I am coming off of the LG8300 and the Samnsung A930 and I can finally say that I have found my phone to keep until my NE2 comes up along time from now. The only reason to pay this much for a phone is if you're looking for a superior long term phone, which I was and so I did. This phone improves upon everything that was wrong with the a930. The outside display is completely readable in direct sunlight, and the clock is readable without turning on the backlight. The side buttons are much improved. On the A930 they were too sensitive and it was very easy to hit the volume adjust keys and speakerphone keys while you were talking on the phone. On the A990 they are a lot better. The volume keys are placed lower on the side so your thumb rests above it, and the speakerphone needs to be pressed for about 2 seconds to activate unlike the A930 which turned on as soon as you hi the button. Those are definitely design improvements. The inner display is big and beautiful and the wallpaper looks great, and even better if you turn off the eri banner and the inside clock. Calls sound loud and clear at all times and the speakerphone while I have heard louder, is just fine in just about all conditions. Reception is second only to the Motorola E815 and a very close second. I have had no problems getting a signal or have had any dropped calls. The speaker independent voice dialing is the best yet in any phone i have had , and even when using bluetooth the phone always recognizes who I am trying to call. Pictures are very good for a camera phone with 3.2 MP but I am not going to throw away my Canon by any means. Battery life is so so. Right now I get about 2 days out of it. Last week I went to the verizon store and they were able to order me an extended battery with the door which is shipping to my house. I will see how good it is when it arrives this week sometime. All in all I have never been more pleased with a phone. It's definitely the best they have.