LG KC550 review: No thrills, all camera

GSMArena team, 30 July 2008.
Pages: 123456

Tags: LG, Shootout

A line of multimedia-oriented handsets has secured LG a strong foothold in the cameraphone kingdom. LG KC550 is probably the first to join the club with only imaging in mind. A mid-range handset with top-of-the-shelf photo and video capabilities is probably what describes best the compact slider.

The LG KC550 sure lacks the Viewty power and Secret's Black Label charisma. OK, it's unassuming, but not without a talent of its own. The 5 megapixel slider strives to be the most affordable cameraphone out there with a Wide VGA@30fps video recording topping.

Those qualities have set many shutterbugs a foot with excitement as they are finally promised uncompromising cameraphone capabilities at an afordable price tag that's fit for the masses. But please, don't go throwing your digital camera just yet - let's first see what LG have for us this time.

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Official photos of KC550

Key features:

  • 2.4" 262K-color display of QVGA resolution
  • Auto screen rotation in image gallery and video player (built-in accelerometer)
  • 5 megapixel autofocus camera with active lens cover and Power LED flash
  • 720x480pixel@30fps video recording (VGA@15fps is also an option)
  • USB and stereo Bluetooth (A2DP) connectivity
  • Hot-swappable microSD card slot (capacities up to 4GB)
  • Office document viewer
  • FM radio
  • TV-out port
  • Six games, which make use of the accelerometer and vibration feedback
  • Google Search and Mail come pre-installed

Main disadvantages:

  • Video recording is a great disappointment
  • Only 12MB of internal memory
  • Poor sunlight legibility
  • Really awkward file manager
  • No UMTS support
  • Only tri-band GSM support
  • Glossy front panel is a fingerprint magnet
  • No SSL support in the native email client
  • FM radio lacks RDS and cannot run in the background

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Photos of LG KC550

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More photos of the KC550

LG KC550 builds on a good track record of 5 megapixel mobile phone imaging. While the exotic KG920 is mostly noted for being the forerunner, the Secret and the Viewty do demonstrate true imaging prowess.

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5 megapixel cameraphones by LG: KF750 Secret KU990 Viewty KG920

Still in the 200-250 euro (320-400 US dollars) price range, LG KC550 will be obviously taking quite some competition heat from the Samsung G600 and Sony Ericsson K850.

The slide-and-snap Samsung G600 advantages include quad-band GSM support, a 16M color TFT display and a range of attractive color versions. The KC550 however sports an accelerometer for auto screen rotation and interactive gaming plus a slightly larger screen estate.

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Samsung G600

Sony Ericsson K850 is also a must-consider alternative, topping the LG KC550 capabilities with a strong connectivity package (quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE and tri-band HSDPA) and xenon flash for basically the same asking price. The K850 also doesn't have a screen as big as the one of the KC550 but manages to compensate with sound multimedia capabilities.

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Sony Ericsson K850

Both the Samsung G600 and Sony Ericsson K850 are a bit underpowered when it comes to video recording, while LG is promising not only top-notch photo performance but also high resolution video at 30 fps. That alone should get you interested so jump aboard as we explore the LG KC550. See you back in a flash!

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