Yesterday at IFA , LG unveiled its new 8-3 inch G Pad, a tablet that features a Full HD IPS display (1920×1200) powered by a 1.7GHz Quad-Core Snapdragon 600. LG came up with the 8.3-inch form factor after collecting data from the government and conducting a study to determine what should be the maximum width for one handed operation. The LG G Pad runs Android Jelly bean 4.2.2 and is part of the G-series, LG’s top mobile product line which includes the recently launched G2 and its predecessor the LG Optimus G Pro. Featuring a sleek design with a nicely textured aluminum back cover, the WiFi–only LG G Pad offers a unique Q-Pair feature that allows users to pair it with their smartphone. Patrick Hong, LG G Pad product manager told me that the goal of Q-pair is to make the tablet and the phone smarter. Since people always carry a phone and a tablet, it is great to take advantage of both devices.
The LG G Pad is slightly larger than competitive products in its category (7-inch and 8-inch tablets), so, it is comparably as thin and light than the best tablets out there. (216.8mm x 126.5mm x 8.3mm – 338g) Knowing that tablets are not primarily used as cameras, unlike smartphones, LG made the decision to offer only 5 MP for the rear shooter, which is the standard for this type of product. It is a good way to prioritize high costs on key features such as the high quality display or the 4,600 mAh battery. At IFA yesterday, I had the opportunity to briefly try the LG G Pad, and you can read my first impressions in the article below.
LG G Pad Specifications Highlights
- Processor Quad Core1.7 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon (APQ8064).
- Display 8.3 inch, IPS 1920 × 1200 pixels/273 ppi
- Internal Storage : 16 GB (eMMC)
- MicroSD slot up to 64 GB
- RAM: 2 GB / LPDDR2
- Cameras: Rear 5 megapixels – Front : 1,3 megapixel
- Battery : 4600 mAh
- OS Android Jelly Bean 4.2.2
- Dimensions: 21,6 x 12,6 x 0,8 cm
- Weight: 338 g
- Colors: black or white
Industrial Design (very good)
LG determined the specific 8.3-inch size after carefully reviewing the data from the government related to the average hand size of the population, in order to deliver the optimal comfort for one handed operation for the maximum screen size. The sleek body feels great in the hand and the light weight makes it even more comfortable to hold. To differentiate itself from the all-plastic android-powered competitive devices, the LG G Pad features an elegant aluminum backside that looks stylish either in black or silver.
On the front, you will find the camera and the LG logo at the top, and below, the display with very narrow bezels. On the back, the camera is located at the upper left corner while the dual speakers are placed on the other side. The LG logo is displayed in the middle. The USB connector is found in the center of the bottom edge, while the microSD slot is located at the top alongside the 3.5 mm audio jack. You will find the volume rocker and the power button on the right edge.
Display (very good)
The Full HD IPS display (1920×1200) is crisp and clear and offers a higher resolution than competitive devices in the 7-inch/8-inch category, except for the new Nexus 7. For reference, the 7.9-inch iPad Mini delivers 1024×768 pixel resolution, while the 8-inch Galaxy Note 8.0 offers 1280×800. And thanks to its specific aspect ratio, when watching a movie there are less black spaces around the video window than other similar size tablets on the market. As expected with LG IPS displays, the image quality is great and the viewing angles are good.
Software – LG custom features
Patrick Hong, LG G pad product manager and in charge of new products at LG Mobile, showed us a detailed demo of the new Q-Pair feature, unique to the manufacturer. The key idea behind the new custom software is to offer the benefits of 3G/4G connectivity to the WiFi-only tablet. Basically, the Q-Pair pairs the G Pad to the user’s smartphone over Bluetooth, to make both devices “smarter”. Pairing your devices with Q-pair is an easy process, you just have to open the Q-Pair app and hit the start button. Once paired, you can access the following features: Wifi hotspot, Call notification, Message notification, SMS notification, Q-Memo transfer, recent app sticker. With Q-Pair, you are able to reply to SMS sent to your phone from the G Pad, and you can receive SMS and call notifications sent to your phone on the tablet as well. The WiFi hotspot feature enables wireless tethering via your smartphone. Check the video demo to see some of these features in action. Additionally, the LG G pad provide access to LG specific features launched on the Optimus G2 such as the multitasking feature Q-Slide (watch the video in the G2 Hands-On) or Q-Memo launched with the Optimus G (watch the video, featuring Q-memo and the first version of Q-Slide)
Performance (perceived) (good)
Patrick Hong explained that the choice of a Snapdragon 600 instead over the more powerful 800 model was made to allow for better battery life and for preventing overheating during intensive usage. The system overall performance is good, and the processor handles well the display’s high resolution, the user interface is smooth and responsive.
Video Playback / Audio (very good)
The dual stereo speakers offer a good sound quality that enhance the entertainment experience, especially for watching movies. The image quality for video playback is really good, and the when I tried to watch HD trailer on Youtube over WiFi the video playback was smooth . (check video above)
Conclusion (very good)
I need more time to get an accurate idea of what the LG G Pad is capable of, however, from what I saw yesterday at IFA, the device is one of the top tablet that we have tried in this category. From the high quality display to the elegant industrial design with the form factor optimized for one handed operation, the LG G Pad definitively delivers good performance in a nice package.