LG G2 Smartphone Mixes it Up With Power and Volume Buttons on the Back

PHOTO: LG G2 smartphone
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The Samsung Galaxy S4 and the HTC One have represented Android smart phones well, while the Moto X promises to deliver users the freedom to customize their American-made phones. But LG doesn't want to be left out of the mix and it's hoping its new LG G2, revealed today at a press event in New York City, will be able to rival the others.

Throughout the reveal, both LG CEO Jong-Seok Park and Senior VP James Fishler said that observing how people used their smart phones heavily influenced the design of the G2. The power and volume keys are placed on the back of the phone, right where LG noticed that most people's fingers naturally rest.

"If your finger is so eager to hang out on the back of the phone, we might as well give it something to do while it's there," said Fishler.

By placing the buttons on the back and engineering the circuitry and electronics around that design choice, the phone's bezel is only 0.1 inches thick. There are no buttons anywhere else on the phone. Park describes it as "clean, with nothing on the sides to break the beautiful lines."

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The G2 upgrades its hardware in addition to its design. It contains Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 processor, which has been optimized to extend battery life and provide a consistent 4G LTE connection. The phone will also come with a 13-megapixel camera with an optical image stabilizer for crisper photos, as well as Hi-Fi sound quality to meet users' audio needs as they listen to music, play games and watch movies.

In terms of the user experience, LG has made subtle changes that, while not necessarily revolutionary, are more convenient. The guest mode, which Fishler refers to as "kid mode," sets up a user profile different from the owner's so that no parents accidentally find themselves buying a new car because of their kid's actions.

Users can answer calls simply by picking the phone up, with no need to swipe at a home screen. People who walk outside on cold winter days no longer need to take off their gloves to answer their phone.

Apple's iPhone 5S reveal and release is still about a month away.

LG didn't share the price or availability of the smartphone, but it will be available at T-Mobile and Sprint in the U.S.

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