Review: LG Mach for Sprint
The Mach runs Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich with a user interface skin from LG and Sprint. In terms of usability, it runs exactly like the Optimus G does.
The lock screen is fully customizable. It offers four shortcuts, all of which can be changed or deleted. You can also customize which clock appears on the lock screen, and whether or not weather data and other alerts are sent to the lock screen.
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There are five home screen panels for customization out of the box, but you can delete or add screens. The main menu is a regular old grid of apps, but you can customize it. You can view it with large icons (default) or small icons to fit more apps on each individual page. You can sort apps alphabetically or via install date. You can't, however, view them in list form. Apps may also be placed on the home screen panels inside folders.
The drop-down notification shade provides access to all the wireless radios as well as brightness, rotation, and sound settings, plus the QuickMemo feature. Even better, you can customize which shortcuts are visible in this drop-down control strip.
The Mach is compatible with Sprint iD Packs. If you choose, you can download and install these packs, which are bundles of apps, wallpapers, and shortcuts centered on a specific theme.
Take all these combined, and you have a flexible platform that you can customize and make your own. The Mach also comes with different home screen themes (each with its own wallpaper and app shortcuts), and of course the ability to tweak ringers, alerts, and so on. You can even customize the app icons with photos you've taken yourself.
The Mach uses a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Plus dual-core processor at 1.2GHz per core. It's sufficiently quick. I didn't see any performance hiccups while I was testing the phone.
Calls and Contacts
The phone and contact apps work on the Mach just about the same as every other Android 4.0 smartphone. In-call options run the norm, and include speakerphone, mute, send to Bluetooth, and add a line. There are the usual home screen widgets for direct contacts, as well as the a nice widget for a collection of your favorites. The bigger widget lets you access your top nine contacts and gives you a cool UI for interacting with them on the home screen.
As far as messaging goes, the Mach has the stock Android tools on board and LG's QuickMemo app (more on that later). The SMS app offers nice, threaded conversations; the Gmail/email apps are great ways to manage your inbox; the Google+ and Google+ Messenger apps are good for keeping up with your G+ activity; and the Google Talk app is as powerful as ever for IM and video chats.
Neither Facebook nor Twitter is pre-installed, so you'll have to download them from the Play Store yourself.
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