The LG Nexus 4 was announced on October 29, created to come and update Google’s famous Nexus line. The previous Nexus phone, which was made by Samsung, wasn’t the coolest device on the market in terms of hardware, though it came with the latest version of Google’s Android OS. Now the Nexus 4 manufactured by LG is running the new Android 4.2 OS, which offers a lot of amazing improvements. But what else can this phone boast of? And is it really worth buying? We’ll try to find it out now.
LG Nexus 4 hardware
LG has tried to arm it new Nexus 4 with the best features of the famous Optimus line, yet keeping its price as low as possible. That’s how we got a huge 4.7-inch device offering a resolution of 1280 x 768 pixels (320ppi pixel density – not bad, hm?), protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 2 and weighing only 139 grams (4.90 oz).
Inside the phone you will find a quad-core processor clocked at 1.5 GHz, together with 2GB of RAM, similar to the LG Optimus G. Well, you can call it a powerful CPU of course – they say it’s almost as good as that of the Samsung Galaxy S3. We are not sure the 2100mAh battery is enough to power these energy-consuming processor and touchscreen, but it’s still said to provide at least 15.3 hours of talk time, which is not bad, of course, if it’s true. The cameras are usual 8MP and 1.3MP ones – almost all modern smartphones have such cameras now.
Another advantage of the Nexus 4 is the wireless charging technology: the phone uses the Qi wireless standard, so finding a charger for it won’t be a big problem, but Google has still announced the Wireless Charging Orb – a really cool and stylish accessory that is expected to be fully compatible with the Nexus 4.
All of the specs mentioned above seem to be rather attractive, but the LG Nexus 4 has two big shortcomings, too. First, it comes in two versions only featuring 8 and 16GB of internal memory and NO support for microSD cards, so you can forget about storing huge amounts of data on your phone. For many users it’s a very big problem. Second, LG and Google haven’t added LTE support to the phone: they said LTE wasn’t quite “consumer-ready,” whatever it means; but perhaps they did it just to cut down the price of the Nexus 4. This will be a problem for those who’re used to LTE, but people from areas with no LTE coverage won’t care at all.
Android 4.2 and its new features
Most versions of Google’s Android OS have special “sweet” codenames coming in alphabetical order: Cupcake, Donut, Éclair, Froyo, Gingerbread, Honeycomb, Ice Cream Sandwich, and Jelly Bean. Developing the Jelly Bean experience with further smoothening to the UI, Android 4.2 has a lot to offer.
First of all, it now supports multiple user accounts (though it’s available in tablets only – yet), each coming with its own homescreen, apps and widgets. Gesture typing, which has long been available thanks to the popular Swype app, is now built in the system, available for both smartphones and tablets. It’s also possible to place widgets on the lock screen and access quick settings (including display brightness, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and battery life) even faster than before – via the notifications area. Google Now has become smarter, too.
If you love taking photos, you’ll probably like the new camera mode in Android 4.2 called Photo Sphere. It’s a good improvement to the usual panorama mode, allowing tilting the phone not only left and right, but up and down, too, so you can get even bigger and cooler panoramic images.
So many features that were earlier made available via different apps are now implemented in the OS itself, so you won’t have to use any third-party apps any longer, which is of course very nice. Plus, Android 4.2 is promised to perform better and lack the lags of the previous versions, which also sounds very attractive.
LG Nexus 4 price and availability
The LG Nexus 4 is expected to be launched on November 13 in the UK, Germany, France, Spain, US, Canada and Australia, while other countries will get it a bit later, by the end of November. The 8GB model will be sold for £239 at the Google Play Store.
So is the LG Nexus 4 worth buying?
Well, what do we have here? The LG Nexus 4 is quite an attractive smartphone with good hardware and software. It does have a couple of shortcomings, of course, like the lack of LTE and microSD card slot, but the low price fully compensates for this.
If you like to store much info in your phone and use the super-fast LTE networks, perhaps the LG Nexus 4 is not for you. For all the others it’s an almost perfect smartphone for a rather affordable price.