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Casio G'zOne Commando 4G LTE (Verizon) review

Penulis : Pada Hari : Saturday, August 24, 2013 | Jam : 5:17 PM

Casio G'zOne Commando 4G LTE Spec :
  • Display: 4-inch TFT LCD at 480x800 resolution with Gorilla Glass 2
  • Processor: 1.5 GHz dual-core
  • OS: Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
  • Cameras: 8MP rear, 1.3MP front-facing
  • Storage: 16GB internal (you'll actually have less available)
  • RAM: 1GB
  • Dimensions: 5.1 by 2.7 by 0.5 inches
  • Weight: 6.17 ounces
  • Battery: 1,800 mAh
  • Other: NFC, external (wireless) charging, FM radio
Casio G'zOne Commando 4G LTE (Verizon) review:
The good: The waterproof Casio G'zOne Commando 4G LTE has fast 4G speeds, good call quality, dual front-facing speakers, and useful preloaded apps for the outdoors.
The bad: Its bulky build, poor photo quality, and outdated Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich OS drag down performance.
The bottom line: The Casio G'zOne Commando 4G LTE is an excellent and affordable rugged handset, but skip it if taking great pictures is a priority.
The Casio G'zOne Commando 4G LTE isn't the sexiest phone to bring to a beach party, nor does it have the sexiest name (it's pronounced "jeez-one" in case you're wondering, as in jeez-one-person-should-be-fired-for-that-name). But if you're looking for smartphone that can survive almost anything, this is it.
That's because the rugged Commando was designed for someone who has an active, outdoorsy, and all-around swashbuckling lifestyle. It's water- and dustproof, can survive extreme temperatures, and is shock resistant.
True, the Commando isn't perfect. It doesn't take great photos, and it isn't as powerful as other high-end devices available on Verizon. But for $99.99 on-contract, Casio's Commando is a reasonably priced Android handset that's built to last.
Design
Let's not beat around the bush: the Commando 4G LTE is hefty and doesn't look very chic. Understandably, 6.08 ounces of its weightiness is thanks to the device's rugged exterior. Sporting distinct edges and a triangular chin, the handset flaunts an industrial, mechanical aesthetic, and its body is reinforced with tough rubber along its sides and back.
The smartphone measures 5.1 inches tall, 2.7 inches wide, and 0.5 inch thick. While stuffing it into my front jean pocket proved snug, I imagine it wouldn't have a problem fitting inside rear pockets of larger pants, and small shoulder bags. In addition, despite its bulky build, the Commando 4G LTE isn't particularly wide, meaning it's still easily maneuverable with one hand.


Aside from a volume rocker, the left edge houses a programmable shortcut (or "tactile" as Casio likes to put it) key that you can customize to launch applications like your contacts, Gmail, or music. Up top are a 3.5mm headphone jack that can be covered by a small plastic door, and a sleep/power button. On the right are a Micro-USB port that also can be plugged, and a charging terminal. Finally, the bottom edge features a small hole that you can loop a lanyard or strap through.
Fastened by four screws in each corner, the device's back sports a dimpled texture. The 8-megapixel camera is at the top left with its flash right next to it. A vertical toggle lock secures the battery door. To remove the plate, switch the lock upward. Then, using an indentation to the right, pry off the plate with your finger. The 1,800mAh battery inside is also locked down. If you want to access either the 4G LTE microSIM card or microSD card slots underneath it, slide the orange lock at the bottom of the battery to the right.
The 4-inch WVGA display has a 480x800-pixel resolution and is topped with Corning Gorilla Glass 2. Not only is it responsive to the touch, but it's also easy to view outdoors in sunlight, and has a respectably wide viewing angle. It accurately and brightly displayed an all-white color swatch, text and menu icons appeared clear, and HQ videos on YouTube also looked sharp.
Above the display are a 1.3-megapixel camera and the in-ear speaker embellish with a small chrome-colored piece of plastic. Below the screen are four hot keys (back, home, recent apps, and menu) that light up when in use. Finally, all the way at the bottom are dual front-facing speakers. Though at times music came off a bit harsh at max volume, these speakers boosted audio quality and depth.


Software features
It's been a little over a year since Android Jelly Bean came onto the scene, so it's disappointing to see that this handset runs on the older Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich instead. You'll still get the usual batch of Google apps, though, which include Gmail, Plus, Hangouts, Maps, portals to the Play Books, Magazines, Movies and TV, Music, and Store, Search, and YouTube.
Basic task-managing apps include a calculator, a calendar, a clock with alarm functions, native e-mail and browser clients, a news and weather app, and a sound recorder. Verizon preloaded My Verizon Mobile (which lets you check your data use and minutes), Verizon Tones music and media store, mobile hot-spotting, its own brand of voice mail and navigating, Video Calling, and the media hub Viewdini.
Other apps include several Amazon apps (the store itself, Kindle, MP3, its app store, and Audible), an American Express app, a DNLA app for streaming media between devices, an FM radio, a help app for recording video alongside a movie editor, a music player, NFL mobile, the mobile office suite Quickoffice, Slacker Radio, Nuance voice command, a VPN client app, IMDb, and the shoe retailer Zappos.
Casio G'zOne Commando 4G LTE (screenshots)
Casio also packaged a handful of outdoorsy and active-lifestyle apps that come integrated in the phone's UI. Though I loathe bloatware, I personally find these apps useful and on-point with the kind of customers who would buy this phone.
One such add-on is G'zGear, which includes a compass (this compass is also featured in both the home and lock screens), a thermometer, a high/low tide weather app, and an app that tells you when the sun and moon will rise and set. There's also a star-gazing app, a pedometer and virtual trek tracker, and a barometer to measure atmospheric pressure. Some of these functions are also featured as home screen widgets for easy access, alongside a flashlight and battery-saver widget. You'll also get G'zWorld, an app that lets you record, share, and geotag all your outdoor activities, and Glove Mode.
As you can gather, users should activate Glove Mode when they're using the Commando 4G LTE while wearing gloves. When turned on, the device's UI simplifies into four simple categories: message and e-mail, notifications, camera, and phone. Once selected, the functionality of each of these four categories are simplified even further, allowing you to still use the most important features of the handset, but with the fewest taps and finger strokes as possible.
Camera and video
Both the 8-megapixel camera and 1.3-megapixel camera have digital zoom, an exposure meter, geotagging, a timer, six white balances, four color effects, two qualities, image stabilization, touch shutter, and grid lines. However, the 8-megapixel camera has six shooting modes (including HDR, continuous shooting, and panorama), 14 scene options (which has one mode just for cooking!), three focuses, seven sizes (from 640x480 to 3,264x2,448 pixels), and a flash. The front-facing latter camera has only three camera modes, three sizes (from 640x480 to 1,280x1,024 pixels), and a mirror image option.
For video recording, both cameras have audio muting and the same zoom, exposure meter, geotagging option, timer, white balances, color effects, two qualities, and grid lines functionality. The 8-megapixel camera specifically has four video modes (some of which are standard, slow motion, and live effects, which includes a silly faces module and the ability to change your video's background with a fake sunset sunset, for example), eight scene options, three focuses, a flash, and five video sizes (from message attachment to 1080p full HD). The front-facing camera can only record in standard mode, but the live effects (with the same six silly faces and background options) are still retained, and video sizes top out at 1,280x1,024-pixel resolution.
Photo quality was disappointing, and I expected sharper images from an 8-megapixel shooter (especially since I've seen clearer images from 5-megapixel cameras, like the LG Lucid 2). Colors looked washed out or inaccurate -- especially blues, which looked oversaturated and almost greenish. Edges looked blurry and I saw a lot of digital noise, even with pictures taken outdoors in ample sunlight.
Casio G'zOne Commando 4G LTE (indoor)

Casio G'zOne Commando 4G LTE (Verizon) User Review :

Pros Waterproof, drop proof, tough, cool features for the outdoors (G'z Gear), good speakers, rugged look (if you're into that kind of thing), good size screen.
Cons Bloatware, battery life is weak, not enough RAM, really stupid name (Jizz On?)
Summary
 I have had this phone for about a month now, and I like it a lot. For someone who spends a lot of time outdoors, this phone has been perfect. I can take it anywhere without fear that I might have to cross a river, get splashed by a wave, or when it falls out of my pocket onto some rocks the screen will break. The front speakers are pretty loud and clear, so this is the perfect shower phone. Crack open a beer, put on some jams, and soap off your grime. No worries about it getting wet.
I have dropped it half a dozen times, and no damage at all.
I live on the California coast and do a lot of hiking and biking, so the G'z Gear has been pretty useful. The sunrise/sunset app is great for planning walks, the pedometer and G'z World works like a GPS to save your favorite trails, the tides chart is great for planning tide pool excursions, and compasses are always useful. The barometer is cool to toy around with, and if you go camping and want to make your own weather forecasts, but because the battery life isn't great, this seems like it wouldn't be perfect. Having your own thermometer is great as well.
I haven't used the star gazer at night yet, but it looks accurate.
Flashlight is bright.
Camera seems like every other phone camera I have seen-mediocre but sufficient for quick pics. Video is the same. I have a real camera for doing any wildlife/scenic photography.
I have never used the newer version of Android OS, so Ice Cream Sandwhich seems fine to me. I can easily access my email, listen to music and watch movies on Google Play or the built in Music app, Google Maps are the best as always, etc.
The home page is easily customized, you can put all your apps on any page, open up to whichever page you need.
I haven't needed glove mode yet, it's still quite warm, but it worked when i did a trial, so that would be great for using your phone on the ski lift or something like that.
There are a few issues keeping this from being a 5 star product. They loaded up with Bloatware that suck up RAM and battery. 3 different amazon apps, zapos, slacker radio, amex, Google magazine, etc, etc. They are easily uninstalled/disabled, but it was annoying none the less. There is also only 700mb of RAM, which seems a bit underpowered to me. When no apps are running, Android takes up more than half of that, so multitasking is hard. You just have to make sure to quit/stop apps when you aren't using them. I've never used a S3 or anything, but I imagine they are a bit more powerful.
The battery also isn't great. This is probably the biggest issue for me. For a phone that is meant for outdoor people, having a phone that dies after 10-12 hours is stupid. It is already a beefy phone, they should have just made it a little bigger and put in a real battery to give the phone 24-48 hours of life.
Overall, I really like this phone. It is perfect for someone who spends a lot of time outdoors, and doesn't want to worry about their phone getting wet, dropped, or damaged. 

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