New for 2009, VTech's LS6225/LS6215 series is one of the company's featured DECT 6.0 cordless phone lines. VTech has a reputation for making sleek and stylish cordless phones and the LS6225 series is an eye-catcher, with a shiny black finish, touch buttons on the base unit/digital answering machine, and a slight curve to the handsets that follows the contour of your face. You can get this model in packages of two and three handsets (the system is expandable to 12 handsets), as well as a unit that leaves off the answering machine.
With the design of the LS62x5 series, it looks like VTech drew some inspiration from Motorola's Razr phones, particularly when it comes to the keypad. The keys are flush to the phone and made of hard plastic, but their spacing is good and we had no trouble dialing numbers. The keys are backlit and while the 1.5-inch LCD (it, too, has blue backlighting) isn't huge, it should be ample enough for most users.
The phone and base unit is attractively styled with a sleek, minimalist design that we liked. The base unit has no buttons per se; all the controls are touch-based, and they worked fine in our tests. However, it should be pointed out that the shiny black finish--on both the front and the back of the phone--is a fingerprint magnet. On a positive note, we found the user interface relatively straightforward and easy to navigate. The speakerphone is built into the back of the handset (it sits right in the middle) and Talk/Off buttons are clearly labeled and within easy reach of your thumb as you hold the phone in your hand.
Pop open the battery compartment and you'll notice what this phone's biggest drawback is. It's powered by a 500mAh Ni-MH battery pack that, according to VTech, will give you up to 8 hours of talk time (5 hours with of speakerphone usage and up to eight days of standby time). In our tests, these numbers seem a little on high side (we only got about six days of standby time), but, according to VTech, operating times vary depending on your actual use and age of the battery.
In a wider context, those numbers match up well against the competition (and against some earlier VTech models, which opted for superslim handsets at the expense of battery life). By comparison, Panasonic's KX-TG6400 series includes two 650mAh Ni-MH AAAs that provide approximately 5 hours of talk time and 11 days of standby time.
The LS62x5 series comes in packages featuring two or three handsets, and you can have a maximum of 12 handsets connected to the system. You don't get some of the features found on some of Panasonic's latest models, including Talking Caller ID, Talking alarm clock, Talking battery alert ("Please charge the phone"), or ringer ID (you can attach various ringtones to contacts in your phonebook), but all the standard stuff is here: call silent mode, three-way conference capability, a handset-to-base intercom function (as well as handset-to-handset communications), and a speakerphone in the handset. The LS6225-2 series does not have a speakerphone or dial pad in the main base unit, and there's no headset jack in the handset for hands-free operation (though some people don't care about this feature).
The digital answering machine (found in all models but the LS6215-2) can store up to 14 minutes worth of messages and any of the handsets registered to the system (up to 12) can access the phonebook, which lets you store up to 50 names and numbers. However, only one handset can access the phonebook at a time.