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Bell to launch LG Optimus L5 for only $199.95 unlocked

July 2, 2012

Canadian carriers are not exactly known for their small prices. The prices of phones on contracts may look reasonable at first sight, but the contracts last for three years, and the carriers make sure they make a lot more money on a phone than they are investing in subsidies. This is why it’s a little surprising to see Bell selling a decent Android 4.0 smartphone for only $200 unlocked.

The LG Optimus L5 specs include a 800 Mhz Cortex A5 processor, which should be significantly faster than ARM11 (by 20% or so). The good news is that it seems we’re finally getting to the point where we can get rid of ARMv6 processors in our phones, and we’re moving fully to ARMv7 processors, even for the low-end of the market.

Cortex A5 is an ARMv7 processor and the phone comes with Android 4.0, which means that Chrome should run on it (Chrome doesn’t run on the low-end ARMv6 chips). Alternatively, if Chrome doesn’t run on ARM v7 right away, Google can implement support for it much more easily, than if they were to port Chrome to the ARMv6 architecture.

The Optimus L5 also includes specs such as a 480×320 resolution 4-inch display, 512 MB of RAM, 2.7 GB of internal storage, a 5MP camera with VGA video-recording, and a 1500 mAh battery. As you can see, this phone really is low-end, but it does run the latest version of Android (considering Jelly Bean is not out yet), so you should get a pretty smooth experience on it, even on such low-end hardware.

There are no words on if this phone is getting Jelly Bean or not. Considering that Jelly Bean is a pretty minor upgrade under the hood, I think they will upgrade it, just like they upgraded the LG Optimus One from Froyo to Gingerbread. But LG isn’t saying anything officially about it yet, so, if you care about getting Jelly Bean, you might want to wait for an actual announcement. If it does get Jelly Bean, this low-end phone should run even faster, but that’s only if LG’s new Optimus UI doesn’t slow it down too much.