The highly anticipated flagship smartphone from Korean manufacturer LG makes an official landing on our radar – allow us to introduce you to the LG G3, a 5 inch smartphone that packs a whopping QHD display alongside a pretty impressive spec sheet that we think will help elevate the company to higher echelons of the top-tier smartphone space.
LG G3 specifications
- 5.5 inch QHD Display (2560 x 1440)
- True HD IPS w/ Corning Gorilla Glass 3
- 534 Pixels-per-Inch
- 2.2 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801(MSM8975AC)
- 2GB RAM / 3GB
- 16GB / 32GB Internal Storage
- microSD up to 128GB
- 13MP Rear Facing Camera (4K / Dual LED Flash)
- 2.1MP Front Camera
- Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
- Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, Infra-red
- Micro USB 3.0
- GPS, A-GPS & GLONASS
- 146.3mm x 74.6mm x 8.9mm
- 149 grams
- 3,000mAh Battery
- Available in metallic black, silk white, shine gold, moon violet and burgundy red
Performance and software
The specifications of the LG G3 are very impressive on paper, with industry-leading components being used all around. The device runs like a champ! But of course, look at those specs. This is to be expected, what we really want to know is how LG is making this device stand out. What else makes it different?
Aside from the hardware, LG has brought all its previous features and added upon them. Of course, there is Knock On and Knock Code, but we have all seen that. LG has also included a much nicer UI, with lighter typefaces and less visual clutter.
In addition, the simple motion effects add usability, instead of wasting resources. Pre-installed apps have been given their own colors, making the device’s color palette much more mature, and individual apps easier to find.
There is also Smart Notice, a new service that takes information from your device and gives you smart reminders. This would work a bit like Google Now in that it doesn’t need anything to be input. It just knows.
For example, it reminds you of missed calls, new numbers show up as new contact suggestions, and the device will even remind you to clean temporary files. LG Health is also being included in the list of Smart Notice-supported services.
Build quality and design
In terms of build quality and overall design the LG G3 boasts a polycarbonate back, but features a metallic film that makes it much better-feeling in the hand. It’s a hybrid of sorts. Looks like metal, feels like metal, but it’s not only metal. LG has molded plastic and metal together, resulting in a composite material unlike any other smartphone’s.
The thinner sides and minimal bezel sure help, too. The device looks and feels as good as we were all dreaming. And yes, it feels much smaller compared to other 5.5-inch smartphones.
LG have also continued with their design philosophy regarding buttons, once again as with the LG G2 and G2 Pro, placing both the power button and volume rocker on the back of the device.
LG is not trying to copy anyone here, and that is why they are also not adding water/dust resistance. The manufacturer really cares about aesthetics, and giving the LG G3 too much ruggedness would make it thicker and heavier. With that said, LG does offer water splash resistance, but that is about it.
But of course, the headlinnes for this device will revolve around the QHD 2560x1440p display, which features a stunning 538 PPI pixel density. And rightfully so – we’ve been waiting for a screen of this ilk for some time now. When Samsung and Sony launched their respective Galaxy and Xperia flagship devices back in February, we were hoping to see the Full HD display abandoned in favor of a larger resolution QHD panel.
Alas it seemed that Full HD would live to fight another day in the top-tier smartphone segment as both the Galaxy S5 and Xperia Z2 arrived with 1080p (1920 x 1080) displays. But display resolutions have historically only ever moved in one direction, and we always felt that 2014 would actually be the year of the QHD device would finally arrive.
We were not entirely disappointed; the OPPO Find 7 duly arrived on the scene sporting a 5.5-inch 2560x1440p display, followed by the Xplay 3S also bearing a QHD display. There are also rumors that a Lenovo Vibe Z2 Pro and forthcoming Samsung Galaxy Note 4 device would arrive with QHD resolution.
Regardless, this is one display that will stand out against the crowd, leaving HTC, Samsung, and the others behind. At least for a while.
LG also talks up its Advanced OIS + Camera technology, which professes to take great photos regardless of moving target objects and low light. This camera uses laser technology, face detection and optical autofocus to make for the optimal photo.
Laser autofocus promises one of the fastest autofocus experiences ever, offering up to 0,276 sec autofocus. LG G3’s Dual LED Flash includes a BSI sensor for more realistic and accurate colors, as well as improved low light photos.
All of this, along with the 13 MP sensor, should make for a great imaging experience. It might also be important to note LG has created a nice “Selfie Cam”, which is what they now call their front-facing camera. Much like HTC’s Ultrapixel technology, this 2.1 MP camera allows more light in, making front-facing shots much better in dark environments.
LG has also created a very clever way to offer front-facing flash. If the option is turned on, the device will use its own display as a flash! It will turn white and light you up for better exposure.
In terms of camera software, LG has turned this device into the simplest camera around. There is no shuitter button in standard mode, and LG has hidden all the extra features we almost never use. You simply tap on the screen to focus and shoot. That’s it.
Battery Life and wireless charging
LG is known for its battery life, and the G3 is not being left behind. The 3000 mAh battery is sure to keep your device alive for a long day. Now, this device is quite more powerful than previous LG G series devices. This means battery should suffer a bit, but we will learn more about this once we test the device.
Power saving mode does make power levels as low as full HD, though, so you may be able to keep your amazing battery life.
One advantage of the polycarbonate/metal construction is that it allows for Qi wireless charging, which will come with the LG G3 by default. The manufacturer does state this may vary between markets, though. Some countries may offer more affordable versions, or simply change them a bit.
The leaks are finally over and now we are off to get you some sweet hands-on time and LG G3 testing. It seems the company did have some nice tricks up its sleeve, and not EVERYTHING was leaked beforehand. You may also love that LG has gone back to having a removable battery and provides a microSD card slot.
This is one hell of a smartphone, with great build quality, an amazing display and top-notch performance. It will be released in Korea next week and in Europe come June. Obviously, the rest of the world will see it soon afterwards. Expect the usual high-end pricing.
Are any of you looking to sign up for this bad boy?