Sep. 19, 2012 at 1:19 PM ET
On Wednesday, LG held a press event in New York City to show off its new Optimus G smartphone. We had a chance to give the device a quick trial run — and we were pleasantly surprised.
The Optimus G uses a quad-core Snapdragon S4 processor. In plain terms, this means that it's zippy, despite running a heavily skinned version of Android. During the time I spent with the device, I noticed no obvious lag or any pesky hiccups.
I certainly did expect quirky or slow behavior from the device as it has a multi-tasking — or "cross-tasking," as LG calls it — functionality.
You can run two apps simultaneously, with both shown on the display. This means that you can send a text message or look up something on the Internet while watching a video. You can also take notes over any screen and fade your scribbles in and out with an opacity slider. (This is actually rather useful if you jot down a phone number and then dial it — no need to switch between apps.) These cross-tasking features work surprisingly well — especially when compared to the features we'd seen with the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 — but unfortunately they are still a bit limited. You can use any app together with the video player and you can use any app together with the note-taking functionality. But you can't use any random two apps at the same time.
The Optimus G has a 13MP camera which gets plenty of support from features which adjust for movement, correct shutter speed, take multiple shots or allow voice commands to trigger the shutter (you can literally just say "cheese" to snap a photo).
The 4.7-inch screen on this smartphone is pleasantly bright and vibrant. Indoors, it looked fantastic. I do wonder how it performs in bright sunlight though.
All in all, the Optimus G seems like a great device. It's speedy, looks good, feels good (and light!), and doesn't have any instantly obvious annoyances. I can't wait to try it out for more than a few minutes and see if those first impressions — and the device's battery, for that matter — last.
No word on shipping or pricing details just yet, though word is that the LG Optimus G will hit shelves before the end of this year.
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