LG Electronics plans to introduce the Optimus 4X HD at Mobile World Congress 2012 in Barcelona Feb. 23. Another big-is-beautiful device, its debut coming quick on the heels of LG's 5-inch Optimus Vu "phablet," the 4X HD features a 4.7-inch True HD IPS display and is the world's first with a Nvidia Tegra 3 4-Plus-1 Quad-Core mobile processor.
Even its battery smarts are big. According to LG, the Nvidia processor is designed for high-level multimedia performancelike high-definition (HD) video said to rival a PC's performancebut uses "a fifth battery-saver core to handle less-demanding tasks."
The Optimus 4X HD comes with 16GB of internal memory, and notably will run Android 4.0, or Ice Cream Sandwich. Its last two device introductions have been with Android 2.3 and future promises of ICS.
There's an 8-megapixel backside-sensor-illumination (BSI) camera with LED flash on the back and a 1.3-megapixel camera on the front.
"LG introduced the world's first dual-core smartphone exactly one year ago, and today we're announcing the next milestone," LG CEO Jong-seok Park said in a statement. "But speed in itself isn't what makes LG Optimus 4X HD unique; it's the benefit we're bringing to customers with the HD multimedia experience in a mobile form factor."
On Feb. 20, LG introduced another Android-running smartphone, the Optimus LTE Tag. Promising it was a true update to the Optimus LTE, the Tag features near-field communication (NFC) technology, which LG is pitching uses for beyond mobile paymentsthe functionality that the NFC has so far primarily been marketing with.
"Swiping a tag upon entering the office could put the Optimus LTE Tag in silent mode and activate WiFi," LG explained in its release. "A tag on the car dashboard could be programmed to turn on Bluetooth, GPS and raise the volume. The options are limitless."
Just a day before the LTE Tag debut, LG introduced the Optimus Vu in Korea. A 5-inch Android-running device, the half-phone, half-tablet will most obviously compete against the 5-inch Samsung Galaxy Note. Though, of course, it's the Apple iPhone and iPad that ultimately drive the competition.
Apple led fourth-quarter smartphone shipments, posting annual growth of 96 percent on shipments of 37 million iPhones, with Samsung close on its heels, shipping 36 million smartphones, by research firm IHS iSuppli's count. Nokia, which handily lead 2010 with total shipments of 100 million smartphones, sunk into third place, shipping 20 million smartphones during the quarter. Sony Ericsson followed with shipments of 6 million smartphones, and Motorola had shipments of 5 million.
LG's Park, introducing the Optimus LTE Tag, said that LG's goal for 2012 is to "offer the widest variety of LTE smartphones in the industry."
The company offered no information about pricing for the Optimus 4X HD, or when or where it will be available.