LG has announced the long awaited smartphone Optimus G for India. The LG Optimus G E975 smartphone arrives with the latest Android update and packs great hardware power. The company proudly presented the Optimus G and also talked about the significant contributions made by the different sister- companies for the device. According to LG, the making of Optimus G involved three companies that separately worked on display, battery and imaging.
The LG Optimus G arrives a bit late for competing with the Samsung Galaxy S III. Packed with an identical set of features, the Optimus G is also said to be the benchmark and close brother of the Google Nexus S smartphone. There are a number of similarities between Nexus 4 and Optimus G but we shall currently focus on the latter.
LG aimed to build a slim phone with a great build instead of aiming for the slimmest smartphone. We do respect that for the design is quite simple to the eyes and the build quality is quite amazing. The phone does not have a unibody design but it features a glass back panel. Apparently, the Optimus G was first announced in September last year and the same design was picked up for the LG Google Nexus 4 smartphone. Hence, both smartphones share similar glass back panels.
The Optimus G is merely 8.45 mm thick, which is still thinner than the 8.6 mm Samsung Galaxy S III smartphone. There is a stainless steel rim that connects the display with the back panel, and there are two screws at the bottom that must be opened in case of repairs.
The slim Optimus G felt really great in the hand. It was easy to slide in a pocket and then take out quickly – not getting stuck anywhere. There are no physical buttons on the display panel; instead there are capacitive touch-sensitive buttons. The only drawback is that the backpanel is a great fingerprint magnet and one has to keep wiping the display as well as the back to make it appear clean.
LG Optimus G has a good design and strong display, and gives a great bang for every buck invested in the phone. Now, the only thing we could have probably wished for is resistance from water and dust. LG is certainly considering that for the future generation of devices. Apparently, the Docomo version of LG Optimus G for Japan is a water-resistant model.
LG boasts of great hardware quality in the development of Optimus G. Starting off with the display, the Optimus G features a 4.7 inch True HD IPS panel touchscreen that offers 1280 x 768 pixel resolution. The display has been constructed using Zerogap technology that removes additional layers. Thus the resultant display is slimmer, lighter and is more responsive to touch. The display offers great viewing angles and 470 nit brightness. We were impressed by the brightness and the crispness of text. Since the display is HD ready, one can easily enjoy HD videos from YouTube without any worries.
Under the slim 8.45 mm chassis, the Optimus G packs a quad core 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro APQ8064 mobile processor paired with an Adreno 320 graphics chip. Together, the processing and graphics muscle acts as a strong backbone to drive the operating system and the applications running on it. Of course, the 2 GB RAM also plays a crucial role.
LG claims to have squeezed the image sensor a bit to make it slimmer and it does not compromise on image quality. The image sensor utilizes the advanced five element lens to provide better support to the sensor. Located at the back panel, the LED flash is placed below the camera instead of on the side. The 13 megapixel camera is capable of recording HD videos along with auto focus and offers HDR as well as Panorama shooting modes. The camera can also detect faces, but throws up a lot of noise in low-light environments.
There is a strip of speaker mesh on the lower right side of the back panel. The ear piece lies stuck on the top in the front, like most HTC smartphones, and on its right is the secondary front facing camera. Optimus G packs 32 GB on-board storage, of which some would be reserved for the system, and there is no memory card slot. LG barely talks about other features such as Near Field Communication and WiFi Miracast support to push multimedia content directly to the Miracast standard supporting display.
Longer usage is promised with the 2100 mAh Lithium-Ion battery that can be optimized with the different power management tweaks offered in the smartphone. Notably, the company has introduced a dual band 3G network-supporting model for India and not a 4G LTE model.
LG has taken the Optimus 3.0 user interface a step ahead with Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean. Oh yes, the phone runs Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean out of the box and has been optimized with the latest features. However, LG did not comment much when asked about the Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean update.
LG boasts of the new QSlide function that enables Cross-tasking to use two different applications or quickly switch between options. Once the QSlide button is tapped, the feature gets activated and makes two apps translucent to be stackable on top of each other. For instance, you can send a WhatsApp or SMS message while watching a video on the YouTube app. The app basically offers a slider on the top of the screen for the user to adjust the transparency of the top window of the app.
LG has added several new lock screens and effects to the Optimus G, which are very zippy and do not lag – all thanks to the quad core mobile processor. Several apps are pre-loaded and it will take a while for one to locate them visually due to the Optimus 3.0 UI. The phone was loaded with several new apps including the Quick Translator, which tried to recognize the words quickly but could not recognize handwritten text.
Inside the settings there is the Eco Mode, which controls the different radio and sensor options to optimize the battery life of the device. The quad core control under Eco Settings is an interesting option that we found could be quite useful. LG has packed all the possible features of a rival device such as SmartStay, but with a different name and implementation.
LG Optimus G is available at approximately Rs 30,990 in the market and will certainly be compared with the Samsung flagship Galaxy S III. The display’s colour production and brightness will give second thoughts to the Galaxy’s HD Super Amoled display. LG has packed enough hardware muscle in the Optimus G to make it competitive enough for the Galaxy S III.
Now, if only the Optimus G was here two months ago, then it would certainly have given a good fight to those looking for an option against Galaxy S III. We shall look forward to the review unit of the Optimus G to run some benchmarks and use it for a long enough time to test the battery life as well as its other features.