LG Optimus Vu, with 5-inch screen, will rival Samsung Galaxy Note

Samsung's Galaxy Note has a challenger in the so-called smartphone/tablet hybrid category of devices -- which many are starting to call phablets -- in the new LG Optimus Vu.

LG, the second largest South Korean electronics maker behind Samsung, has teased the Optimus Vu for a couple of weeks as a new phone that offers the usefulness of a tablet in a smaller, more portable size.

On Monday, LG detailed some impressive specs for the Optimus Vu on its Korean website and a Japanese blog. confirming a 5-inch touchscreen with a 4:3 aspect ratio that, like the 5.3-inch screen Galaxy Note, makes use of a stylus.

The screen has a 1024 x 768 pixel resolution to display Google'sAndroid Gingerbread operating system, although an upgrade to Android Ice Cream Sandwich will come later, according to tech site the Verge.

Inside, the Optimus Vu will be powered by a 1.5-gigahertz dual-core processor from Qualcomm and will feature 32 gigabytes of included storage, LG said, according to a translation of its Korean site.

An HDMI port will be included on the Optimus Vu, for hooking the phone up to HDTVs, as well as an 8-megapixel camera on the rear and a 1.3-megapixel camera up front, the company said.

The whole package comes in at just 8.5 millimeters, or 0.33 inches, thick, which is slightly thinner than the awesomely thin Galaxy Nexus (0.38-inches). Both the Galaxy Nexus and Optimus Vu are capable of running on 4G LTE networks.

LG has yet to say when the Optimus Vu will hit U.S. retailers, but more details should be announced at the Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona, Spain, which runs Feb. 27 through March 1.


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