voice mail message status, save up to 40 messages for 40 days (or archive permanently), create up to 10 different caller ID-based greetings, and reply via call back, text or even voice mail.
- VZW Backup Assistant: Automatically back up your mobile contacts to your online address book. If your phone is lost, stolen, or damaged, or you decide to upgrade, easily restore your saved address book to your new phone. You can also add, delete, edit, and print your contacts online and send the changes to your mobile phone.
- V CAST Music with Rhapsody: Access this exclusive digital music service for RealNetworks and for MTV Networks, which delivers unlimited monthly access to music on up to three Rhapsody-compatible mobile phones and players and online on multiple PCs and Web browsers. For a monthly fee (billed on your Verizon Wireless bill), you can load and reload your subscription songs from your PC to your V CAST Music with Rhapsody phone as often as you want, and take your music on the go.
On PCs running the Windows XP or higher operating system, you can also browse, preview, and purchase music using the V CAST Music with Rhapsody software, which is available as a free download from the V CAST Music with Rhapsody download website. Additional subscription charges applicable.
- V CAST Video on Demand: This optional service enables you to watch full-length TV shows plus news, sports, weather, and live entertainment video clips. It features more than 100 full-length programs from leading broadcast and cable networks, ranging from highly-rated drama and comedy series to reality programs and children’s programming. V CAST Video on Demand also delivers live sporting events, including NHL hockey games and an upcoming slate of college football games
The service offers unlimited viewing of Basic Videos and the ESPN MVP channel. You can choose from 14 categories, including Entertainment, Kids, Music, Sports, Comedy, News, Pop Culture, Information, Women, Latino, Home & Leisure, Multicultural, Cutting Edge, and Hollywood. Additional subscription charges applicable.
An alternative to the Android virtual keyboard, the Swype virtual keyboard allows you to input text by swiping the finger with one continuous finger or stylus motion across the screen keyboard. Based on testing, speed and accuracy are equal to or better than the traditional keyboard-tapping method. You can activate the Swype keyboard by pressing and holding in a text field, wait for popup to appear, click Input Method, and then select Swype.
In the image to the right, the word "mind" was generated from tracing the path shown above in a fraction of a second, by roughly aiming to pass through the letters of the word. A key advantage to Swype is that there is no need to be very accurate, enabling very rapid text entry.
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