LG continues its bet on mobile 3-D technology with Monday’s introduction of the LG Optimus 3D smartphone. The handset, announced at Mobile World Congress, stands out from the smartphone crowd with a 5 megapixel dual-lens rear camera, capable of high-definition recording in either 2-D (1080p) or 3-D (720p). The 4.3-inch touchscreen display can show the three-dimensional images without special glasses required. Unlike many other competing handset makers that are choosing dual-core chips from Qualcomm or Nvidia, LG is building the Optimus 3D on an OMAP4 chip from Texas Instruments.
Indeed, LG is touting a pair of “duals” with the TI OMAP4 hardware; the chip is a 1-GHz, dual-core processor but also uses dual-channel memory, which LG says will boost performance over smartphones with dual-core chips and single-channel memory. The Optimus will also benefit from the performance features brought by Android 2.2, or Froyo when it ships in Europe in the second quarter of this year. LG says the device will see an upgrade to Gingerbread, but some will disappointed that the phone won’t arrive with Android 2.3, which Google made available in the fourth quarter of 201o. Rounding out the specs of the Optimus 3D is 8 GB of internal memory, an HSPA+ cellular radio, and 1500 mAh battery.
The 3-D aspect may appeal to consumers who already have a 3-D television in the home; through an HDMI cable, LG’s new Optimus can push 3-D images directly to these television sets. And consumers that don’t have the latest and greatest TV at home can still upload images from the dual lens phone directly to YouTube’s 3-D channel. It’s too early to say if this functionality will be a hit with consumers, but clearly, LG is hoping to differentiate its devices — the LG G-Slate also uses a two-camera system — with the glasses-free, 3-D technology. The company has even created a 3-D user interface for five software applications on the Optimus: the Gallery, Camera, Game & Apps, YouTube 3D and a 3D Guide.
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