LG will most likely be officially launching the Optimus G E975 today, which makes this their flagship handset in the Indian market. This will knock the Optimus VU from its pole position in LGs line up and will either witness a drop in price or will be discontinued altogether since, let’s face it, it didn’t exactly win any design awards. The Optimus G is very similar to the Nexus 4, in terms of specifications and will act as a substitute for it. This is once again similar to what Samsung did with the Nexus S and their Galaxy S smartphone. With the handset retailing around the Rs.30,000 mark, does it pack enough power to take on the Samsung Galaxy S III or the Sony Xperia ion? Let’s break down the specifications and find out.

OS – Android Jelly Bean with Optimus UI 3.0
It’s refreshing to see LG bundle the latest Operating System on their flagship handset, compared to a year or so ago, when they always seemed one step behind the competition. Along with Jelly Bean, we also have LG’s trippy Optimus UI. While it’s not the best looking interface compared to HTC’s Sense or Sony’s Timescape, it’s certainly functional.

Cellular connectivity – Only dual-band 3G
The Optimus G supports quad-band GSM networks but unlike the Nexus 4, it only has dual-band 3G support. This is quite surprising since all other flagships like the Galaxy S III and the Xperia ion support quad-band 3G, which means you can connect to most high-speed networks around the globe. This won’t be possible with the Optimus G.   

Display – Similar to the Nexus 4
The display technology is borrowed from the Nexus 4 and isn’t much different from their previous flagship, the Optimus 4X HD. The panel used is a True HD-IPS+ with a 720p resolution. This gives it a very good pixel density of 318ppi. We really liked the display of the Nexus 4 so if this is anything like that then you can expect accurate colour reproduction and good brightness levels.

13MP shooter seems pretty impressive

13MP shooter seems pretty impressive

Form factor – A slight variation of the 4X HD
The Optimus G has the same squared-off design as the Optimus 4X HD, except for the slightly rounded corners. It’s very similar in dimensions as well except for the depth, where the Optimus G is slightly thinner at 8.5mm. It has gotten heavier by roughly 12g but is still very manageable at 145g.

Wi-Fi – Dual-band support
Wireless connectivity remains the same. We have dual-band Wi-Fi that works on both, the 2.4GHz and the 5GHz band.

SoC – Qualcomm APQ8064 quad-core processor
The Qualcomm chipset used here is the exact same one we saw on the Nexus 4. The APQ8064 consists of four ARM CPU cores running at 1.5GHz and Adreno 320 for graphics. This is an extremely potent chipset from Qualcomm and efficient too, since it’s built using the 28nm fabrication process.

Internal storage
The onboard storage has been bumped up to 32GB, which is plenty but that’s only because there’s no way to expand the storage. It’s a bit weird that LG chose not to include a microSD card slot when their previous flagships had it.

Primary camera – Going after the Xperia Z
This will be the first Android phone to hit India with a 13MP camera. Sony’s Xperia Z is still some time away so the Optimus G can enjoy the spotlight till then. LG hasn’t mentioned if it has a BSI sensor or even the aperture so we’ll just have to wait and see. The camera is capable of HDR stills, panorama, Full HD video recording and lots more.

Sensors – Accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass
All the sensors seem to be present, including NFC for payments and data transfer.

GPS – Comes with GLONASS
GPS gets a bit of assistance from GLONASS in triangulating your position.

Battery – A decent capacity
The Optimus G packs in a 2100mAh battery, which should be able to deliver a day’s worth of usage. The smaller 28nm fabrication should help in prolonging the battery life of the handset.

The bottom line
The highlights of the Optimus G seem to be the camera and the new, efficient SoC. The rest of the features are pretty much identical to the 4X HD. On paper, it makes sense going in for this as compared to the Nexus 4 since you would be getting a warranty as well as a better camera, although you’ll have to forfeit timely updates. The retail price for the handset is quite tempting but whether or not it’s better than the S III or the Xperia ion will only be certain once we review it. Stay tuned for the hands-on and our first impressions of the LG Optimus G coming up shortly.

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