Editor's Review of the Optimus Chat
The Optimus Chat may look and feel like an entry-level phone, but with Android 2.2 and a slide-out keypad, it differentiates itself from the usual budget crowd.
Design & Build
Design-wise the LG Optimus Chat is a fairly chunky device, measuring in at a 16mm thick. However this is all made up for when its keypad is revealed, offering-up four rows of QWERTY goodness for bashing out emails and sending lengthy messages. We were fairly impressed with the slide-out keys too, which are well spaced apart and tactile to use.
Keyboard aside, the Chat also comes with a decent 2.8-inch (320 x 480) capacitive touchscreen, coupled with a duo of physical keys for call/end call. The display proved much more responsive that the usual cheap resistive screens, and we were impressed by how speedy the capacitive interface was.
However, this excellent keyboard and zippy screen are almost let down by the handset's cheap plastic casing, which drags it down a level and makes it look and feel 'cheap'.
OS & Interface
Running Android 2.2 you know what you're getting with the Optimus Chat, and although it may be lagging behind the latest Gingerbread models, but Froyo is still a decent version of Google's OS. It comes dressed in LG's Optimus UI, which offers the usual customizable homescreens and social networking features. You'll also get all the usual pre-loaded goodies, include email, maps and access to the Android Market.
Multimedia & Storage
The LG Optimus Chat touts a not-so-impressive 3 megapixel camera, although it still manages to create some fairly impressive snapshots. It can also record standard-res video footage, at 640 x 480 pixels.
There's also a built-in MP3 player and an FM radio, which are of the usual Android variety. You won't squeeze many songs on though with its 140MB of internal memory, although this can be expanded up to 32GB.
It may be marketed as a 'cheap Android handset', but the Chat still lands equipped with high-speed connectivity. You'll get HSDPA speeds of up to 7.2Mbps, alongside WiFi connectivity for when you're in the home. In terms of the browser we were pleasantly surprised, and it renders pages well on the 2.8-inch screen. The Chat also supports the pinch-to-zoom and multi-touch gestures, allowing you to easily enlarge web pages for reading text more clearly. Sadly however, it's 600MHz processor means Adobe Flash isn't supported, but given it's price tag, we'll let this one slip.
Its battery life is another stand-out feature, which seems to be the norm for lower-priced handsets. It packs a hefty 1500mAh effort under the hood, offering up to 5 hours of constant talk-time and up to 440 hours on stand by.
The Optimus Chat is unlikely to compete against LG's high-end efforts, but with its intuitive keys and capacitive screen, it's an excellent alternative.
LG Optimus Chat News
Following the launch of the Optimus Pro and Optimus Net, LG has added yet another budget handset to its Android line-up: the LG Optimus Chat. The handset’s not ashamed to rock mid-range specs, and comes touting Android 2.2 (Froyo) OS. This, along with LG’s Optimus UI, dresses the handset’s 2.8-inch (320 x 480) capacitive screen, [...]
LG Optimus Chat Specifications
109mm x 59mm x 16mm
Full capacitive touch screen
Type: TFT LCD
Size: 2.8 inches
Resolution: 320 x 480
Interface: LG Optimus UI
External: microSD up to 32GB
A-GPS with maps
Up to 7.2 Mbps download speed
Up to 5.76 Mbps upload speed
Wi-Fi: IEEE 802.11 b/g/n
Audio: 3.5mm stereo jack
Data: Standard microUSB
GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
A2DP for wireless stereo headsets
3.0 megapixel camera
Battery Capacity: 1500 mAh
Talk Time: 300 minutes
Standby Time: 440 hours
Radio: FM with RDS
Audio supported formats
Playback: MP3, WAV, WMA, eAAC+
Video supported formats
Playback: MP4, H.264, H.263, WMV