We are now in 2013, with mobile devices replacing our primary computers, and playing an integral part of our daily lives. The mobile phone manufacturers have finally started to realize the importance they need to give to their products to wow the customers and also to stay in the market for some more time. One good example is in the case of LG, where the company has produced yet another beautiful and sturdy device, the LG Optimus G.
LG announced the Optimus G in India a few weeks back, and we were impressed with the specs and also the sturdy nature of the device. Today, we take a look at the flagship device from LG, the Optimus G.
The Optimus G clearly send out a message from the company to its competitors that they are really serious in what they do, and LG has put in their best in this device, let it be the design or the build quality or even the specs. Optimus G is clearly the company’s best Android smartphone so far. Read on for the full review.
Hardware & Design:
Smooth edges, a back panel with a brilliant diamond-like illusion, a super cool display, combined with a brilliant processor and memory, is what you’d notice when you start using the Optimus G. Let’s do a complete user perspective review of Optimus G here.
When you remove the device from the beautiful packing the company has put for the device, you’ll find the sturdy and very light device, with a beautiful and powerful 4.7-inch True HD IPS Plus Display, that turn on when you press the Sleep/Wake button which is on the right side of the device.
You’re greeted with a beautiful stock wallpaper, and without any second thought, you’d just swipe your finger in any direction, to unlock the device, and boom, you’ll notice a super cool animation. The company has enhanced the animation when compared to the LG Optimus 4X HD, which has a lock button at the center of the screen and a pretty cool circular animation while unlocking the device.
The LG UI 3.0 is pretty easy to use and its heavily tied up with the devices’ hardware. The phone sports a Qualcomm Snapdragon 1.5GHz Quad-Core processor, which really screams like hell while playing processor intensive games on the device. For your convenience, here’s the complete configuration of the device:
|LG Optimus G (India)|
The hardware configuration speaks for itself on the LG Optimus G, and now, let’s talk about the design. We’ve been playing around with the device for a while, and I’ve been using it as a primary device, and I absolutely loved it.
The device fits pretty well in hand, and does not feel really big in your palm. The back of the device is actually gorgeous. The Optimus 4X HD had only one complaint, which is, the back panel wasn’t that great. It was not gorgeous and was not sturdy. But now, LG has rectified that. The Back panel sports a diamond like illusion, which gives it a rich look when compared to the typical single tone back panel that many other manufacturers provide.
The build quality is what we need to definitely talk about. I gave this device to a kid who visits my house daily after his school, and his primary job was to literally break toys at home. He, for the first time, failed to break the Optimus G. The build quality is top notch and the tightly sealed casing has been build to last.
Ultimately, I’m in love with the design of the device, and I think LG has made a difference in the heaviness and the back panel of the Optimus G. The Optimus G does not align well with the typical mobile phone style statement that many other competitors have, but the company is definitely adopting its own LG L-Style design to almost all of its devices that are coming out in the market.
Thumbs down, this is probably the best display we’ve ever seen on a mobile device. And that’s what the company also promised while launching the device in a special event. The company has been making some of the best in class displays off late, and this is a very good example that they can add to their portfolio.
The 4.7-inch display is super bright, with a 1280×768 pixels resolution and the screen is a True HD IPS Plus enabled module on the device. The display clearly wins over its competitors like the Samsung Galaxy S III and HTC One. The ppi is also super competitive. The Optimus G sports a 318 ppi display, and its clearly awesome.
The camera has also improved and the UI 3.0 has brought in a lot of new camera specific features like taking multiple shots, better face recognition and also the ability to choose which frame is right one for you.
The 13 megapixel rear facing camera is brilliant. The picture quality is also good, but unfortunately, it falls short of the iPhone 5 and the HTC One. There was No lag in saving the picture even when shooting a picture with HDR switched on. Thanks to the processor which performs like crazy.
The low light shots were also impressive, and in fact it performed better than the iPhone 5 shots. But again, there’s no dedicated camera button on the device, but still, it works. But while shooting some pictures, I had to be careful to make sure that I don’t hit home or back button at the bottom.
Software & UI:
We already reviewed in detail the importance LG has been giving to its UI that it puts on their Android devices, and the Optimus G is a clear example about the future of UI 3.0.
The device ships with the UI 3.0 cooked onto the Android 4.0, but the company has promised to release an update for 4.1 soon. I gave the device with the UI 3.0 to some of my friends who are already deeply in love with iOS, and they loved using it. The transactions the UI provides are pretty brilliant and does not provide a completely Fancy style, leaving out the professional users. Right from the lock screen to the camera app, the company has enhanced the existing system. Importantly, nothing beats the stock Android. And the Optimus UI 3.0 fall closely inline with the stock Android UI.
I particularly loved the QSlide functionality, which enables you to pin screens on the device, helping you monitor two apps at a time. I think this is brilliant. There’s also another technology built into the system, called Dual Screen and Dual Play. As the name suggests, the users will be able to share a set of contents onto a larger display, while the users still cal perform other actions on the device. This is more like AirPlay on iOS, but with a lot of difference.
The next feature which I loved was the ability to zoom in into almost any application on the device. LG calls this feature Live Zooming, which allows the users to zoom into any video they’re playing on the device. This comes in handy when you want to have a closer look at the contents of the video which you’re not clear of.
QuickMemo. LG has been promoting Quickmemo like no other in their software, and yes, it is worth it. The Optimus G has an enhanced Quickmemo, with the ability to draw on the screen even while on the camera app, capturing a video or a picture. Thankfully, the company has not wasted a hardware button for this feature.
The last feature which I’d like to talk about, is the Screen Zoom. This comes in handy with a lot of users with eye power problems, where they are not clear with the text or an object that’s being displayed on the screen. People can now zoom in, into any of the apps, without the developer needing to provide support. Thanks for the accessibility LG.
The music player, email app, and other such things are pretty much the same as that of any other Android ROM, but I found the Wise Alarm feature quite useful. The Wise Alarm wakes you up with a regular alarm, but opens a preset of apps that you’ve mentioned to open.
There’s also this app, called Remote Assist, which helps the users to talk to a technician on any queries they have with the device. Overall, the UI is great, and suits well with the devices’ aesthetics. And as I had mentioned earlier, the company has been trying to bridge the gap between hardware and software, and this is evident in Optimus G.
The display is brilliant. The camera, good. The processor, is super powerful. But what about the not-viewable battery at the back? Is that ever worth it? And does it stand up to its competition?
Well, my answer would be Yes. While LG disappointed us with a poor battery life on LG Optimus 4X HD, the company seemed to have fixed the battery issue both with the software as well as the hardware on the Optimus G. On a regular usage, which involved frequent Tweeting, email checking, Facebooking and some gaming, the battery stood upto a solid 7 hours and 32 minutes on an average*.
I think the power management systems have been enhanced with the software, and it was actually confirmed by one of the LG’s spokesperson at the event.
* The average was calculated based on the battery performance for seven full days.
The competition is heavy. LG is fighting up to climb the ladder kicking off Samsung in the first place. And their team has been working so hard to give their best with each and every device they’ve been producing. This is completely evident with the Optimus G.
Even though the device does not come with the 4G LTE Capabilities in India, it makes sense at this point, where the country is yet to adopt the new technology, atleast like how it has adopted 3G.
With a good competitive specs, and a super rigid build quality, we give this device a go for our users.