Review: Pantech Marauder for Verizon Wireless
Verizon didn't go too far overboard with respect to bloatware. The Marauder is stocked with an extra, Verizon-curated app store, MyVerizon Mobile, V CAST Tones (really, Verizon?), and VZ Navigator. Most of the rest of the apps are stock Android. Perhaps the oddest inclusion is AmexServe. This app lets you send/move money between accounts and send it to people, sort of like Western Union. This app would make sense to me on a prepaid phone, but not on a standard smartphone from a Tier 1 carrier. As with most phones, some of these apps can be deleted and some cannot.
The Marauder supports mono and stereo headsets, phone book access, and object push with its Bluetooth radio. I had no trouble pairing with headsets and other phones. Sound quality of calls through the headsets was very good. Stereo music sent to a set of Bluetooth speakers sounded pretty good.
The stock Android browser works very well on the Marauder. Paired with Verizon's 3G/4G networks, it was speedy and did a great job of rendering pages. Personally, I prefer Google Chrome, which is available to the Marauder (but not preloaded).
The Marauder has its own version of the Android lock screen clock. The time is displayed in white digits in the center of the lock screen circle. Since the lock screen is a bit busy, it can sometimes be hard to discern the time in a quick glance.
The Marauder has Google Maps in addition to VZ Navigator. Both work fine, though of course Google Maps is free and VZ Navigator costs an extra $10 per month. In terms of GPS radio performance, I found it to be quick and accurate.