LG launches Optimus G flagship smartphone: quad-core S4 Pro, LTE, 2GB RAM, ICS, 13MP camera (updated)
It’s official! Today in Seoul LG is announcing its latest flagship smartphone, the Optimus G. The 8.45mm (0.33-inch) thin handset — which has been rumored for weeks — packs Qualcomm’s Fusion 3 chipset which pairs a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro SoC (APQ8064) with a 2G / 3G / LTE radio (MDM9615). It features 2GB of DDR RAM and a 4.7-inch 1280×768 (320ppi) True HD IPS PLUS display with Zerogap Touch (in-cell touch) technology. A sealed 2100mAh Li-polymer battery rated for 800 charge cycles powers this Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) device. The rear camera sports a 13-megapixel backside-illuminated sensor with 1.1µm pixels, an f/2.4 autofocus lens and a single LED flash — along with a more pedestrian 1.3MP shooter in front. There’s 32GB of built-in flash storage, but no microSD card slot. Other specs include WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0, A-GPS, NFC and MHL.
Aesthetically, the Optimus G marries LG’s Chocolate and Prada design-languages into a sleek 145g (5.11oz) unibody smartphone. The front is all glass with three capacitive buttons while the back indroduces the company’s Crystal Reflection process which gives the handset “the ability to display different patterns depending on the viewing angle and lighting”. LG’s placing a lot of emphasis on how the user experience benefits from the Optimus G’s quad-core Krait CPU and Adreno 320 GPU — something it calls “cross-tasking”. This includes capabilties like QSlide Function, Live Zooming, Dual Screen Dual Play, QuickMemo, Screen Zooming, Application Link and Icon Personalizer, plus camera funtionality such as Time Catch Shot, Cheese Shutter, Smart Shutter and Low Light Shot Noise Reduction.
Back in late November last year, Lenovo’s Chinese folks teased a certain IdeaTV or LeTV for launch this year, and now we finally get to see it in its full glory. Dubbed the K91, we’re looking at a 55-inch IPS 3D HDTV running Android Ice Cream Sandwich (a first for smart TVs, yet not quite a Google TV), and inside it sits a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon APQ8060. Dig a little deeper and you’ll also find 1GB of RAM, 8GB storage, SD card expansion, 802.11b/g/n WiFi, 10M/100M Ethernet, HDMI and USB 2.0 connectivity (which is much needed for an external hard drive to store video content). As you can see in the pictures, the K91 will come with some Lenovo cloud services, including an app store (but the TV will have over 100 apps preloaded, anyway) and video-on-demand, along with voice control and facial recognition (mainly for child lock, we presume) using its five-megapixel webcam. As always, we’ll get back to you as soon as we get information on dates and prices.
The ASUS news, it just keeps on flowin’. Shortly after getting a sneak peek at the Eee PC Flare, in flies yet another leaked image of yet another leaked ASUS product. This go ’round, we’re looking at what’s purportedly the 7-inch Eee Memo Pad, a handy little fellow that we’ve actually heard about before. We’re told that it’ll ship with a 1.2GHz dual-core Snapdragon processor, 16GB to 64GB of internal storage space, built-in 3G, WiFi and a 1,280 x 800 screen resolution, and it’s apt to be revisited at CES 2012 before launching as an Asia-only product later in the year. It’s hard to say what edition of Android will pop up when this is formally unveiled next week at CES, but we’re guessing that it’ll stick its tongue out at the long-awaited Padfoneas it’s introduced, regardless.
After eluding our grubby little paws at its launch in New York and again this morning at Mobilize 2011, we’re happy to report that we’ve finally caught up with T-Mobile’s Galaxy S II. To recap, the carrier’s permutation rocks the same WVGA 4.52-inch Super AMOLED Plus display as Sprint’s Epic 4G Touch, but replaces Samsung’s in-house 1.2GHz Exynos CPU with Qualcomm’s dual-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon S3 processor. T-Mobile tells us the brain swap was necessary as it wanted its variant to support 42Mbps HSPA+ on the network’s AWS band (just like its cousin the Amaze 4G). Oh, and like AT&T’s variant it comes with a little NFC glitter sprinkled on top. So is it the same delectable Galaxy S II as its European and Sprint counterparts? From our brief time with the handset, the transplant doesn’t appear to have impacted performance at all — it’s just as snappy as ever. In terms of appearance, the phone sports a soft-touch matte black finish in back and its bezel is a lighter shade of chrome than used on its siblings. Check out our gallery below, and peek after the break for our hands-on video.
Is the world’s next showstopping Gingerbread smartphone seriously coming from Huawei? The same company that shocked us all with the S7 Slim tablet (and pulled a similar stunt with the MediaPad) has just taken the wraps off of its newest handset in Beijing, and the curtly-titled Vision offers quite the stat sheet. While it still falls short of Samsung’s Galaxy S II and HTC’s EVO 3D in terms of raw horsepower, it’s still more than capable of holding its own. Within the unibody frame, you’ll find a 3.7-inch capacitive touchpanel, a five megapixel autofocus camera (with LED flash and 720p video recording), 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM 8255 processor and a 1,400mAh battery.
Moreover, there’s 802.11b/g/n WiFi, Bluetooth 2.1, 512MB of RAM, 2GB of ROM, a microSD slot capable of holding 32GB, and a micro-USB 2.0 socket to boot. Per usual, A-GPS, an FM radio tuner, proximity sensor and light sensor are thrown in, and for those with varying moods, you’ll likely appreciate the availability of silver, gold and charcoal back covers. The chassis measures 9.9 millimeters at its thinnest point while weighing 121 grams, which Huawei curiously points out is “less than a bottle of perfume or aftershave.” We’re told that it’s loaded with a “3D interface,” but given that we’re not hearing anything about a “3D display,” it’s probably little more than spruced-up 2D. We’re still waiting to hear back on a price, but “select markets” can look for it to land in September.
Last month Hulu Plus finally arrived on Android however support was unfortunately limited to just six devices, but tonight the official blog has announced the count has reached double digits. Four HTC phones are on the list — the Evo 4G, Thunderbolt, myTouch 4G and G2 — bringing the total to ten models supported, featuring a mix of first and second gen Snapdragon chips clocked at varying speeds. Given shared architecture with some phones already on the list it’s not clear why these had to wait, but Senior Product Manager Lonn Lee is quick to point out that the streaming video site isn’t done yet. Even as it’s on the auction block, there’s at least some chance to pick up disgruntled Netflixsubscribers and adding a few underserved handsets is as good a way as any to reach out.
Towards the end of our recent trip to Taiwan for Computex, just as the hustle and bustle was winding down and we’d settled on a bit of sightseeing, we stumbled upon a rare beast — a smartphone unicorn of sorts — the Sharp Aquos SH-12C. This 3D-capable Android handset for NTT’s Docomo network was imported from its native Japan by a Hong Kong resident who was also attending the epic trade show. Like the HTC EVO 3D, this device features twin cameras and a glasses-free stereoscopic qHD display, so we decided to combine work and play by getting some hands-on time with this mysterious phone right on the observation deck of Taipei 101. Take a look a our gallery below — complete with foggy views from the 89th floor at dusk — and hit the break for our hands-on video, first impressions and some camera samples.
The first time we saw the rumored Supersonic we were blown away. HTC and Google had just wowed us with the Nexus One, and here we were looking at something even better — a 4.3-inch phone with WiMAX wrapped in a white body. This prototype was buggy and had abysmal battery life, but it was real. Four months later it landed in our hands at Google I/O. We’re of course talking about the EVO 4G which went on to become a runaway hit for HTC and Sprint as the first ever 4G smartphone in the US. And here we are, a year later with the HTC EVO 3D, the legitimate heir to Sprint’s mobile kingdom — at least until the Motorola Photon 4G comes along. When we first played with the 3D-capable handset at CTIA we were suitably impressed, but we left with a lot of unanswered questions. How do the 1.2GHz dual core processor and qHD display affect battery life? Is 3D a compelling feature or just a gimmick? What is 2D camera performance like with the lower specced camera? Is the EVO 3D a worthy replacement for the EVO 4G? Find out in our review after the break.
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A hotly anticipated smartphone with a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, a “Super” 4.3-inch screen, and a manufacturer-skinned version of Android 2.3 — we must be talking about the Samsung Galaxy S II, right? Not on this occasion, squire. Today we’re taking a gander at HTC’s Sensation, a handset that’s just begun shipping in Europe under a short-term Vodafone exclusive and which should be making its way to T-Mobile in the USA early next month. By beating its stablemate the EVO 3D and Moto’s Droid X2 to the market, the Sensation becomes the world’s first 4.3-inch smartphone with qHD resolution, while also serving as the debut phone for HTC’s Watch movie streaming service and Sense 3.0 UI customizations. That leaves us with an abundance of newness to review, so what are we waiting for?
It wasn’t that long ago that we were jonesing for a Nexus One on Verizon. What HTC gave us instead was the Droid Incredible, with the same 1GHz Snapdragon CPU and gorgeous 3.7-inch AMOLED display — not to mention a better camera (8 megapixel vs. five), 8GB of built-in flash storage, an optical trackpad, HTC’s Sense UI on top of Eclair, and a dash of funky industrial design. The Incredible was an impressive phone with a lovely camera, marred only by questionable battery life and lack of supply, forcing HTC to build a Super LCD-equipped model to satisfy demand. Judging by the popularity of the Incredible, it came as no surprise that following HTC’s announcement at MWC, the Incredible S eventually became Verizon’s Droid Incredible 2. With a 4-inch Super LCD display, global CDMA / GSM radio, front-facing camera, updated internals (including 768 MB of RAM), trick capacitive buttons, and a Froyo-flavored serving of Sense, the Incredible 2 seems like a worthy successor to last year’s Incredible. Does it live up to our expectations or is it just another fish in the crowded sea of Android? Does it significantly improve upon the original formula or is it merely a refresh? Hit the break for our review.
We’d heard some rumblings ST-Ericsson might be moving in on its turf with Nokia’s Windows Phone devices, but Qualcomm has now reasserted that it’s still the main game in town. Following the big Mango announcement this morning, Qualcomm confirmed that Microsoft has chosen it to bring a “new generation of Windows Phone handsets exclusively featuring Qualcomm’s second generation Snapdragon mobile processors to market.” The company’s executive vice president, Steve Mollenkopf, further went on to say that Qualcomm is “excited about this next Windows Phone Mango release,” and that it will “leverage the synergy of our highly integrated second generation Snapdragon solution and Microsoft’s Windows Phone software.” Leveraging synergy, what more could you ask for?
We’ve seen it photographed, videotaped, and even, briefly, up on RIM’s own website. Now it’s up there to stay, the BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 (aka the Bold Touch) have been made official as RIM kicks off BlackBerry World in Orlando. As expected, the phone packs a 1.2GHz Snapdragon processor that has only a 2.8-inch VGA touchscreen with a 287dpi pixel density to worry about. On the back is a five megapixel camera and inside is 8GB of internal storage (with microSD expansion) and NFC circuitry. At 10.5mm it’s RIM’s thinnest handset yet, featuring a stainless steel circumference and a fiberglass back, while up front of course it makes room for a full QWERTY keyboard. The 9900 supports HSPA+ connectivity to get its 4G on, while the 9930 is the world variant, adding dual-band CDMA and quad-band GSM to the mix, and both do 802.11a/b/g/n along with Bluetooth 2.1. Both, quite naturally, include the new BlackBerry 7 OS, including a faster browser and voice-activated search. Another picture and full specs are listed after the break, which will have to do you until this handset releases sometime in the summer, meaning this could be your next great beach accessory for those working vacations.
Qualcomm’s back again with yet another set of impressive numbers. For the second quarter of this fiscal year, the chip giant saw record earnings of $3.88 billion, up 46 percent from the same quarter in the previous year, and collected $999 million of sweet profit which is a 29 percent jump from last year. This is no doubt to do with the 70 percent increase in the MSM7000- and MSM8000-series Snapdragon shipments in this half of the fiscal year (compared to 2H 2010), and it should be noted that this quarter also saw the 100th Snapdragon-powered device announced by a Qualcomm client. Additionally, EVP Steve Mollenkopf reassured us that the recent events in Japan won’t have any significant impact on upcoming shipments, so the 30 Snapdragon tablets in the pipeline should arrive as scheduled. Excerpts from the financial report can be found after the break.
Before hitting the states this summer, the Sensation will launch in the UK, Germany, and the rest of HTC’s “key” European markets in mid-May, with Vodafone scoring a Europe-wide exclusive for “a couple of weeks.” We can’t wait to put the Sensation through its paces in a full review, but happily we already scored some hands-on time with a near-final unit. Continue below the break for some early thoughts, full specs, and close-up shots of this superphone in action.
Would you look at that, HTC’s latest worst kept secret is live on Vodafone UK’s website. So here’s the scoop: 4.3-inch qHD (540 x 960 pixel) SLCD display, 1.2 megapixel front-facing camera augmented by an 8 megapixel shooter with dual-LED flash around back, a 1.2GHZ (dual-core) processor, and 4GB of internal memory with an extra 8GB supplied on memory card. Stick around, we’ll have hands-on with the latest Android Sensation from the HTC launch event later in the day.
This time last year, HTC had two Android smartphones for the mainstream: the 3.7-inch Desire, outfitted with the latest and greatest, and the 3.2-inch Legend, which was humbler in specs but offered the novelty of an aluminum unibody construction. After seeing that strategy pay off handsomely, the company’s come back in 2011 with a similar proposition. The 4-inch Incredible S is now the higher-end device, while the 3.7-inch Desire S is the smaller, aluminum-shelled handset. What’s curious this time, however, is that the Desire S has exactly the same 1GHz Snapdragon inside it, the same graphics, same WVGA resolution, and the same 768MB of RAM as the Incredible S. Throw in the fact it comes with Gingerbread preloaded and a few new tweaks to the Sense UI and you’ve got to wonder if this might not be the more, um, desirable of HTC’s new Android duo. Only one way to find out, right? Full review after the break.
The PlayStation Phone. We’ve had quite the intimate history with this gamepad-equipped slider, learning of its secretive existence way back in August and then handling a prototype unit in January, so you’ll forgive us for feeling sentimental and still entertaining our pet name for it. The Sony Ericsson marketing gurus renamed it the Xperia Play when it finally went official at MWC this year, but the PlayStation connection remains as strong as ever. Aside from the D-pad, iconic game keys, and two touchpads, this device comes with a little app named PlayStation Pocket, which will be serving up dollops of classic PlayStation One gaming to all those with a taste for it. Yes, the Sony influence is strong with this one, and the Android Market will be joining the fun with Xperia Play-optimized titles from third-party developers. So all we really need to know now is whether the Android smartphone underpinning this smash-bang fusion of old and new school entertainment happens to be any good. Shall we get Started?
Sprint has stopped playing coy about one of the worst-leaked devices in recent memory and has at long last made it official. The EVO View 4G is a 7-inch, 1024 x 600 Android tablet with a 1.5GHz processor, 5 megapixel rear- and 1.3 megapixel front-facing camera, a WiMAX radio, and HTC’s loving application of Sense for a UI. If all this sounds familiar, it’ll be because we’re really talking about HTC’s Flyer tablet, introduced at last month’s MWC, and just like it, the EVO View will also feature the HTC Scribe capacitive stylus. The Evo View 4G will ship with 32GB of storage “this summer.” You’ll now find the full press release and spec sheet (including a healthy gigabyte of RAM and a 4000mAh battery) after the break, and some preliminary shots below. Full hands-on to come!