The LG G Pro 2, the follow up to the well-recieved G Pro - has waded into the supersized smartphone battle, preparing to go head-to-head with the Samsung Galaxy Note 3, the HTC One Max and the Sony Xperia Z Ultra. So is LG's larger-than-life phablet head and shoulders above the competition or merely standing on the shoulders of giants? T3 got up close for an LG G Pro 2 hands on to find out
Does size matter? Is bigger always better? You can ask any number of bulk-based cliche questions when you're talking about phablets but whatever your view, the arrival of the LG G Pro 2 goes to show these larger cross-breed handsets are here to stay.
In fact, analysts are predicting a six-fold increase in phablet sales by 2018.
It's understandable then that there's some stiff competition in this space (we're looking at you Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and Sony Xperia Z Ultra) already, but the LG G Pro 2 packs some solid specs that should make it a contender.
It comes with a 2.26GHz quad-core processor - the same one you'll find in the LG G2 - 3GB RAM, a choice of either 16GB or 32GB of internal storage. All of that powers the latest version of Google's Android 4.4 KitKat with a relatively soft touch LG skin. Article continues after the video.
LG G Pro 2: Size and Build
The main feature of the LG G Pro 2 is its 5.9-inch full HD display. That's some serious screen real estate and unsurprisingly that means this a big device that definitely delivers more when you're using it with two hands.
Flip it over and you'll see the familiar rear volume and power/lock keys from the LG G2 that can be a little tricky to hit when you're attempting to use this phablet.
There's also a textured back case that provides some much-needed extra grip and, in our view, a little design flourish to the overall looks of the G Pro 2.
Despite its size, the G Pro 2 doesn't feel too heavy in the hand. It weighs in at 172g. There are three colour options - 'Titan', white and red.
LG G Pro 2: Screen
We might have mentioned this already but it's massive at 5.9 inches. The bezel clocks in at just 3.3mm, meaning the G Pro 2 boasts a 77.2 per cent screen-to-phone ratio. That's a lot of screen.
It's also reassuring then that it doesn't disappoint. It's extremely bright and clear with photos and videos coming to life, making it a realistic option for enjoying films on the move. Meanwhile, the web browsing experience is also crisp.
LG G Pro 2: Features
Just like the LG G2 Mini, the G Pro comes with Knock On feature that lets you fire up your phone without picking it up. But LG has gone even further, bringing out a new Knock Code feature.
Knock Code extends the double-tap on function we saw launched in the G2. You can now set your own combination of two to eight taps for added security. It's fairly intuitive to use, although we found we didn't always get the tap code correct first time. That said it does offer a pleasing extra layer of security.
G Pro 2 users will also be treated to Mini View, a great new feature that lets you customise the size of the screen, making it easier to use one-handed.
With a swipe of the naviation bar to the left or the right you're able to shrink down the screen for easy access. It's a bit like being able to create an LG G2-sized touch area within the LG G Pro 2's larger frame. Perfect for those times when you know you're going to be using the device one handed. By that we of course mean standing up on a train.
Mini View is one of those simple ideas that makes complete sense and definitely sets the LG G Pro 2 apart from the competition.
There's also Dual Browser view which lets you multi-task having two windows working on the screen simultaneously. It operates pretty much the same as Multi View on the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and from a content creation perspective is very useful indeed.
LG G Pro 2: Performance
We put the LG G Pro 2 through its paces on a decent Wi-Fi connection and it handled all of the apps we had access to well, jumping between apps was fast while loading web pages was also rapid - even on heftier desktop sites.
LG G Pro 2 Battery
You'll find a 3,200mAh removable battery on board which should put out a day's usage. We'll obviously be putting that to the test when we do our LG G Pro 2 review shortly.
LG G Pro 2: Camera
The G Pro 2 features a 13 megapixel camera with optical image stabiliser plus (OIS+). It's capable of shooting 120FPS, HD and full 4K ultra HD video with 3840 pixels x 2160 lines, so content can be played back on 4K TV sets.
Before you shoot your footage you get to choose whether you want to record in HD or 4K.
According to LG, the image stabisisation has been enhanced by 20 per cent to provide better shots in low light conditions and reduced blur when shooting motion pictures.
You'll also get the option of three different editing speeds - one-half slow motion, one-fourth slow motion and original.
Another addition to the camera capabilities is Natural Flash. The G Pro 2 takes two photos simultaneously, one with flash on, one with it off and then combines them to create a more natural image.
You'll also get Magic Focus, the ability to refocus the image after on a different area after it's been taken.
The front facing camera is now a 2.1 megapixel shooter.
LG G Pro 2: Verdict
On first view, the LG G Pro 2 has a lot going for it - most notably with the improved camera skills making it strong for stills and shooting video. Throw in a couple of other neat software touches, like Knock Code and Mini View, and LG has delivered some geniuinely useful innnovation. The big question is at what cost?
LG G Pro 2 release date: TBC
LG G Pro 2 price: TBC