The year 2013 is still new and not much is expected from phone manufacturers at this moment although the market is awash with all kinds of new devices entering the market. The Android market is particularly the most dynamic when it comes to communication and computing with manufacturers coming up with all sorts of amazing devices, the latest most outstanding devices being the Samsung Galaxy line of devices, Xperia line of Smartphones by Sony, the Optimus smartphones by LG and a number including HTC One X and One X+ from HTC.
Unlike in other smartphones running other operating systems such as Apple’s iPhone and those running Windows and Blackberry OS, Android smartphones are very competitive and are designed for all kinds of users – from cheap budget phones costing as little as $50 to expensive phones going for almost $700, low end devices designed for simple daily use to high end devices suited for gaming and multimedia playback.
The battle for the most powerful android smartphone in the market this year appears to be shaping up to be a three-horse race. Last year, HTC dominated the most powerful smartphone in the market since the launch of the HTC One X but Samsung took over with the launch of the Samsung Galaxy SIII in mid-last year. The SIII has been dominating the market as the most admired and most preferred Androud smartphone since then and although HTC launched the more improved HTC One X+ and LG entered the fray with their LG Optimus G, none has so far managed to outdo the SIII.
This year, in a couple of months as a matter of fact, the competition for the top slot of the most preferred and powerful Android smartphone will switch to a whole new gear. Samsung is working on a new smartphone flagship, the successor of the SIII, Samsung Galaxy SIV. Although most Android fans expect the SIV to take the mantle as the number one Android Smartphone but truth is, two other companies, HTC and LG, are working day and night to make sure their own devices take the spot.
HTC is in advanced stages of developing a new flagship smartphone, the HTC One or most commonly rumored as the HTC M7, a 4.7 inch smartphone expected to come to AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint at launch, probably in the first quarter of 2013. The most notable selling point of the M7 or HTC One is the camera, rumored to introduce ‘Ultrapixels’ and not just megapixels we are used to. Besides the camera, the phone is also expected to feature a high definition 1920 x 1080 pixels screen (an impressive 468 ppi display density), a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, 2 GB of RAM to complement the powerful processor, 32 GB onboard storage capacity (some may come with 64 GB) and a 2,300 mAh battery.
LG in particular is planning a comeback and there have been rumors to indicate that the company will unveil a flagship smartphone within the next couple of weeks. The Optimus G Pro is expected to take the competition of screen size a notch higher to 5.5 inches (up from 5 inch introduced by HTC, but it will still be a Full HD with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. It will also boast of a 1.7 GHz Snapdragon S4 Pro SoC CPU if the rumors are anything to go by, 2 GB RAM, 32 GB memory capacity to store all those HD videos and pictures, games and music, and an extra microSD card slot to expand the memory by up to 64 GB for those who just can’t have enough storage. Up to this point, the specs show a device a lot like the HTC M7 or One, but what sets the Optimus G Pro apart is the 13 megapixels rear camera (HTC M7 has a camera with 13 MP too but it overlays three sensors for a clearer more crisp image) and its 3,140 mAh battery.
Based on the specs of the Optimus G Pro, it appears LG is taking on the Galaxy Note II from its rival South Korean company Samsung rather than its next smartphone, the SIV. Remember that the Galaxy Note II features a quad-core 1.6 GHz processor, 2 GB RAM, a 5.5 inch 720 x 1280 pixels screen and a 3,100 mAh batter, specs very close to those expected in the LG Optimus G Pro. Will LG just rise to the occasion and include a stylus with the phone?
Samsung on the other hand has guarded its secrets very closely regarding the SIV. Rumors started circulating though just a few weeks after the SIII was unveiled, rumors that Samsung flatly denied. More prominent rumors and leaks today though indicate that Samsung may be coming up with a killer smartphone – one that will set whole new standard for smartphones in the entire market, not just the Android market only. The SIV is expected to sport a Full HD 5 inch screen (no flexible, unfortunately), an Octa processor that Samsung unveiled during the CES (a chip with 8 cores for mobile devices), 3 or 4 GB of RAM, up to 128 GB internal memory and a lighter and thinner case.
Everything here of course is still a rumor, but these are reasonable and practical assumptions. More tangible rumors indicate that the SIV may feature a quad-core 2.0 Exynos processor, 2GB RAM (just like SIII) and a 13 megapixels camera, which is also a possibility. However, even Samsung knows that there will be no point releasing a device so closely similar to its predecessor, especially when developing a flagship device.
The swords are drawn, and the battle is starting. LG is said to be considering releasing the 5.5 incher Optimus G Pro to its native country Korea and in Japan to NTT DoCoMo in a few months, perhaps before releasing another for the US, Europe and Global market. The phone has already debuted in Japan (announced actually) but there is no news on what LG is going to do nextThe phone itself, if the specs rumors are true, is impressive enough, and will certainly reach heights that the Vu did not. The bigger question is, will LG beat HTC with their HTC One and Samsung’s Galaxy SIV with their new high end smartphone to take the top spot this year or will it fumble production, even shipments, the way it did with Nexus 4 and LG Optimus G? It’s just a matter of time before we find out.
LG Optimus G Pro Specs Overview
Display: 5.5″ 1080×1920 Full HD IPS-LCD screen
Processor: 1.7 GHz quad-core Snapdragon
Operating System: Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean
Memory: 2 GB of RAM, 32 GB of internal memory (with microSD card expandable to 64 GB)
Cameras: 13 MP rear and 2 MP front cameras
Battery: 3,140 mAh