Capitalising on the mid-range mobile phone market, LG launched the affordable and feature-rich Cookie Pep a few months ago. With touch screen phones becoming the interface of choice, especially amongst young buyers, the Cookie Pep targeted a consumer group that was looking for a handset that would give them access to a wealth of features while being touch sensitive. Expanding on the success of the Cookie Pep, LG recently launched two additional handsets in the same range, the Cookie Fresh and Cookie Plus. We baked these phones on our test bench to find out what features they have to offer over their predecessors, and how they fare against each other.

First impressions

At a glance, both the phones have clearly retained the same sleek and compact look of the Cookie Pep, however they are slightly bulkier. While the Cookie Plus is encased in a minimalist, black bezel; the Cookie Fresh has a colourful side panel which is available in two colours – blue and orange. Both the phones have three buttons on the fascia – the ‘call' and ‘end' buttons on either side and the ‘applications' button in the centre. When the apps button is pressed on the home screen, it pops up a list of your favourite apps which you can add, delete and move around by dragging them across the screen. If the apps button is pressed when any other screen is activated, it shows you a list of the running apps, which you can choose to access or end at a press.

Both the phones have a mini USB port that also functions as a charging slot. While the Cookie Plus has a microSD card slot embedded near the battery, the Cookie Fresh features one on the side which means you can slide it out without having to remove the battery cover. Both the phones also have a toggle switch for volume as well as a camera button. The camera button activates the camera only on the Cookie Plus, on the Cookie Fresh you have to open the camera application first after which the button functions as a shutter button.

Multi-tasking

The music player functioned in the background while we accessed the home screen and messaging functions of both the phones, however, while we could continue listening to music while playing games on the Cookie Plus, we weren't able to do so with the Cookie Fresh. Also, neither of the phones gave us the option to use the camera while the music player was on.

Screens

Both the phones have a lock screen icon. While the Cookie Fresh has a lock button on the side, it was missing on the Cookie Plus. One interesting feature of the Cookie Fresh that was absent on the Cookie Plus was the lock screen gesture. You can access these gestures under screen settings and customise them to start different functions. For instance, when the screen is locked and you trace the letter ‘M' onto it, it opens up messaging. Similarly, ‘O' brings up the organiser.

While both the phones had a more responsive touch screen than the Cookie Pep, the Cookie Plus scored with its extra sensitive touch interface.

Both the phones have three customisable home screens that you can swap by flicking to the left or right.

Multimedia

The Cookie Plus has a 3-meg camera while the Cookie Fresh features a 2-meg clicker, and both come with 2x digital zoom, video mode and photo editing features.

While the Cookie Plus is 3G enabled, the Cookie Fresh is not, which is probably the one feature that contributes to the price difference between the phones

The Cookie Fresh features an integrated Oxford dictionary too, which is missing in the Cookie Plus.

Our Verdict

Battery life on both the phones was about average, lasting about two days with a few hours of talk time.

Apart from the Cookie Plus' superior touch sensitivity and 3G abilities, there wasn't much of a difference from the Cookie Fresh. Both had an equal number of features and the user interface was close to identical. While some might prefer the more colourful looks of the Cookie Fresh, the Cookie Plus has a more sophisticated design and might appeal to young professionals who are also looking to upgrade to a 3G network in the future.

Cookie Plus: Rs 7,999

Cookie Fresh: Rs 6,199

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