LG hasn’t had much of a hand in the tablet wars in Australia up until now, but that looks set to change, with the brand announcing some stiff competition set to take on that offered by rivals.
It’s likely the first salvo in what we expect will be one of many products, with LG announcing the G Pad 8.3, a device that literally is what its name says: a pad-style device with an 8.3 inch screen that fits in with LG’s current “G” branding of devices, like the Optimus G and recently released G2.
Inside the G Pad 8.3, there are similar parts to what we see in LG’s phones, though not quite the same, with a 1.7GHz quad-core processor from the Snapdragon 600 line (down from the 800 in the G2), 16GB storage, 2GB RAM, and with a 5 megapixel rear camera.
Of particular note is that LG is sticking with Android on this tablet, going with Jelly Bean 4.2 for the first models, though also bringing together some interesting software that aims to make every Android smartphone compatible with the tablet.
To do this, LG is relying on “QPair,” a new piece of software that uses Bluetooth and any Android 4.1-based smartphone to link up with the tablet, offering messaging from the tablet, and even the ability to see phone calls.
Other LG bits and pieces we’ve seen in smartphones has also been brought over, such as the built-in remote control functionality, multitasking, and the G2’s double-tap of the screen to switch the display on without reaching for that pesky power button.
There’s also a Full HD In-Plane Switching display here, matched ot the 8.3 inch size, making it one of the higher resolution 8 inch Android tablets out, and no doubt puts it into direct competition with Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 3 8 from earlier in the year, which carries a $50 lower price tag than the $399 LG G Pad 8.3, but also only a 1280×800 (HD) screen resolution in a similar body.
“The LG G Pad 8.3 offers practical features that provide real-life benefits, making it a perfect tablet for the contemporary technology consumer who is looking for convenience, style and advanced technology,” said Lambro Skropidis, General Marketing Manager for LG Australia.
“We believe that customers are looking for compact portability without compromising on technology when buying a tablet,” said Skropidis, adding “the G Pad 8.3 marks LG’s entrance into the tablet category and we’re thrilled to be launching such an innovative and premium product.”
In Australia, JB HiFi looks to be the sole distributor for this one, with only one model coming for $399 in November.
As such, expect to find the LG G Pad 8.3 in white, with WiFi only (no 3G model locally), and with 16GB memory, though storage can be expanded through a microSD slot.