The Crush has a 2-megapixel camera, but we couldn't find any camera options beyond a digital zoom. You don't even get a choice of resolutions, which is the least we'd expect. We're not happy with the growing trend of cell phones that lack camera-editing features. The camcorder is similarly devoid of features. Clips attached to multimedia messages are capped at 15 seconds. Photo quality is pretty good. Colors looked natural and there was just a minimal amount of image noise.
The media player is pretty bare-bones, but it's appropriate for a phone like this. It supports multiple formats (MP3, WAV, WMA, eAAC+, AAC, AAC+, MIDI), but it can play music only from a memory card. You don't get one in the box, but the slot will accommodate microSD cards up to 16GB. Internal memory on the Crush is 150MB. The Crush also offers GPS with Your Navigator from Networks in Motion. You get turn-by-turn navigation, local search, and traffic updates and movies and events.
You can personalize the Crush with a choice of clock formats, wallpaper, and banners. You also get one game, Pac-Man, with the opportunity to download more through U.S. Cellular's EasyEdge service. The full HTML browser is the only feature really affected by the small display size. It's not very useful and the features are limited.
We tested the dual-band (CDMA 800/1900) in San Francisco. Since we aren't in U.S. Cellular's home area, we used the carrier's roaming network. Call quality was generally good with clear audio and little interference. The volume could be a bit louder--we had some trouble hearing in noisy place--but that was our only real complaint.
Callers on the other end didn't have many complaints. They could tell that we were using a cell phone, but that's a typical experience. We tried calling in a variety of locations and got similar results every time. A few said the Crush picked up background noise, but other friends didn't notice it. Speakerphone calls were surprisingly clear, though they could be louder. Bluetooth headset calls were satisfactory.
The Crush has a rated battery life of 4.3 hours talk time and 20.8 days standby time. Our tests revealed a longer talk time of 6 hours and 11 minutes. According to FCC radiation tests, the Crush has an SAR of 1.53 watts per kilogram.