Following an exceptionally long pause, LG is back on the tablet market, big style, presenting the LG G Pad 8.3. This is the first 8-inch tablet that comes with Full HD resolution. As this an IPS display and as this device is equipped with a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor, it is clear LG intends this tablet to engage even the most demanding users.
I tried this model at IFA in Berlin, where LG is not showing off the final version of the tablet, but a version with unfinished software — although I did not encounter any flaws on the software while testing the prototype.
Build and Design
What is more impressive at first glance than its speed and display is the fact that the G Pad 8.3 is extremely light and feels great when held in the hand. Weighing 338 grams and being 8.3 millimeters thick, it can be carried in the inside pocket of a jacket without being a burden, while using it for a while is not tiring for the hand at all. Thus, LG has a model that provides the portability of 7-inch tablets, but with a significantly larger screen surface, almost half-way to that of 10-inch tablets.
The 8.3-inch display has a resolution 1080 x 1920 pixels and offers a pixel density of 265 ppi, which results in exceptionally sharp imaging. Thanks to the IPS screen, LG has succeeded in achieving great contrast on the G Pad 8.3, which is also very sustainable, irrelevant of the viewing angle and the type of lighting in the environment. However, there are issues with the screen brightness, which is — even when set to the maximum — unsatisfactory and unworthy of a flagship device. Still, software limitation could be the problem here, and this might be eliminated in the shipping version.
Qualcomm’s aforementioned 1.7 GHz quad-core Snapdrapgon processor, with the help of 2GB of RAM, handles Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean) fantastically well, offering all those advanced options of multitasking which we saw when the LG G2 smartphone was presented. By doing so, LG has expanded its unofficial title as leader when it comes to introducing multitasking to Android OS, from smartphones to tablets.
LG’s own QPair application should be praised; this comes with the tablet and enables pairing up the G Pad 8.3 with any Android OS smartphone (the same application will be available on Google Play). This way, notifications, messages and calls to the smartphone can be received on the tablet, which is handy when the tablet is being used as a primary mobile device (for example, when at home or reading an eBook). The really neat thing is that starting a Wi-Fi hotspot on a smartphone can be activated with the QPair application on the tablet.
In my preliminary tests, I tried out the tablet’s back-facing camera, which takes 5-megapixel photographs, but it did not leave the impression of a premium device, unlike other features this tablet has to offer. Although quite sharp, images taken with the G Pad 8.3 have over-emphasized cold tones and are often underexposed.
When all pros and cons are summed up regarding the G Pad 8.3, the conclusion is that LG has seriously succeeded in reclaiming its position in the tablet market arena.