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printed September 17, 2014
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Review: Casio G'zOne Commando

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Is It Your Type? Body The Three S's  

Screen

The Commando's display measures 3.6 inches across the diagonal and has 480 x 800 pixels. In other words, standard Android fare. With so many pixels, everything on the screen looks very good. The brightness concerns me a bit. It was absolutely fine inside, but outdoors, reading the display was problematic. Given that this is an outdoor phone, I was expecting outdoor performance from the display. If you're in a shaded forest along the Appalachian Trial, you'll be alright, but if you're trekking across bright, Arizona terrain, you're out of luck. Poor form, Casio.

Signal

The Commando is a 3G phone, and not a very good one. Most of the time I tested it, it registered just one or two bars of signal strength. With its sheer bulk, you'd assume it to possess a monstrous antenna capable of harvesting even the weakest connection. No such luck. The Commando failed the NJ vault test (my local grocery store), where it dropped Verizon's network entirely, leaving me stranded and unable to make calls or send texts. The Commando also lost the network a bunch of times when walking around New York City. All that said, the Commando didn't drop any calls once connected, but data sessions are best described as performing in fits and starts.

Sound

Phone calls are not the Commando's forte. Calls I was able to connect were often garbled, forcing me to ask my friends to repeat themselves so I could understand them. Earpiece volume bordered on painful, as did the volume of ringers and alert tones. You're not going to miss calls because you couldn't hear the Commando. The speakerphone showed the same garble that the earpiece did, but at sonic boom volumes. The vibrate alert is strong enough to make the Commando dance across any smooth surface.

Battery

The Commando has a 1430mAh battery inside. For an Android device, it has average battery life. It can make it through a single day, but it'll be about ready to die at breakfast time if you forget to charge during the night. I was worried that some of the G'zGear apps (adventure-based stuff) might suck down battery life in mere hours, but I didn't notice additional battery drain when using them.

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