If I received a dollar for the number of times the word “simple” was uttered at LG’s launch of their brand new G3 smartphone, I probably would have walked out of the press event with enough cash in hand to buy it right off the bat.
Developed to epitomize the mantra that is “Simple is the new Smart”, the G3 aims to provide users with an experience quite unlike anything else they’ve ever seen.
Having said that, I have to give credit to LG where it’s due; for the few brief moments when I held the G3 in my hands, it seemed to deliver on all the features that the execs were trumpeting about during the presentation.
The UI of the new LG G3 looks as though the makers of Nova launcher were hired to create the look of the home screens, with copious input from Minimalist UI. Sleeker and less cluttered, the number of soft buttons along the bottom of the screen have been reduced from 5 to a functional 3.
LG has pretty much nailed exactly how I would customize my Android phones after unboxing it. While this really depends on user preferences, LG seems keen to save users that precious amount of time needed to customize their phones right off the bat, which is a nice personal touch.
The greatest takeaway from the event would be the renaming of the front facing camera; LG has now officially dubbed it the Selfie Camera.
This is quite the stroke of genius: After all, when was the last time a regular person used the camera for a video call? It was suddenly baffling to me how no one did this prior to the G3.
The best implementation of the new Selfie Camera would be that users are now able to take a picture of themselves without even touching the screen. Check it out in the GIF below!
And do excuse my colleague who was trying to take a picture of the phone taking a picture of us, I have no idea what was going through his mind at the time.
Simply prep the G3 to take a selfie by placing an open palm in front of the camera, then clench your hand into a fist when ready to start the countdown and voila! Selfie served up and ready to go!
I guess many of the people who attended were serious journalists types who didn’t enjoy playing with the phone as much as I did, though. Everyone else seem more hung up on tech specs and other less exciting features.
The gathered LG execs must have had a heart attack when I hoisted the brand new phone high up on a selfie stick, but hey, at least the bald Korean dude behind me found my antics amusing, so I guess all is fine and dandy!
When it comes to image quality, you be the judge. This photo was taken by the camera on automatic settings. I didn’t get the chance to try it up close or play around with the various settings and filters, but based on my impressions, it should do fine in a variety of lighting conditions.
The 13 mega-pixel OIS+ (Optical Image Stabilizer Plus) camera comes with a built-in IR Laser Auto Focus feature, promising stunning image quality alongside lightning-fast response time. The effect was apparent during our hands-on time with the phone; the camera felt extremely responsive, and there was little to no delay between tapping the screen and actual capture of the image.
With the IR Laser Auto Focus, the camera takes a mere fraction of a second to focus on the subject, and the camera triggers the shutter simultaneously. This, essentially, is how the G3 achieves it’s amazing response time.
The inclusion of a Quad HD display worries me slightly, in spite of the promise it holds when it comes to sheer visual splendor. Sure, pretty images are always good, but it also implies that the G3 is going to eat through it’s batteries very quickly.
The LG folks were quick to assure me that they have taken power consumption into consideration and performed the necessary optimizations. According to them, keeping the phone functional for an entire day on a 4G network would not be an issue.
One individual that I spoke to mentioned that a local telco had demanded that the phone deliver 20 hours of battery life, which is a pretty tall order by any measure. The exec seemed pretty confident that the phone will fulfill that requirement; whether or not the G3 delivers upon that promise remains to be seen in our full review. 20 hours sounds way too good to be true, but if it even achieves 60-70% of that, we would be impressed.
Pre-ordering the LG G3 nets you a free Quick Circle case and a wireless charger, priced at S$98 and S$68 respectively. Those are some pretty steep prices for some optional extras, but I’d like to point out that the Quick Circle case is rather indispensable for the admittedly cool features that it affords. The video below gives you an idea of just how beneficial the case can be to your experience with the G3.
As you can see, much like similar products for other phones in the past, the Quick Circle case lets users enjoy various features of the G3 without ever having to open the cover. The circular glow emanating from the edge of the window was really quite pleasing to the eye, and does well to set the G3 apart from other phones of it’s ilk.
The LG G3 will be available off contract at S$868 and S$928 for the 16GB and 32GB models respectively from June 14 onwards. Stay tuned to Geek Culture for the full review in the coming weeks!