Prada Phone by LG 3.0

The third LG Prada Phone — or to use its slightly ridiculous full name, the Prada Phone by LG 3.0 — took to the catwalk at its launch last night, dazzling the crowd with a gleaming screen and high-fashion Italian glamour.

LG and Prada first released a phone together in 2007, and the mobile phone market has changed significantly since their last outing — the LG Prada 2 KF900 in 2009. But they’ve proved themselves to be a wily, forward-thinking pair in the past, so we had high hopes for their latest release. LG Prada Phone 3.0 back

We could stroke the lovely textured pattern all day long.

The Prada Phone is running the Android 2.3 Gingerbread operating system and anIce Cream Sandwich update has been confirmed for next year.

The phone will be released first in western Europe and South Korea, with a January launch date set for the UK. Prices and specific dates have yet to be fixed, but LG has said that it is currently negotiating with all major UK networks.

Design

As one would expect, this Prada phone has been impeccably styled. The chassis is all black and comes emblazoned with Prada logos.

LG Prada Phone 3.0 logo

It may be made of plastic rather than the metals favoured on many high-end phones, but this doesn’t cheapen the feel — it just makes it lighter.

The back of the phone has a lovely textured pattern, which makes it look and feel like it’s been coated in leather, so we were a tad disappointed when we found out it is actually made of plastic. The silver rim that runs around the phone is also made of plastic. This makes it very light and comfortable to hold and it doesn’t feel at all cheap.

The dazzlingly clear 4.3-inch capacitive touchscreen uses LG’s Nova technology. Nova screens are claimed to be more than twice as bright as the already retina-melting Super AMOLED displays favoured by Samsung. LG claims they also offer purer whites, deeper blacks and consume 50 per cent less power than traditional LCD screens.

LG Prada Phone 3.0 screen

The low-calorie Nova screen technology is said to eat half as much power as regular LCD displays.

In terms of design, the Prada Phone compares favourably with the Samsung Galaxy S2 and the newly released Motorola Razr, which are also black, skinny and sporting 4.3-inch displays.

While not quite matching the Razr’s sleekness, at 8.5mm it will still be one of the thinnest phones on the market. What’s more, it uses a smoke and mirrors technique that LG likes to call Floating Mass Technology to make it appear even skinnier.

LG Prada Phone 3.0 thickness

Not quite as skeletal as the Motorola Razr, but a creditably waif-like 8.5mm thickness.

Processing power, memory and camera

The Prada Phone is powered by a 1GHz dual-core processor. That may not pack quite the same punch as other high-end smart phones, especially when the rumoured quad-core phones begin to appear next year, but it should still offer a really nippy performance.

With 8GB of internal storage and a microSD slot for expanding the memory, there should be plenty of room for all the music, photos and video you could wish to cram in.

It also comes equipped with an 8-megapixel camera that shoots 1080p resolution video, a separate front-facing camera for video calls and some incredibly swish-looking Prada-branded earphones.

LG Prada Phone 3.0 camera

There’s an 8-megapixel camera around the back but posey users will more likely want to admire their own chops with the front-facing cam.

Software

If you prefer to conduct your smart phone business from within a monochrome milieu, the Prada Phone’s design and software will please you plenty. We were rather keen on the noir-themed styling of the user interface when we saw the leaked press shots. We weren’t disappointed when we got up close with it. Scrolling is nippy, bloatware is not excessive and menus and homescreens are thoughtfully and simply laid out.

LG Prada Phone 3.0 menu

The noirish monochrome colour scheme means there’s no risk of clashing with your frock.

For the purposes of continuity, you have the option of turning the colourful logos of any apps you download into stylish black and white icons to match those already installed on the phone. If this all sounds a bit minimalist for your taste, you can always add a splash of colour with one of the wallpapers based on Prada’s distinctive Saffiano design, which can also be seen on the back of the phone.

The Prada Phone will launch running Android 2.3 Gingerbread, but it’s already confirmed that it will be updated to the latest and scrummiest version of Android, Ice Cream Sandwich. LG predicts the update will occur around March or April.

Considering that there will be two companies collaborating and compromising over the user interface design, we won’t start working up our appetites for a spring release until it’s been confirmed.

Outlook

The high-fashion design of the Prada Phone sets it apart and the Nova screen really is startlingly bright. While our first impressions were positive and the specs are promising, we’ll have to put it through its paces to see if it offers real competition to the other high-flying recent releases.

LG Prada Phone 3.0 homescreen

Ice cream sandwiches are more fattening than gingerbread, so it’s no surprise that LG opted for the latter OS on this fashion phone.

LG claims the phone is aimed at the upper end of the market, although to give the brightest sparks in the business a run for their money, we would have liked to have seen it running Ice Cream Sandwich from the outset, rather than having to wait for an upgrade.

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Author Retired

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