Share this Story

Onliner Briefly Reviews the LG Nexus – Compares to Galaxy Nexus and Reminds You That It’s a Prototype

Onliner, a Russian news outlet, has had an LG Nexus prototype in its hands for a few days now, something we are all admittedly jealous of. Today though, they released a preview or semi-review of the device, giving us a look at what an unfinished prototype device is capable of. If you aren’t picking up the sarcasm in that last sentence, let me rephrase. Their review mentions “prototype” and “buggy” more than I care to count, so don’t buy into this as some definitive preview of LG’s Nexus phone. 

Overall, they talk about low benchmark scores even though it has a Snapdragon S4 Pro quad-core processor. They mention reboots and buttons not always working, the fact that it’s only running Android 4.1.2, and that Beam refuses to work. But again, it’s a prototype, so nothing has been optimized. For all we know, this isn’t even final hardware – and most certainly isn’t final software.

But, because we like talking about Nexus phones, let’s dive into the good parts of this, like how it compares to the Galaxy Nexus, the gorgeous display, and if the camera is decent or not.

Vs. Galaxy Nexus

Which one is the LG and which one is the Samsung? Tough to tell, right? Obviously, the one on the left is the LG Nexus, thanks to a moved speaker grill and a shiny silver iPhone 3GS-ish rim around the device. The form factor though, is almost identical. The only noticeable differences appear on the backside, which you can see below. The LG device does not have a hump, measures in slightly thinner, has an 8MP camera that sits off-center, and a mosaic tile finish. Oh, the front screen is not curved like on the last two Nexus phones from Samsung, something I actually enjoyed.


Here are 4 additional camera samples (resized) that are nothing to write home about. Onliner blames buggy camera software for the poor results, however, I’d argue for the 10th time that this won’t change when the phone is officially released because the stock Android camera software has always been awful and almost always produced low-end pictures. Since this phone is running Android 4.1.2, maybe we’ll see Android 4.2 at launch along with new camera software.


Onliner was quick to point out that the display is beautiful and on-par if not better in ways to the iPhone 5’s. Since the display is likely the same 4.7″ HD IPS+ display that is used in the Optimus G, this should surprise no one. They said that the display gets brighter than the iPhone’s, has worse contrast, and shows excellent viewing angles. We’ll talk more about this display soon, as we have two Optimus Gs in our possession.


It’s a prototype. Do I need to say this again? Prototype. Nothing about this phone is final or official except for maybe the processor, display, camera sensor, and RAM. For all we know, the software will be updated, hardware could change, and Google may have surprises up their sleeves for the unveil. I personally love the look, as the Galaxy Nexus design is still one of my favorites. It’ll be a great device, assuming it doesn’t come with only 8GB of internal storage.

Via:  Onliner

  • I keep seeing complaints lately about the stock android camera software. I am inclined to believe this as a Gnex owner.

    However, I am not familiar with quality replacement options. Any recommendations?

  • Holy Bezel!

  • Everybody complains about battery life but never stop to think that they might be on their phone too much.

  • Bionic

    Russians don’t know anything.

  • k_nivesout

    The site this is from is Belarusian, not Russian (yes there is a difference).

  • master94

    Worse kept secret in history. Lg Nexus looks great. Lg is best in hardware and fails in software so Google taking over software will make this the perfect phone

  • sagisarius

    I’m really starting to wonder if that thing is really a Nexus…. or maybe just some demo device LG made to pitch a Nexus idea to Google. Like some type of proto-prototype.

  • Adam

    Just for the record, the original article says it measures 0.3mm THICKER at 9.2mm deep. Compared to 9.2mm on the GSM GNex. That is all.

  • POGO?

    • descendency

      No Go.

  • Bionicman

    i know its a prototype but, man that camera is horrible. i think my gnex with jelly bean takes slightly better pictures! this phone is really starting to not impress me…

  • I_Am_Roy_Halladay

    If they do come out with a CDMA model, it’ll be a tough choice for me whether I should shell out the $400+ for this or just stick with my GNex. I wish I was more sold on this phone..

    • Bsody

      You must have a spending problem Mr. Halladay. I would have thought you would be able to find $400 laying around the mansion.

      • phatmanXXL

        Check the couch.

  • Bmos

    I love this phone but it not being an lte device and on Verizon makes me wanna pass. Can’t wait until the actual Optimus G comes out hopefully on Verizon and hopefully it at least gets timely updates. That’s the only thing I hate about android. Updates are far and between. And if I root and put a custom rom I lose some of the functions I may like from the original software.

  • nightscout13

    Camera location is fugly. non-removable battery is bad news.

  • Charlie

    Regarding the whole 5 Nexus rumor earlier this year. What if it was based off of SKU’s? We would have the 8gb N7, the 16gb N7, the 32gb N7, the rumored $99 N7 and this LG Nexus. That is five separate (albeit similar) Nexus variants.

    I’m sure it’s probably wrong, and that we will see other Nexus phones, eventually. Not this year though. Just some thoughts.

    • kixofmyg0t

      And still no more details on Occam…..which is none of the devices you listed.

      • Charlie

        Highly doubt there is much to it. Early Nexus 10 maybe? I, personally, don’t think it’s a separate Nexus phone. Just my opinion though.

        • kixofmyg0t

          We have Nexus 10 rumors, those could be Manta….but everyone is talking about Occam and Manta being Motorola products. I wish I had more to report.

          • Charlie

            As do I. We can only hope. Ha.

          • Charlie

            And if it is, I just don’t think Verizon will see it. Just my opinion.

          • kixofmyg0t

            Well, if I have to get off unlimited data I’m saying goodbye to Verizon anyway so it could still be an option for me.

  • Leo

    It’s lg come on it will obviously be garbage

  • RC

    The next nexus needs to address the 4 short comings of the current nexus to be really successful imo.
    1) Camera
    2) Battery Life
    3) Signal strength
    4) speaker volume (just make the thing loud enough that you don’t miss phone calls when the phone is in your pocket)

    • They need to nail the battery life on this thing.
      That would be the one thing that would keep me from using my upgrade on this.

      • vitriolix

        Agreed. I don’t care about my GNs battery life because I always have a spare battery in my wallet… but this thing has a sealed back :-

        • I still think that they are going to keep the screws there so when a battery gets old and loses its ability to keep a charge it can be replaced by the user.

          • vitriolix

            Point is if my battery runs low from over use (traveling, at a conference, etc), i pop in the battery from my wallet and I’m good to go. I do this constantly with my Galaxy Nexus. Losing that might be a deal breaker.

          • Agreed. Won’t make this very seriously if it is non removable.

    • smartguy05

      I agree with all but the last of your list. My speaker volume is just fine. Although I always run a custom rom and can crank it at anytime so I may have a different experience.

      • I have no issues with the speaker volume either… I actually use the phone to listen to music while i’m in the shower and even with the fan/shower on I can still hear it no problem.

        I am running a custom ROM (AOKP) but no increase in the volume.

        • Agreed. My speaker has never been an issue, not sure why I see people complain about it. Maybe there was a wide spread faulty speaker production of some sort, but my speaker is loud.

    • Cowboydroid

      I have never had this speaker volume problem that so many people complain about…

      Battery life is about the only thing I really want to see improved. If that means sticking a 3500 mah battery in it, DO IT!

    • I have MAJOR speaker issues. My ringer is ok cause I went through all the ringer options and found the one that was by far the loudest, “digital phone”. But as far as any kind of media, music, YouTube, ect. it’s horrible. I cant show someone a YouTube video unless their is literally no other noise going on. Very frustrating.

    • dsass600


      • Abgar Musayelyan

        That’s a lot of TT’s. B-)

    • michael arazan

      Speaker Volume Fail. This is why I still use my Moto D1 as my music player, and alarm clock. Without apps that boost the GNex speaker I’d never hear any rings or notifications, but the apps you have to turn on over and over again and don’t always continuously run in the back ground. Plus all the other minor let downs mentioned above

      • copperwatt

        People seriously listen to music on their phone speaker??? Why? Oh the humanity!

        • phatmanXXL

          You must have never been on urban mass transit

  • Ugh, not on Verizon is a HUGE disappointment.

    • Kyle Miller

      Is it really? I mean would you really want a faster than a GNEX but not quite superior overall build and specs plus it may not have LTE. No. If this is not on VZW then its no biggie. Bring on the motonexus any day!

      • I assume if it came to Verizon, it would have LTE. Verizon wouldn’t allow it any other way.

        But yes, you’re right, if this is the only Nexus this year, it’s a disappointment. But if there will be others than will be on Verizon (made by Moto or Samsung, then that’s fine I suppose). I have a hard time believing the “multiple Nexuses” rumor. I truly believe this will be the only one.

        • vitriolix

          F Verizon. I got suckered Into a two year contract last year for the nexus… now im going to pay the ETF to break free and buy an unsubsidized GSM phone, switch to tmo prepay and i’ll still come out ahead.

      • Amenemhat1

        True. All recent and to be released phones still do not have what it takes to call the G-Nex a dinosaur by any standards. This is probably the only phone that is about to reach 1yr old and can still be considered top of the line. Most phones are obsolete within 6-9 months from release since their next generation phones quickly come to market…

  • ddevito

    I’ve been in love with GNex’s design since I opened the box. I’m glad to see Google keep the design. The no logo monolithic design is gorgeous.

    What’s strange is that I would’ve expected this design to be used for a Galaxy Nexus 2 (whose model# GT-i9620 turned out to be the Galaxy Premier). It almost makes me think the LG decision was “last minute”, just like the Nexus 7, and that Google had this design concept in mind for Samsung (as it was reported earlier in the year that Google was rumored to pick Samsung once again). So this means that…

    1. Google truly does design the hardware (since this Nexus so closely resembles the GNex)
    2. The design was owned by Google (Nexus) and they picked LG at the last minute.

    I’m happy for LG, personally I wanted to see Motorola or Sony get picked.

    • Josh Nichols

      I don’t understand how any of your points mean that the design or the OEM were last minute? The Galaxy Premier never looked like a Galaxy Nexus, nor was it ever a “Galaxy Nexus 2”, people just assumed it would be because the model number was GT-i9260

      • Emad Zia

        ………and that is a pretty good indication of why it was rumored to be nexus 2.

        • Josh Nichols

          I never said it wasn’t rumored to be the Galaxy Nexus 2? I said the only reason people thought it was a Galaxy Nexus 2 was because of the model number. Obviously it was never meant to be a Galaxy Nexus 2.

      • ddevito

        Let me clarify…

        Samsung took full credit for the design of the Galaxy nexus – so if this upcoming Nexus is from LG, why does it look so much like a (Samsung) Galaxy Nexus??

        • Josh Nichols

          It’s possible Google liked the design and wanted to keep it consistent isn’t it?

  • user311

    Want to see the rest of the nexuses coming out. This LG looks ok, but after owning an LG revolution as a work phone and having a S3 as a personal phone, I find the LG lacking. And the fact that they aren’t giving it JB even though the Thunderbolt and Charge are getting it rubs me wrong.

    • JoshGroff

      Considering the S3 blows the Revolution out of the water, I’m not surprised you find it lacking.

      • user311

        Well I first felt that way well before I got the S3. Acquiring the S3 only made it feel that much worse.

        • JoshGroff

          I know that feeling, I had a thunderbolt. At least it wasn’t a work phone so I was able to root, ROM, and over clock it.

  • Jeff Tycz

    I dont mind the look at all (except i do wish it had the curved screen like the galaxy nexus) but I really really hope the hardware is going to change

  • Mikezilla Harris

    Its far too early to start the negative “LG” comments, right? Guess we’ll have to wait and see.

    • kixofmyg0t

      I’m holding off judgment, mainly because of the recent LG Optimus G video DL posted. I was like “damn that thing runs SMOOOOOOTH”

  • Greyhame

    I wish the back of my Nexus said Google on it instead of Verizon’s nasty check mark…

    • ddevito

      Nail polish remover = comes right off

      • Greyhame

        TIP OF THE DAY HERE!!!

        So doing this. Hmm, how to explain buying nail polish remover………..

        • TheCheapGamer

          I believe it’s acetone.
          Either way, say your bitch made a mess that you have to clean up.

          • Greyhame

            Haha. I do have a g/f actually… just a little fib for comedic effect. Still, I couldn’t help but laugh out loud at this. Caught me off guard.

          • Anyone who calls a woman a bitch the way you just didn’t isn’t worth listening to. Ever.

        • nightscout13

          Do you have a girl friend? Have her buy it. Unless you don’t have one. (at this time)

        • QQpayne

          Go to auto parts store, buy aircraft coating remover, its like pure acetone.

        • h_f_m

          What the… man up and buy it. Are you that worried about what people think?

        • Live2Rootz

          lol really? same guy that’s afraid to buy condoms at the store or pick up tampons for his girlfriend…man card revoked!

          • Greyhame

            you’re hilarious. also not very adept with jokes. you’re an oxymoron.

      • bad. ass.

      • a.youth.in.Asia


        • Greyhame

          +1 from me

      • MJ nexus

        The gsm is the real deal anyway that’s why it gets
        the first update!

    • JoshGroff

      You can get a replacement back plate. 😉

      • Is there one for the VZW extended battery that you know of?

        • JoshGroff

          Hmm, that I don’t know, I would assume so.

      • Greyhame

        Yeah, I have the extended battery. Gonna give the nail polish remover a shot!

        • JoshGroff

          Heck, worst case scenario you have to browse Amazon for an extended battery backplate.

    • New_Guy

      Verizon just wants to remind us all that they think they have all of us in check

  • misterwight

    Anyone have suggestions for a replacement for the stock camera software? (not manufacturer-specific, obviously)

    • Angelo Allegra

      Camera 360 Ultimate.

    • Greyhame

      Camera FX seems to work better for me. Seems slightly better quality than Vignette (but that app has come a long way as well). Haven’t tried 360 Ultimate.

    • JoshGroff

      FX Zoom is pretty good. (I think that’s what it’s called.)

  • Edmund75

    With this device scheduled to be unveiled end of the month, is that enough time to change anything hardware-wise? As for software, I’m sure Google will be ready. We’ll all find out soon!

    • cns2007

      There’s know telling how old that prototype is? Could be first of a few iterations.

  • Jared

    Sadly i’m just not excited about the next Nexus. I was hoping for a different look and a much better camera. I’ll save final judgement for when it is official.

    • I have a feeling that it will be one of those situations where the phone looks bad in pictures but better in real life.

      Sort of like the (for the lack of a better example) hatred of the unannounced iPhone 4 design when Gizmodo go the leak. Later everybody loved how it looked in real life (and then they started hating it again once the design didn’t change from the 4 to the 4s).

  • radiohead14

    i’m getting nervous that there are still no other Nexus rumors besides this LG. i would love for VZW to get a Nexus Maxx or a Sony one.. preferably a Sony, since the camera is more important for me.

    • Josh Nichols

      Verizon probably won’t get another nexus phone.

    • kixofmyg0t

      No other rumors? Where is Occam?

    • DainLaguna

      i would have loved a sony too 🙁

  • NB3

    Screw 2 year contracts

  • bitbank

    As an owner of a Galaxy Nexus, the new LG Nexus doesn’t have enough differences to interest me. If it had a larger display, radically better camera, or some unique new feature then I might consider buying one. I also have a Galaxy SIII and I like the hardware design better than the Galaxy Nexus, but I prefer to use the GNex as my daily phone due to the cleaner version of Android.

    • Josh Nichols

      Twice the cores and twice the memory, a better screen, and likely the next iteration of android isn’t enough?

      • Emad Zia

        my gnex with JB is incredibly smooth for me to get something that looks exactly the same and has a mediocre camera. Optimus G or HTC One X+ need to make their way to VZW… THAT i can justify.

        • vitriolix

          A little early to call the camera, how about we wait for some real world reviews? Almost any camera would be a huuuge upgrade from my GN

      • The next iteration of android should be on the gnex as well…

  • This is just one phone, I don’t see why everyone’s so baffled about it being sub-par. Aren’t we supposed to be seeing a handful of Nexus devices this year? Is so, don’t fret with the LG

    • moelsen8

      it’s getting kind of weird that this has been the only one repeatedly and repeatedly (and repeatedly) leaked… i was hoping for multiple too. definitely agree with kellex.. if this has more than 8gb storage, it would make me for the next year.

      • Charlie

        Totally agree. I think more devices are coming, but not until later. The LG phone will get the spotlight first.

    • Josh Nichols

      Well there have already been two nexus devices this year..

      • Emad Zia

        i hate this comment. i hear it all the time. bottom line is, most of us are more worried about devices, cell phones…. so although you’re technically correct, you know exactly what people mean.

        • Josh Nichols

          Google never said there would be five nexus phones, they said five nexus devices. So despite your hate for it for whatever reason, is correct.

    • Charlie

      I think we would have seen some leaks or heard more rumors by now. I bet this LG Nexus will be it for a while.

  • spliced249

    Iphones never change design. The world bitches. Nexus going to follow suit? Kinda meh… Still live my G-Nex. Plays Granny Smith just fine.

    • The iPhone is in it’s fourth design. The only thing that has really stayed the same is the black border with the home button at the bottom.

      The software, on the other hand, has changed very little and now looks dated.

      • I held the iPhone 5 and thought it was a dummy phone at first lol. I used it and it feels very awkward compared to my GNex or even my friend’s 4s

        • I would definitely have preferred them keep the weight of the old one.
          The phone also looks weird since it is so tall but not wide.