The LG Optimus G has been around for awhile now, and we’ve had a chance to try it out for a couple of weeks. This phone was LG’s initial salvo into producing higher end smartphones. While the market has released newer and arguably better models (like the LG Optimus G Pro and Samsung Galaxy S4) these past few weeks, we’ll opine on the Optimus G’s features based on it’s own merit, or simply saying, if it does what it does well.
Design and Hardware
The Optimus G is a black 4.7″ smartphone that features a Gorilla Glass front and back, with the back having a pattern underneath called “Crystal Reflection”. It has a plastic bezel which I don’t really prefer for a high-end marketed smartphone.
You’ll find the Sleep/Wake button on the right side, the volume buttons and SIM slot on the left, and the microUSB port at the bottom.
The Optimus LG uses a microSim, which is insertable via a latch on the left side. The SIM tray is made of two materials; the SIM holder is made of metal while the top part is made of plastic. If your SIM is a little thick, or it has gunk on it, it has a tendency to get stuck inside. The top part broke off when I was pulling it out during the review. :[
At the back you’ll find the 13MP camera with an LED flash and a vertical speaker grille on the lower right. You’ll find the 3.5mm headphone jack and noise cancelling mic at the top.
It’s thin at the expense of having a non-user-replaceable battery but holds enough charge to last you a day and then some, thanks to its 2,100 mAh battery. You also get 32GB of internal storage space but there is no expandable memory slot.
All in all the Optimus G has a weight of 145g. It’s pretty solid and will hurt when thrown. I do find the phone to be slippery more often than I’d like though, which is why I would recommend buying a case for it. Fortunately, LG already has one available specifically for the Optimus G.
The screen looks great. The 4.7″ screen has a 1280×768 resolution which entails to a sweet 318 PPI pixel density. LG calls it “True HD IPS Plus” with “Zerogap Touch” technology, which basically means that it’s an IPS LCD screen fused to the glass that makes the pixels appear close to the surface. I have to say that the colors are really rich and crisp.
Inside, the Optimus G is powered by a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor with 2GB of RAM and Adreno 320 GPU, along with the 32Gb of non-expandable storage. Aside from Bluetooth and WiFi, you also get NFC as well as support for Miracast and DLNA. The LG Optimus G has HSPA+ and LTE, so you can definitely use it download your torrents.
The Optimus G also comes with an in-ear headset. It has the mic and only a play/pause/answer button. I’ve used these when I run and I find them easier to clean afterwards, thanks to the flat cables. The sound quality is adequate and you’ll notice the Dolby mobile sound enhancement when you activate it in your music player.
Having been to the launch and watch their presentation and the user stories shared by a professional photographer, I expected that the camera would be good enough to impress. The camera app has a tons of features yes, and it performs really fast thanks to its quad-core processor, but I find its autofocus to be a little overactive that it keeps on shifting unless I stay real still.
The colors are a little washed, which is what I expected from camera phones even if it has a high megapixel count. With regards to video, you have live zooming, which allows you to zoom in on a part during playback.
Here are a few sample shots taken with the LG Optimus G:
One of the touted features of the Optimus G is QSlide, which is a suite of applications that you can use on top of other applications. Quick Memo allows you to draw on a screenshot of the screen or blank page; you can also view videos, browse the web, view your calendar and use the calculator on top of other applications. You can adjust the opacity of these applications as well as resize and move them on the screen.
That being said, I feel that QSlide would have been better if instead of overlaying the application on top and having to fiddle with positioning and opacity, it would have been better to just make the apps appear from the bottom of the screen in split view. This is to prevent visual clutter as I often get distracted when the app overlayed on top like a ghost. But that’s just my personal preference.
The Optimus G is fast and responds really well to whatever you set it to do. It’s at par with the quad-core phones like the S4 and the Note II, all thanks to the 1.5GHz quad-core “Krait” processor, 2GB RAM and the Adreno 320 GPU. During the time that I reviewed this phone it has never crashed nor lagged noticeably.
It got a 6718 score using Quadrant. From Fruit Ninja to ShadowGun, gameplay and graphics were really snappy.
LG has definitely upped their standards with this model. The Optimus G is an impressive machine and delivers a fast and responsive experience when you use it. The Optimus G originally retailed for Php26,900 but price has come down since (as low as Php21,000). For a more high-end version you might want to wait for the already-announced Optimus G Pro and the water and dust resistant version which is the Optimus GJ.
- Stylish and thin
- Solid feel
The Not So Good
- Two-piece sim tray breaks
- Non-expandable memory
- Overactive focusing for the camera
|LG Optimus G E973 Specs:|
|4.7″ True HD IPS+ display 1280 x 768 @318ppi|
|Gorilla Glass 2 (front and back)|
|Quad-core 1.5 GHz Krait, Qualcomm APQ8064 Snapdragon|
|Adreno 320 GPU|
|Android 4.2 Jelly Bean|
|32 GB storage, 2GB RAM, no microSD|
|13 MP (3,264Ã—2,448) back-side illuminated sensor with LED flash|
|HDR, Panoramic shot, Photo Sphere|
|1080p @ 30fps video recording|
|1.3 MP front-facing camera|
|microUSB v2.0 / SlimPort for HDMI|
|HSDPA, 21 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps, LTE|
|Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, dual-band, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot|
|Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP|
|Li-Po 2100mAh battery|
|133.9 x 68.7 x 9.1 mm|
|SRP: Php26,900 as of March 7, 2013|