The Pantech Breakout is Verizon's first entry-level smartphone to feature 4G LTE for blazingly fast internet speeds. Priced at $100 with a two year contract, is it a good choice for basic smartphone users?
BUILD & DESIGN
The Pantech has a relatively basic design. With a 4-inch screen and no added frills (like a keyboard), it will be very familiar to anyone who's ever used a touchscreen-only device. The only non-touchscreen controls beyond the basics are the four standard nav buttons down at the bottom of the screen. Otherwise, the design is somewhat unremarkable, though that's hardly a bad thing.
Under the battery cover you can find the bundled 8GB microSD card, as well as the LTE SIM card. For those who don't know, this isn't like the kind of SIM cards you find on AT&T or T-Mobile -- it can only be switched between Verizon 4G devices.
The standard microSD card is 8GB, much better than the 2GB many basic phones come with, and definitely more suited to a new user's need for apps and music storage.
Overall the Breakout "feels" good, relatively sturdy and dependable, not at all cheap or flimsy. Given its price, this is somethng of a surprise.
At 4-inches and boasting an average 800 x 480 (WVGA) resolution, the Breakout's screen is nothing to scoff at for an entry-level device. It looks good, providing a crisp view and plenty of room for web browsing. It's also not bad to type on when turned sideways; as a rule, the larger the better for this kind of typing, but 4 inches is enough even if you have big fingers like me.
Other Buttons & Controls
Aside from the standard power and volume controls, the Breakout also features a camera button, and another for its voice command options. These aren't the same as regular Android voice search, it's "Voice Recognition by Nuance" for voice dialing and similar options. It appears to work relatively well though despite not being Google's own goodies.
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