Jan 19 AT 9:58 AM Anthony Domanico 55 Comments

LG Spectrum first impressions, goes on sale today for $199 at Verizon

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The LG Spectrum is the latest LTE device to be released amidst a sea of LTE devices on Verizon Wireless. The Spectrum is the follow-up to last year’s LG Revolution and is aimed at the mid-range market (that hole that exists between the Galaxy Nexus/Droid RAZR and the Pantech Breakout/Samsung Illusion). I’ve had my hands on the LG Spectrum for a little over 24 hours now. What follows are my initial impressions of the device after a day’s worth of use.

The Spectrum is a highly spec’d device, with a 4.5-inch True HD (720p) IPS display, 1.5 GHz dual-core Snapdragon S3 and an 8 megapixel HD camera capable of taking 1080p video. LG’s Spectrum runs Android 2.3.5 Gingerbread with LG’s custom UI overlay. By now, you probably know how I feel about the UI skins manufacturers and carriers are putting on devices, so I won’t bore you with another rant about why we need more stock Android devices.

In my opinion, LG’s skin has taken MOTOBLUR’s spot at the bottom of my list, specifically when it comes to the app drawer. LG’s app drawer separates apps into unhelpful categories and by default has a whopping 8 categories you’ll have to expand and shrink to get to whatever app you want to choose (though you can remove 6). I prefer the standard app drawer, and the better solution to LG’s skin is to simply install a launcher replacement application from the market (GoLauncher, ADW, and LauncherPro are my faves).

When it comes to how most people use their devices, the display quality and screen resolution are key points of focus. Though the display on the LG Spectrum is certainly not bad by any stretch, the color output appears dull in comparison to the Galaxy S II (with Samsung’s Super AMOLED Plus technology). Since the LG spectrum features a 720p display, it has a standard resolution of 1280×720 which, though awesome for displaying multimedia (videos) on the device, often has me squinting to do some of the more basic functions like reading/responding to email.

The Spectrum feels incredibly solid in the hands, and though the plastic backing renders the phone a bit slippery, I’m really liking the overall form factor of the device. The black with chrome accents motif has always been a favorite of mine, and the LG Spectrum wears this finish quite well.

Overall, the LG Spectrum is a good choice for those who don’t want to spend the $300 Verizon asks for its top-of-the-line LTE devices. As with all large purchasing decisions, we highly encourage you to go to a Verizon store and check the Spectrum out for yourselves before making the purchase decision. We will have a full review in the coming weeks.

The LG Spectrum goes on sale today, January 19, at Verizon Wireless stores for $199.99. Anyone out there planning to pick up the Spectrum?

Anthony loves all things technology, from hardware to apps and games. You can connect with him via Google+ or Twitter by clicking one of the fancy doo-dads above.

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