on November 29, 2012
I am reviewing the LG Optimus G 4G Android Phone (Sprint).
First off, I upgraded from the HTC EVO 4G which I had from its release. Great phone, and in my opinion, this made for a great upgrade. So why only 4-stars and not 5? If everything got 5-stars then nothing would be exceptional would it? It is just that, a great smartphone, not an exceptional smartphone. That said, after owning it for a couple of weeks I thought I'd share my preliminary observations.
IN THE HAND:
Initially I was apprehensive about any phone with such a large display but I am WAY over that now. For reference, I am a male and I wear Adult-Large sized gloves. Though I think my fingers are a little on the stubby side the phone fits well in my palm. As a righty I can reach the power button with my thumb and volume controls pretty easily with my index finger. I really like the flat sides as opposed to the smooth rounded/curved sides of my wife's GS3. In contrast, my wife does not like the flat, sharp edges of the OG and much prefers the feel of the GS3. To each his/her own. Her seat-of-the-pants observation is that the OG is bigger to her. I think because it has flat sides you have to curl your finger further around the phone to grasp it and maybe that is why she thinks it is bigger than her GS3. From a technical standpoint it has slightly smaller dimensions.
If anyone has been using the EVO 4G then you know it is a hefty phone. I liked that about it. It felt heavy in my hand and that gave it a quality feel you don't get from the featherweights they market these days. Don't get me wrong, I like that the OG is lighter than the EVO, but not nearly as light as the GS3 so it still feels substantial in my hands. Amazing what a difference a few tenths of an ounce can make. And the quality of the phone is not only noticeable in its feel but its visual appeal as well (you can Google OG reviews for more on that subject matter). I'll just say that this does not look like a cheap, `plasticky' phone. Not that it should matter, but I like that it has a very high quality, high end look to it.
Earlier I mentioned it has flat sides and sharp edges. The four corners are well rounded but the front surface is at a right angle to the edge of the glass/case, and to a lesser degree the same on the back. It is finished with a nice chrome trimmed edge when viewed face on. This is not sharp in the sense that it can cut you, but it is definitely not a gently rounded and smooth surface transition like the GS3. This will be great for edge-to-edge screen protectors. The screen is very bright, and easy for me to read. So bright in fact I actually find it more comfortable when dialed down to the preset 63% brightness with auto-dim enabled. Outside in bright sunlight it is very viewable even at this setting. That is a pleasant upgrade from the EVO which always washed out in bright sunlight.
The touch screen is something I am still getting used to. I don't know if it is because I had an anti-glare/anti-fingerprint screen protector on my EVO, but the OG glass surface is soooooo slick. I sometimes have to make multiple attempts to `press' or `tap' a button because I end up moving the screen ever so slightly, enough to make the phone think I am swiping and not tapping; kind of annoying that I have to `think' about the tapping gesture rather than just doing it, all to be sure as not to move the screen when what I want is a press or tap instead. Guess it is something you get used to doing over time, like swipe (and no, I am not feeble handed or whatnot... I have plenty of dexterity in my fingers). Like I mentioned earlier, I kinda have stubby fingers so for me it requires more effort to reach across the phone with my thumb (4.7" inches of display is a lot of real estate). Single handed texting is somewhat a challenge. It is also just as difficult trying to reach a button or key on the near side of the thumb. If the phone were narrower I could just shift it around in my hand to make it easier to get to the near side buttons, but with its size it becomes less stable in hand as I can't grip it as securely doing so. I'm sure I'll get better at it over time.
Ok, so this phone smokes! Especially in comparison to my EVO. I had to go back to my EVO looking for a file since I didn't just do a full copy over to the new phone. While scrolling the screen on the EVO I kept thinking that it had some busy process running in the background. I had all radios turned off and as well no sync'ing. No other tools running, just Astro file viewer. I realized that the OG was just that much smoother when scrolling. Looked like a stuttering effect on the EVO while it was as smooth as glass on the OG. Same for any animation and transition. Soooooo fast on the OG. Apps literally just POP open without ANY delay. For benchmarks you can Google it. I am just stating my observations here. Browsing the internet was also soooooo much faster on the same home wi-fi network. Incredible what a quad-core processor and graphics accelerator can do. I don't play many games but the ones I had ran very smoothly and loaded nearly instantaneously. Again, no scientific measurements were taken just side-by-side comparison and a "seat-of-the-pants" experience. I'd say this phone is plenty fast for anything most of us plan to do with our phones. Besides, what's faster? Nothing as of this writing. Oh, and all the extra RAM and ROM make for a happy Me. I had lots of moments when I had delete stuff off my EVO to free up space. Did you know your email stops sync'ing when you get the low storage space warning?! I found out the hard way.
I'll wrap it up with this. I have had a pretty good experience so far with the battery. On a normal day's use it gets unplugged around 6:30am and plugged in around 11:30pm. I still have above 40% capacity remaining. That's with nominal usage - over 30min of voice calls, over 1hr of having the screen on at 63%, Wi-Fi & GPS, and background sync on all day. Under heavy usage over the same period I was just under 30% remaining. For me heavy was a little over 1hr of voice calls, 3hrs of screen time, and lots of web browsing over Wi-Fi, and the GPS and sync was also on. Those are just my numbers so your mileage may vary.
Long write up short...I am very pleased with this phone. I like it better than my wife's SG3 on its physical merits alone. The SG3 UI is nicer I will admit, as the OG UI leaves something to be desired, but there's an app for that. ;-) I really like HTC's Sense UI so in comparison the OG UI is very bland. ICS makes up for it though by providing plenty of eye candy in the form of transitional effects. Over all, if you can agree with anything I said above then you may like this phone as well...or not.
******* UPDATE - Jan 04, 2013 ******
It has been a little over a month or so since I got this phone and I can say I believe I made the right choice for me. A couple of additional items I would share are...
If anything could be done better it should be the vibrate feature of the phone. It is sooooo subtle. The vibration is more like a high frequency buzzing, and not very "strong(?)". I've tried the "long continuous" vibrate, the "short multiple" vibrates (more than one pattern and duration), and everything in between and it really makes no difference. More often than not if I am walking and the phone is in my pant pocket I will not even notice the vibration. If it weren't for the fact that the ringer is so loud I would miss most calls entirely. Even in my jean pockets which hold the phone closer to my leg I don't notice the vibrate when engaged in activity. When I am sitting sure I notice it, but if you like to leave your phone on vibrate you will have to make a concerted effort to feel for a vibration while walking around. You ladies that would carry it in your purse/wallet...forget about it. You would not know it is vibrating unless it is against something that causes it to make some chatter. Don't get me wrong, I am not saying it is useless, I am just saying it is not very pronounced. Some may like it this way. I just wish it were more like the rumple of a Harley, than the whine of a crotch-rocket.
I've had no problems with battery life. I am still getting a full day's charge (unplug around 6:30a and plug in around 10:30p or so). Some may do more with their phones and others less, so your mileage may vary.
Don't know how to categorize this last comment but an irksome thing that happens to me is that as I put the phone into my pocket I sometimes either hit the standby button with with my thumb or the cusp of my pocket thus turning the phone on as I put it into my pocket. I've "butt dialed" a person or two because of this and on a couple occasions found that my phone was browsing the web for shoes! Anyways, I'm getting better at not doing that but it still happens from time to time, and I either notice it because the phone is warm in my pocket or after I pull it out.
Either way, none of these have detracted from the phone for me. I am still very pleased with my decision and eagerly look forward to a Jelly-bean update!
on December 17, 2012
LG knocks the other smartphones into the dust with the Optims G quad core phone. Atter about a month, I can tell you:
The quad processor, 2 gigs of RAM and Ice Cream Sandwich software make the Optimus G amazingly fast, and I'm only running it on the 3G network. The conventional Android Facebook app that took my Evo 4G about five seconds and more to load, is now up and running on the Optimus G in two seconds. Click, look, and its on.
I can only imagine how monster fast this is going to become when the 4G LTE network kicks in.
The Optimus G also has an absolutely gorgeous screen. It's clarity, color accuracy, depth and brightness are teriffic and it shines through even the light of day. Most times I am running the screen at only half brightness.
The camera's image and color quality are EXCELLENT, really something to write home about. It's unlike any camera phone I've used in the Android world. At 13 megapixels it is beyond par with iPhone pix. I find that it handles low light better than most point and shoots did a year ago.
The battery lasts for two days at a time. That includes running a live wallpaper, picture taking, an hour of mp3s a day through Bluetooth headphones, texting, web surfing, social networking, calls, and running the alarm clock overnight.
Initiially, I had some dodgy audio on phone calls, but after a month, the calls are routine with no problem on either end of the line and no dropped calls.
The aesthetics of the phone are a very elegant, slim and tall, high gloss black case made of glass, front and back. It would be at home coming out of the breast pocket of a tux. And It resists smudges, front and back, EXTREMELY well. The build qualty is top notch, too.
I've found I can edit all seven screens with ease, rearrange their order easily, and share photos to texts and social networks simply and quickly. It also woks well with my Dropbox
The voice to text and voice search mechanisms are teriffic. There have only been a couple of translations that required a tweak in a month.
I also like the placement of the power, screen on/off button on the side (as opposed to the top). At 4.7 inches and tall, it lets me fire up the phone with one hand as I take it out of my pocket.
on November 15, 2012
The optimus G is almost everything it claims to be.
Speed is probably my biggest interest in the phone, and it clocks in excess of 5000 on SmartBench 2012.
A friend of mine has an EVO, and I ran smartbench three times while her EVO was running it once. I also started after she was well into the first try.
Build quality and battery life are above average, even at my work where the signal coverage leaves much to be desired.
(poor coverage causes lower battery life)
It is a little large, and people with small hands may have trouble with one-hand use.
Although it looks like plastic, most of the phone is Corning Gorilla Glass. Very nice.
The speed helps a bunch when streaming video from Netflix, or from the DLNA servers on my lan.
Not having an SD slot is a small minus, but 32G internal storage makes up for that.
Google wallet is supposed to be preinstalled, but it isn't actually on the phone or available for it at this moment (15/11/12) but I expect that will be fixed shortly. I will be disappointed if this never becomes real.
Oh yeah. It also makes and receives phone calls.
on December 11, 2012
Just got this phone as my 2 year upgrade. Read a lot on this one and others on sites like Engadget, Cnet, etc. And wow, this phone is everything as advertised. The feel of the phone is great, and the screen is fantastic looking at only half brightness. The speed at which you can switch between apps and screens is very impressive, and web pages load incredibly quickly, even on just 3G. On WiFi its even better. The battery life thus far has impressed me, it is much better than my old HTC Evo Shift. Plus the nice thing about the Sprint version, is there is virtually no carrier bloatware, except for Sprint ID which is actually useful for managing your account. The memory is about 25gb due to whatever space the OS takes up, so its not a full 32gb, but should be plenty.
Definitely a great phone, and for just $100-$150 you cannot go wrong at all with this one.
on March 15, 2013
So I've owned a Galaxy S3, Evo 4g LTE, iphone 4s, galaxy nexus, Galaxy Victory, to name a few. I buy and sell phones a lot, but I usually try the phone out and see if I like it.
The big 3 right now on sprint (not counting the iphone 5) would be the Evo LTE, Galaxy S3, and Optimus G. They are all similiar specs, size and OS. For the record I think Iphones are great devices I heard great things about the 5, however I'm going to just comment on the android phones.
Hardware: The Optimus G is a 4.7 inch device with a decently small bezel to keep its size down. It is plastic but extremely well feeling plastic, with glass on the back with a nice etched design. It has a great kind of solid feel to it that doesn't stop it from feeling premium. There is a power and volume buttons, sadly no camera button. I like the more square design of it, I'm not as much of a fan of the extremely rounded designs. It compared the to S3 and Evo is the most comfortable to hold. It has a better build quality feel than the S3 by far I think, and I would give edge to the Evo on the build quality though, they used some great materials.
Performance: Similar in performance, the Optimus obviously has the edge on specs, it has the faster quad core and it does rank higher in benchmarks. However games and applications don't really show much difference, nothing really uses any of them to their full potential. All of them are butter smooth with everything. The S3 and Optimus have the extra gb of ram, which isn't to much difference but you notice it at times.
Battery: This is a topic I really care about, it's hard for me to get behind a phone with a non-removable battery. I kept my galaxy victory for so long because the battery life was so great with the stock battery. The optimus G seems to be pretty close to matching that. The standby life is great, I had it sitting at work for like 5 hours with terrible service 0-1 bars and it used like 2%. Normally I am above 50% after a full day, not that I'm a power user but I use it a decent bit. Compared to the Evo and the S3, the Evo comes close that had pretty good battery but the S3 seemed to drain decently quicker compared to them. I use the Eco mode on my optimus though which manages the processor differently i guess, I see absolutely no difference in speed but battery is better though.
Screens: All are the same resolution, the Optimus uses a Super IPS i believe and it seems good enough. Colors look great and everything, the only problem is the automatic brightness is extremely passive and seems to not want to brighten up enough. Compared to the SLCD and the AMOLED it seems pretty par with them.
Software: Really this isn't a huge part as you can change alot of the software. However I like LG's default software, there is actually alot you can change with the homescreen layout that I'm used to seeing in homescreen replacements on the play store. It looks clean and doesn't really get in the way. EVO's software is alright, don't hate it or love it and the S3 seems to have the most bells and whistles when it comes to software, I have to hand it to them for that.
Summary: Compared to the S3 and EVO the Optimus G I think has the best feel in the hand, best performance, best battery life. It lacks a little bit on software but nothing big, wish it was made of aluminum or something but I understand not using that for signal issues.
on February 20, 2013
Overall I'm very satisfied although I have only had the phone for about a week. It is extremely quick and runs smooth. I checked out and compared other phones before I purchased this one and it seemed to be the best out of all for the price. The screen is super clear and the color contrast is excellent. Its quad core so programs seem to flow. The speaker quality is nice for the speaker phone and ear phone. The speaker phone is really loud you can understand the words through it. The UI is pretty easy to get use to. It also has 32 gigs of memory.
The are some cons: The phone is made out of glass back and front. Thats not the strongest stuff for a phone body to be made out of. So don't drop it!!! and get a case! Another thing is that there is no removable battery. Not to mention there is no sd card slot which can really come in handy. I guess trying to follow apple. I have not gotten the camera to take clear pictures when there seems just a very slight movement though pictures are nice as long as there is no movement. Videos seem to come out pretty decent.
Overall Its worked pretty good for the last few months. It is very fast and fluid. Although it doesn't have an sd card slot you can run a usb to computer and transfer your data and it worked very well on my macbook once I downloaded the software. It has nfc abilities but I haven't used them yet. I would say its worth checking out.
on April 28, 2013
I have had this phone for only a few days (i had switched from the HTC One V)and i must say, i am impressed! I mean it could be better, but my dream phone isn't really feasible(a phone that would be able to appear out of nowhere and it could fly in the air and turn into a laptop and answer my thoughts). But never the less, this is a really enjoyable phone to have!
Large Screen (but it can be bothersome to some people that switched from a smaller phone and have trouble with the grasping of it)
Easy to reach power button and sound controls while holding the device (unlike my nook tablet or my HTC One V, this was one of my least favorite parts of my old phone).
Quality of the phone isn't like the kyocera xtc or the HTC 4G. it's more high quality of the product (don't get me wrong, i liked the htc 4g when it came out, but you haven't seen high quality till you've seen this.) what i mean by high quality is that it's made of durable material (unlike the iphone) and the screen doesn't break when you drop it, unlike the newer iphones (i've dropped it twice, one for a test for the review and another on accident).
The speed is amazing! when i upgraded i was shocked and i realized that apps loaded in half the time and that the graphics seemed a lot better (a little bit dark but the brightness of the screen changes that when it's all the way up, also for brightness of the screen see customer warning/concerns/Misc below)
Battery life wasn't the greatest in my opinion and that's the main reason i'm giving it 4 stars. This is also the one thing that annoys me about this phone. The battery just seems to drain all day and i think it's because of the screen brightness but i'm not certain (i will tell you all when i find out).
The vibrate is like a mouse. it is honestly unhearable for me and i don't like it this quiet. i have to check my phone for calls when i'm expecting a call and i can't leave it on vibrate because i can't miss a call that important.
NO MICRO-SD card expansion is a killer on this phone because i love my music and love to listen to it but i don't like limits and this kills a lot of my love for the phone! i just hate it.
Camera underperforms compared to normal 13-MP cameras and viewing pictures just look a tad bit worse than my old phone which is a bummer.
The feel in your hands isn't too heavy or light, but i really wish it would weigh a little bit more because i feel like it would break if it drops.
Very Bright, so you may want to dim the lights because it lights up the room when you turn it on at 100% brightness in the middle of the night.
The screen is really slick but you get used to it after a few days, but my daughter doesn't like it at all...(for people who don't like slick screens you may have to get a screen protector).
No micro-SD expansion slot which sucks huge.
Specs: Product Features:
Camera: 13-MP (but it underperforms)
Processor Speed: 1.5 GHz
OS: Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)
Size (LWH): 2.71 inches, 0.33 inches, 5.19 inches
Weight: 5.12 ounces
Network Compatibility: LTE
Minimum Rated Talk Time: 900 minutes
Minimum Rated Standby Time: 240 hours
No Micro SD card expansion
If you have any questions, comments or concerns regarding my review or the phone itself, please comment below and i will get back to to you within approximately 6-8 hours.
on January 9, 2013
Case: Sturdy and substantial. I think I can drop it and not have the screen crack, haven't tried it. 9/10
Screen: Clean and sharp. Very good screen. 10/10
Camera: Decent, 13MP doesn't matter. Panorama sucks, bad editing software. 6/10
Hardware: Fast, quad-core, 2gb ram. Can do anything fast. 10/10
Sound (volume): Loud enough. I have no hearing problems. 9/10
Sound (Voice): Clear and no distortion. 9/10
UI: Confusing at first, easy after 3 days of use. 7/10
Network Speeds: WiFi connections are fast. 3G stays connected. 4G, what 4G? 8/10
If you're into phones with accessories, then this is not the phone for you, get an iPhone. This phone is made for performance. It is future proof for the foreseeable future because of the quad-core and 2gb of ram. I haven't had any issues with my phone for the week I had it. As phones go, it's average, but that's good enough for me :)
My other options...I would have gone with the Nexus 4, but those are always sold out. The S3 is dual-core and old, but they do have a lot of users, meaning more accessories for it. Note 2, too big.
Final Score: 68/80 (85%)
on July 5, 2013
this phone originally was launched with Ice Cream Sandwich, but LG decided to actually upgrade a phone in the first few months unlike other companies; I was going to wait for the GS4, but the specs are pretty similar on this phone, and Amazon made me an offer I couldn't refuse; Jelly Bean is a slick OS versus my last OS (Gingerbread); I really like the cards that inform you of weather, sports, articles you might enjoy, directions to places you've been, and nearby locations to visit; the phone itself is very fast with its quad-core processor, and 32GB of internal storage is a nice addition (no SD card slot though); the battery life is amazing; I used the setting to optimize the quad-core processor, and I sometimes flip data off if I'm in a building where I know data cannot survive; I sometimes will go two days without charging, with moderate use and leaving wi-fi and data on
on March 13, 2016
I ordered this phone to replace my HTC One M7. This phone has awesome battery life, great speakers, nice clarity when speaker/hearing people over the phone, text messages are sent/comes in immediately, and the browser speed is pretty fast. Some of you are probably wondering if it's easy to activate/switch over from another phone. The answer is yes. This phone doesn't take a sim card and you will be up and running in under 10 minutes. This phone also has a 13mp camera which is an awesome bonus for people that enjoys taking pictures. The front camera isn't as strong, but the pictures are still crisp and clear without being faded or blurry. I was very skeptical about LG phones, because years back I owned a LG rumor that had a sliding keyboard, and the phone completely failed and wouldn't turn back on. It seems like LG has gotten back on the right track and is making great quality phones.