We were hoping (and still are) that Mobile World Congress would bring us some surprises – but LG’s entry into the tablet market wasn’t one of them.
The LG Optimus Pad is an 8.9in Honeycomb running tablet which will go head to head with the Motorola Xoom, BlackBerry PlayBook, HP’s TouchPad and whatever Apple throws at us by way of an iPad 2 in the coming weeks/months. It was as far back as mid-January that we knew we would be seeing this device in Barcelona, which will be called the G-Slate in the States. LG’s press conference this morning finally confirmed what we already knew anyway giving us very few details we were not aware of.
The 8.9in WXGA touchscreen has a resolution of 1280 x 768 with an aspect ratio of 15:9 and is capable of Full HD 1080p decoding. Powering everything will be an Nvidia Tegra 2 dual-core processor running at 1GHz which will be needed for the in-built 3D camera (two 5 megapixel cameras) which will allow you to create 3D stills and videos. Added to this is a 2 megapixel front-facing camera for all your video calling pleasure. The tablet weighs 630g, has a micro USB port as well as a mini HDMI connector to allow you to share all you 3D images on a nice big telly.
The Optimus Pad will have 3G and Wi-Fi when it ships and will come with 32GB of storage on board. LG claims the Optimus Pad can be comfortably held in just one-hand but we wait to be convinced. Whether the addition of the 3D camera will be enough to make this tablet stand out remains to be seen but if this adds a premium price it could face a tough time in such a crowded marketplace. When we will be seeing this latest Android tablet is not yet known and LG is being very quiet about pricing but once we learn more in Barcelona we’ll bring it straight to you. We are looking forward to trying out this device and will bring you our impressions when we get a hands-on.
Update: LG in Germany has just announced that the Optimus Pad will be going on sale in April at the eye-wateringly high price of €999 (£841). We guess that 3D camera really does add a premium price. We’ll keep you updated when we get a UK price.