ViewSonic ViewPhone 3 hands-on (video)

No trip to CES 2012 would be complete without spending some up close and personal time with ViewSonic's new phone for the Americas, the ViewPhone 3. Known internationally as the V350 -- which we scored a hands-on with at last year's MWC -- this model retains its dual-SIM heritage and brings a few upgrades such as an 800MHz CPU and Android 2.3. Along with a 3.5-inch HVGA, TFT-LCD display and a 5 megapixel camera (sans LED flash), the phone features 802.11b/g/n, quadband GSM and 7.2Mbps HSDPA with unknown bands (save for 850MHz, anyway). The handset has a plasticky feel, but is also well-proportioned and fits comfortably in the hand. We were less impressed with the quality of the LCD screen, which is rather low-res and distorts easily when viewed from angles.

While the hardware is rather passable as a budget phone, the software is cluttered with superfluous features and effects that detract from the user experience -- both in terms of performance and navigation. Given the dual-SIM nature of this phone and its availability as an unlocked device for $279, it's actually somewhat of a rare breed. Loaded with a proper ROM, it could certainly appeal to the right crowd. For some further insight into the ViewPhone 3, be sure to check the video after the break.