It was the big story of CES 2009, but only now has LG put the finishing touches to its first watch phone and put it on sale, if you know where to look. You can only buy the LG GD910 through one Orange shop in the U.K.--in Bond Street, London--at the moment, on pay as you go tariff 500 British pounds, although there will be a limited number available online later this month (register your interest here).
We had the chance to try one out briefly earlier Wednesday, and what struck us was that it's actually a pretty basic device. We're so used to seeing phones packed with features, apps, and a hundred ways to access your Twitter feed on the toilet, this felt like a letdown.
LG is making a big deal of the fact this isn't just a phone, it's a 3G phone, and a superfast HSDPA one at that. But before you get carried away thinking that you'll be able to access the Internet, check your e-mails and so forth, be warned--the 3G is just for video calls. (Does anyone know anyone who actually makes these?) To be fair, there's no way you would want something like a browser on this thing, as the screen is just 36 millimeters (1.4 inches), but it still seemed weird to us.
There are just three buttons on the whole of the device, at the edge, which you use for bringing up contextual menus and the like. You use the touch screen for everything else.
Calling people, video or otherwise, is easy enough. If they're in your phone book already, you simply select their name. If not, typing numbers on the touch screen is much more straightforward than you might think--the soft keys on the touch screen have enough space between them so you can type speedily without errors.
Video and voice calls are all piped through the internal speaker, turning the watch into a normal speakerphone. You might feel rather foolish and cause much irritation around you, but you don't have to bring the watch up to your mouth to be heard, unless you're trying out your best Dick Tracy impression.
You'll feel even more of a fool if you use the Bluetooth headset LG provides, though--ignoring the fact that everyone using headsets should be made to sign a register for the good of society, it has a really long microphone arm, straight from the early naughties. Then again, with the headset, people around you won't be able to hear the other end of your conversation, so it's not all bad.… Read more