Lg 420g Review Part 2

This is part 2 of my LG 420g review. If you haven’t yet read the beginning, click here for part 1 of the LG 420g review.

Internal display/keypad

LG 420g pictureThe main display on the LG 420g is fine, but not impressive. The screen on the LG 600g is larger, and the resolutions on these two seem to be the same. I couldn’t find any official specs on the screen resolution, but to my eye it looks no sharper than the 128 x 160 screen on the 600g. It’s not great in direct sunlight, but it works. It’s about what I expected there.

The menus are laid out differently than on the 600g. It might be confusing to some, and make perfects sense to others. I think this is really a matter of personal opinion here. I think a bigger problem is the slow navigation through the menus. It’s not a huge concern, but there’s definitely a noticeable delay between when the navigation keys are pressed and when the scrolling actually happens. It seems to me that LG has made the menus prettier, but at the expense of keyboard responsiveness. I have had a few instances where I navigated to the wrong menu item because my keystrokes got ahead of the system.

Fortunately, this lag didn’t crop up in text entry. There, the both the T9 and the standard multi-tap entry modes were very responsive. The 420g also seems fine to me in terms of how easy it is to handle. It seems well-balanced, and one-handed use isn’t a problem.

The keypad works as it should, and provides a little helpful tactile feedback in the form of a “click” when each key is pressed. However, I don’t really care for the directional pad. While it is definitely large enough, I don’t like the fact that it is flat. This makes it hard to tell where the keypad ends, and also makes it hard to feel the separation between the directional keys and the center “ok” key. In my opinion, both the LG 220c and the LG 600g have better directional keypads as a result of raised keys, and I’m curious as to why LG decided to use this flat style on the newer 420g model.

Another thing I don’t like is that the shortcut keys – left, right, up and down on the directional pad, as well as the right soft key – cannot be customized. They are locked as follows:

  • Up: Compose new text message
  • Down: Contact list
  • Left: My folder
  • Right: Sound profile
  • Right soft: Messages

And of course, there’s the browser shortcut key, which also cannot be locked as far as I can tell. As someone pointed out on my review of the LG 220c, on that model it’s possible to lock that browser using the phone’s settings menu. I tried to accomplish something similar with the 420g, but could not find a way to lock out the browser. Incidentally, the default security code on the LG 420g is 0000, in case you happen to need it for any other applications.


I used my LG data cable to plug my 420g into the USB port on my PC. Unfortunately, it didn’t allow me to transfer any files across this connection. It did charge my phone, but  that was it.

However, I was able to successfully use bluetooth to pair the LG 420g with my computer as well as several other phones, and completed several file transfers, including pictures and ringtones both to and from the 420g. I was also able to use bluetooth to send my contact list from my Samsung t401g over to the 420g.

It also worked fine with a couple of bluetooth headsets I tried. As always with my reviews, I haven’t tested the bluetooth connection to any navigation systems or GPS devices, since I don’t have access to any of these devices. However, I think it’s safe to say that the bluetooth service will work for sending and receiving calls, but NOT for hands-free dialing. The 420g doesn’t have built-in voice dialing, and I don’t believe it supports the proper bluetooth profiles for navigation systems that have their own contact lists and phone books. If anyone can try this and prove me wrong, though, I’d be happy to hear about it.

In the final installment of this review I’ll go over the camera, browser, and organizational tools, as well as a summary of the pros and cons. I hope to get that published in a day or two, then move on to my LG 620g review.

Continue reading part 3 of this review by clicking here.
Click here to return to the review index.

40 thoughts on “Lg 420g Review Part 2

  1. Hi,

    I’m having trouble getting the Bluetooth to work on this phone. I enabled it and made my phone visible. I bought a USB dongle, which seems to be working fine. The problem is that when I try to connect my phone to my computer by “Add a Device”, it continues to search and not find my phone. Am I doing something wrong? My phone has Bluetooth on and is right next to the dongle. The dongle automatically downloaded drivers when I plugged it in, and I am using Windows 7.

    If anyone has a solution or any help it would be appreciated.

  2. Search for updated drivers via the manufacturers website. They should have updated drivers. Install any software/programs that came w/ the dongle.

  3. Do you know what is the original PIN1 Code for this phone? I’ve tried 0000 and 1234 and those were not it. I have this phone for Straighttalk

  4. Hey Pbush- I’m looking at this phone, and wondered a couple of things, and as this is my first cell, I am without clue. 😉

    Web access- I’m assuming there’s a browser in the thing, which can access any website? Or is it some goofy “portal” page that has stuff from tracfone that has time, temp, weather, sports scores, etc, and nothing else available as far as being able to browse the web.

    Thanks for the review, it’s bizarre the websites for places that sell this stuff doesn’t have more complete info.

    • Hi Stever
      You are correct in both assumptions, kind of – first, when you activate the browser you will be taken to a portal created by TracFone. However, within the browser there is a choice to click “options,” and from there you can “enter URL,” which can be the URL of the site of your choice. How well it will display on the mobile browser is a function of the programming of the site, however, so your mileage may vary with outside sites.

  5. I have the Lg 420g for straight talk. I just got it yesterday and can’t figure out how to get the text messaging mode off t9. please help I want it so its the regular ABC mode, ya know where if i want to type the word, “phone” i do each letter individually. Please does anyone know the answer to change it? I have straight talk the lg 420g phone.

    • Unfortunately it is not as simple as switching to a new carrier, Cindy. In the case of TracFone, they have special software on them that limits them to use as TracFone handsets. And Straight Talk will only accept phones with an ESN that’s in their database of accepted handsets. So it’s a double whammy for you, and a strong “no” to answer your questions. Fortunately, Straight Talk does have a deal going on this month where they offer a $15 gift card (I believe it’s a prepaid Visa) on all phone purchases. Check it at their site:
      Straight Talk

  6. Hello! Trying to figure this phone out for my sister but, wow, it has been a horrible experience so far.

    Anyways, has anyone figured out how to lock the keypad so her 3 year old doesnt call the cops from it again :)?

    • Hi Kim
      I believe that in the phone settings menu you can set it up to require a pin code in order to dial out, but I don’t remember for sure. Look in menu>settings>security. If you need a code, the default is probably either the last 4 digits of the phone number, or “0000”

    • to set up the code,you have to go to the security setting.
      Click on outgoing call and set to block.
      The only problem is I don’t know if it will block 911 calls.I use it in case I lose the phone you have to unlock it (the keypad) before you can make an outgoing call. Lots of luck

  7. Can the LG 420g be answered by just flipping open. Their silly 2 page ‘manual’ gives no information at all.
    Thanks for any info.

  8. I need help with my texts, they are sending as multimedia messages, and i have no idea how to change it back. its really making me upset, as of seeing this is the 5th phone i’ve went through with straight talk. please help.

  9. I have an LG600G phone with Tracfone and it has the annoying habit of often not letting me answer the phone and giving me this “call restriction 34” message. I bought an LG420G but before I open it I’d like to know if it has the same irritating habit of not letting people answer the phone. Is anyone aware of this problem with the LG420G?

  10. I just paired my LG 420g with my Nissan Cube’s hands free bluetooth system, and the car can and does utilize the LG 420g’s pbone book. (My old Motorola W376g did not). So now I can use the car’s voice activated BT interface and say “call… name” to call a name listed in my LG420g’s phone book. I did nothing special to make this work, just turned on the phones bluetooth and did a simple pairing with the car.
    I have only made a few test calls, but so far it seems to work great.

    I am using Tracfone LG 420g and a 2010 cube SL with SLP package (the radio with the backup video camera).

  11. First off, nice review. It was very helpful.

    Secondly, I’m having trouble with text entry on my LG420g. Maybe you can help me out. The problem is, when I’m using t9 I can’t change the predicted word. For instance, to type “go” I press 4, 6, but the word that comes up is “in” which is also 4,6. The manual says that you can press up or down on the direction pad to switch between possible words, but when I press up or down it only moves the cursor around and does not change the text. Does anyone else have this problem or know a way to fix it?

  12. Thanks for the great reviews!

    Look’s like the link to the pbush tracfone lg225 review is a bad link. I’m looking forward to reading that review.

    I just got a new (not refurbished) Tracfone LG420g to replace my keyboard dead TF LG225.

    The 420 has many changed menus and button function changes. Cube turn menus, and a menu that drops down and bounces at the bottom of the screen. Annoying. I didn’t need any of that. It’s a phone… not my source of entertainment.

    But here’s the rub; very poor reception! My wife’s LG225 gets all bars, as did my old 225, while the 420 wanders between 3 bars and no service.

    Tracfone is trying things at their end. Having me enter long code sequences. Master resets. Maybe (probly) changed providers. Maybe it helped. Now wondering between one bar and three bars. Two hours on the land line to TF.

    So I was checking the internet to see if the 420g is known for bad reception. Seems like it’s not. Maybe I got a bad unit. Maybe one phone’s bars aren’t the same as another phone’s bars. But intermittent ‘no service’ is pretty clear.

    Tracfone asked that I give it some time now to see if it stays in service. One bump…

    I’ll be checking for the pbush lg225 review to see if the 225 is some kind of gold standard in cell phone reception. Two bumps…


    Two bumps…

    One bump…

  13. No wonder the workforce keeps getting smaller. We are all being turned into our own computer repair persons, car repair persons, and phone/cable/internet customer service persons! We have long since pumped our own gas, and bagged the groceries. If we learn to make McDonalds fries at home the economy will probly collapse.
    So, now I’m smarter (in the area of phone customer care), thanks to the pbush articles about how the SIM card controls the provider… and much banging my head against the Tracfone wall.
    When I called Tracfone to get a return authorization for my poor reception 420g phones, after hours on the landline trying to get the 420’s to maintain service (let alone a strong signal), after hours of searching the internet for what type of phone has reception as good as an LG225, Tracfone offered a change from T-Mobile to AT&T. What? You mean it’s not the phone? Also told me for the first time that my old LG225’s with great reception were on AT&T, whereas the new 420’s were on TM… Would have been nice if they had mentioned that up front! Only when I got to the point of fuming, and threatening did they offer the change. I talked to seven or more TF techs, sales reps and supervisors before one of them enlightened me of the option.
    Note that this poor reception is only at my house (home office). Around town the 420’s are fine. The last Tracfone tech told me the 420 was working fine, and that the problem was the construction of my house. Advised I should step outside in the snow to use the phone! Not only didn’t that help, it further lowered my opinion of Tracfone’s techs.
    So now two 890 141 SIM cards are on the way to replace the two 890 126 cards. Fries with that SIM card?

  14. Bought the 420g for $15 from Wal-Mart to replace my 600g. I wanted to point out that the internal screen is exactly the same size as on the 600g. Perhaps the white outline on the 600g gives an illusion of larger screen area.

    What I find annoying about the 420g is that the clear or backspace key does not work for backing you out of menus. I used this feature all the time on the 600g. Now the button has little use unless you are texting. If you are in the address book and hit the clear button it asks you if you want to delete the highlighted entry. I would really love to be able to reprogram this button.

    BTW, the $15 package from walmart came with a wall charger, a car charger (with plug to usb adapter), a phone pouch, and a headset. The headset uses a usb connection and plugs in the same place that the charger does. I have not tried it and probably never will but it’s there.

  15. Hello, I’m trying to transfer my contact list from my tracphone LG600G to my LG420G. I have tried by moving SIM cards, but the only function allowed is a 911 call. Can this be done by bluetooth from phone to phone?

  16. Hi Greg
    You should be able to do this through bluetooth. First, make sure bluetooth is active on each phone. Next, pair the two phones. Then, on the 600g, go to your contact menu. I don’t have a 600g to look at for reference, but I believe that you can go to any one contact, then options, then send via bluetooth. I could be wrong, but I believe that then there is another option to send your entire address book.

  17. Thanks for the review. Glad to know you can file transfer with bluetooth.

    For me, my laptop and phone can find each other and be paired. The only problem is when I go to ‘Paired Devices’, and click ‘connect’ to my PC, it fails to connect. The phone has an icon of a locked padlock on the screen next to the name of the computer. This is the only thing stopping me from getting it to work. I’m assuming it’s a setting on my computer that needs to be changed (even though I’ve tried all the bluetooth settings), but any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

      • Hi Brian
        Unfortunately, I really can’t help much with bluetooth pairing questions. there are so many different combinations of hardware, operating systems, software, and drivers that it’s really hard for me to know exactly what the problem is. HoFo might be a better place to ask a question like this:


  18. I Have The LG 420 G Phone

    When I Try & Go To Myxer.Com On My Phone..It Says

    Insufficent Memory..UnAble To Proceed & Then Closes Out

    Why Is This??

    Why Are You Not Able 2 DownLoad The Free RingTones From Myxer.Com?

    & When I Try 2 Send The Free RingTones To My Phone From The WebSite Online..

    They DO NOT Send..

    Can AnyOne Guide Me In The Right Direction?

    I Just Got My Phone @ The Beginning Of March & I’m Already Totally UNSATISFIED With This Service!

  19. Jaci – can you try downloading the ringtones to a computer, then using bluetooth to send them to the phone?

    That’s what I had to do.

  20. “Jaci: I Have The LG 420 G Phone. When I Try & Go To Myxer.Com On My Phone..It Says Insufficent Memory..UnAble To Proceed & Then Closes Out. Why Is This??”

    Just saw this on http://support.myxer.com/2007/06/02/is-my-phone-supported/

    “Is my phone supported?

    Our software works with most phones and carriers out there (both inside and outside the US). However, there are some phones that are not compatible. In the US, we support most carriers including: AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless, and Cellular One.

    There are a few notable exceptions:

    Nextel, Boost Mobile, Helio, Tracfone, and Telus Mobility have disabled the ability for their users to use downloaded songs as ringtones.”

  21. concerning Brian’s problem with ‘allow connection’, I was able to connect my PS3 BT headset by holding the power button (before the power is turned on) until it goes into ‘Discovery Mode’, then I pushed connect in the ‘Paired Devices’ menu while my PS3 BT headset is selected as the device to connect to.

  22. “Ok, the padlock is unlocked now because I told it to ‘allow connection’. But it still fails to connect.”

    You have to go into settings>my visibility> then select either ‘visible’ or ‘visible for 3 min’ then push connect under ‘paired devices’ while your device is highlighted.

  23. LG420G WHERE IS THE MANUAL?????????

    I know LG Made one when the phone came out. If anyone has found one please let me know.

  24. No comments on the audio quality? voice reproduction audio quality of course. I don’t care to listen to music on this phone

    I have heard this phone decimate the audio on both sides of the conversation. is that unique to cingular?

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