The LG G3 is pretty hot, and I love it so far. It's hard to say whether that love affair will last because I've only had about 30-40 minutes to play with the device, but having done this as long as I have, that's enough time for me to tell whether I like a phone or not.
Last year, I said that the LG G2 had everything - except a soul. It was hard to flesh that out at the time, but now that nine months have passed, it's easier to put it into words: The G2 had just about everything you could've wanted from a smartphone at the time, but there was, for some reason, just no real attraction there.
Have you ever dated anyone who, on paper, was nearly perfect in every conceivable way, but you felt some spark missing? That's what the G2 was like for me.
The G3, on the other hand, is different. I actually liked the device before I was able to get my hands on it. Just seeing it sitting on the display tables, waiting for the presentation to be over, it already looked good. And it didn't disappoint.
Although I would've preferred a metal phone, I'll settle with a metallic one. It's also no secret that I abhor the rear button design, but the LG G3 gets it right where the G2, G Flex and G Pro 2 got it wrong. It finally feels good and is easy to find and use without having to fiddle around with the device.
LG G3 has one hot body
The first thing you notice about a phone is its looks. You aren't seeing what's on the inside yet, again, like a date. LG finally has the curves right, tapered at the edges to give you something to hold onto.
Moreover, the metallic look and extremely thin bezel makes it look like a premium device, whereas its predecessor looked like a nice chunk of plastic.
Speaking of thin bezel, it helps give the phone, with a 5.5-inch display, a smaller profile. When held next to the G2, the G3 is hardly any bigger, which is great.
Ask me two years ago whether I'd ever want to own a smartphone with a display bigger than 5" and I'd have enthusiastically said hell no! But times change, and so do tastes, and the G3 makes all that size quite pocketable.
But what good are looks without the internals and everything else that makes a smartphone hot? The display is a cut-your-eyeballs sharp 2560 x 1440, giving it a 538 PPI density. That's sharp, and maybe sharper than is necessary, too. At some point, the average human eye probably won't be able to tell the difference between a 441PPI display and 538PPI display at two to three feet away.
Moreover, you've got a removable battery this time, microSD support, Snapdragon 801 chipset with a 2.5GHz CPU and a 13MP camera with improved image stabilization and laser focus.
Again, on paper, it sounds like it really couldn't get any better. But the difference this time around is that the body, UI and general improvements in this iteration give the G3 what the G2 lacked - soul and feeling.
If a tree falls in the forest...
So why am I worried? Well, how many of your friends and family know what a Samsung Galaxy S5 is? And how many of them ever heard of the LG G2?
If you have a phone as hot as the LG G3, but average smartphone buyers never really get a chance to hear about it or see it, is it still really that hot?
It's no secret that Samsung has a gazillion-dollar marketing budget, making the Galaxy S5 outrageously popular despite being one of the most boring phones on the market today. And the HTC One, as sexy as that phone is, also has a hard time gaining any real popularity.
I want the G3 to become as much of a household name as the Galaxy S devices, but that will never happen. LG tells me that it's at a solid third place right now, which is great, until you consider the major players out there. Samsung, HTC and who else? Motorola? In this case, third place is pretty close to last place.
At any rate, I'm not here to market the G3, and I'm not suggesting you should, either. That's not my job. However, over the years I've learned that what makes my job a little more interesting is when the smartphone space isn't a one-horse race. For so long, the iPhone dominated the space while others were kidding themselves that Android was a solid alternative and that BlackBerry was very much still in the game.
Now that things are starting to even out a little more, I'd hate to see it go back and forth between Apple and Samsung. HTC is finally starting to get hints of love, and I would really like to see LG kicking in this race, too.