Review of the LG G Stylo for Boost Mobile
The Stylo's pre-loaded media apps more or less mirror those of other recent Boost phones. The phone comes with Google's Play apps for buying and consuming movies, books, TV shows, and magazines. These apps work well. The Stylo also has the native YouTube app, as well as a basic music app for playing side-loaded content. The simple music player works well; it's too bad there's no similar app included for your side-loaded video.
If you prefer media services other than Google's, the Boost Stylo has your back. NextRadio is preinstalled, as is NBA Game Time. Boost Music is on board, as well, and serves as an alternate music store. It focuses on ringtones, but you can purchase and download whole tracks, too.
The stand-alone MP3 player has DLNA wireless local streaming built in, and the tool is dead simple to use.
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The Stylo doesn't have a physical camera button, but you can launch it from the lock screen or with a long press to the down volume button on the back of the handset.
There are just two shooting modes in which the camera app operates: auto and panorama.
In auto mode, the camera interface includes controls running down the left and right sides of the screen. Five quick action buttons appear on the left: settings, flash, user-facing camera, modes, and menu. These buttons cannot be customized. The controls float over the viewfinder if you shoot in 16:9 mode. There are separate buttons for the camera and video camera so you can easily snap stills while filming video.
If you press and hold the screen the camera will automatically take a burst of shots for as long as you touch the screen. The Stylo doesn't have LG's Gesture Shot, but you can beautify yourself with the “makeup” feature. It automatically removes blemishes, etc.
I found the Stylo's camera software to be relatively quick to focus and snap photos.
The Stylo's sensor captures images up to 8 megapixels. It's a solid camera for a mid-range handset. I was impressed with most of the shots I took. Focus is excellent, white balance is accurate, and exposure often perfect. It doesn't quite compare to the G4's excellent camera, but it holds its own. I'd rely on the Stylo for most photo needs and bring out the big gear only for important events.
The Stylo does an excellent job with 1080p HD video. I was pleased with the results I got from the video camera. It delivered clear focus, good color, and good exposure. I saw very little noise in low-light results. I'd use the Stylo to record everyday events, but might be tempted to switch to dedicated gear for special occasions.
Like many Android handsets these days, the Stylo has two picture-managing apps installed: There's an LG-designed app as well as Google's brand-spankin-new Photos app.
LG's app is really nice. I like that you can view the gallery via albums, timelines, memories, favorites, or videos. You can also see images stored in your online accounts, such a Google Drive or OneDrive. Editing and sharing features are robust. It includes the basics (crop, rotate), the advanced (color, light), and the fun (filters, effects). Not only can you share with pretty much every social network on earth, you can also push photos to other nearby devices with ease.
The Google Photos app is also great. First and foremost, it's a great (free) way to backup your photo library. It also happens to include great tools for keeping your library organized and shared.
Boost stuffs plenty of junk onto its phones, but LG lets you delete it. It's worth noting that the Stylo has only about 4 GB of storage available to end users. You're going to need a memory card with this phone. Even then, it only supports cards up to 32 GB. Weak, LG. Weak.
The Stylo's Bluetooth radio paired with and connected to a range of other devices without issue. Bluetooth 4.1 plays nice with things like smartwatches, fitness bands, PCs, phones, tablets, and of course headsets of all shapes and sizes. I used it to make some calls through a headset. Calls sounded horrible via my car's hands-free system. Music was only passable via my favorite Bluetooth speaker.
Google's Chrome is a great browser and works well on the Stylo. It mostly delivered web sites in a blink across Boost's LTE network. Web pages look great on the Stylo's big display.
Double tap the screen to wake the Stylo and check the time. The clock appears near the top of the display. I wish the font were thicker and bigger to make it more visible. The clock itself cannot be customized.
The GPS radio worked fine and was very quick to pinpoint my location. Google Maps and TeleNav's Scout app are both aboard. Google Maps is as good as ever, and Scout, which is free, can be a fun alternative to search for nearby points of interest.
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