LG G Pro 2 hands-on (MWC 2014)

February 23, 2014
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MWC 2014 Coverage brought to you by: Bitdefender Mobile Security & Antivirus for Android.

We’ve seen the LG G2 mini, but what’s really exciting from LG’s MWC 2014 lineup is, of course, the beast of a phone that is the LG G Pro 2.

There’s no way around it: the 5.9-inch G Pro 2 is big, and if you have troubles using such smartphones, you could just as well stop reading this post right now. But if super large screens are your thing, of if you simply think you can adapt to the massive screen real estate offered by this phone, the G Pro 2 is definitely at the top of the Android flagship hierarchy.

Check out our quick hands-on look at the new LG G Pro 2 or read on for more.

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Design, build quality, and feel in hand

We already made it clear how imposing this phone is, but we have to note that it could actually be a lot bigger, if it weren’t for LG’s trademark thin bezels. Indeed, the G Pro 2 probably has the best screen to frame ratio of any mainstream Android device. It helps that LG has moved the power button and volume rocker on the rear of the phone, leaving the front solely to the display and a small LG logo.

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The phone is reasonably thin at 8.3 mm, and, at 172 grams, not that heavy, considering its size. The phone is well balanced and feels good in hand; the bigger size however, makes it harder to reach the buttons on the back, especially if you don’t have long fingers.

LG swapped the ultra glossy finish of the G2 with a semi-matte finish on the G2 Pro, and that helps with handling. Subjectively, it also looks and feels better in our opinion. Overall, LG did a pretty good job at designing the G Pro 2, but no design artifice can hide away that large footprint.

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Hardware and performance

We have a true Android champion here, with some of the best specs on any phone currently available. That starts with the Full HD IPS LCD display, which may not be as sharp (spec to spec) as other devices due to its larger size, but the difference is really minor. The colors are vibrant (AMOLED fans might have something to say about that), viewing angles are good, and brightness is excellent.

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Qualcomm’s current top of the line, the Snapdragon 800 SoC is in charge of the processing work, and the 2.3GHz Krait 400 CPU and Adreno 330 GPU do a great job, even when you throw heavy stuff at them. It helps that the G Pro 2 comes with 3GB of RAM, while storage options include 16GB and 32GB, expandable.

The battery is a great 3,200 mAh, and there’s all the connectivity options and sensors you might want.

The camera on the LG G Pro 2 is supposed to be special – not only it packs optical image stabilization, it packs OIS Plus, which is an image stabilization technology augmented by software enhancements for even smoother video and clearer shots. This is all marketing talk for now, and we look forward to seeing this OIS Plus in action. We plan to compare the G Pro 2 and the G2 in a side by side camera comparison, which should really help pinpoint any differences.

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One other trick that the G2 Pro is capable of is 4K image recording. Yes, you can record video at 4K resolution to play on your native 4K TV or monitor for glorious results. The utility of this feature is debatable for a majority of users, but that will change in the future, as more and more manufacturers transition to the standard.

Software

In the software department, the G Pro 2 is really similar to the LG G2 and even the tiny – by comparison – G2 mini. That means you get a KitKat-based Optimus UI implementation, with a lot of added bells and whistles, including Q Slide and LG’s floating apps implementation, Q Apps.

There’s some brand new stuff coming on the G Pro 2 as well, including Mini View, a function that allows you to resize the UI to a smaller size so you can use the phone with just phone. The G Pro 2 also comes with the Knock Code feature that combines the double tap to wake feature with a pattern lock. For what is worth, LG told us that all the new stuff will eventually come to other G series devices.

LG G Pro 2 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 3 aa 1

Wrap up

The G Pro 2 shapes up to be an expensive device and that’s understandable given that large, Full HD screen and the other good stuff on the spec sheet. We’ll see in a full review if the G Pro 2 can beat the Note 3 or other devices in that class, and if ultimately it’s worth its salt.

For now, we’ll tell you that – the LG G Pro 2 does shape up however to be an attractive piece of kit for people looking for the biggest possible screen on  a smartphone.

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