Last month, LG announced the G Pad, a high-end yet between-standard-sizes Jelly Bean tablet. At the time of the announcement, we still didn’t know all the details about the tablet, including the price or whether or not it would actually be released in the US.
Fortunately, the tablet is now both available in the US and for sale in stores, and along with it we have the retail information on the G Pad’s features. As we already knew, the G Pad will include an 8.3-inch 1920 x 1200 display, 1.7GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor, and 2GB of RAM. It also has a microSD card slot, Bluetooth, and 4,600mAh battery, but no GPS, Qi charging, NFC, or HDMI out.
At a starting price of $349 for the 16GB version, this is a lot to be missing, especially with the Nexus 7 priced at just $229 to start. However, the G Pad does have the one major advantage of an 8.3-inch display, which in my opinion makes a small tablet much more useful. Whereas a 7-inch tablet is just close enough to the size of a smartphone to make it not worth carrying around, a slightly larger tablet works much better for web browsing, PDF reading, and gaming without being overly cumbersome.
Does that make up for the fairly significant price difference? Perhaps not, but the LG G Pad is certainly worth checking out in store simply to see how much of a difference the 8.3-inch display makes. Because even if this isn’t the Android tablet to rival the iPad mini, I don’t doubt that the “in-between” tablet market will be growing in the near future, especially with the increased popularity of Galaxy Note-sized smartphones.