LG Optimus G versus… LG Optimus G

Dave Zatz —  December 25, 2012


After evaluating LG’s flagship Optimus G Android handset these last few weeks, we’re convinced the quad core, high res powerhouse should be on every smartphone shopper’s short list. Beyond the impressive specs, the Optimus G is a handsome device to behold that challenges the iPhone in build quality and design symmetry. And, unlike some of its Android counterparts, the LG is not saddled with a shiny, creaky plastic covering (à la the Samsung Galaxy S line). My only real complaint is that it’s still running Ice Cream Sandwich, as opposed to the Jelly Bean build found on its white-labeled Nexus 4 brethren. However, LG does a very nice job augmenting Android with their Optimus UI 3.0 — enhancing functionality without getting in the way (not counting the carrier-loaded third party apps that require rooting for removal).

Here in the states, potential Optimus G owners have an interesting decision to make… going with the LS970 on Sprint versus the E970 for AT&T. Like early Samsung Galaxy variants that differed by carrier, LG muddies the water with two distinct US models. Sprint’s Optimus G more closely resembles the design aesthetics of their International variant via a protruding 13 megapixel camera, whereas AT&T’s model features a flush 8 megapixel shooter. Both include 32gb of onboard storage, but they differ in their implementation: Sprint’s Optimus G offers no memory expansion options, while half of AT&T’s storage is provided via a 16gb microSD card… that can be swapped for a larger chip. And I’ve found that accessible microSD slot quite handy in accessing my BlackVue car cam footage.

(Thanks to GigaOm’s Kevin Tofel for providing the comparison photograph up top!)