Apple should take notes on a number of the Voyager’s features, including the virtual T9 keypad that makes texting a breeze, the stereo Bluetooth support for music, and especially the way the touchscreen buttons “bite back” with force feedback. It’s a godsend when you use on the touch screen, allowing you to fly through the menu system’s large icons and even type URLs without opening up the phone.
If you don’t want to deal with virtual keys, you’ll find the Voyager’s spacious QWERTY keyboard, plus an additional screen and stereo speakers, once you flip it open. Moreover, the device supports Verizon’s mobile TV service, which provides eight channels of broadcast mobile TV (for $15 per month), making the Voyager a dandy little desktop TV set.
As a phone, the Voyager is fun to dial and use. Tapping the Unlock button on the front screen gives you a main screen with four icons: messaging, phone, address book and main menu. Tap the phone icon and you can dial on a virtual keypad. You can also use voice dialing, whether over a wired or Bluetooth headset, or flip the phone open and dial using the full keyboard. To scroll through the address book, just flick your finger as with an iPhone.
The Voyager’s phone reception and audio are acceptable but not impressive. While the earpiece achieves good volume, sound is distorted considerably at the top of the range. The speakerphone, on the other hand, doesn’t get tremendously loud, and it works only with the clamshell flipped open. The Voyager’s 4.5 hours of talk time isn’t bad for a phone with two huge, power-sucking screens.
There’s a lot to like here: You get a generous 183MB of available internal memory, and the device also has a microSD card slot. The huge internal screen makes the Voyager a great gaming phone, and the device works well with Verizon’s VZ Navigator GPS service. The Teleca browser makes Web pages look good, but surfing is slow despite the phone’s fast EV-DO connection-and there’s no Wi-Fi. But the 2-megapixel autofocus camera takes decent photos.
The Voyager’s flaws illustrate how Apple’s competitors struggle to make their high-end phones just work as well as the iPhone does. Like most other Verizon handsets, it has some frustrating menus and a perplexing inability to sync calendars, contacts, and videos with PCs or Macs.
No, the Voyager isn’t an iPhone killer. But if you choose your network first, and you’ve chosen Verizon, this is the closest you’ll get to a true mobile revolution-for now.LG VX10000 Voyager ReviewPrice range:$499,99; $299,99 and up with contractCheck This Out:HP iPAQ 512 Voice Messenger Review: Voice Smartphone from Hewlett-PackardHTC Touch Dual Review: HSDPA In, Wi-Fi OutPantech Duo Review: Pretty Dual-Slider Has Problems