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>> Hi, I'm Kent German, senior editor here at cnet.com. Today we're taking a first look at the Motorola Rapture VU30. This is a new phone for Verizon wireless service. This is sort of a sibling phone to the Motorola VU204, that was, had a little bit of the same design, didn't have 3G phone, this is 3G, so it has EBDO and V-cast music and regular V-cast. So all the media things that Verizon has. One difference between the VU204 is that this phone does not have that soft touch material on the outside, it is just a straight plastic, it is a little shiny on the front. So a little sleeker design, maybe a little more stylish for some people. Does have a reflective face here on the front, however that means it shows smudges and fingerprints just a little bit, so you want to wary of that. But otherwise, pretty nice. Like the curved edges, like the feeling in the hand, it's nice, got a nice solid feel. Here in the front, does have a pretty large external display, it is full color, shows photo caller ID and regular caller ID, and all the information you'll need. Actually you can use it to browse through the camera menu and the music player with the phone closed, so you can access both of those features. Camera lens is here on the back, which is unusual, I wasn't expecting it there. Was expecting it up here. Even though you can't take pictures with the phone closed, there's no self portrait mirror here, and if you open the phone, this won't work as a view finder for the camera. So this is a little bit of a quirk. It's a two megapixel camera, so we'd expect a little more there. There's also no flash on the outside either. There is a speakerphone here on the back, here on the side there is a camera shutter, there's a handset locking switch so you can use to make sure that these controls, which are touch controls on the external display for the music player and camera, are inactivated automatically. Here on this side we have a volume rocker, there is a speakerphone button which you can turn on, or which you can activate before you make the call, which is always a nice touch, and then there's a micro USB slot that is used for the charger, and any kind of USB cable. Inside, display is nice, it is full color, two hundred sixty thousand colors, so pretty bright and vibrant, about what you'd expect. The menu system is easy to use, Moto, Verizon has continued to refine it just a little bit since their much maligned menu interface that they've had for a few years now that's standardized. They've just located things in different areas, and just made it a little easier to cruise through. Keypad buttons and navigation control are really nice, have a really nice design. There's a very big circular toggle, it is colored a little differently. It is flush with the surface of the phone, but there's a little bit of a tactile ridge on the outside, and little bumps right here, which give it a nice feel, and so it is easy to use, especially since it's so large. A couple of soft keys, there's a dedicated music key, clear button, talk and end keys, also the end key is a power button. These are just raised above the surface of the phone, so you do feel them as you slide your finger over, and I do like all the space you have there. Also the toggle will work as a shortcut for functions of your choice. Keypad buttons are also nicely designed. They are also raised slightly above the surface of the phone, so you can dial by feel. There's plenty of space, we didn't have any problems with texting or dialing quickly, and there's a bright back lighting. So definitely a nice inside of the phone, nice controls, and a nice display. The Rapture VU30 does have stereo Bluetooth, the music player, the V-cast, personal organizer functions, and most of what you'd expect from a midrange 3G phone like this. Call quality on this phone is okay, found that the clarity was pretty good.
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Volume could have been a bit higher as it was difficult to hear in noisy situations. Streaming video quality was just okay, music quality was fine. I'm Kent German, this is the Motorola Rapture VU30.
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