LG Xenon mobile phone
This Telstra-exclusive 3G phone offers a full QWERTY keyboard and targets younger users
- QWERTY keyboard, shortcut keys, responsive and well-designed interface, shortcuts and widget home screens
- Design is a little underwhelming, slider wiggles when opened, excessive and unalterable Telstra customisation, no 3.5mm headphone jack, no social-networking apps, poor value Telstra plans
LG's Xenon isn't a bad little phone, but its design is a little underwhelming and we would have liked native applications for social-networking sites. On the current Telstra plan it's hard to see any value in this device, especially considering the target market.
Price$ 589.00 (AUD)
LG's Xenon is targeted at teenagers who aren't willing to pay through the roof for a fully fledged smartphone yet still want mobile Internet access. It sports a slide-out QWERTY keyboard and a range of shortcut keys for messaging applications. The phone is exclusive to Telstra's Next G network.
The LG Xenon can be compared to the Telstra hiptop Slide. The hiptop Slide is a re-branded Sidekick device that is an extremely popular smartphone in the US. The LG Xenon is designed to appeal to a similar demographic, but it is a much more advanced mobile phone than the hiptop. For starters, it has a full touch-screen interface.
The best feature of the LG Xenon's design is the full, slide-out QWERTY keyboard. This feature is rare on low-end mobile phones. The keys are quite close together, so it can take a little time to get used to the layout, but the keys are clearly defined and slightly raised, so they provide good tactility. A row of shortcut keys on the far left of the keyboard provides easy access to new message, new e-mail, recent calls and contact list functions. All these open almost instantly.
We feel the design of the LG Xenon is a little underwhelming considering its target market. It lacks the quirky, vibrant feel of the hiptop, and our black review unit looks rather uninspiring until you slide open the keyboard. The spring-operated slider isn't as smooth or sturdy as we would have liked. When opened the slide wiggles slightly towards the left side, raising questions about the phone's build quality. We really liked the physical task key — pressing it opens a list of currently running applications and allows you to close them. The Xenon also has physical answer and end call keys, external volume control, and dedicated camera and screen lock buttons.
Under the hood, the Xenon has a familiar look and feel, employing a slightly different version of the interface used on the 8-megapixel Renoir. The phone uses a resistive touch screen (as opposed to capacitive), but for the most part it's responsive and snappy, and the icons are large and require a slight press to activate. The menu layout is simple: four icons sit on the right side of the main menu (phone, multimedia, my stuff and settings), while the home screen also has a row of easily accessible icons (dialler, contacts, messaging and main menu).
The Xenon's home screen is split into three separate screens: a contacts screen, a regular home screen and a favourites screen. The home screen has a pop-out widget option where you can drag widgets and place them anywhere on the home page area for quick access, while the favourites menu allows users to choose three customisable shortcuts. There are nine shortcut boxes in total, but six of them are Telstra content related and can't be edited.
Our main issue with the Xenon is that there is no App Store, so what you see is what you get. There are no Facebook, Twitter or MySpace apps preinstalled; you need to use the browser to access these social-networking sites, which isn't as convenient as a dedicated app. Being a Telstra-exclusive phone, the Xenon is full of shortcuts to Telstra services and applications, such as Mobile Foxtel, Whereis and the BigPond content portal. Carrier customisation has always existed, but the fact that you can't edit or remove these shortcuts in the favourites page didn't thrill us. The Telstra shortcuts also exist in almost every menu, including phone and multimedia categories.
The Xenon has some basic multimedia features, including a music player, but it is let down by the lack of a 3.5mm headphone jack. Instead LG uses a micro-USB port that doubles as a charging jack, so you can't charge and listen to music simultaneously. A basic 2-megapixel camera with LED flash doubles as a video recorder, and the 80MB of internal memory is supplemented by a microSD slot that can house cards of up to 16GB. PIM features of the Xenon include a voice recorder, calculator, notepad, world clock, tasks, stopwatch, tip calculator and a unit converter.
The LG Xenon will be offered for $0 on a Telstra $40 plan over 24 months, but this isn't a cap plan and only offers $35 worth of calls and text. Telstra plans to sell the Xenon as a $50 bundle by including $10 worth of data, though that only amounts to 150MB per month.
Follow GoodGearGuide on Twitter: @GoodGearGuide
Join the newsletter!
Nespresso Creatista Coffee Machine
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-77EZ1000U
SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™
WD MY PASSPORT™ X Gaming Storage
Apple iPhone X
Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44
Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer Fuchsia/Iron
Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 14
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-55EZ950U
cloudandco Smart Cane
WD MY PASSPORT™ Gaming Storage
Toys for Boys
Lego Mindstorms EV3
Bose SoundLink Micro
LaCie Rugged USB-C Portable Hard Drive
UBTech First Order Stormtrooper Robot
Ubiquiti Network’s Front Row Camera
Propel Star Wars T-65 X-Wing Drone
Google Daydream View VR Headset
Onyx Smart Walkie Talkie
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera
Dearear Endear In-ear Wireless Earphones
Belkin Pocket Power 10,000mAh
Amazon Echo Bluetooth Speaker
Nest Protect Smart Smoke Alarm
WD MY CLOUD™ HOME Personal Cloud Storage
Xbox One X
Toffee Bags Commuter Satchel
Panasonic Hi-Fi - SC-UA7GS-K
PETKIG Go Smart Dog Leash
iRobot Roomba 980 Vaccum Cleaning Robot
Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K
Raspberry Pi Starter Kit
Urbanworx Full HD Action Camera
Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
Logitech Doodle Collection Wireless Mouse
Panasonic Portable Splashproof Fun - RF-D20U
Tile Pro Bluetooth Tracker
Fallout Geeki Tikis
Lexon Flip Alarm Clock
Kogan Bluetooth Soundbar
Ikea NORDMÄRKE Wireless Charging Pad
3SIXT 3-in-1 Smartphone Lens Kit
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Hisense takes the fight to home entertainment heavyweights with flagship Series 8 and 9 ULED TVs
- 2 Sony's latest Ultra HD OLED debuts in Australia
- 3 Panasonic Ultra HD OLED TV Review
- 4 D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD DSH-C310 review
- 5 Oppo A77 smartphone: Full in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Sony Commences Android 8.0 Oreo Rollout in New Zealand Starting With Flagship Xperia XZ Premium Smartphone Device
- Qualcomm adds security, battery life features to phone chips
- Cygnett’s new wireless charging range has arrived
- Belkin Introduces USB-C 3.1 Express Dock HD
- Porsche Design Huawei Mate 10 Will Come To Australia
PCW Evaluation Team
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
- LG V30+ review: The videographer's smartphone arrives
- Fitbit Ionic review: Impressive but not quite iconic
- Xbox One X review: Brave new world
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- CCiOS DeveloperQLD
- FTSolution Architect - infrastructureACT
- FTSystems Engineer (data centre)Other
- FTProcess Improvement Specialist | 6mth ContractOther
- CCBusiness AnalystNSW
- FTSoftware Developer (Ruby on Rails)NSW
- FTManagement Consultant - ConsultancyOther
- CCUnix System AdministratorNSW
- TPLead Solutions Architect - SAP HCMQLD
- FTSenior Telecommunications RiggerSA
- FTInfrastructure ArchitectOther
- TPProject ManagerVIC
- FTSolutions Architect - Digital/WealthOther
- FTData Centre / Hosting Lead - $800 per dayOther
- FTRobotic Process Automation DeveloperOther
- FTTeam and Project Administrator - SalesforceQLD
- TPSecurity Design OfficerNSW
- CCTest Engineer - Insurance BackgroundQLD
- CCProject ManagerNSW
- FTCommunications ManagerOther
- FTData Analysts/ EngineersWA
- TPAndroid DeveloperNSW
- TPBusiness AnalystACT
- FTSCADA Technical Lead/ ArchitectOther
- CCControl Systems SpecialistACT