GOOD THINGS COME TO THOSE WHO WAIT

LG G3

HWM (Singapore) - - Test - by Sid­neyWong

The G3 is no doubt the most com­pact phone of its class; it will not feel like you’re han­dling a 5.5-inch de­vice. LG achieves this by shrink­ing the bezel around the dis­play so that 76.4% of the de­vice’s front face is de­voted to the screen. Due to this, the G3 is just a tad larger than the cur­rent crop of 5-inch phones.

We must say LG did a re­mark­able job with the feel and han­dling of the G3. Its curved back—dubbed as the “float­ing arc de­sign”— rounded cor­ners and brushed metal­lic look made us fall head over heels with the phone.

To set the record straight though, the G3 does not ac­tu­ally have a metal rear cover like the HTC One (M8); it only pre­tends to. The rear cover is ac­tu­ally plas­tic with a metal film to pull off its brushed metal look. It also has a matte fin­ish to help with han­dling and keep­ing fin­ger­prints at bay.

LG has also made im­prove­ments to the rear but­ton setup on the G3 for a bet­ter, tex­tured feel. The clean lay­out also makes them eas­ier to ac­cess.

Re­mov­ing the rear cover gives you ac­cess to the mi­cro-SIM and mi­croSD card slots. The mem­ory slot sup­ports cards of up to 128GB, which aug­ments the in­ter­nal stor­age ca­pac­ity of 32GB. Out of the box, the G3 comes with 24.43GB of avail­able stor­age space re­main­ing.

The star of the show is its 5.5-inch Quad-HD (QHD) dis­play. With a res­o­lu­tion of 2,560 x 1,440 pix­els, the G3 boasts a whop­ping 534ppi, the high­est pixel count of any avail­able smart­phone. Do the ex­tra pix­els ben­e­fit the user ex­pe­ri­ence?

While there are cer­tainly good things to say about

the dis­play such as the true-to-life col­ors, sharper icons, text and im­ages, do not ex­pect the bump in res­o­lu­tion to im­prove the over­all view­ing ex­pe­ri­ence by leaps and bounds.

In­stead, LG gave its in­ter­face a ma­jor re­haul. What you’ll see now are sim­ple, flat graph­ics with a clean, min­i­mal­ist look. Over­all, these mod­i­fi­ca­tions led to the emer­gence of a dif­fer­en­ti­ated de­sign lan­guage that LG can truly call its own.

Apart from UI de­sign, LG also im­proved the typ­ing ex­pe­ri­ence on the G3 via its Smart Key­board. Not only can you ad­just the height of the key­board, it has adap­tive tech­nol­ogy to learn your typ­ing habits. When used, we ac­tu­ally found our typ­ing to be faster and more ac­cu­rate.

LG also has a vir­tual per­sonal as­sis­tant, Smart No­tice on the G3. It of­fers no­ti­fi­ca­tions on up­com­ing events, weather fore­casts and prompts you to en­able Bat­tery Saver once the bat­tery drops be­low 30%.

Like most re­cent An­droid flag­ship smart­phones, the G3 runs on a Qual­comm Snap­dragon 801 chipset. It comes in two con­fig­u­ra­tions: 16GB in­ter­nal stor­age with 2GB RAM, and 32GB in­ter­nal stor­age with 3GB RAM.

Its per­for­mance in bench­marks is com­pa­ra­ble to the com­pe­ti­tion, al­though scores are lower in some cases as the higher res­o­lu­tion dis­play is more tax­ing on the pro­ces­sor. The G3 gen­er­ally felt very smooth in its daily oper­a­tion.

The 13-megapixel rear cam­era takes pho­tos re­ally fast thanks to its laser aut­o­fo­cus, which is the same tech­nol­ogy used in the traf­fic po­lice radar guns to track ve­hi­cle speeds. Im­age qual­ity is ex­cel­lent with ac­cu­rate color re­pro­duc­tion and amaz­ing de­tails (at least on the G3 dis­play).

When it comes to bat­tery bench­mark­ing, the G3 took a beat­ing as the QHD dis­play proved to be a huge power drain. The re­mov­able 3,000mAh bat­tery lasted only about six hours, plac­ing the G3 last in its class. Un­der nor­mal us­age con­di­tions, our G3 man­aged 18 hours of up­time with two and a half hours of screen-on time.

Re­tail­ing at $868 (16GB) and $928 (32B), the G3 is priced lower than its com­peti­tors. Given the small price dif­fer­en­tial, there’s no rea­son not to opt for the 32GB model. It’s a shame about the bat­tery life, but when charged, we were hard pressed to find any other fault with the G3.

The LG G3’s rear has a metal­lic fin­ish that is some­what sim­i­lar to that of the HTC One (M8).

We liked the im­proved feel and tex­ture of the rear but­tons on the LG G3.

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