If the idea of a big tablet-like phone is your cup of tea, LG appears to have a solution, with an early showing of a new mobile handset featuring a 5 inch screen.

Shown ahead of the official unveiling at Mobile World Congress next week, the Optimus Vu features a 5 inch IPS screen in the 4:3 aspect ratio.

While screens using the high-quality In-Plane Switching (IPS) technology are being seen on premium tablets as of late — such as the Apple iPad 2 and Asus Transformer Prime — the 4:3 aspect ratio is a little surprising, as it is the same screen format seen on the Apple iPad, with mobile phones typically adopting a 16:9 or 16:10 widescreen format.

Offering a larger screen aspect ratio will certainly give mobile users more screen real estate, allowing them to write messages with more of the screen available to them.

Under the hood, LG is reportedly packing a 1.5GHz dual-core CPU, 8 megapixel rear camera, 1.3 megapixel from camera, Google Android, 32GB storage, WiFi, HDMI, stylus, and a big 2080mAh battery.

Interestingly, LG is also throwing in support for the high-speed 4G LTE connectivity, suggesting that if it were to come to Australia, Telstra may indeed be the first to grab it, offering customers speeds in excess of 30Mbps.

The idea of large-screen “tablet phones” isn’t a new concept, with Samsung unveiling its Galaxy Note last year, a handset featuring a 5.3 inch screen and stylus. That model is yet to be released locally, though rumours are suggesting Vodafone is eyeing a release for it later this year.

We’ll certainly know more about LG’s first tablet-styled phone when all is revealed next week, but until then take a gander at the photos below.