The LG Viper ($100 with a inexperienced two-year contract from run; worth in the same way as of 4/12/12) is Sprint’s very earliest LTE phone. But the Android-running Viper is a slight basic to the game: Run hasn’t rolled available its 4G LTE meet people yet. Despite being having difficulties with 3G speeds, though, the reasonable LG Viper packs round about high-quality specs in place of the worth. The dual-core computer handled everything I threw by the side of it with luxury, the 5-megapixel camera took superior pictures, and the addition of Google Wallet is not too shabby.
Design and flaunt
[Click to enlarge] The Viper has a “platinum” rating by UL natural world in place of its sustainable build and packaging. According to run, the phone’s body is 50 percent recycled plastic. Earth-friendly phones aren’t in the main the nearly everyone stylish-looking models, but the Viper is an exception. The piano-black expression is nicely complemented by a chrome border around the phone’s edges. The silver plastic aid has a “brushed” end, giving it a sophisticated look. It feels a slight chunkier than the other smartphones we’ve recently reviewed, measuring 4.59-by-2.44-by-0.46 inches thick, but it weighs a handy 5 ounces.
[Click to enlarge] The 4-inch WVGA display’s solution is somewhat hand down than top-tier smartphones by the side of 480-by-800 pixels (the highest-end machine phones stretch with 1280-by-720-pixel screens). If you table on using the Viper just to browse the netting, check e-mail, and perform round about casual gaming, the flaunt ought to be located sufficient.
Like many smartphone displays, the Viper is a slight oversaturated. This was perceptible in the sphere of our color stick tests, someplace the color gradients bled into every other. It tended to tint available skin tones a slight trace, too, but it didn’t add a reddish color, in the same way as we’ve seen round about AMOLED displays perform.
The Viper runs machine 2.3 (Gingerbread) with an spread over the surface from LG and run with the aim of runs atop it. The spread over the surface is somewhat nonthreatening person and looks related to the vanilla machine Gingerbread interface, but you’re having difficulties with a keen SprintID (Sprint’s app package service) navigation button on the flaunt. Run deep-rooted with the aim of the Viper willpower eventually be located upgraded to Ice Cream Sandwich, but the company did not say as soon as we may well expect with the aim of revise.
Other than the enduring SprintID button, you can remove pretty much all of the carrier-added software (or, in the sphere of round about personal belongings, bloatware). I wasn’t able to remove SprintZone, but I may well remove run NASCAR, NBA cellular phone, TeleNav, and other added apps.
Single informative integrated claim is Google Wallet, which uses the built-in NFC fragment in the sphere of the Viper to allow you be payments with your phone. In place of a complete overview of Google Wallet, check available our hands-on re-evaluation.
[Click to enlarge] I snapped a only some photos indoors and available with the Viper’s 5-megapixel camera. My al fresco photos looked pretty superior, with vindicate details and superior color reproduction. My interior photos had a trace of a dark cast to them (see the sample photo) and looked a slight granular in the sphere of clear areas.
The Viper additionally has a front-facing camera and can dash capture on tape in the sphere of up to 1080p. In the same way as you can hear in the sphere of the sample capture on tape less than, the Viper's microphone was very responsive to wind. Ensign overall looked a trace dark, but the Viper may well come to grips with fast-moving objects with no at all artifacting or else pixelation.
In the same way as mentioned, the run LTE meet people has not been rolled available yet in the sphere of the United States. Run recently announced with the aim of it would roll available LTE in the sphere of a handful of cities in the sphere of mid-2012, but San Francisco, sadly, isn’t single of them in place of the moment being.
As soon as you switch on the Viper, you’ll arrange to instantaneously depart into the settings and good turn inedible the LTE. If you don’t, the phone willpower constantly try and search in place of a non-existent meet people and drain your battery. Until LTE comes to your city, you’re having difficulties with 3G. Single good mechanism to look familiar to is with the aim of run willpower offer unconstrained data on its LTE meet people, so you’ll be located able to manipulate your data to your heart’s content--without getting throttled.
I ran the FCC-approved Ookla Speedtest.Web app to gauge 3G data speeds in the sphere of San Francisco. I got an common of 0.92 megabits apiece back up (mbps) in place of uploads and an common of 1.83 mbps in place of downloads in the sphere of various parts of San Francisco. These are pretty superior speeds in place of 3G, but nowhere touch on round about of the LTE 4G speeds we’ve seen on AT&T's and Verizon’s networks. In place of exemplar, the Nokia Lumia 900 achieved an common download velocity of 13.27 megabits apiece back up and an common upload velocity of 7 mbps in the sphere of San Francisco.
The Viper might be located a “budget-friendly” phone, but it’s rebuff slump. Powered by a dual-core 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S3 computer, the Viper felt snappy all through the user interface. I loaded a duo of graphics-heavy games on the Viper plus Osmos, approach, and the humankind of cream. All three games ran smoothly, with no at all deliver. I additionally ran two unusual benchmarks on the Viper: Qualcomm’s Vellamo yardstick and the third-party Quadrant benchmarking app. According to Quadrant, the Viper got a count of 3009, considerably elevated than the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, which got a count of 2000. On Vellamo, the Viper scored 1221, which additionally position it at the forefront of the Galaxy Nexus.
Call quality in excess of Sprint’s meet people was satisfactory. The Viper was awfully responsive to outer clatter, such in the same way as wind or else fly-by-night cars. On a particularly breezy date in the sphere of San Francisco, I couldn’t sway a conversation with no my contacts on the other conclusion asking me to reiterate myself—the wind had completely overcome my voice. Indoors, the Viper did a assortment better. My friends’ voices sounded vindicate and natural, while they reported with the aim of they may well hear me wholly.
We arrange not yet complete our prim and proper battery tests, but we willpower revise this re-evaluation time was the results are in the sphere of. In the sphere of my hands on manipulate, however, battery life wasn’t very superior on the Viper. It seemed leisurely to charge, and I had to plug it in the sphere of twice in a ample date of somewhat minder manipulate.
The LG Viper is a solid introduction to Sprint’s incoming personal of LTE phones—even though near isn’t a run LTE meet people yet. The Viper might not be located a top-of-the-line smartphone, but its dual-core computer keeps it running smoothly, and the camera snaps solid photos. But the Viper seems in the same way as if it is jumping the gun a trace. Being having difficulties on a 3G meet people with an LTE-capable phone is a slight poignant; and while run did say the Viper willpower understand the Ice Cream Sandwich upgrade, there’s rebuff effective as soon as with the aim of willpower be located. If you don’t mind waiting in place of run to switch on its LTE meet people (especially if you live in the sphere of single of the earliest only some cities on Sprint’s roll-out list), the Viper is a superior preference. If you’re looking in place of higher-end LTE phones on run, you might absence to remain a trace and depart in place of the incoming HTC Evo 4G LTE or else the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.