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LG G2 Hands-on, Tour and Gallery

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LG announced the G2 smartphone today, and since we are in New York for the party, we got some hands-on time with the device right after they unveiled it. The device features a gorgeous 5.2″ 1080p display, Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, a 13MP back-facing camera equipped with OIS technology (first of its kind in a mobile device), and that very interesting button configuration along its backside. 

So far, I must say I am very impressed with what LG has created. The phone is lightweight, looks stunning. takes phenomenal pictures, operates at blazing speeds, and brings some interesting proprietary software which we will highlight a little later.

Down below we have our quick intro/hands-on video, as well as an image gallery.

Gallery

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Hands-on

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  • JoshHenry

    I like the phone, but not much about it intrigues me. I still need to get my hands on it, but it seems like just another more powerful, big screened, black slated phone. Nothing revolutionary. Yet they started their presentation off defining “Innovation”.

  • JoshHenry

    The gimmicks that LG is pushing for the G2 aren’t that cool to me. I feel like all of those features that they so called innovated could be found with a quick search in the play store.

  • NexusMan

    LG officially takes the prize for dumbest smartphone feature: “Knock to wake”

  • Brian Wolfman

    I wonder how this phone is when I lay it on a table. Does the power button get pushed accidently? Does it make it wobble?

  • Bradley Allen

    What happens when you set it down? Does it rest on the power button?

  • Michael Nichols

    If they include scrolling from back I’d be alot more interested

  • Inez_carroll325

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  • http://www.vinsonimages.com yamaha83

    the main design flaw i see with those rear buttons is constantly rubbing your dirty fingers over the lens of the camera…. for that reason alone, this phone is off my list.

  • Steven Berger

    The UI such a cheap copy of TouchWiz…it seems ALOT worse then it too.

    • Godzilla

      launchers

  • Malcolm Love

    Did you really have to knock on the screen? I lol’ed irl.

    • ToddAwesome

      With the power button on the back it actually makes sense, if you keep your screen facing up at you all day. Now, the power button on the back, um, sure…

      • Malcolm Love

        I know the feature is called “Knock Knock” but of all the hands on vids I’ve seen of this device, he was the only one to actually KNOCK on the device and not just tap….I think he took that a bit too literally.

        • Dave Hernandez

          I noticed this too. You just need to tap it twice as evidenced by all the other hands-on videos. He actually knocked. I was like “wuuuuut?”

  • prestone1

    keep the notification bar pulldown for notifications and then a small area for settings or toggles. its ridiculous with a 5″ screen you cant see all of your notifications.

  • panicswhenubered

    If only the G2 used the Moto X’s software and UI…

    That being said, I think I’ll wait in hopes of a G2 Nexus or Google Edition.

  • jer85008

    So we have to choose between a phone with mid-range hardware and awesome software (Moto X) and stellar hardware with crap software (LG)? That sucks.

    And if anyone thinks there will be a Nexus 5 variant of this phone anywhere near $300 unlocked/direct from Google within the year they are nuts.

  • Zach Armstrong

    That nonfiction panel is just hideous looking

    • joejoe5709

      lol. nonfiction. gotta love autocorrect.

  • OneForTheGoodDays

    Is there a reason I shouldn’t be happy with the Droid Ultra? Do people here think it will have Dev support?

  • David Benson

    And my comment stays true… I HATE LG SKINS

  • Chris Schmucker

    Throw CyanogenMOD on this and we may have a winner.

  • joejoe5709

    I’m at work so I can’t watch the video, but this phone has huge promise. Despite the insane specs, there’s no way I’d put up with the fugly cluttered UI so here’s hoping the bootloader is unlocked (Verizon…) or there’s a Nexus5 (again, Verizon…) in the pipeline based off this. The rear buttons are very very interesting. I bet every Android fan watching this coverage is awkwardly holding their phone today trying to see what it would be like. I know I am. And it’s not as bad as it sounds or looks. And if it means those bezels look the way they do – I’m definitely down with that. Knock Knock is slightly gimmicky stop gap for the weirdness and would only be useful on a blank part of your homescreen. I’m thinking some custom notification power widget magic could help with that. The phone itself isn’t particularly pretty especially from the rear but I can handle that. Remove some of the badging (Verizon…) and you’ll have a pretty decent Nexus-esque phone. I don’t think the build quality is as nice as the MotoX or HTC One but that’s alright I guess. For now I just can’t keep my eyes off that stunning screen… WOW.

  • Taylor Abrahamson

    It’s pretty gorgous piece of hardware if you ask me. Damn I hate everything they did to the OS though. Notification draw is AWFUL

  • http://www.naskaras.com/ Thanassi Karageorgiou

    As an informed consumer I’m offended at the “DSLR-like” camera claim.

    Really? How exactly is this camera “DSLR-like”?? because it has active image stabilization? LMAO Point and Shoots have had that for a decade. Because it has 13 megapixels? YAWN. When will the Megapixel myth stop? It’s never been about the amount of pixels, but lather the SIZE of the sensor and pixels that most contribute to image quality and low light performance. The 3.2MP sensor on my 2008 LG Dare dumb-phone has been the better than any android phone i’ve owned to date. And I’ve owned man of the flagships.

    Furthermore,
    Does it offer the mounting of powerful, interchangeable lenses from various manufacturers? NO
    Does it offer the precise manual control, speed and ergonomics of a DSLR? NO
    Does it have a Full-Frame or even APS-C sized sensor? NO
    Does it accept high-speed Compact Flash or even SD cards? NO
    Does it capture RAW files? NO
    Finally, Does it have a physical shutter, an optical viewfinder with prism? (The “SLR” part in “DSLR”) LOL. NO.

    So how exactly is this camera even in the same sentence as “DSLR”?

    Marketing Directors should be ashamed of themselves, misleading consumers.

    End Rant

    • starnovsky

      I agree to most, but LG Dare had a POS camera. I had one, I know. :)

      • http://www.naskaras.com/ Thanassi Karageorgiou

        I’m sorry you feel that way. Mine was exceptional. Also, what other phone at the time did 120fps slow-mo video mode, even at the VGA resolution? =)

        • starnovsky

          The software and resistive screen were so bad that I barely was able to use camera at all

          • http://www.naskaras.com/ Thanassi Karageorgiou

            Granted, but the camera itself performed very well for me, even in low light. The physical shutter button had nice tactility and was very responsive. I have 5×7 prints from that phone that are framed and on display in my house. =)

          • starnovsky

            Wow, interesting insight! Maybe I should dust off that old LG Dare and try that camera again. :) I probably was underestimating it.

          • geedee82

            Yeah I had the LG Dare too, it really did take some fantastic pictures.

          • LionStone

            Yea, but you know how to take a photograph…and I think most people are just used to automatic everything. You probably learned on an old manual only SLR, as I did…and even though you can’t control the timing on a camera/phone, you can do things to help the lighting to get a better photo…rather than not thinking about any of that and just snapping away.

    • joejoe5709

      Eh… I think most everyone knows this isn’t half as capable as a DSLR. It’s just marketing speak to illustrate how special the OIS is. Hopefully we’re getting the point where this will replace most point and shoots.

      • http://www.naskaras.com/ Thanassi Karageorgiou

        I hear ya. Marketing BS just makes me mad sometimes.

        • joejoe5709

          I know. I hear ya. I didn’t mean to flame you. I agree. Just one of those things you shake your head at and move on. Like almost every commercial on TV. Most of them spout crazy information with little print down at the bottom that makes their facts practically false. But in this case, I don’t think there are many people who will pick up this phone expecting anything beyond a typical smartphone/point and shoot. And if they do, then that’s a shame.

          • http://www.naskaras.com/ Thanassi Karageorgiou

            Good points.

            But photography is my business, and I’m constantly giving advice to friends and family about hardware purchases based on their needs and budget. I’m surprised at how overwhelmingly uninformed and ad-influenced most of them are because of exaggerated claims like this.

            Its as appalling as phone manufacturers highlighting their phones’ camera features in print/web ads where the phones are depicted with on-screen pictures that are not produced by said phone’s hardware. Again, this is my trained eye and background at work, so it may not be as obvious to most consumers, but its nevertheless deeply misleading.

            Need proof? check out Apple’s own Facetime page on their site: http://www.apple.com/mac/facetime/

            The third picture down on the right shows a young girl face-timing from what appears to be her Macbook. Notice the background is out of focus? At that distance from the subject, no compact image sensor (like the ones used in laptops and cell phones) has the optical capability to produce this aperture effect. I wont get into technical jargon, but it is physically impossible.

            So how does apple make it happen? Hired photographers, professional equipment and lighting. Certainly not a screen capture.

      • DainLaguna

        But even the marketing is wrong: the HTC one and various Nokia’s already use ois, so how is its inclusion here the ‘first of its kind in a mobile device?’

        It just isn’t true.

        And its kinda weird that Tim didn’t throw a ‘yeah that’s bs’ disclaimer given that this site has covered one of the other devices that already has it (the HTC one) pretty extensively.

        • LionStone

          Agree…that part rubbed me the wrong way as well…should have said “the first on a 13mp”…

    • Bigwavedave25

      Ah nostalgia, I recently reactivated my old Dare on a 3rd line to make way for our upgrades. Man, forgot how much I liked that phone…

      • http://www.naskaras.com/ Thanassi Karageorgiou

        My current phone’s screen is bigger than the Dare lol

        • Bigwavedave25

          Nice.
          I even pulled up BitPim for the heck of it the other day just to see if I remembered the folder paths to ringtones and other misc stuff I used to mess with. Good times :)

          • http://www.naskaras.com/ Thanassi Karageorgiou

            Oh wow. BitPim. I thought I was so cool using that haha

  • JasonWhite

    Now I’ve only messed around a little bit with other launchers. I haven’t felt the need on my GNex. But would Nova Launcher or some other be able to clean this up? Like could you replace the pull down notifications? Or are launchers mostly for icon packs/number of homescreens/added gestures?

    • JasonWhite

      Bueller?

      • LionStone

        hehe…yes, I believe you are correct…i have Nova Prime running on my DNA and it doesn’t have any change options for the pull down panel.

        • JasonWhite

          Gotcha. Good to know!

          Thanks :)

  • Chris King

    I would think those back buttons would make pocket dialing way to frequent.

    • socarwolverine

      It’s the volume and power button, you use those to dial?

      • Chris King

        No but it’s been said they can unlock your phone which in turn turns the screen on and then it can make a call.

  • IHATEHIPSTERSSS

    aaaand r.i.p g$4

  • RoadsterHD1

    Hey Tim, get us a AnTuTu or Quadrant score on that puppy.

  • JasonWhite

    When showcasing that your phone is better “looks wise” maybe you shouldn’t put it next to two competitor phones with waaaaaay cooler icon packs set up on them.

    • Eion

      I noticed that as well haha. Wonder why they loaded non-standard icon themes onto the Samsung and HTC.
      What icon set is the GS4 running?

      • JasonWhite

        I’m not sure but I do believe that I like it!!!

    • Dane Carpenter

      I’m guessing those are Droid-Life phones

      • Eion

        Ah, that would make much more sense!

      • JasonWhite

        Hmmm. Maybe. Looks like they are under a case though. Like inside a plastic box.

        • Dane Carpenter

          The LG has the alarm charger on it and the other two do not. I’m thinking they are not in a case

          • JasonWhite

            Fair enough :)

        • http://www.kovdev.com/ kover

          Definitely not in a case.

          • JasonWhite

            Sorry. The ghostly shadow of the pole over the S4 and the way the text from that other screen was reflecting towards the top of the G2 – thought it looked like a large plastic encasing.

      • http://www.kovdev.com/ kover

        You guess correct.

    • http://www.kovdev.com/ kover

      Those phones were actually put there by Tim and I. Totally not part of the display.

      • JasonWhite

        Well in other news – your icon pack is sweet. What is it?

        • http://www.kovdev.com/ kover

          It’s called Nox. I haven’t released it to Google Play yet, but hope to do so soon.

  • Eion

    Just watched the video. Good lord there’s alot of clutter when you pull down the notification shade.

  • Tyler Durden

    Perfect phone..and being all carrier. Unless the note 3 wows me. This is it.

  • Colin Huber

    Dat bezel doe.

    • Tyler Durden

      DAT joke doe

  • RoadsterHD1

    I’m not feeling the buttons on the back thing. I didn’t see the headphone jack either….
    Spec’s are not an issue anymore, The marriage between the HD and SW is what makes the phone.

  • Bionichomer

    great specs, but poor implementation. unnatural power/volume activation, terrible UI, fingerprints. I prefer good UI… Moto X looking good.

  • Liderc

    Jeesh, the back looks awful. Settings sigh…. and I think that screen is too big for me personally. They should have stuck to 5” and reduced the size. The front minus the logo looks very nice.

  • AdamJay

    The hardware looks pretty amazing (from a spec perspective), but the UI looks absolutely terrible. The icons and overall design look like they’re 10 years old and it doesn’t seem nearly as fluid as it should considering it’s packing a Snapdragon 800.

    Granted, I haven’t used it myself, but I have to say I’m more interested in the Moto X at this point.

    • duoexo

      Seems like if I were to get this phone. Nova Launcher would be the first thing installed till the Dev community can clean up the ugly.

  • http://www.getintonursing.com/ Jon

    Wow they really went for Touch Wiz vibe but it looks even more busy and awful looking. Nexus 5 is hour only hope with this device.

    They should have gone the motorola route rather than the Samsung route. Less is more.

  • turdbogls

    Tim sounds like Nick Swardson…lol

    anyway, if the nexus 5 is based off this, i think i just found my next purchase.

    while i like most of what LG does with the UI, the drop down and settings app are horrendous. but I like the camera,lock screen,dialer, and some of their other features.

    • Steve B

      Agreed. Nexus 5 will be my next phone if it’s anything like what this thing is packing.

  • dannyWHITE

    I feel like LG left out some things we all wanted to know like removable storage, wireless charging, and those Quickwindow cases.

  • Chris I

    I always love the demo of “how fast this phone is” by flipping through the home screens. “Oh yeah, wow, look how fast it goes…”
    Cracks me up every time. Sure hope it has an SD slot, a removable battery, and maybe, just maybe, a Nexus experience possibly?

  • PowersUSA

    Google play addition and I’m there

    • keltypack

      The Google Edition would be great, but the price also has to be right (<$500) to select this over the Nexus 4.

      • DainLaguna

        It most certainly will NOT be that cheap if it comes in GPE form.

        Even so, that battery and display maybe worth the extra 300 or so

  • Geoffrey Gunter

    I hate to be this guy, but it would be awesome to see a new Nexus reflect the G2, though I have to say I’d be pretty surprised if Google gave a Nexus a 5.2 inch screen.

    • http://www.getintonursing.com/ Jon

      Me too…but they really need to do something in the 5″ space. I hope that they continue both the Nexus 4 and a new line in the Nexus 5.

      That would round out the lineup really well. Nexus 4, 5, 7, 10.

    • joejoe5709

      I have my doubts that all of the specs will make their way to a Nexus but it certainly seems like a good start. I mean even if it’s a little smaller with a slightly slower processor I think we’ll still be in good shape. A phone matching 75% of these specs is still going to be a beast of a phone. And I would be pretty blown away if they included the rear buttons which might mean large bezels. And on a 5″ screen the bezels need to disappear.

      This is a next gen phone and I doubt Google would have time to optimize KLP to these cutting edge specs (especially with JBQ’s announcement). So I would expect something between this and the Nexus4 specs-wise.

      Some people have expressed interest in a Nexus4 and a Nexus5 existing at the same time. If Google thinks there’s a market, it’s not a bad idea. I wouldn’t even mind if the Nexus5 were a bit more expensive that we’re accustomed to with Nexus phones. Moto X for the Nexus4 replacement and the LG G2 for the Nexus5. Boom. Apple who?

      • starnovsky

        Snapdragon 800 was available to OEM sampling for quite a while. I’m sure Google got to play with Qualcomm’s dev kit.
        JBQ wasn’t responsible for Android development, AFAIK.

  • Kane

    NOX sighting..

  • Thomas

    Galaxy Note 2S? ;)

  • Chicostyles

    GPE PLEASE then i might consider!

  • Justin Barrett

    That pull down notifications is hideous. Gimmicky UI tricks, very much like Samsung. I’ll probably pass.

    • vitriolix

      Makes touchwiz look refined which if saying a lot

  • dtraini30

    Dear Lord that UI is awful.

    • Geoffrey Gunter

      It seriously kills the phone for me. The head of software design at LG must be blind.

    • jose

      It’s the only thing that would hold me back from getting this. It’s like Samsung ate too many Skittles and puked.

      • joseph barrientos

        CM tho…

    • Joseph A. Yager

      Custom Launcher from the Play Store fixes that issue – Nova Launcher has been my launcher of choice for a long time now (on my Gnex).

      • dtraini30

        While it does fix some things, it does not fix the dialer, text messing app, notification bar, horrible settings layout, etc.

      • jose

        Yeah but did you see that notifications menu? Good lord. Seizure-inducing.

      • Steve B

        Yeah, a launcher only covers so much though. Lipstick on a pig.

      • C-Law

        I use nova launcher even with stock android but it won’t fix this god awful notification menu. What a disaster

    • C-Law

      Yeah! Id have to see official cyanogenmod come to it before I could even consider it now!

    • michael arazan

      Can I get an LG G2 with the Moto X software and almost stock Android Please?

  • Chicostyles

    speakers on the bottom

    • joejoe5709

      Better than the back if ask me. And if the speakers are as good as they say they are, it shouldn’t be a problem. Sure, the front is optimal but then you end up with crazy bezels.

  • Futbolrunner

    Where are the speakers on this guy?

    • Dale

      On the bottom – by the microUSB port.

    • dtraini30

      On the bottom.

    • Weber

      On the bottom.

    • Robert Macri

      On the bottom.

    • Futbolrunner

      On the bottom?

    • jose

      On the bottom.

    • marko358

      …and doctor

  • sc0rch3d

    I could see an APK being developed with a great Knock Knock Who’s There app

  • dannyWHITE

    The pinch out on the home screen is to be able to show off your wallpaper without all the clutter of apps and widgets blocking it.

  • Daeshaun Griffiths

    Dave?

  • D.B.Evans

    Wow – look at all the fingerprints already …

    Is the headphone jack on the bottom? Liiks like it in the photo.

  • jose

    I think I want this. Never owned an LG device before. What’s the bootloader situation like? Is it easy to hack and get rid of L-Gizz?

    • Tyler Durden

      And lose all the features. Just buy a nexus 4.

      • jose

        Verizon…No intention of switching ATM.

      • Justin Barrett

        What features?

        • Tyler Durden

          Camera mainly.

          • joejoe5709

            Worth losing some camera capability to lose the terrible UI. I’d put CM on this thing in heartbeat.

      • http://ntang.tumblr.com/ Nicholas Tang

        Or… wait a few months and buy a Nexus 5. :)

        • Tyler Durden

          For me being stuck on a pos gnex. I need to upgrade soon.

          • Chippah

            haha you too eh?

          • Chris Schmucker

            Just bought a 3500Mah battery for my Gnex. If you can get over the extra bulk, with 4.3, the Gnex is still chugging along just fine. But i am getting a little envious of the competition.

          • Eric Mosley

            I’m still on Gnex too my main complaint more so than the battery is and always will be the reception. I’m in Dallas on Verizon it should be 4G everywhere I go and it struggles bad and is most of the time on 3G. It is a damn shame beacuse I love this phone.

          • Chris Schmucker

            True. I live on the outskirts of a medium-sized city and it struggles to maintain a constant 4g signal

          • Josh Oberg

            mine struggles in phoenix as well

          • C-Law

            Yeah I feel ya! I bought a used gs3 in December when I cracked the screen on my gnex. I ran the phone with cm on it and it was basically what the gnex should have been, awesome screen, signal, battery life, but I just sold it thinking the Moto x would be cheaper than what it is and am currently using my gnex again until I find a good phone to buy and it’s killing me. The battery life even with the extended battery is abysmal, and I can keep it on Wi-Fi with lte off, lol

      • joseph barrientos

        lol in which way is the phone that same in specs as the N4? if anything hold out for the 5, but if you’re talking about pure AOSP then yes, nexus is the way to go

        • starnovsky

          It’s by far not the same. But if somebody wants unlocked LG phone to install AOSP then Nexus 4 could be a good choice.