LG is withdrawing from the smartphone market after more than 15 years of bitter struggle. The Korean manufacturer marked the history of telephony, with the first capacitive screen phone, before the arrival of the iPhone. Or the first smartphone with a double photo sensor on the back. Most of its phones have been dumped, but this will be remembered for a long time to come.
Historically, Seoul, South Korea, is home to two technological rivals – LG and Samsung. This April 5, 2021, LG Electronics announced its withdrawal from the telephony sector. This event will be a milestone, even if things are not going to change for us: since February 2019, LG Electronics had indicated its choice to leave the French market.
LG Electronics has brought many technologies and innovations that are now on the majority of smartphones sold, others have been completely underestimated. Instead of making a long list of LG products, we bring you a selection of the phones that stood out for us.
We could have mentioned the LG Prada, the first capacitive screen phone (before the iPhone). Nevertheless the Viewty was really classy. It was not a smartphone, but this Viewty was considered an evolved smartphone with its touch screen (3 inches, 400 x 240 pixels), the whole was without a physical keyboard. We can not confirm that at the time it was an alternative to the first generation iPhone.
It has sold more than the first generation iPhone… you will have noticed its 5 megapixel CMOS camera on the back with Schneider Kreuznach optics, flash and image stabilizer. There was even a 120 fps slow motion mode… yes, in 2008. Finally, it was DivX certified, which was very rare at that time.
This is LG Electronics’ first Android smartphone and one of our first tests on Frandroid. It had this physical keyboard slider which made the whole thing very convenient. It was entry-level, it is clearly this kind of smartphone that began to popularize Android in France. We remember its Teflon back which made it possible to avoid slipping, it was a little apart alongside the HTC Hero or even the very first Samsung Galaxy.
LG Optimus 3D
A few years passed between the GW620 and the Optimus 3D, it was the kind of year where manufacturers were trying new things. As its name suggests, the Optimus 3D was a smartphone with a 3D screen without glasses (stereoscopic Nintendo 3DS type). It was the trend of the time, HTC also had its Evo 3D.
LG Optimus 4X HD
Why did they choose the Optimus 4X HD? In 2012, it was one of the few smartphones to be equipped with an ARM chip from Nvidia, like the Nintendo Switch. This was before Nvidia pulled out of this market. In 2021, Nvidia is in the process of absorbing ARM… for the Optimus 4X HD, we were talking about a Tegra 3 which gave access to some fairly unique games: Princess Punt THD, Riptide, Shadowgun THD, Samurai II: Vengeance THD… thanks to the Tegra 3’s GPU. You can find his test here.
LG Nexus 4
How could we have forgotten the Nexus 4? Co-developed by Google and LG, it succeeded the Nexus One, the Nexus S but also the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. Its asset was obviously its OS in a sleek version but also its price: 199 euros in 8 GB version. It was a very popular smartphone on Frandroid, it was powerful (Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro) with a beautiful IPS screen (4.7 inches , HD). It survived from Jelly Bean (Android 4.2) to Lollipop (Android 5.1). You can reread his full test on Frandroid.
LG G2 et LG G3
The Optimus brand has disappeared… it was the LG Gx era. The LG G2 dates from 2013. It included an IPS LCD screen in Full HD definition, which was clearly impressive at the time, and we remember the Snapdragon 800 which did wonders.
The G3 was equipped with the famous IPS + screen in QHD definition as well as the Snapdragon 801 chip. We remember its 13 megapixel rear photo sensor, it was capable of filming in 4K. The laser autofocus system was also an improvement over the slow AF systems of the day. With 10 million sales, it was a real success.
These models had the particularity of offering buttons located at the back of the shell, directly accessible under the index finger.
It wasn’t a good smartphone, but it was the first smartphone with a curved OLED display. It was not recommendable but that made it an object of curiosity, an attempt, a technical test … before folding smartphones.
Samsung, LG and Samsung 5X 5
The collaboration with LG has lasted a long time, with the LG Nexus 5 and Nexus 5X. The one that stood out to us is the LG Nexus 5, an alternative to the Samsung Galaxy S4 and LG G2. It still offered excellent value for money, euro for euro.
The LG G5 is the most underrated smartphone on the list. He had a modular system for hooking up accessories to him. But more importantly, he was one of the first to introduce the dual-camera system on the rear – with an ultra-wide-angle camera in addition to the classic wide-angle. LG then abandoned the modular system because… it was poorly integrated with an impression of too great fragility.
LG also had the good idea, despite the presence of IPS LCD technology, to integrate an “Always on-display” functionality. In short, it was the smartphone of innovation.
LG G8X ThinQ
The LG G8X ThinQ Dual Screen offered the benefits of a foldable design at a normal price for a smartphone. But unlike the folding screen on the Samsung Galaxy Fold, the G8 had a second screen in the form of a clip-on case.
We did not know it in France, but the LG Wing will undoubtedly mark one of LG’s last chapters on the smartphone market. The LG Wing 5G is different from most other phones. It has a front screen that swings horizontally and upwards to reveal a smaller screen below.