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Computer Weekly's Gadget Guide on smartphones gives you a round up of all the latest smartphone news, previews, and reviews from Inspect-a-Gadget.
If you're researching the wide range of smartphones in the market head over to our guide for the low-down on the devices you just can't live your life without.
Diary of an outcast: Apple's Special iPad 2 Event
I will start with my favourite post, the infamous Apple event. I had been invited to Apple events before but somehow started getting missed off the list. I hate Apple so it was no surprise that they didn't want me there. Safe to say that after this post not only was I missed off the list but Computer Weekly never received an invite from Apple ever again.
iPhone Vs N97
This was the first big video project that me and David (video editor) put together. At the time I was so happy that I'd got the N97 I decided to make a video pitting it against the iPhone while mocking Apple's advertising campaign. Little did I know that the N97 would prove to be the worst purchase I've ever made in my life.
HTC Desire HD Review
David (who stars in this video) and I wanted to do something different and create a cool video review. This is what we came up with.
Sadly once we started recording David (and the department he worked for) were made redundant. It didn't effect the video but it wasn't a happy time for us. Having cleared out his desk he set up at home the next day to finish it. This was our last hurrah and the last video I made. Very proud of it.
What is the best mobile OS around?
At this point, no one wanted to be in any of my videos. The company was starting to cut back on them and so I tried to play four roles with four outfits and a moustache before I got told that what I was doing wasn't a productive use of my time. Honestly, how could they say that?
This video used to have a voting element that has since been removed because we couldn't afford to pay for the server the flash sat on.
The most ambitious video we ever tried.
Video: The future of business cards, I'm not taking the Poken
There was a girl I was desperate to go out with at my work. I needed to do a video to have a reason to talk to her but the only thing I'd been sent was a Poken. No phones or cool gadgets. Somehow I persuaded her to help me make this video. We're still together :)
Video review of the wiimote like Gyration Air Mouse
This video is pretty much when I realised that I can be funny. What people don't realise is that filming didn't take long but discussions between David and I on what was funny took forever.
He would stand there saying "That's not funny" every time I cracked a joke or did something stupid. Or one of my favourite lines of his was "You might think that's funny, but it isn't".
Video: Palm Pre vs the iPhone - The big debate
I had 2 weeks before Christmas to do a video armed with my wit and a white wig that was left over from a very bad 'Back to the future' spoof I'd made where I played the Doc. That video was so bad that the company we producd it for sent us a letter saying that if the video ever saw the light of day, they'd sue my a** off.
David went on holiday with a week left of editing/filming to do so I didn't have anyone to tell me that what I was saying wasn't funny and some of the editing is a bit off. It's still a good video but we felt it was rushed.
Video: I heart iPad - Dating website matches man to iPad
What do you do when you get your hands on an iPad before the UK release? Write a review. Then what? Make a video about having a special relationship with it. Yep, not sure why.
The HTC and Google story: A love affair and a tragedy
Lord knows what compelled me to write this. Had I taken more time to craft it, I think it could've been great but when I read it now I feel it's rushed. Still good, where the idea came from I'll never know.
Video: Flip Mino HD review
This video took 84 takes. For no reason at all I couldn't stop laughing during recording. We got in trouble because it was meant to take a couple of hours but took almost two weeks.
Video: Zeemote review - Is this the future of mobile gaming?
I did this video because Zeemote said that they'd give me a free phone if I reviewed it. So...
GeeklyWeekly Sexy Halloween Special
Wow, how bad is this video? It doesn't even have anything to do with gadgets!!
When it was first released the Optimus' main attraction was that it made Android 2.2 available on a mid-ranged smart phone at a low price.
Funnily however, most of the criticisms that have been levelled at the p-500 are about Android 2.2 and what LG have done with it; chopping and changing, adding their own tweaks and 'styling'.
The announcement of Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) should be seen as an opportunity for LG to tackle and improve some of the poorer areas that have been identified on this phone.
LG gave Optimus owners a shock after initially stating that the upgrade to Android 2.3 would not be made available on their handsets.
Thankfully, they then performed a U-turn within days and announced that the update would be made available.
This news will surely have been much to the delight of many Optimus owners out there who are now eagerly anticipating the release of Android 2.3.
There is no doubting that the OS upgrade could improve the phone no end but there is nothing it can do to help with the look of the Optimus One.
It looks as if it has been made from an old car interior and had some shiny chrome trim added to break up the bleakness.
My mum always taught me not to judge a book by it's cover but when a phone looks like this you just can't help yourself. Sorry mum.
To be fair, the LG could be uglier. It has managed to score some points for the simplistic design and layout of the volume toggle, headphone jack, micro usb slot and power button, which are all seamlessly included in the chrome trim.
The home, return, search and menu buttons below the screen are all nicely sized and spaced. They also produce a gentle glow when pressed.
The Optimus is the perfect size to be held comfortably in one hand and the cover, despite it's unappealing looks, provides a nice rubbery grip.
Although, the rubbery back of the phone has also been branded with the Google logo, like a piece of cattle, the Google services on this phone are actually one of the best things about it.
Usability and OS
Google Maps and loads of other Google apps are either preinstalled or available for download in the Android store.
Moving onto the looks of the menu and home screen, things improve slightly but this is where Android 2.3 can make all the difference.
LG decided to make their own default theme and menu style, which does not seem to have gone down well.
In my opinion it is not very consistent, it looks like menus and folder icons have been taken from other phones and just thrown together.
The home screen features a curved dock at the bottom, filled with shortcuts to contacts, phone, messaging and the browser, though they can be changed.
In what I deem a show of extravagance, the P-500 can have five or seven home screens, depending on the amount of widgets you would like to have easy access too.
This combined with the categories of menu items and switches in the notification bar make me feel as if there is too much going on and too much choice.
I don't want to have to make 39 decisions in order to put the phone on silent before sneakily playing games under the table.
A messaging widget created by LG will not get the recognition it deserves if people select seven home screens because they will most likely have used up all of their energy sliding from page to page in order to find it.
If they do manage to find it, they will see the first few words of their most recent texts. This is handy for those who need constant reminders but not so handy if your boss picks up your phone to see you've applied for a new job.
LG could also scrap their much-criticised keyboard when Android 2.3 is released.
The keyboard appears as a normal phones keypad yet the buttons are still small and fiddly on the 3.2inch screen. The several shades of grey that are used don't make the keyboard any more appealing.
It is quite simple to change the keyboard to QWERTY but this only really improves typeability (I know that's not a real word but let's move swiftly on) if you tip the phone so it switches to landscape.
Just to balance out some of this negativity there is one positive. A word predictor, much like the one Apple have installed in the iPhones
A suggestion pops up in a small grey box midway through typing a word, it can then be selected or ignored. This saves a few seconds and in a society where time is said to be money, this surely means each time you use it your gaining at least a few shiny pennies.
Screen and camera
The screen, camera and media capabilities of the LG will not be affected by the 2.3 update but it is still worth looking at them.
To mix things up this time I'll start with the negative.
The low screen resolution (320x480-pixel screen) means the Optimus One is incompatible with Flash Player 10, so no BBC Iplayer.
Either cleverly or luckily, I'm undecided; they have saved their blushes somewhat with the preinstalled Youtube app.
Astonishingly, the small and low-resolution screen does not ruin internet browsing. Zooming in and out is easy, all that is required is a double tap or pinch.
The Wi-Fi and HSDPA also support fast 3G downloads.
The 3MP camera sounds bad by todays standards but it is clear and bright. Nevertheless, you can't have it all, everything seems quite soft and any slight movement can cause motion blur.
There is no flash but there are is a vast selection of effects and filters along with a face tracking tool which does what it says on the tin.
The camera can also take videos, with three resolutions to choose from - 640x480, 320x240 and 176x144. Clips emerge as 3GP files and play to a decent standard on the PC or Mac, although the frame rate isn't particularly high.
A little feature in the video recorder that you don't see very often is the ability to mute sound during recording.
This could come in handy if you are the sort of person who is desperate for Youtube views.
You could record a video of your fluffy little Labradoodle barking and then later dub over the video and make it look as if it was speaking like a human.
I'm no expert on the art of Youtube videos or how to get views but I imagine that's the sort of thing that happens...
Adding media to the Optimus One is just a case of dragging and dropping, once it's connected to your computer of course. A 2GB microSD is included with the phone.
The LG allows you to not only easily share photos, videos and music on Facebook and Twitter, it also allows you to share your contact information and friends display pictures in the phones contacts application.
Battery and call quality
Two quick final points to make are about the battery life and call quality.
The battery will last for two days of moderate usage thanks to clever little power saving tricks. An example of one is that the screen turns off when you press your ear to it during a call and turns back on automatically when you finish your call, all thanks to a friendly little proximity sensor.
The call quality is nothing to write home about, the sound is crisp and clear and the speakerphone is a long way from sounding tinny.
For all of the good features on this phone there is at least one major flaw that either ruins or takes a lot away from all the hard work that has gone into creating this device.
The Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) update has the potential to turn this phone from a respectable cheap handset to very good cheap handset. That's providing LG swallow their pride and stop interfering with the Androids OS.
However, if LG stick to their guns and decide to try and put their own stamp on the 2.3 update then Optimus owners and those considering buying one, will be left disappointed all over again.
It could quite possibly be the longest time I've road tested a handset... Back in November I was kindly loaned an LG Optimus One - and it's been in my pocket, nestled next to my usual HTC Diamond 2 every since. Then Christmas came and print deadlines beckoned. Before I realised it, it had become part of my everyday kit...
The LG Optimus One is a neat, powerful smartphone that treads the fineline between fancy functionality and basic phone features beautifully.
The Optimus One is similar in size and form factor to HTC's compact Hero (which I quite like, incidentally), but the Optimus One feels more substantial and robust in your hand. The moulded, concave back in smooth plastic, the screen-protecting front in black rubber - it's a heavyweight handset.
Running Android 2.2, the 3.2 inch Optimus One the display resolution is fairly low.
Still, it boasts a capacitive and very responsive screen, which feels solid enough to the touch and responded well to the apps we used. Occassionally, typing proved to be a bit of a chore when the handset was held vertically. But that's a niggle rather than a complaint.
LG have customised Android a little to fit with the handset. It's a gentle tweak - with a custom dock to complement the physical buttons at the front and bottom of the handset. You can define and configure multiple home screens, though we found we were often happy enough going to the Optimus One's custom app page, where you can sort by category to quickly find your favourites.
It seems a bit of a disservice to tag the Optimus One as an entry level device. Some of the specs bear that out but, seriously, in daily use and operation we rarely missed functionality. The 600 Mhz CPU powering the Optimus One was fine in most circumstances, only stuttering and moaning a little when trying to tackle larger, more complex web pages. And it streamed video over YouTube at smooth rates and resolutions, when connected to WiFi.
The bottom line? The Optimus One is a chunky, serious feeling phone that has much of the functionality you'd expect from more expensive models. Incredibly, it's available free on an £18 monthly contract over at Three, for example. I was happy to use it as my main work phone for close to two months - using it mainly to check mail, Twitter, Facebook and to track stories online. Well worth switching if you're in the market for a better handset but don't want to pay iPhone prices.
SO, what have they come up with? Well, it's none other than the LG Optimus Prime... I mean One, the LG Optimus One.
LG say Optimus means best in Latin, but in the real world it means a red and blue truck robot (in disguise) of awesomeness that transforms into an Autobot god, built to fight the evil Decepticons.
I'm going off-track, excuse the crap pun, LG's latest phone looks to pack a punch carrying Froyo as it's OS.
But that's not the only thing LG are offering, they have also announced the release of a lower end smartphone the Optimus Chic (below center), a super phone LG Optimus Z (aka CYON, below left) and Android Tablet PCs.
This is all exciting stuff, I had the LG Viewty when it first came out and I didn't think it was too bad for a touchscreen phone. Since then it seems LG have been powering up to this launch as their releases in between have been largely forgettable.
The one thing that I expect from an LG, and has been the case for some time, is great UI for both tablets and phones. Watch this space.