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Review: Pantech Flex for AT&T

Is It Your Type? Performance Basics Extras Wrap-Up Comments  7  

Oct 1, 2012, 6:32 PM   by Eric M. Zeman   @phonescooper

The Pantech Flex is one of the slimmest, most attractive smartphones ever offered by Pantech. Appearances, however, can be deceiving. Phone Scoop's full report gives you the skinny on this thin cell phone.

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Is It Your Type?

The Pantech Flex is a slender Android smartphone that offers a lot of bang for the $50 retail price. It's one of the more attractive offerings to hit the market from Pantech of late, and doesn't skimp on features, either. Features are one thing, but performance is entirely different story.


The Pantech Flex caught me by surprise. When I pulled it out of its box, I expected to find another chunky, ho-hum phone. It's rare, you understand, that the hardware of a $50 smartphone impresses me, but the Flex definitely left an impression.

The design is good. Sure, the front surface may be a bit plain looking with its black-on-black appearance, but the edges and back surface change things up. There's a gray, metallic band that encircles the outer edge of the Flex. What I really like is the back surface. It's a two-tone job with an odd mix of geometrical shapes embedded in the plastic. It has a science fiction-y look to it that I find appealing.


At 7.9mm, the Flex is extraordinarily thin. Few devices measure thinner than 9mm, let alone 8mm. The slender profile of the Flex goes a long way to improving the experience of the device. It's comfortable to hold and use. I particularly like the grippy texture that's found on portions of the battery cover. It helps the Flex stay in your hand and yet it will still easily slip into a pocket.

In terms of the build quality, it is about the best I've seen from Pantech. The Flex feels as solid as a rock. The body is rigid and strong, and has no flex in the body (pun intended). The seams are all tight, and there's nothing about the Flex that feels cheap or poorly made.

The front is mostly display. There are no buttons at all, thanks to the Android 4.0 system software. All you get is screen and the earpiece slit. The bezel isn't too, too big.

The volume toggle is on the left edge. Its crosshatch-patterned plastic makes it stand out and easy to find. It offers good travel and feedback. The same goes for the lock button on the right edge of the Flex. It's smaller than the volume toggle, but has the same texture and is located dead center on the side. The microUSB port is also on the right edge, and the headphone jack is on the top. There's no camera button.

The battery cover is somewhat difficult to peel off. It's clipped on tightly. Once removed, you'll find that you need to pull the battery to access the microSIM card and the microSD card. That's unfortunate, but not all that unexpected. But hey, at least you can remove the battery, right?


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Oct 2, 2012, 3:59 PM

Really? Tell me which one of the 10 devices is better.

You lost your credibility with this review when you wrote:

"There are at least 10 devices in the $50 price range at AT&T that offer better performance than -- if not the svelte good looks of -- the Flex."

Really?...tell me which phone in this price range is running ICS with a dual core 1.5 ghz S4 chip and 1GB ram with an 8 mp back cam and 2 mp front cam? Did you bother to run any real performance tests? Nope, you didn't...hint, other sites that did, ranked its performance as comparable to the Samsung Galaxy III and the HTC One (which not surprisingly run the same chipset). So which ones have performance "better than" that are close to $50 on contract? Lets not talk refurbished prices here. Actually, we should be looking at off contrac...
Kudos to you for ACTUALLY doing some comparison shopping!

But the problem with sales floor is that most phones seem attractive in the store particularly when you are comparing price points a few hours in the store or even the 14 day trial is not en...

Oct 2, 2012, 11:49 AM

Eric Summed It Up Perfectly

Eric Said

"Even for $50, it's hard to recommend the Pantech Flex. There are at least 10 devices in the $50 price range at AT&T that offer better performance than -- if not the svelte good looks of -- the Flex"

Did there really need to anything else said? You could Copy and Paste this review for the next Kyrocera smartphone as well.
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