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LG KS360 Qwerty keyboard phone

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It’s not a top-drawer mobile keyboard experience, but it’s reasonably effective once you get familiar with the keyboard configuration and button size. You need to be careful as you tap away, though, as it’s easy to stray onto adjacent buttons if you type too quickly.

Button labelling could be better too. We found the colour scheme on our sample - blue letters on red - didn’t show up letters particularly clearly in dull lighting conditions, despite backlighting, making it trickier to tap at speed. So you won’t be able to type as quickly as you might on a regular keyboard. But then the KS360 is designed more for regularly banging out messages rather than serious keyboard-work.

LG KS360 sliderphone

There’s haptic feedback to confirm your digital dabbing

Pulling up the phone’s main menu system, you get a familiar icon grid of functions, numbered for quick selection if you’ve engaged the slider keyboard. Selecting options pulls up further sub-menus you can scroll through – although you can also tab back and forwards through menu options using the forward and back navigation keys.

Various options are on-hand within the messaging menu, which pulls together instant messaging, email, and regular text and multimedia messages. You can see threaded messages too, so you can follow conversations.

On the Orange Signature version of the KS360 we tested, the Orange Messenger Windows Live-based service is pre-configured, so you can start chatting quickly. Orange Email is set up too, although you can add your own settings for regular POP and IMAP email accounts.

Although the KS360 majors on messaging and social networking, LG does include a line-up of typical mid-range phone features, including standard-issue music and video players. The music player is fairly basic stuff, with a functional, unsophisticated user interface.

The Orange-branded version is set-up to browse and buy tracks from the Orange Music Store. There’s 15MB of internal storage, but Micro SD cards of up to 4GB are supported too. Music category choices are unusually basic, though, so selecting tracks is clunkier than on most music mobiles.

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