By June 13, 2009

LG Arena (KM900) review

LG KM900 Arena review

LGs latest addition to there touch screen devices seems to be off to a flying start but does the new Arena live up to the hype?

First announced at Mobile World Congress back in February the LG KM900 Arena is not LGs first touch screen device but it is the first with the new S-Class UI, so let’s see how it compares with other touch screen devices on the market.

The LG Arena (LG KM900)

The LG Arena (LG KM900)

What’s in the box?

  • Handset
  • Battery
  • Data Cable
  • Wired Headset
  • Charger
  • User Manual
  • Software Disc

Have a look at Matt’s LG Arena unboxing video for more details.


LG Arena Specification:

  • 3” 16M-colour capacitive TFT touch screen of WVGA resolution (480×800 pixels)
  • S-Class Touch UI
  • Quad Band GSM/GPRS/Edge support
  • 3G with HSDPA (7.2 Mbps)
  • WiFi & GPS with A-GPS
  • 5 Megapixel autofocus camera with Schneider-Kreuznach optics, LED flash, geotagging
  • Di (720×480 pixels) @ 30fps, QVGA fast motion video and QVGA slo-mo video
  • 8GB built in storage
  • Hot swappable microSD card slot
  • Standard 3.5mm audio jack and TV out
  • USB mass storage
  • Bluetooth 2.0 with A2DP
  • Accelerometer for screen auto rotate
  • Multi-touch input
  • 3D Hardware accelerator
  • DivX and XviD support
  • FM Radio with FM transmitter
  • Office document viewer
  • Smart dialling


Opening the box first impressions were generally positive. On the bottom/front of the device are the send and end keys. Between them is a shortcut key which takes you to the 3D cube. This lets you scroll between the four available customized home screens.

On the top/front of the device is the front facing camera (for video calling) and the powerful speaker.

LG Arena front view

LG Arena front view


On the rear of the handset is the 5MP camera lens and also the flash for low lighting shots.

LG Arena back view

LG Arena back view


The left side of the Arena only contains the USB port. Unfortunately LG are still using there proprietary connectivity port and not a more standard MicroUSB or MiniUSB. On the up side, the port does have a nice sliding cover instead of a removable rubber cover like on many other handsets.

LG Arena left side

LG Arena left side


The right side of the device contains a dedicated camera button for a quick launch and also an up/down volume rocker.

LG Arena right side

LG Arena right side


The top of the handset houses the 3.5mm headset jack and also the on/off power switch.


LG Arena top view


The bottom of the Arena is plain, featuring no controls or ports whatsoever.



  • 3G HSDPA
  • Built in GPS
  • Superb Video Recording
  • 3.5mm Headset Jack


  • Feels very plastic and low quality



My initial thoughts when I first handled the LG Arena was “oh no, this feels horrible”, however when I turned the handset on I was pleasantly surprised. The screen is extremely vibrant and the haptic feedback makes using the touch screen relatively easy.

The four different home screens make finding what you want quick and smooth.

Although the phone is not of the best build quality all the buttons are extremely responsive and do the job well.

Having 3G made web browsing fast but the browser itself is not the best. It supports pinch zooming (like the iPhone) but it is very jumpy and hard to get the exact zoom you require.

By far the best features on the Arena are the multimedia ones.

The video camera is superb. I have used many high end smartphones and none of them can match the video quality of the Arena. If there was one thing that really impressed me about the handset it was this!

Sample Video –

The 5MP camera does a great job and produces good quality bright vibrant images.

Viewing photos on the phone was also a pleasant experience. Switching to landscape mode allows you to swipe forward and back through the images and the pinch zooming works a treat here.

Listening to music was fantastic. The speaker on the Arena sounds amazing and this was before I even figured out that I could switch on the Dolby option. This made the music even crisper and as a rock fan it was nice to be able to clearly hear the bass. Once the wired headset was connected the sound quality was good enough to give any other handset/mp3 player a run for its money.



From LG’s website:

Take great quality photos with the 5 megapixel camera that includes Auto Focus and a 4x digital zoom and capture quality images.

Enjoy a truly cinematic experience with a 3" WVGA screen (480 x 800 Resolution) which gives you four times the   clarity of most mobile phones. Accessing your favourite film has never been easier thanks to the DivX/Xvid Video Playback.

Play your music more powerfully with Dolby Mobile for Music to experience a superior sound quality. Plus, take advantage of the 3.5mm jack, for connecting high quality headphones. Finally, the LG Arena allows you play your music in multi-formats meaning all of your music – MP3, AAC, AAC+, RA and WMA).
Play your music where ever you want with the fantastic FM Transmitter. Plus, enjoy internet access with lightning fast   Wi-Fi connection and a PC like internet browser.  Venture off the beaten track with the integrated A-GPS feature and tag locations of great photos with Geo-Tagging.

Massive 8GB of storage (expandable to 32GB with a Micro SD Card) there’s plenty of room for loads of photos, music and  videos.



So does the LG Arena live up to the hype?

A lot of people have compared the LG Arena to the iPhone, but personally I don’t think that Apple have much to feel threatened about. Although the Arena does everything it says on the box the user experience is not as good as on some other handsets (including the iPhone).

As a fan of touch screen devices I was not expecting the Arena to be a great handset to use but it pretty much ticked all the boxes. Although I won’t be going out to buy one I honestly feel that if I had to recommend a phone to someone who did not need a business handset then the LG Arena would certainly be a contender.

Well done LG. A pretty good effort.


Review by: James

Post Tags: [LG Arena,LG KM900,touchscreen phone,]

Posted in: Reviews

About the Author:

More than 20 years in the IT industry. Blogging with a passion and thirst for new technology since 2005.
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