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First Impressions: LG G Pro 2 — A Great Alternative to the Note 3

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We played with LG’s latest and greatest — the G Pro 2 — right here at Mobile World Congress 2014 in Barcelona and found out why this amazing device is a great, if not, better alternative to Samsung’s Galaxy Note 3.

The LG G Pro 2 replaces the Optimus G Pro in LG’s range of flagship devices and as far as specifications are concerned the device sits square with the Samsung Galaxy Note 3. The G Pro 2’s processor, RAM, storage and battery capacity are all identical to its closest rival. That means you get top of the line spec like a fast and power frugal 2.3GHz Snapdragon 800 quad-core processor, 3GB of RAM, LTE connectivity, a choice of 16 or 32GB of on board storage, both support microSD expansion for cards up to 64GB in size and both have the same 3,200mAH battery capacity.

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But the G Pro 2 differentiates itself in a few key areas. While both have 13MP camera that are capable of shooting 4K videos, the 13MP camera on the G Pro 2 comes with an optical image stabilizer and incorporates improved image processing to produce a more natural tone and better white balance in pictures when using flash (a feature that LG calls Natural Flash). From our brief time with the device, the LG looks to be the better shooter thanks to the OIS and better image processing.

The G Pro 2’s full HD 1080p display is slightly larger measuring 5.9-inches versus the 5.7-inches on the Note 3 but with a thinner bezel design, the G Pro 2 doesn’t feel any bigger than its rival. Display technologies are different too, where the Note 3 features Samsung’s latest Super AMOLED HD technology, LG uses its IPS LCD display technology to produce a vivid, bright and sharp viewing experience of which we have no qualms with. It is a great display and we’d argue that the G Pro 2 edges the Note 3 in this area despite having a more pixel dense display (386ppi on the Note 3 vs 373ppi on the G Pro 2).

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Build quality is where the G Pro 2 excels as well. While the design may look simple and plain, the G Pro 2 is much better to hold than the overly plastic Note 3. The removable textured back panel with a matt finish feels great, almost cloth-like to the touch and resists fingerprint smudges exceptionally well too.

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In terms of design the G Pro 2 is unconventional with no physical buttons at the front. Instead, you get on screen navigation buttons. The power button and volume rocker is located at top centre of the back panel and will require some getting used to. Your fingers will find it awkward to reach behind to switch on the device or adjust the volume but it eliminates accidental presses when you put the device in landscape mode. Good thing also that LG has the unique Knock Code where a series of quick taps on the screen switches on the device. This means you don’t really need to use the power button in most cases.

On the software side, the G Pro runs on Android 4.4 KitKat out of the box complete with LG’s own set of smart features that are not much different from the ones available on the Note 3 like multi-screen mode and mini apps like calculator and timer that run on top of main apps. We have no issues with the smart features in the G Pro 2. The interface design is clean and light while the smart features are easy to use and come in useful when you want to multi-task or get a number of things done on your device at the same time.

One glaring omission though is the inclusion of a stylus. This is fine for us as we very, very rarely use a stylus but to others who like having the feature handy, you will miss it on with the G Pro 2.

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So what do we think about the LG G Pro 2. While our time with the device was brief, LG’s latest flagship left an impressive lasting impression.The G Pro 2 — from our first impressions at least — is a capable and great alternative to the omnipresent Galaxy Note 3. The G Pro 2 outshines the Note 3 in many respects and it is a device that we are looking forward to seeing in Malaysia. Pity however, LG Malaysia has been very quiet with regards to its plan on growing its mobile business in the country and if things remain the way they are, the G Pro 2 might not even make go on sale in Malaysia.

LG G Pro 2 Hands On Video

LG G Pro 2 Hands On Photos

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