LG has announced that it’s releasing the Optimus Vu handset in selected countries around the world from September.
The Vu smartphone has a 5in, 4:3 ratio screen, putting it into the so-called ‘phablet’ category midway between a phone and tablet in terms of size.
Launched on LG’s home turf of South Korea back in March, the Vu has sold half a million units since then, though its international rollout has been slow. It went on sale in Japan this month.
It competes with the popular Samsung Galaxy Note, which is expected to get a new version at the end of August. That may have spurred on LG’s decision to issue the Vu in more countries. There’s also the heavily tipped launch of the iPhone 5 and a mini iPad this autumn to contend with too.
The Vu is due to arrive in “selected markets” in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Latin America. The UK is not mentioned specifically, but we’d be surprised if we were left out at this stage.
However, this international version leaves out 4G/LTE reception, which is well established in Korea but not yet in places like Europe, so it will support 3G for mobile broadband. It ships with the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich OS.
Among its key specs are a quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3 processor with a fifth battery-saver core (instead of the Snapdragon S4 chip in the Korean and Japanese editions), an 8-megapixel rear camera, 1.3-megapixel front camera and 32 GB of internal memory. The screen is an XGA IPS display with 768 x 1024 pixels. The device weighs 168g.
It will also come with a new version of LG’s note-taking QuickMemo feature (which the manufacturer added to its Optimus-L phones recently) and the Notebook app. These “make great use of the large display real estate,” says LG.
North America is reportedly due to get the Vu before the end of 2012 as well. The US is not mentioned in LG’s current press release, but this could be something to do with 4G/LTE.