Casio G'zOne Boulder
updated and fantastic
This phone is now coming direct from VZW with the software update. In my opinion, the speaker and crashes have been fixed. The speaker doesn't sound as good as others because there is a waterproof membrane over it. Bluetooth headsets however sound just like any other. Sound quality here is very adequate but not the best I've ever heard.
I wouldn't buy this phone if you're into music, video games, and surfing the mobile web. There are plenty of other phones out there that cost less and do the job better. I would buy this phone if you're hard on your equipment and beat phones up until they die.
I've had this phone for three months now. I've never dropped a call or had poor reception and been unable to make a call. It's been wet on a rafting trip, dropped in the sand at the beach, and used in the rain a lot while at work. It sits in my pocket at work and gets hit with sawdust, dirt, concrete, grime, water etc and it bounces off. It works and functions perfectly.
Comes with 2 batteries
Comes with a doc style charger
Rugged beyond belief
Flashlight is cool
Compass works well
Shortcut keys keep you out of huge menus
Speaker and ringer can be VERY loud when needed
Battery life could be longer
Exterior screen should be color
-Durability ive dropped my boulder 35 feet and it didnt even drop the call i was on.
-I can hear to talk on the phone in a sheet metal facory with presses runnning non stop.
-Flashlight is handy when im inside of a press working on it.
-The displays are glass/lexan I havent determined which one very resistant to scratches.
-Mobile Web is very responsive.
-Mobile email and vzw navigator work very well.
-I like the rubberized grip on my black model reminds me of the old Nextell phones.
-Good call quality
-Tinny speaker (which was fixed by software update #1)
-Small keypad makes it uncomfortable but livable to text.
-Locked UI, Poor UI buggy sometimes.
-Cant download movies or pictures from Mobile Email program. (WTB way to get around that)
-The amp on the speakers are too powerfull for the speakers on the phone itself causing the cracking at high volumes.
-Poor Battery Life (buy extended battery 1640 milivots)
Ive had the G'Zone Boulder since release the phones hardware is extreamly sturdy, and its very durable we all know that but lets get to the bread and butter of this phone. As with 94% of Verizons Phones the operating system is proprietorial and junk thats nothing new.
I'm Acually on my second Boulder the first was a operating system defect which is prevelant in most VZW phones, my wife is a Asurion Tech she sees that problem alot but its no biggie really . The second phone I've received is 150% better than the original hell even the battery life has been improved not by much mind you but its a little better, I suggest you do as I did and buy the extended battery.
Folks that talk down about this phone need to realize that it is a phone not a Palm or a Blackberry its a military spec phone, that does exactly what it says it does there may have been some early realese bugs, but hell there are bugs on every single peice of first gen equipment especially when they receive a complete revamp as this model of the G'Zone series did.
Two Thumbs way UP
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New model for 2009
Just ordered one on 12/10/08. I will post pics when I receive it. If you want to order one now it is 49.99 with two year upgrade. The phone has a obvious speaker on the front of the phone. That is what I needed to tell the sales rep online so he could tell the newer phone from the older model.
Better with UPDATE
Well, I have had three of these now and was really not impressed until this week. I understand the Boulder's intended use and appreciate it's functions and ruggedness - that said, it just didn't measure up to even my Moto W385, which was free.
Fast forward to a few days ago.....after checking in on Howard Forums, I learned of a new software flash (v09) and now its a different phone. Note; I was able to use the built-in software updater to get as high as "v07" and it shows that this is the current software for the phone, but "v09" exists and makes the phone better - you just must go to the VZW store and have it flashed into the phone, as it is apparently too large for OTA updates.
So far, the audio is both clearer and louder, the batter life better (I'd guess maybe 50-70% better IMHO), and the software bugs (such as Backup Assistant) are gone. This is the proper software that the Boulder should have had been using at the launch. Remember, with the water resistant membranes over the openings, the speaker will never be as clear as a regular phone.
(sidebar: what the heck is VZW doing, they take longest to "test" and release phones, but most have issues anyway?!?!?!?)
Anyway, try the phone with this new software and I believe you'll like it - I do!
Good for my line of work.
Having recently purchased the G'zOne Boulder in orange, I set the call forwarding, and bid adieu to my crackberry for a few days. After all, I am trying to give it a good workout, right?
Here is my bias: I work as a firefighter and I need a phone that takes a beating and more than the occasional shower.
-Abuse of the Boulder: I took a shower while using the Boulder. Lathered. Rinsed. Repeated. Dropped in a cup of coffee. Fought two fires. Worked outside in the rain calling in triage reports to hospitals. Dropped it from 3rd story balcony.
-Excellent signal quality
-Audio quality was okay
-Good battery life (when PTT is off)
-Strong vibration alert
-Easy, familiar, UI
-PTT is adequate
-Ringer loud enough even in holster
-Orange (makes it go faster)
-LED flashlight is more useful than I though
-Audio quality is tinny when volume is up high
-PTT kills the battery
-PTT alerts not adjustable (Tx/Rx) and are too quiet
-Co-workers like to drop it in drinks
-Speakerphone requires use of mute to prevent intermittent audio.
Ultimately, I would suggest that if you are having a problem with your audio quality, turn the volume down, and make sure the earpiece is positioned correctly. That does take some practice. If you use PTT, get the extended battery.
The phone has a watertight membrane over the components, which explains the tinny sound quality you get from the earpiece, and speakerphone. The speakerphone does not work well in duplex operation if the volume is up high-- eh, can't win 'em all.
If you are looking for a multimedia phone, this isn't it. If you want a rugged phone that gets the job done in the driving rain, or even the shower, this is it. It's not perfect, but rest assured, every duty shift this is one piece of equipment that will be on my belt.
Mil-Spec Weapon of choice
I've owned a lot of phones in my time. I've tried every brand available at one point or another and every major carrier. I can say without a doubt that the Boulder does exactly what the manufacturer and VZW says it can. First off, too many users expect a phone to do waaaay too much. They aren't tv's, Ipods, or PC's. They're phones. The Boulder is exactly what it is claimed to be. A tough as nails, military grade piece of hardware.
Pros: great connectivity
better signal than most
water, shock, dirt resistant
did I say SHOCK RESISTANT?
ergonomical as you can get
easy to navigate
accurate electronic compass
EXCELLENT BLUETOOTH CONNECTIVITY
cruises VZW web 2.0 very well
excellent call quality
sound quality for a mil spec phone is
excellent, no tinny sound or static
Cons: none as of yet, and I put em through
This phone works very well doing what it is designed to do. It doesn't drop calls, it maintains strong signal, and it works after hitting the pavement. From a twelve foot ladder. Standing on the top rung. I hosed it with a kitchen sink gun and no problems. Maybe I'll bury in a sand box next. It also has virtually perfect reception on a bluetooth device when across the room or with the phone in your pocket. I live in the Atlanta area, which is very hilly with heavy foliage (which adversely affects signal), and it keeps on truckin. the battery is average, but thats what car chargers are for. If you want a tough, reliable, no frills, easy to use phone, this is the one for you. Way to go VZW, another fine pick.
Bad sound, bad battery = terrible phone
I was really excited to get this phone when I heard it was going to be released. The G'zOne V had great reviews, but to me it was just too bulky. This seemed to finally combine the rugged, water-resistant features of the V with a good-looking, smaller design.
Unfortunately, it sounds terrible. Someone likened it to a kazoo; other descriptions include talking via a fast-food drivethru window or underwater. It's like the earpiece has been coated in thick wax.
Battery life is also a major disappointment. With average, even minimal use, it won't hold a complete charge for two days. Not exactly a flaw a model marketed for "outdoorsy" people should have. So you want to take it camping, on an overnight boat trip, etc.? Bring a generator or use the gimmicky yet handy compass to find your way back to an electrical outlet.
Perhaps it should be gas-powered. Instead of miles per gallon, we could be discussing minutes per gallon.
In short, this phone was not ready for release and will need major hardware upgrades to perform as promised.
* Handsome design
* Rugged build
* Flashlight feature
* Compass feature
* Decent signal strength
* Terrible sound quality
* Abysmal battery
* T9 text input a step down from LG VX8300's predictive Word input
* Keys lack profile and are easy to push inadvertently, especially the speaker key
I contacted Verizon about the audio quality of my Gzone Boulder. The next day my phone did an automatic software upgrade. I would not have known but I was trying to use the phone and saw what was happening. I received an email the next day from Verizon saying this was the first they heard of the problem. Wow this was a coincidence that the software update happened the next day. The audio quality has improved tremendously but still is not as loud on the speaker phone as I wished. The battery still sucks. My friend has the extended battery and it lasts about 20 hours with about 2 hours of talk with standby.
just like everyone says, this phone was not ready to be released. battery is terrible, cant understand what people are saying, to hard to text with. had a Motorola phone 815 and cant find a phone that comes close to it. it's to bad, this could be a good phone. i personally don't think the receptions that good, but i was told by verizon that the 815 had more power and you can't get phones like that anymore? make sure you have 30 days to try, might return. get the bigger battery.
Great idea, exceptionally poor execution
I was soooo excited when I saw the spec. sheet. I currently use the G'zOne Type-V and thought this phone would be smaller and more useable with Bluetooth and mini-SD.
I was even more impressed when I saw it in person.
However, soon upon its arrival the G'zOne Boulder began to disappoint. The sound quality is horrific. The phone is mil-spec rated for water resistance but it sounds as if it's already underwater. I kept thinking my connection was terrible but then I realized everyone I spoke to couldn't hear me well and I couldn't hear them.
All the features in the world are worthless if it can't function as feature #1:
1.) Be a phone.