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printed April 17, 2014
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Review: Casio G'zOne Ravine

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There's nothing unusual about making calls with the Casio G'zOne Ravine. You can start dialing on the keypad, or press the Send key to jump to the call log. Find the number you want in the log, and just press Send to start a call. The Contacts list is also a shortcut on the standby screen by default. Just press the right soft key under the screen to jump to the address book.

Once you're in a call, you can activate the speaker by hitting the speakerphone button. I like that closing the phone does not hang up on a call. With such a loud speaker situated on the lower lip of the clamshell, it's convenient to talk with the phone closed, walkie-talkie style, even when you're not making a PTT call.

There are plenty of options available if you dig through the menus during a call. You can send the call to Bluetooth, take notes on a notepad, or start recording the call. The Ravine can place three-way conference calls, too, but the phone doesn't offer any options or visual cues to help with the process. But it's the standard Verizon procedure: dial the second number, press Send, and when the party answers, press Send again to join the conference. Once you've connected a third party, there is no indication on screen of the conference, and no way to manage or split the two calls again.

The contact list is just a bit smarter than the standard feature phone affair. You get room for four phone numbers, two email addresses, two postal addresses and some other categorizing fields. All of those fields are tied to other functions on the phone. So, you can hit Send on a phone number to start a call, or you can start a new email from the contact card. You can even start navigating to one of the postal addresses, using VZ Navigator for turn-by-turn directions. That last is a rarity on feature phones, though it's a common feature on more advanced smartphones.

There are no sync options available for the contact list. You can't synchronize with popular online services. I'm not sure why carriers neglect feature phones for contact sync options. It would seem that sync is more important on phones without a QWERTY keyboard.

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