Pantech isn't known for their high end phones, but that's changing with elegantly designed, well equipped Android smartphones like the Pantech Discover. The phone has a 4.8" display running at 1280 x 720 and a sleek design that doesn't look the least bit cheap though the phone is only $49 on contract with ATT.
Like most higher end US smartphones, the Discover has a 1.5GHz dual core Snapdragon S4 CPU with a gig of RAM and 16 gigs of internal storage. Despite the slim design, the back cover is removable and there's a microSD card slot and a removable 2100 mAh battery under the door. The back cover has a grippy texture and is curved so it's less likely to slip out of your hand. The phone is thicker at the top to accommodate the large side-facing stereo speakers and 12.6 megapixel rear camera with LED flash. And yes, it takes very pleasing photos and good 1080p video.
The phone runs Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich rather than 4.1 Jelly Bean, and at $50 with contract, we're guessing it won't get the Jelly Bean upgrade. It has Pantech's UI customizations, which aren't our favorite but it's not that intrusive. There's an option to enable a simplified UI for newbies. The Discover surprisingly ships with Adobe Flash Player 11.1, which has all but disappeared from new Android phones and is no longer available for new installs on the Google Play Store. Take note, Flash video addicts. There's no need to hunt down and sideload Flash.
The phone has 4G LTE on AT&T's 800MHz band as well as HSPA+ 3G (though AT&T also calls this 4G). Reception is solid, data speeds are excellent and call quality is good. The Pantech Discover had dual band WiFi 802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS and NFC. There's a front 2MP for video chat. It's quite the phone for $50 on contract and it compares favorably with more expensive smartphones.