LG – GD910 watch phone review

mobile phone watch combo with Outlook synching
Photo of LG – GD910 watch phone
£500 (SIM-free)

Why do they do it? Why do companies who can make perfectly good technologies sometimes decide to throw the baby and the bathwater at a bizarre combination that should only see the light of day in science fiction movies? Who knows why, but LG has come up with a phone in a watch.

The GD910 isn’t the first watchphone and it probably won’t be the last. But it is bizarre in the extreme. It has a touchscreen, Bluetooth, HSDPA, a generous 80MB of on-board memory and even a camera for two-way video calling. The 1.4-inch screen sits in a huge (in watch terms) casing that measures 39 x 60 x 13.9mm thick. Its 90.7g will weigh your wrist down.

The build quality is tough and there’s a faux leather strap that looks OK. On one side are Call, Back/Clear and End/main power buttons.

It is a real pain, though understandable, that you have to charge the watch, rather as you would a mobile phone. We are used to our watches lasting for years without needing a new battery, but the GD910 needs to be put in a clamp-like cradle and charged every so often. We got through a weekend without charging it more than once, but you’ll probably need to budget for power boosts a couple of times a week if you don’t want to get caught short.

When it comes to making voice and video calls the GD910 is supplied with a Bluetooth headset so at least you don’t have to hold the watch to your mouth to phone a friend. Well, you can do that actually, but then both sides of the conversation are audible to all those around you. There’s no headphones jack for wired hands-free calling.

The camera can be used to shoot still photos at 640 x 480, but it is a bit of a faff as you need to take the watch off, point it at your subject and crane your neck round to try to frame the shot, as camera and screen are side by side.

That screen delivers 128 x 160 pixels. It is touch sensitive and you can sweep and swipe at it to get around. Working out when you can sweep and when you just press is fairly intuitive, but writing SMS messages is an exercise in patience. You tap at an on-screen keypad using T9 or multitap. Either way it is slow to get even a basic SMS message out.

The GD910 can play music though its speaker or to a Bluetooth headset. It will synchronise with Outlook and you can add appointments directly, though as we’ve already noted, prodding at the screen is a fiddle. You also get a memo function, voice recorder, calculator, unit converter, stopwatch, multiple alarms and a selection of clock faces for viewing the time.

Company: LG

Contact: 0844 412 0992


Verdict
So, this is a watch with some smartphone features built in. It does neither job especially well, being large for a watch and under-powered, small screened and poorly featured for a smartphone. OK LG, you've done it. But we aren't convinced it was worth the effort.