As I have posted earlier, we are in Seoul/South Korea, where LG has unveiled its high-end LG Optimus G smartphone. After spending some time with the handset, I’m going to give you my first impressions, but before I do that let’s go back to the main specifications to provide some context for those who are just jumping on board now.
The LG Optimus G is the first handset powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S4 Pro which yields excellent performance as we’ve seen earlier when we played with the quad-core S4 Pro development platform. Unlike The S4, the S4 Pro does not come with an integrated modem, which means that LG can swap modems fairly easily to adapt to various LTE bands worldwide. This means that the Optimus G should show up in most sizeable markets.
The industrial design on the LG is built around a 4.7″ True HD IPS Plus display (1280×768 pixels) which produces a very high quality image. IPS has been popularized by the iPhone’s Retina display, and LG is one of the main force behind IPs, so it’s not surprising to see it in this phone. With a thickness of 8.45mm (.33″), LG shows that it absolutely wanted to build a thin phone. In fact, we were told that thinness is even more important than adding a battery more generous than the current 2,100 mAh one.
The phone itself feels surprisingly light for its size: 145g (5.1oz), which is 5g more than the 3.5″ iPhone 4S. Yet, it doesn’t feel “plastic” (especially when compared to the Galaxy S3). My favorite version is the white one which feels very good, made with high quality materials (the back is covered by glass, don’t let the diamond shape pattern fool you).
Despite having small hands, I found the size of the Optimus G to be reasonable and I was able to use it with a single hand for most things (there are not a lot of things happening at the upper-right corner of the screen). Overall, the phone feels great
The Optimus G is very responsive and this is one of the most important thing in terms of “perceived” performance (what is performance good for if you can’t “feel” it?). The virtual keyboard is particularly fast, which often translates into faster typing rate (in words per minute) and less typos. Additionally, the predictive text used by LG in this phone does not try to “auto-correct” me without asking (I’ve bumped into that with iOS devices), so I can pick and chose when I use the dictionary – this is very useful if you use a lot of technical lingo or if you text in more than one language.
Additionally, loading apps and browsing the web over WiFi was very fast. We’ll need to do some side-by-side comparisons when I get a chance. Obviously with a Snapdragon S4 Pro in the back-end, all the multimedia functions were pretty much a breeze, so there’s nothing strange to report on that front. Finally, I played with the loud speaker: it’s comparable to the iPhone 4 that I have on-hand, but a trade show floor is not the ideal place to test audio.
I will spend more time with the new features and put them to the test in a real-world situation, but at the moment, some of them are promising. I’ll update this post with a few details, but the next stop is the full review. What do you want to know? Drop a comment below. For more photos and details about the software and features, head to my previous Optimus G post.