LG U880 mobile phone review

3.5 out of 5
price dependent on contract

For

Thin, easy to use, crisp colourful screen

Against

Nothing too exciting here, only one camera, no flash on camera

LG has been at the heart of the 3G revolution since the beginning, but then after its first enjoyable attempt, it then got the Motorola Razr bug and created a series of phones that all looked the same, but with a slight tinkering.

Its latest handset, the U880 breaks away from this mould and ops for a super thin, super long clamshell design that will suit both men and women alike.

That thin claim is well justified. It might not be as thin as the GSM version of the Motorola Razr, but it's almost a millimetre and a half thinner than the company's 3G version the V3x. The 1.4mm doesn't sound like much and it reality it isn't, still it allows LG to crown the phone with the moniker "the world's slimmest 3G phone".

With the size, the weight has come down as well going from a 132 grams for the LG 8360 to 98 grams for the new model.

However while this phone is the thinnest around, well for the time being, it's also probably the longest we've seen in a long time when fully opened. Sceptics up and down the country will say LG has just flatted it with a large steam roller and turned that thickness into length.

Get past its measurements and the phone itself is very unadventurous: the U880 offering all the usual features; tri-band, Bluetooth, digital camera and optional memory expansion via Transflash, but that doesn't mean to say that it shouldn't be looked at.

Flip open the phone and the 2-inch 262k clear colour screen beams out at you alongside the clear number pad design that will appeal to those who don't want to have to struggle to work out what is what.

In its simplest form, a menu button, labelled "menu" gets you unsurprisingly into the phone's menu and other shortcuts are equally simplistic.

Rather than opting for two digital cameras for video calling, LG has decided to rely on just the one and and in the case of the U880 it's a 1.3 megapixel version that swivels so you can either use it for taking pictures or recording yourself, but not both.

In our tests the camera performance is okay, but nothing special. Those looking to treat this phone as a low-end field camera will be disappointed to find that there is no flash fitted. This makes party shots in dark dingy pubs and bars almost impossible and we are surprised by LGs omission to leave this out.

An additional problem we found was that there is no locking mechanism for the rotating camera.

Verdict

While the U880 doesn't pack any exciting features that will have you reaching for your pocket every time you see someone you want to impress coming your way the LG U880 does tick all the boxes.

Those into their multimedia will be pleased to see that you can control the phone's MP3 player via the outside display and buttons, while video callers will be pleased to see that when it comes to making calls their requirements haven't been left out either.

So you choose this over the Motorola V3x? In terms of usability we do prefer this model, however the feature set of the V3x with its two cameras one of them being a 2 megapixel model and the increased talktime maybe too much for some to turn down.

A good solid phone, just nothing to write home about.