Pantech and AT&T have always had a good relationship with each other. They had mostly made low-end Android phones and pretty average tablets but with the Pantech Flex and now the Pantech Discover, they are showing that you don’t have a pay a lot to have good performance.  At just $49.99, Pantech is appealing to the consumer who isn’t looking to spend a lot of money for a flagship device. Does Pantech have what it takes with the Discover? Find out in the full review!

 

Design

While the Discover isn’t a flagship phone by any means, I have to say it has a very interesting styling to it. It almost looks futuristic with its “teardrop” shape but I’m sure that more of an illusion than anything. There is a silver band that wraps around the left speaker around the bottom and to the right speaker but just to tell you know, it is just a metallic plastic. Other things to note is that the back cover is made of a grippy soft touch plastic which makes for an easy grip and nice touch. From an overall design standpoint, the Discover has a subtle elegance to it and I hope other OEM’s put this level of detail into their products.

Display

The Discover has a 4.8 inch display HD display which in my testing had wonderful color clarity and viewing angles. If Pantech can manage to put a HD panel on this phone in 2013 than other OEM’s have no excuse. Also thank to the fact that the Discover has on-screen buttons, you have all those extra pixels available to you when you got to watch videos or look at pictures.

Internals

It needs to be said that the Discover is not packing light when it comes to what it inside it. We have a 1.5 GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor with 1 GB of RAM. You have Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, 16GB of internal storage with MicroSD card expansion and a removable 2100 mAh battery. This phone has late 2012 specs and it holds its own very well. Battery life was very good and I had no issues getting through the day.

Camera

While HTC is out to show the world the Megapixels are nothing more than a myth, Pantech had decided to go in the opposite directions. The Pantech Discover has a 12.6 MP camera with an LED flash. While Pantech packed a lot of different options into their camera software, I didn’t think the pictures quality was much to write home about. The quality wasn’t terrible but I felt it could have been better. You can see sample shots below.

The Discover can also record 1080p video. You can see the sample below as well.

 

Software

The Pantech Discover runs Android 4.0.4 with Pantech’s custom skin on top. There are a myriad of options in regards to changing the lockscreen and Pantech has taken the time to bundle in some helpful apps Tip Calculator, Voice recorder, Pill reminder and then more Social apps as well.

The one app I did want to highlight is the AT&T Drivemode app. This is the first phone to come preloaded with this app and is a continuation of AT&T’s Texting and driving it can wait campaign. What this app allows you to do is, if you are a parent, set it up so when you child is driving their car, they can’t text or make phone calls. Incoming text messages are sent an auto reply and incoming calls are sent to voicemail. You have the option of setting up a “Safe List” where certain numbers can be called or received. 911 is set by default but you can add other numbers. One other option that you can set up is to automatically set up the app to enable when the phone detects that it notices you are traveling over 25 MPH. Think of it as out of sight out of mind. I think it’s great that AT&T is continuing to support this initiative in regard to teen’s safety when behind the wheel of a car.

Phone Quality

The Pantech Discover does run on AT&T’s LTE network and in testing, the speeds I got where phenomenal. On average by download speeds were between 8 MB – 35 MB and upload speeds were between 6 MB – 10 MB. Call quality would normally be good but I think it was just the review unit that I received but I had issues hearing others that I was talking to. This was a problem that persisted regardless of where I was at. I’m going to say it was my Discover review unit because I have never had these issues with any other phone that I have tested on AT&T.

Wrap Up

Should you get the Pantech Discover? If you are someone who is looking for a powerful phones without paying flagship prices, then I would say yes. The Discover excels in all areas that it needs to and at just $49.99 on a two-year agreement, you honestly can’t go wrong. The other saving grace is the fact that this phone will soon be getting Android 4.1 (Jellybean) meaning soon you will have access to Google Now, expandable notifications and Project Butter.

Source: AT&T