Android Central

While MobileCON 2012 won't be known for any major announcements or shakeups, it did give at least one company a spotlight to shine on its upcoming flagship powerhouse. LG , on hand for the final night here in San Diego, continued its marketing push with a blowout to celebrate its upcoming Optimus G, the superphone we've seen both in South Korea and in New York. Official for both AT&T and Sprint, we're now getting a closer look at the device that LG is banking on to put them back in the game.

We got our hands on both models at a launch party last night, and while both carry the Optimus G moniker, you'll notice in the photos as well as the video some very distinct differences-- take note: this is not a Samsung release.

Form Factor

The most noticeable difference between the two models is the shape and form factor. While the Sprint model more closely resembles the international version, complete with protruding 13 MP camera, rounded corners, and black reflective back, the AT&T model opts for sharper corners, a flush camera with framed flash, and a less-than-pitch black back. The physical power and volume rocker buttons on Sprint's model are a metallic silver, whereas they're darker and more uniform with the rest of the body on AT&T's version. AT&T's model is also slightly thicker and wider with a matte finish on both the top and bottom surfaces, and even LG's signature patterned reflective backplate differs ever-so-slightly from Sprint's.

Functionality

The differences aren't only skin deep. You'll notice some minor differences in the software, though both are running identical versions of Android 4.0.4 skinned with LG's UI, including different settings and preferences preset out of the box. The settings menu is radically different, with Sprint opting for the more traditional scroll down menu, whereas AT&T has chosen a new approach with a swipeable left-to-right menu broken into categories (something I haven't seen before on any Android device). And, though we were prepared for this, it's worth mentioning again that Sprint's model ships with a whopping 13 megapixel camera, while AT&T's sticks with a more modest 8 megapixel shooter.

 

Despite the differences, there really isn't too much to fret about here. Both are very much the Optimus G, complete with an S4 Pro quad-core processor, 2 GB of RAM, and LTE radios. LG's flagship certainly has the guts to compete in the big leagues, and whether you grab one on Sprint or AT&T, you'll be buying into one of the most powerful devices on the market today.

Take a look at the sublte differences in the photos and video below while we get to work on reviewing both of these devices, and be sure to stay tuned while we put the Optimus G through its paces in the coming days.

 
There are 32 comments

etnpnys says:

See... the LG Nexus is going to have to differentiate itself from these devices in some way other than slightly more rounded corners.

That makes me doubt some of the validity of the leaked rumors at least a little bit... Has there been a previous Nexus device that was identical to another offering from the manufacturer?

cjbrigol says:

The 2nd and 3rd nexus' were /close/ to the second and third Galaxy flagships, but no, nowhere close to identical.

movielover76 says:

I've seen the pics of the rumored LG nexus and it's not identical, the shape of the device and back is different. As far as the specs, why wouldn't they use the same hardware for all of their top end phones, nexus included.

liteon163 says:

The Nexus 4 and the LG Optimus G are not competing for the same customers. It doesn't really matter how different it is. People into the Nexus line will understand how superior the hardware is. People not into the Nexus line will listen to the store's salesperson.

dante501 says:

Lg really does actually brings out quality hardware but the screw ups in the software in recent memory But the LG 4X HD is a pretty decent device and if LG can now stable update and shows commitment i see a bright future for them but they have to proof a lot and need to deliver what they do hardware wise no doubt.

jaymoney1980 says:

Did you guys notice that the sprint version had the physical buttons. That irritated me throughout the whole video.

hmmm says:

Does that mean more of the screen is used for content or that the screen is a little smaller on the Sprint model. I don't care what type of buttons a phone has but if having capacitive buttons uses the bezel and gives me more screen real estate then that is the better option to me.

tommydaniel says:

Are you talking Home, Back, Menu? They are physical on both devices....

Cubfan says:

No SD slot on Sprint? No sale.

Robbzilla says:

Meh, with 32GB onboard, I'd survive. Well... I'd survive for a couple of years anyway.

ultraviolet says:

Has it been stated how much memory these will have?

dschoenike says:

in androidcentrals "hands on" with the sprint version. they said 32gb.

dschoenike

crxssi says:

That is storage not memory. It has 2GB of memory.

dhughes says:

The AT&T version will have 32GB and a SD card slot as well.

http://www.att.com/gen/press-room?pid=23408&cdvn=news&newsarticleid=35458

crxssi says:

That is storage not memory. It has 2GB of memory.

dhughes says:

Sorry yes it has 2GB of memory. I thought he was asking about storage, and just misspoke, since it says in the article how much memory it has.

they should be shipping with 32gb.

crxssi says:

That is storage not memory. It has 2GB of memory.

vinny jr says:

Lousy breakdown. The most important spec was left out. What about internal memory??? Last I heard was 8 gb. If that is the case this phone is junk and will noe sell. Complete Failure.

tommydaniel says:

This is the Optimus G, not the LG Nexus..

crxssi says:

It has 2GB of memory, not 8. Memory is also always internal.

jean15paul says:

Ggrrrr. D@mn 4-icon dock on the Sprint version.

tommydaniel says:

Just drag another icon down...

oversteer325 says:

Since the Sprint one has SprintID does it allow you to select the Vanilla ICS launcher rather than the LG skin like other SprintID phones?

E90 Commie says:

Interesting to see that LG is unable to design a smartphone so AT&T and Sprint just HAVE to step in and do the work for them.:)

It is time for this country to get standardized devices - there's no valid reason why a carrier should interfere with the design. They should just offer service and let the manufacturers develop the phones.

Robbzilla says:

Have you met Verizon & AT&T? Not happening.

E90 Commie says:

I know, I had a Thunderbolt and never again a device that has been modified by a carrier.

If the carriers are so interested in being manufacturers - why not go to a Chinese ODM and make their own device?

100% pure AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile or Verizon. Designed by them, manufactured under their control and with a specific carrier-derived version of Android called "CDroid". Google Play is replaced with V Cast Apps and similar stores of course.:)

Gorn says:

You guys really need to work on your photography and video. A 9 minute video and you couldn't spring for a tripod? How about some end-to-end shots to show width? And some glare elimination. With an off-camera flash and a curved piece of posterboard you can get nice product images for nothing:

http://thesybersite.com/minolta/ministudio/index.htm

st_7 says:

I'm eagerly waiting for the full review of these both phones especially about the camera part, if 8mp camera on At&t version phone can perform anywhere close to 13mp camera on sprint version phone, i'll be more than interested at&t version as it has sim slot & micro sd card slot.

aaronwe says:

Wait wait wait... you got both Optimus G's together in the same room and didn't get a side-by-side shootout with the cameras!?

The 13MP sample pics were simply awful. There's no excuse for cramming more megapixels into a tiny sensor while sacrificing image quality and adding noise. Here's hoping the 8MP version is a whole lot better.

obas#AC says:

Can you guys please do some tests with the camera's. More so with the 13mp as some leaked pictures seemed rather disappointing.

ArgonNJ#CB says:

ICS = FAIL