Review: LG Lotus Elite
The Lotus Elite's music player — made by Groove Mobile — is no great shakes. It is on par with what you expect from any mid-range feature phone that is not focused on providing a killer music experience. In fact, it doesn't appear to be updated or changed in any way compared to what appeared on the original Lotus.
You can launch the player with the phone closed by unlocking the phone. There is a software menu accessible from the external display that can be used to start playing the current playlist. There are two stereo speakers on the outside of the phone that can get quite loud during music playback (why the ringers can't reach the same volume levels, I have no idea). The sound is clear and clean, with no distortion even at full volume. You can play/pause and skip forward and back tracks from the external screen.
With the phone open, you have a few more choices. Using the Sprint Music Store to discover and download music is reasonably easy. Browsing takes longer than performing searches for what you may want to buy. Purchasing and downloading takes about one minute per song. It's the same Groove experience available to most Sprint phones.
AD article continues below...
The music player itself displays album art and a progress bar. The D-pad lets you play/pause or rewind/fast-forward. The options menu really only lets you navigate around your playlists or the music store. There are no equalizer presets at all. Pressing the D-pad up or down lets you cycle through the songs in your playlist quickly.
Music can be side-loaded through the phone's USB port, or placed directly onto a microSD card.
In the end, the music player is hamstrung by the Lotus Elite's lack of a 3.5mm headset jack for regular stereo headphones, but it gets the job done in a pinch.
Review: Jabra Sport Elite Bluetooth Headphones
Jabra's take on cord-free Bluetooth headphones are the Elite Sport. These earbuds handle music, phone calls, and fitness thanks to an included heart rate monitor and phone-based coaching software.
Hands-On with Macate's GATCA Elite Smartphone
Macate's GATCA Elite smartphone is essentially a delivery vehicle for the company's suite of secure communication services. The handset is a decent piece of hardware, but is truly only for executives and VIPs who need extreme privacy.
Hands On with HP's Elite x3
HP is jumping back into phones at a completely unexpected time. HP made quite a few iPAQ Windows smartphones back in the day (2004-2009, to be precise.) Then they bought Palm and infamously drove that into the ground.
Review: Motorola Moto E
Motorola takes a shot across the bow of other entry-level device makers with the Moto E, its low-cost leviathan. The Moto E redefines what inexpensive Android smartphones can offer.
Review: Kyocera DuraXE for AT&T
Kyocera's latest rugged clamshell for AT&T boasts LTE and mobile hotspot powers, in addition to its in-your-face attitude and truck-like build. This compact phone may include only the most elemental functions, but it has a few tricks up its sleeve.