Verizon is pulling out all punches to bolster their 4G LTE lineup in 2012. Not only are they continuously pumping out devices, they’re making it a mandatory standard to have all future smartphones released on their network capable of accessing LTE data speeds. I’ve stated this before many times that this a genius move played by Verizon and can only assure any consumer their money is being spent wisely when going with the Big Red.
Stating that, LG is also on a spree of pumping out devices from all spectrums. The LG Lucid 4G LTE is another device that fits the criteria of a mid range smartphone by Verizon’s standards. But in actuality, the Lucid is by far the most capable and powerful device ever released in America that can single-handedly redefine the budget smartphone market. Something the Motorola Atrix for At&t tried to do, but ultimately failed at.
LG Lucid Quality Design At Affordable Price
What makes the LG Lucid so amazing is what you get for the price. Coming in at $79.99 after mail-in-rebate, the Lucid provides everything your spec’d out beast of an Android smartphone would have. You get a very generous 1.2gh dual-core S3 Snapdragon processor, 4-inch (800×480) IPS LCD display ,which is ALWAYS a plus, 5-megapixel auto-focus snapper with an LED flash, 3.5mm headphone jack, and the ability to shoot 1080p ! LG fit’s all of this inside a very reasonable 11mm thick package.
Prying off the rear cover, we’re granted access to its 1,700 mAh battery, microSIM slot, and spring-loaded microSD card slot. As well as the usual assortment of Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, aGPS, and a always handy mobile hotspot feature. Out of the box, its internal memory breaks down to 4GB of storage with another 1.32GB reserved strictly for apps. Thankfully, you can fit a microSD card up to 32GB in size in that sucker if necessary.
You’ll find your usual four capacitive button layout on the face of the device and a plastic but very durable exterior. LG really tried to make this device feel compact and sturdy. They’ve certainly achieved that goal by a mile. I began to fall quickly in love with the placement of the power button on the Lucid. Usually, companies like Samsung place the power button on the side of the device in the most awkward positions so you have to either feel or look at where your pressing. LG has made it easier by positioning it at the very top right corner so it goes well with your thumb.
The actual visuals of the device are very pleasing. From the mixture of red and black colors on the back plate, to the rounded edges atop the device make the LG Lucid seems just as premium as its internal specs.
Let me not forget to mention and emphasize the fact the Lucid is capable of accessing Verizon’s amazing and FAST 4G LTE network. For $79.99, you can’t beat what LG is offering here.
Great Hardware But Stale Gingerbread Taste
There had to be a hitch with all the amazing things LG is providing with the Lucid and in saying that, Android 2.3 Gingerbread is running on this device. Now, LG does offer a very customized and skinned experience on top of Gingerbread, but that necessarily isn’t a good thing when you get down to the facts. Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0 is a HUGE leap from Gingerbread 2.3 and not having it on your brand new Android smartphone devalues the worth of the device by a pretty huge margin.
Even in saying all that, LG has optimized the heck out of Gingerbread on this particular device. Opening apps are almost instantaneous and using the LTE speeds when browsing the stock browser is pretty stellar. Not only is fast, it’s a consistent fast. Android is known for bogging down all time, for some, it’s a daily occurrence and can be overly frustrating. That isn’t the case on the Lucid in day-to-day use so news like that should make any potential buyer very very happy.
LG has included the choice to change the theme of the stock software for the consumers who love a personal touch to their device. They’re cute and for some will be a welcome addition, but they don’t do anything to add functionality to the software.
The fact LG has optimized Gingerbread to run smoothly on the hardware makes the Lucid’s overall value that much better in my opinion.
A Budget Phone With A Quality Camera
LG continued to impress me with the overall quality of the device. The camera coincides with the same enthusiasm as it provided more than adequate still photos. Even in low light conditions, the single led flash brightened things up just enough so details could be made out without too much difficulty.
The 1080p HD video recording wasn’t bad, but you couldn’t compare it to the likes of other smartphones like the HTC One X and Apple iPhone 4s. The frame rate was actually pretty amazing as a I found no choppiness when using the stabilizing feature on the device. How LG priced the Lucid at $79.99 is still a wonder. This device can easily stack up to devices such as the Nexus and Droid line up.
The LG Lucid provides a more than decent experience overall as a camera and shouldn’t be a deterrent in purchasing the device.
Solid Battery Life For A 4G LTE Smartphone
With its 1,700 mAh battery, it’s able to pull out 500 minutes of continuous talk time on a single charge. LG has stated the device provides about 8 hours, so the Lucid has beat the manufacturer’s own estimates. Equally as impressive, especially for a 4G LTE device, we’re able to get a solid one day of normal usage with a full battery in the tank.
Call Quality Is Less Than Desirable
This was a rather disappointing aspect of the device. Making phone calls on the Lucid provided muffling of voices and numerous amounts of static noise when having prolonged conversations. Whether it’s a software bug is yet to be seen, but either way, phone calls were a rather unpleasant experience all around. Caller’s had the same experience so it wasn’t specific to the device we had.
Hopefully, if the issue is software related, LG can shoot an update to resolve the problem. Smartphones have to be able to make good phone calls, it just not acceptable anymore.
The LG Lucid Is An Impressive Offering For Verizon
Impression of the LG Lucid are nothing short of impressive. When you add the internals, build quality, and overall user experience, Verizon seems to be making Christmas come early this year. The $79.99 price is more than reasonable at this stage in the game and if LG can continue to produce more devices like the Lucid in quality and price, LG may very well find a nice future in being one of the many Android OEM’s out there.
I would highly recommend the LG Lucid 4G LTE to someone looking to have a quality smartphone and not dish out the $$$$.