September 18, 2014

LG G2 hands on: Is there still room for LG?

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Today in NYC I took a look at the brand new G2, the latest flagship offering from LG. After sitting through a very odd announcement, we had a chance to test the device. If you’re not caught up to speed, the G2 features just about every nerd’s perfect list of specs – a fast 2.4ghz quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, and a gorgeous 5.2″ full HD IPS display.

Sounds normal enough, right? Flip the phone over and you are greeted with what LG thinks will “change the way you interact with your smartphone”. It’s not the 13-megapixel camera, it’s the volume rocker and sleep/wake button, on the back of the phone.

My initial impression of the G2 went something like, “Not sure if S4 or G2...”. To say the phones are similar would be an understatement, in fact, the entire event felt like something from the works of Samsung. Not that it’s a bad thing, it is just interesting to see what LG is doing to try and attract more customers. While LG did get overly tech-y during the announcement, they did highlight many key selling points that would appeal to the everyday consumer.

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The rear-mounted buttons for instance, quirky yes, but in all practicality, it makes sense. When using a phone you do rest your index finger on the back center of the phone, exactly where this button is located. The addition of shortcuts from these buttons is also a nice touch. Unfortunately, the design almost seems too out there for the mass market, but only time will tell.

For the twenty or so minutes I had to use the phone, I did what anyone would do, constantly swipe through the screen to see if there was a hint of lag. Of course there wasn’t any, why would there be? This is a flagship phone with a very fast processor. What did strike me by surprise was the size of the phone, it’s big. Sure the 5.2″ screen look amazing, but at what expense if you cannot use the phone in one hand. Not that large phones are bad, its just that LG really pushed the idea of a phone that fits you, I guess I just dont fall into that category.

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In all seriousness though, the phone does look great, it’s fast, bright, and has a wide set of features to help attract users. But is that enough? Both Apple and Samsung have proven that a good phone doesn’t instantly take the cake. It takes marketing and advertising to really reach the market; HTC wasn’t able to do so and I don’t really see LG as an aggressive company for pushing their brand on new users, we’ll just have to wait and see.

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