Packed with a powerful quad-core processor, fast 4G LTE data capabilities, and a high-resolution display, the LG Optimus G for Sprint and AT&T is LG's best smartphone to date, say experts. Though both handsets are similar, Sprint's model offers a 13-megapixel camera (compared to 8 megapixels for the AT&T model), while AT&T offers expandable storage and a larger LTE network.
The Optimus G is a "phenomenal piece of hardware that combines refined design, superb build quality and specs to die for," Myriam Joire of Engadget.com says. But with a Google Nexus 5 phone based on the Optimus G's specs in the works, those seeking the cutting-edge of technology should wait to see what hits the market next.
Smooth user experience could be more user friendly. Android's Jelly Bean operating system is smooth, but reviewers say the TouchWiz interface isn't the most user friendly. "It's probably not going to offend anyone, but it's not particularly compelling either," says Engadget's Joire.
Some Sprint users lag behind AT&T's 4G. When operating on a 4G LTE network, the Optimus G's quad-core, 1.5 GHz processor displays scorching speeds, whether browsing through menus or surfing the web. Unfortunately, Sprint still has a ways to go to expand its LTE network, leaving many users downloading at 3G speeds. Battery life and call quality both perform well on the Optimus G. Sprint's model has a non-removable battery.
Solidly built smartphone. Gorilla Glass 2 wraps around to the solid back panel and protects the sleek Optimus G. The "superb" build quality feels like holding onto a "solid block of technology," says Engadget's Joire.
Crisp display and chiseled angles create a sleek smartphone. Sprint's Optimus G is slightly thinner and taller than the AT&T model. Weighing just over 5 ounces, it's also slightly lighter than AT&T's version. The chiseled, angular design makes it a great fit for the hand, though some experts say AT&T's model is a bit too wide. The AT&T model, however, offers a removable battery and microSD card, features lacking on Sprint's device.
Yet on both devices, the 4.7-inch True HD IPS Plus display takes advantage of thinner screen technology for a top-notch display with "bright and crisp edges and vivid, appealing color," says Jessica Dolcourt of CNET. Its size is excellent for gaming, watching videos and reading e-books.
Megapixels alone don't make the camera. Sprint's version of the Optimus G features a 13-megapixel camera, while AT&T's phone has an 8-megapixel camera. The two smartphones received mixed opinions on which produces the best quality. Despite its fewer pixels, the AT&T smartphone takes colorful, clear shots, though low light images lack some detail. In test images, Sprint's 13-megapixel shooter captures "softer, more natural colors," says Joire, while photos taken with the 8-megapixel camera often appeared "overly warm and saturated."
Review Credibility: Excellent After putting the Optimus G through rigorous testing, Myriam Joire concludes that while it is a "phenomenal piece of hardware," consumers may want to hold out for the upcoming Nexus 5.
Review: LG Optimus G Review: A Quad-core Powerhouse with Nexus Aspirations, Myriam Joire, Oct. 19, 2012
Review Credibility: Excellent After hands-on testing of the Optimus G, Jessica Dolcourt concludes it's the "best LG phone on the market" and rates it at 4 out of 5 stars.
Review: Undoubtedly the Best Phone LG Has Ever Offered, Jessica Dolcourt, Oct. 17, 2012
3. The Verge
Review Credibility: Excellent Calling the Optimus G a "legitimate flagship smartphone," Dieter Bohn compliments the smartphone on its display, design, and processor speeds but notes that the Sprint mobile lacks a removable back and AT&T's model carries too many extra built-in apps.
Review: LG Optimus G review (AT&T and Sprint), Dieter Bohn, Oct. 15, 2012
Review Credibility: Very Good Adama Brown's hands-on review reveals a great screen and fast performance, but the lack of a removable battery and microSD card slot on Sprint's version is disappointing.
Review: LG Optimus G Review, Adama D. Brown, Dec. 7, 2012
Review Credibility: Very Good The Optimus G is LG's "most capable smartphone," says Alex Roth, citing its powerful hardware and 4G service in LTE-capable areas.
Review: LG Optimus G (Sprint) review, Alex Roth, Oct. 24, 2012