Posted in: Android, Hands-on, Tablets

LG G Pad 10.1 hands-on

The LG G Pad 10.1 is the biggest member in this year’s G Pad lineup by LG. Despite having the largest screen (10.1″ vs 8″ and 7″) it carries the same underwhelming resolution of 1280x800px as the rest of the new G Pad pack.

The quad-core Snapdragon 400 chipset is in charge of running everything while the latest Optimus UI on top of Android 4.4.2 KitKat adorns the software side of things. Alongside the midrange chipset and low resolution, LG has included some features that will turn the G Pad 10.1 into a somewhat potent multimedia machine.

For starters there’s an IR blaster on the top which lets you control your TV and set top box. The back has stereo speakers on both sides for better sound when watching a movie or playing games. Then there’s the price that allows the G Pad 10.1 to compete well with direct rivals – at around $250/€250 it still flies lower than an equivalent Samsung Galaxy Tab 4.

LG has included the latest Optimus UI on the G Pad 10.1 – it has the cleaner, flatter look we saw for the first time on the LG G3 and does wonders to remedy the childlike UI of old. Icons are flat and colorful and the UI handles almost like stock Android with enhancements that augment productivity.

Speaking of those, there are few things to point out in particular. There’s the QPair app that allows you to sync messages, notifications, calls and notes between the G Pad 10.1 and an LG smartphone. You can also use QPair to find the phone with the tablet or the tablet with the phone. Dual Window allows two apps to run side by side on the screen simultaneously. Here’s a quick video showing you the LG G Pad 10.1 in action.

Opting for the same screen resolution as its 7″ and 8″ peers the G Pad 10.1 screen by far looks the least sharp. The resolution stretches thin over its considerably large screen estate, producing the rather poor pixel density of 149 ppi. As you can imagine things look pixelated to the point where they appear washed out on screen.

Still being IPS the screen, it doesn’t lose too much contrast when viewed at an angle, which is nice. Outdoors however things take a turn for the worse as the screen is really reflective and you almost can’t find an angle for comfortable operation.

The LG G Pad 10.1 feels nice in the hand thanks to its soft-touch plastic back panel. The G Pad 10.1 feels hefty at 523 g nonetheless – in comparison a Galaxy Tab S 10.5 weighs 465 g, the Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 487 g while the iPad Air is 470 g. It could be worse – the Nexus 10 is 603 g.

While not as aggressively priced as its smaller 7-inch sibling, the LG G Tab 10.1 still has what it takes to be a successful multimedia companion. Its screen isn’t the best but with stereo speakers, smooth and current user interface and OS version, IR blaster and solid-feeling build quality it might be just the thing for users in the market for a larger tablet.

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