Panasonic Allure Review

I think the Allure is a very attractive phone that works intuitively well and separates itself from the rest of the pack.
I think the Allure is a very attractive phone that works intuitively well and separates itself from the rest of the pack.
I think the Allure is a very attractive phone that works intuitively well and separates itself from the rest of the pack.

Highs

  • Sleek and slim styling
  • personalized features

Lows

  • Speakerphone is useless
  • poor voice command

DT Editors' Rating

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Summary

So in conclusion I would have to say that if you are looking for a phone packed with features at an affordable price of $120, the Panasonic Allure could be for you. It think the inclusion of a speakerphone into a cell phone is a terrible idea at this point in time. I have yet to find a cell phone with a speakerphone built in that actually worked without complications. With that in mind, I think the Allure is a very attractive phone that works intuitively well and separates itself from the rest of the cell-phone pack.

Overview

I have a busy life juggling between school, my day job and then Digital Trends. My cell phone is crucial for me when on the road traveling. I need a phone that is light, does not suck up the batteries and is loaded with features. That is why I chose the new Panasonic Allure cell phone. The Allure runs on the ATT multi-digital network and on the following bands: 800 MHz analog, 800 MHz TDMA and 1900 MHz TDMA. TDMA stands for: Time Division Multiple Access. TDMA is a satellite and cellular phone technology that interleaves multiple digital signals onto a single high-speed channel. For cellular, TDMA divides each channel into three sub channels providing service to three users instead of one.

At first I was thinking about going with the Sprint all-digital network because they had the newest phones in terms of technology and features, but their network has issues with dropped calls and bad reception. Verizon has a decent network, but I always felt their phones were out of date. I needed a compromise and a nationwide network, so I chose Panasonic Allure in conjunction with the ATT network.

Aesthetics

The Allure is small and light weighing in at a mere 2.7 ounces with a height of 1.7″ inches and a width of .7″ of an inch. The Allure is a very attractive phone with sleek lines and chrome highlights. The corners are rounded and smooth with a durable plastice case.

Battery

With a slim phone comes a slim battery. The battery is about an inch tall and half an inch a wide and about 1.4″ thick; we’re talking small and thin. The battery is a Lithium Ion make with about 740 mAh of storage. On an analog network expect about 65-70 real minutes of Talk time and about 5 hours of standby. On a digital network expect about 120-130 of talk time and about 180 hours of real stand by time.

Features

The Allure may be small, but it is packed with features. The Allure comes with a built in speakerphone, voice commands for calling, 250 locations for contact storage, SMS messaging, distinctive ring, vibration alert, phone personalization, 20 second voice memo, word T9, scratchpad, 6 backlit displays, caller ID, call waiting, 3-way calling and more. When visiting the Panasonic Allure homepage you will notice that two colors are available for the Allure; Silver and Titanium. I was interested in buying the Silver phone but was unable to find a store or service provider that sold this version. This is very unfortunate because I am sure there are many consumers interested in this particular color.

The Low Down

While the size of the Allure is great, there are some tradeoffs to expect. The speaker in this phone is particularly small which means when the volume is turned up all the way, voices are too high pitched and it sounds like the speaker is clipping. When you put the volume down a notch, voices can be hard to hear as well; there does not seem to be any happy medium.

It is good that Panasonic included a speakerphone into the Allure; unfortunately it is not worth using. If you think the speaker is too weak when putting the phone up to your ears, imagine how weak it sounds when using the speakerphone in the car with road noise. It is basically non-existent. When switching to the speakerphone mode in the middle of a call, you are forced to hold down the ‘#’ key until it switched to the speakerphone mode, warn the person on the other end before doing this or you will blow their ear off.  It would have been better simply not to include a speakerphone than to include one that does not function properly, though that obviously leaves a feature off the checklist.

The voice command feature in the Allure (mostly) works when there is no background noise present. When I recorded the voice commend using the included headset, it would only recognize the voice in the same environment…when I was wearing the headset. I found the voice command feature to be particularly annoying overall.

The 250 locations for contact info is great. Each contact location included a home phone entry, a cell phone entry, a work phone entry and another phone entry as well as e-mail info, a distinctive ring associated with that location as well as a distinctive picture and display color. On my older Nokia phone I had to use one location for each number, with the Allure each location stores all that contact’s information, which is a definite plus for the Allure.

The voice memo feature on the Allure is incredible as well. You are able to record up to 20 seconds and I was able to store at least 6 entries without running into storage problems. The voice memo feature is great when you need to remember something for later and a pen or pencil are not available.

Conclusion

So in conclusion I would have to say that if you are looking for a phone packed with features at an affordable price of $120, the Panasonic Allure could be for you. It think the inclusion of a speakerphone into a cell phone is a terrible idea at this point in time. I have yet to find a cell phone with a speakerphone built in that actually worked without complications. With that in mind, I think the Allure is a very attractive phone that works intuitively well and separates itself from the rest of the cell-phone pack.

PROS:
•    Sleek and slim styling
•    Personalized features
•    Voice memo feature is very useful
•    250 contact locations
•    Scratch pad feature allows user to enter a phone number on the display during a call


CONS:
•    Speakerphone is useless
•    Built in Speaker is weak for those with hearing problems
•    Voice command feature can be troublesome to some users