Unfortunately for the consumers at large, it seems that all OEMs except for Sony seem to equate a smaller chassis with inferior specs. The Samsung Galaxy S3/4/5 mini, HTC One mini, One mini 2 and LG G2 mini all have much worse specs than their larger cousins, and it seems their trend is set to continue with the G3 Beat.
With the Sony Xperia Z1 Compact being the only device to date to ship with specs mirroring the flagship namesake, other manufacturers are offering them a monopoly in a market that many people seem to want. The G3 Beat is a smaller, 5 inch cousin of the G3 (review coming soon) but with much inferior specs. Let’s have a look here:
|LG G3||LG G3 Beat|
|Display||5.4”, 1440p (2K) IPS LCD||5.0”, 720p IPS LCD|
|Camera||13 MP, Optical Image Stabilisation+, Laser Autofocus, Dual LED Flash, 1/3 inch sensor||8 MP, Laser Autofocus, LED flash, 1/3 inch sensor|
|Video Recording||2160p/4K||1080p/Full HD|
|Processor||2.5 GHz Quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801||1.2 GHz Quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400|
|GPU||Adreno 330||Adreno 305|
|RAM||2/3 GB (with respect to storage)||1 GB|
|Storage||16/32 GB, micro-SD expandable||8 GB, micro-SD expandable|
|Battery||3000 mAh, removable battery||2540 mAh, removable battery|
|Other||Rear buttons, NFC, LTE, IR Blaster||Rear buttons, NFC, LTE, IR Blaster|
The G3 Beat retains its larger cousin’s looks, camera features and removable battery but suffers hugely in the performance department. The beefy, top-of-the-line Snapdragon 801 is dropped for a Snapdragon 400, while RAM drops from 2/3 GB to just 1 GB. Storage space is also a paltry 8 GB, but it does have micro-SD capacity.
The drop in screen resolution is also really disappointing – 1280 x 720 pixels spread over 5 inches send the pixel density to a dangerously low 294 ppi – quite far off from the point where eyes cease noticing increases in resolution. Battery capacity also drops, but it is still a large value of 2540 mAh – only 60 mAh less than HTC’s flagship One (M8), and the decrease in resolution would probably allow it to last as long as the G3 as less power is needed to drive fewer pixels.
It is expected to retail at approximately S$650 (US$500, AU$530, £290), which really does not justify its specs. For $150 more you will get the stellar Z1 Compact, while going down to $300 will actually net you the Xiaomi Mi3 which offers flagship specs for a third of the usual price. If you really do not need a more powerful device, then you can get identical specs with the Redmi 1s for just S$169.
And if you want a device that’s pretty much a legit, slightly scaled down version of the G3 which does not make as many compromises as the G3 Beat, has really good resolution (1080p) and pixel density (423 PPI), a 5.2 inch display, a better camera (13 MP with OIS), and a Snapdragon 800 processor, all of which currently retails at a cool $580 (according to Hardwarezone), why, the G2 is still available! It’s got so much better specs and is cheaper and very viable for a buyer who is looking at this price range, and especially since the performance bump is not so great considering the Snapdragon 801 is just a slightly improved version of the 800, it’s pretty much still among the top tier of smartphones right now.
The G3 Beat will launch in Korea first this Friday, 18 July. Countries in Europe, Russia, China, and the Middle East will get it in the coming months, but Singapore availability has not been revealed yet. It will be called the “LG G3 S” in Europe and Russia, however. Colours are currently limited to Metallic Black, Silk White and Shiny Gold.
While the G3 Beat doesn’t seem like a good deal on paper, it is still too early to pronounce a definite decision just yet. Until we get our hands on it, we wait. In the meantime, tell us how you feel about the G3 Beat below!