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printed September 2, 2014
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Review: LG Revolution

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Is It Your Type? Body The Three S's  

Screen

The Revolution packs a now-commonplace 4.3-inch LCD with 480 by 800 pixels. The pixel density is good, though at times it is easy to see individual pixels. It doesn't hold up very well against other similar size/resolution displays in terms of brightness. The Samsung Droid Charge, for example, trounces the Revolution with its Super AMOLED Plus display. The Revolution also didn't look as good in side-by-side tests against the Motorola Droid X2. It's lacking brightness and clarity. It was difficult to use outdoors in sunlight.

Signal

The Revolution is a kick-butt 3G phone. It did an excellent job of remaining connected to Verizon's EVDO 3G network. During most of my tests, the Revolution showed near full signal strength and the device easily passed the NJ vault test (my local super market). It didn't drop any voice calls during my tests, and network speeds for data sessions were consistently zippy.

On the 4G side of things, it was a bit less impressive. The Revolution was able to find Verizon's 4G LTE network around Teterboro airport in NJ, but it never collected more than two bars at a time. Data performance over the 4G network at Teterboro airport (where I was probably the only person using a Verizon LTE device) was outrageously fast -- when it worked. Connected to 4G, speed tests were hitting 11.45Mbps peak downloads. But if it waffled and dropped down to 3G, there was no going back to 4G without rebooting the phone. This appears to be a consistent issue across Verizon's LTE devices, and is something we hope Verizon fixes soon.

Sound

The Revolution is a fine voice phone. Most calls I made with it were clear and free of noise, hissing, or other problems. I noticed that voices were ever-so-slightly muffled from time to time, but that's the worst I can say about call quality. Earpiece volume is plenty sufficient at medium levels and bordering on painful when set all the way up. You'll be able to hear and understand most calls just fine. The speakerphone also worked well, with plenty of volume and good quality. Ringtones and alerts are generally loud enough when set all the way up. The vibrate alert was of average strength. You may feel it; you may not. It depends on how you're holding it or where it is stowed.

Battery

Battery life was not awesome, even when just in 3G areas. I had real problems getting the Revolution to last a full day. Across three consecutive days, I pulled the Revolution from the charger at 7AM only to have it die at 8, 10, and 11PM on those days. I tested it heavily, but not as heavily as I would use a device on a business trip or even simply away from home for a day. I'd keep a spare charger handy were I you.

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