We were puzzled at first as to why we couldn't see the mobile Web browser or mobile e-mail application. It turns out that we needed to download them from the EasyEdge store. We would really appreciate it if those came preinstalled in the phone instead.
The Wine 2 has a couple of music features that were missing from its predecessor. It has a music player, which is pretty simple, but it does let you create and edit playlists. It also has repeat and shuffle modes. The phone has only 256MB of internal memory, but you can easily add more via the microSD card slot. The player supports MP3, AAC, and AAC+ file formats. The second music-related feature is the built-in FM tuner. Once you plug a headset in, you'll be able to listen to any of your local radio stations.
The 2.0-megapixel camera is also improved over the 1.3-megapixel one on the Wine. It can take pictures in four resolutions (1,200x1,600, 9,60x1,280, 480x640, and 240x320) and three quality settings. Other options include four color effects, five white balance presets, a night mode, nine fun frames, a self-timer, four shutter sounds plus a silent option, and brightness. Photo quality was quite good. Images looked sharp, and though the photos did not look as bright as we would like, the colors still looked pretty decent for the most part. There's also a camcorder built in that can record in either 176x144 or 128x96 resolution, and in either 15 seconds for MMS or as long as an hour for storage.
You can personalize the LG Wine 2 with wallpaper, themes, and tones. It only comes with one game--Pac-Man--but you can get more options via the EasyEdge store.
We tested the LG Wine 2 in San Francisco using U.S. Cellular's roaming network. We were quite pleased with the sound quality overall. We could hear our callers clearly with plenty of volume. They did sound a little harsh and choppy at times, but it was rare.
On their end, callers also reported good quality. They said our voice sounded natural and crisp, though they could still tell we were on a cell phone. We enjoyed very little static, and even speakerphone calls went well. They did say there was more echo, but that's to be expected with most speakerphones.
Even though the Wine 2 has 3G EV-DO Rev. 0, we weren't able to take full advantage of it since it doesn't have a real wireless browser. Also, we were stuck with the 1xRTT connection due to our network in San Francisco. Still, we did manage to download a 646KB app in around a minute.
Audio quality was not the greatest via the phone's tinny speakers. So when listening to music, we would recommend a headset instead.
The LG Wine 2 has a rated battery life of 3.2 hours talk time and 14 days standby time. Our tests revealed a talk time of 3 hours and 23 minutes. According to the FCC, it has a digital SAR of 1.22 watts per kilogram.