Review: Pantech Renue for AT&T
The Renue's camera software is surprisingly smartphone-esque. Clearly Pantech drew from its experience with Android when it designed the software. What does that mean? The camera controls are a bit more robust than what's available on most other feature phones.
The base viewfinder offers a focusing box in the center of the screen and a software camera button on the right side. (Sidenote: Why not include a dedicated camera button? There isn't even one on the keyboard, which is doubly wrong of Pantech.) Tap the screen, and a set of controls appear for making adjustments to the camera. On the left, there's a strip of icons that grant access zoom and brightness sliders, as well as fine-tuning items such as white balance, effects, resolution, timer, geotagging, and so on.
You can jump to the video camera or gallery by pressing buttons that appear next to the shutter button.
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When you're ready to shoot images, just press the shutter button. There's no autofocus and no flash. Even so, the camera takes forever to snap the shot. Then you're stuck looking at a review screen before you can go back to the camera to take another shot. The review screen offers tools for sharing via MMS or Bluetooth (but not email, nor social networks); set the photos as a wallpaper or contact photo; or trash it, geo-tag it, or head to the full gallery.
The gallery offers either grid or list views of the images contained therein. The Renue separates preloaded images from those you capture yourself, and you can organize them into folders if you wish. You can also choose to see just the items stored on the internal memory, or those stored on a microSD card.
Options in the gallery are severely limited. You can zoom in, set as wallpapers or contacts, send via Bluetooth or MMS, rename the file, or delete it. There are no editing functions whatsoever. The zoom tool is about as clunky a mechanism as I've ever seen on a phone. Rather than allow Renue owners to use the now-familiar pinch-to-zoom action, the zoom tool offers a slider that you drag up and down to zoom in and out. Accompanying the slider is a thumbnail view of the entire picture, and a box that shows you the section that's blown up. It really looks awful.
New Pantech QMD Both Rugged And Green
Pantech and AT&T today revealed the Renue, a "quick messaging device" with a slide-out QWERTY keyboard and rugged design made from 67% recyclable materials. The phone doesn't require a smartphone data plan, but uses Qualcomm's BREW-MP platform to provide smartphone-like features, including a touch screen and multiple customizable home screens.
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