These days it is hard to find a cell phone that doesn’t require that you pay a monthly data fee for internet service. And, yes, smartphones are fun and probably necessary for some people, but all I really need is a basic phone that also has great texting features. That is exactly what Verizon’s Pantech Jest has. Verizon had a list of fourteen “feature” phones and the Jest was a brand new offering and looked pretty cute. (Cute isn’t necessarily one of my top priorities in a phone, but it doesn’t hurt, right?)
The phone is a compact little slider that fits nicely in my hand when it is closed. I can use the phone for making and receiving calls without sliding it open with just the press of a button.
When I do slide the phone open, I’ve got a sweet portrait-oriented QWERTY keyboard that I absolutely love. Text, numbers, and symbols are all easily accessed in such a tiny space, while the keypads really don’t seem that small. My texting skills are greatly improved – just ask my kids!
The phone does have its limitations however. There are two main areas that disappoint me: the 2 megapixel camera, and the quality of the speaker phone. My pictures seem to be blurry no matter how still I hold when snapping pics, and the person talking to me on speaker phone can hear themselves echo when I have it on. Admittedly, that may not be the fault of the phone itself, but some other technical issue that I’m not aware of.
I’ve been using the Pantech Jest for about two months now, and have become comfortable with it. The system they have devised to access the phone’s options is a bit different and takes getting used to. The main control button is a lot like the “mouse” pad on a laptop computer. You slide your thumb up or down to scroll vertically through your options and then press to choose. It also scrolls horizontally in certain applications.
The phone doesn’t come with a whole lot of direction, but it is pretty straightforward and after playing with it for a while, I was able to jump right in from the start.
My twenty year old daughter has the Jest, too, and she has the same opinion of it as me. She is disappointed in the camera, but loves the keyboard and the size.
For more details, visit Verizon's information page about the Pantech Jest.