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30 October 2013

LG G Pad 8.3 - review

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Introduction, design and user interface

If you want an Android tablet, it’s impossible not to find a great one in any price segment. Also, LG has some sweet devices available out there, ready to satisfy all of their customer’s desires. And recently they’ve launched an 8.3 incher, the newest member in the Optimus family.

The G Pad delivers a WUXGA display with a resolution clocked at 1920x1200 px. The 1080p displays are providing a better experience for reading and web browsing, and also for watching videos. The tablet is fuelled by a quad-core 1.7 GHz Snapdragon 600 processor along with Krait 300 cores. It offers 2GB of RAM and 16GB of built-in storage, which can be expanded via a microSD card slot.

lg g pad 8.3

The device packs a powerful 4,600 mAh Li-Ion battery. It enables connectivity via Wi-Fi, USB and Bluetooth.

It also houses an IR-port which turns on the trick that transforms you device into a remote controller of your living room multimedia products. LG G Pad also delivers the multi-tasking feature with mini-apps and optional transparency, Miracast, accelerometer and proximity sensor, GPS and GPRS.

Design

The design of LG G Pad 8.3 is minimalistic and compact, which pictures perfectly the midsize nature of the tablet.

It measures 216.8x126.5x8.3 mm and has slim screen bezels. The real achievement of this device is that the manufacturer has managed to keep it really light and thin.

The rear of the LG G Pad is made by a cool combination between plastic and metal. The display is one of the best features of the tablet, because it’s made from quality glass and the image quality is great. The usage of this kind of slot is really pleasant.

On the top of the display, you will notice the usual LG logo, the front camera of 1.3MP and the proximity sensor. The slater doesn’t enable dual-video recording, so you will have to use the cameras of it one at a time. No hardware button was packed on the screen of the device, and all the three capacitive buttons can be found at the bottom of the screen.

On the left side of the G Pad 8.3 you won’t find anything, but the right side is pretty crowded. You will find there the power/lock button and the volume rockers.

lg g pad 8.3

The top of the G Pad houses the IR emitter and the 3.5 mm audio jack. Also, under a plastic flap, you will find the microSD. At the bottom, it packs the microUSB port right next to the microphone pinhole.

On the back, you will find the 5MP camera, which is placed on the top left corner, along with a flash. On the right side, it has the twin speakers.

You cannot remove the battery of LG G Pad.

User interface

LG G Pad 8.3 operates on Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean, paired with the company’s UI.

The user can add lockscreen widgets and choose between a generous variety of circular effects. You can set up to 5 shortcuts that will get you straight into the app when you’re unlocking the tablet.

On the bottom of the slot you can stock up to 8 shortcuts, including the easy way to access the App Drawer. This is actually the only app which cannot be discarded, but the rest of the 7 slots can be left empty. You can rearrange, replace and delete them from your own preferences. Even the option to create folders is available.

A cool feature brought by the device is the Q Slide option which allows you to watch a video and still continue to use other apps. Also the QuickMemo integration makes possible to capture a screenshot anywhere in the tablet and write notes over it.

The notification area was designed in such a way that you can rearrange the toggles as you want. You can also add or remove the default toggles from the edit menu.

By default the slater offers seven homescreen slides which can be filled up with widgets and apps and you can set each one of them as your starting home page, which will show up when you unlock the screen.

lg g pad 8.3

The task switcher looks the same as on the other G tablets. You can open it by holding down the home button and it will display a list of all of the recently and currently running apps, which you can reopen or terminate.

You will also find a shortcut to Google Now and to the task manager.

LG G Pad 8.3 implemented its own edition of Samsung’s Smart Stay which is found under the name of Smart screen. This feature, using the front camera, detects your look and keeps active the screen if you’re looking at it.

By swiping up the home button, you’ll start the Google Now app. It can recognize voice commands and depending on your previous searches, the Google Now will use your patterns and search for relevant information.

Camera, audio quality and final impressions

Camera

The rear camera of the slater counts 5MP, along with a front snapper of 1.3MP.

The interface looks pretty familiar and it’s really easy to use. On the right it’s displayed a bar with the still/video toggle, the shutter key and the shortcut to the gallery.

On the top you have the toggle which switches between the front and rear camera, and another one which allows you to select the shooting mode. There are 9 available shooting options - like HDR, Continuous Shot, Beauty Shot, Normal, Sports, Night mode and Time Machine capture.

lg g pad

The quality of the captures taken with the tablet’s cameras is decent, but not the best.

In the Gallery, the pictures can be sorted in Albums, or by time and location. The captures can be edited and shared easily via Email, Google+, Facebook, Bluetooth and many others.

Music player and audio quality

The music player available on the LG G Pad 8.3 delivers an interface specially designed for tablets, and you can quickly switch between songs, artists, albums and many other sorting options.

If you tap and hold on the album a search menu will pop up, if you want to look up for a certain artist or title.

lg g pad 8.3

The audio performance was great on this device. The sound is clear and the loudness levels were good.

Final impressions

The LG G Pad 8.3 is definitely something to take into account if you’re looking for a mid-range tablet. Its organizing skills, the Google Maps and navigation system, the Google Now and many other cool features are the top selling point of this device and are working perfectly. Also the display and audio system are some top characteristics.

This device is beautifully-designed and really light, which makes it really easy to handle.

But note that no network data support is available, only Wi-Fi. It also lacks the NFC connectivity and the dual screen feature.

As we have said, the quality of the captures taken with its cameras didn’t impress us that much.

But for a user who looks for an amazing device for reading, watching videos, listening to music or browsing on the internet, this is a perfect choice!



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