The LG Optimus S might be outclassed in specs and size by some of its larger Android counterparts, but it packs an excellent feature set in an overall tiny package.
The Optimus S is a slim, sleek, compact device with rounded corners, and a tapered profile. Android enthusiasts will immediately feel familiar with the bottom row Android buttons: Home, Menu, Back, and Search. LG smartly made them different from the competition (HTC Aria, Sanyo Zio) by designing them as hardware buttons, which are obviously physically pressed as opposed to touch sensitive controls.
The 3.2″ screen is one of the device’s best feature, and its brightness and crispness is enhanced by a highly coveted super AMOLED display. Unfortunately, the experience of the beautiful screen is heavily weathered by the Optimus’ lag and insensitivity to touches and swipes, although other specs, not the screen, are to be blamed for this.
Specifically, the included 600 MHz processor is just too slow to effectively run Android 2.2. Interestingly, a huge selling point for the Optimus is the fact that its one of the cheapest phones available that runs Froyo. Of course, if excessive lag and insensitivity exists on the homescreen and stock keyboard, it’s far less appealing. For those who hate lag (I would fit in this category), this is a dealbreaker. In this case, if ‘good things come in small packages’ is true, apparently ‘you get what you paid for’ is true also.
Nevertheless, you’re paying for a solid smartphone. Other specs include a 3.2 MP camera with autofocus, up to 32 GB of external storage, a mobile hotspot option, and a controversial layer of interface coating called Sprint ID. If you’re looking for a completely basic, vanilla stock Android experience found on the HTC G2, the colors and customization options found on the Optimus probably won’t be for you. However, for the average user, Sprint ID provides a robust and relatively quick method for customizing the phone.
The LG Optimus S is expected to be released on Sprint in black and purple during the holiday season. With Android 2.2, a flashy touchscreen and a cute (yet classy) design, the Optimus S should find its market niche almost immediately.