LG Optimus G Pro review: Proceed to checkout
The Optimus G Pro comes with the usual set of organizing apps and one of the most advanced document viewers and editors we've seen yet.The app in question is Polaris Office 4. You can of course view documents - Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents and PDF files too, and there's an option as well to export Word and PowerPoint docs as PDF,
Edit mode offers almost a full set of options - text style, justification, paragraph formatting, bullets, even creating tables. If you're editing an Excel file, you get a formula wizard, resize rows/columns, border style, cell merging and so on. Full-featured PowerPoint presentations can be created too.
The Optimus G Pro could become the essential presenter tool with SmartShare. It can stream content over HDMI (via MHL) or over Wi-Fi (Miracast) and audio over Bluetooth so you can run the presentation from your phablet. The app can also push content to compatible LG devices with Beam. Remember that with Dual Play Dual Screen you can use the phablet's screen for something else (e.g. read notes) while the TV/projector is showing the slides.
The calendar app has a split screen interface - the top part is reserved for the monthly calendar and one on the bottom for the agenda/daily/weekly view. This way you will always have your monthly view visible. The border line between the two sections is not fixed and you can easily move it. You can hide the monthly view completely, but you can't do the same with the other section.
The calendar supports QSlide so you can check your schedule while writing an email without having to switch between apps all the time.
In case you want to enjoy the calendar full screen without any additional views, just turn the phone landscape. The G Pro is syncable with multiple online calendars.
The LG Optimus G Pro features an alarm clock application, which lets you set multiple alarms, each with its own start and repeat time, and ringtone. You can enable application autostartup, so the calendar/email/music player/ tasks/weather app launches when the alarm goes off.
There's also a clever feature called puzzle lock, which will make you solve a simple puzzle to disable the alarm. This way you will only be able to stop the ringing when you have properly woken up.
The Timer, World Clock and Stopwatch features are also part of this app.
The organizer package also includes a useful voice recorder and a nicely touch-optimized calculator. The calculator is QSlide enabled to be always at hand.
The Memo app allows you to take notes and add media to them, such as images, audio, or location.
Notebook is more advanced and lets you create books with multiple pages, add multimedia, draw and eventually export as PDF and email them.
The so-called QuickMemo function is integrated in the phone's OS, allowing you to capture screen shots of anything (including the lockscreen!) and scribble notes over them like you would on the LG Optimus G and Vu. You can save the result as an image or add it to the Notebook app.
The button can be reconfigured to launch an app instead, say QVoice, the camera or anything else you want.
There's also a nice weather app that can show you the forecast by the hour, for the whole week, display the weather in the whole country and show you radar and satellite images if you're interested.
There's also a QTranslator app, which uses the camera to scan text (a word, line or block at a time) and translate it from one language to another. It's a bit slow and requires a data connection, but it can help you out if you're abroad and don't speak (or read) the language. The OCR (scanning the text) sometimes runs into trouble and produces garbage, but the translations are fairly good by automatic standards - that is to say, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.
Google Maps and Navigation
The LG Optimus G Pro managed to get GPS lock in about a minute from cold start without A-GPS. A-GPS can speed up the lock (but it involves data traffic). Cell-ID and Wi-Fi positioning are also available if all you need is a rough location, but they need a data connection too.
Google Maps is a standard part of the Android package and we've covered it many times before. It offers voice-guided navigation in certain countries and falls back to a list of instructions elsewhere. You can plan routes, search for nearby POI and go into the always cool Street View.
3D buildings are shown for some of the bigger cities and you can use two-finger camera tilt and rotate to get a better view of the area.
Google Maps uses vector maps, which are very data efficient. The latest version has an easy to use interface for caching maps - you just choose "Make available offline" from the menu and pan/zoom around until the desired area is in view (there's an indicator showing how much storage caching that area will take). You can later view cached areas and delete ones you no longer need.
Note that there's a limit to the size of the area you can cache - you can't just make all of Europe available offline, not even a whole country. We managed to cache London and some surrounding regions before Maps told us the area is too big.
Also, there's no address search in the cached maps and you can only cache map data in supported regions of the world.
You can also plan routes, search for nearby POI and go into the always cool Street View. The app will reroute you if you get off course, even without a data connection. Initial route planning requires data to be enabled, though.
Google Play has the apps
The Google Play app market, previously known as the Android Market, lets you download various apps for your device. Upon launch of the Market app you're greeted with the tiled interface of the Featured window. A swipe to the right takes you to the Categories view.
Swiping to the left takes you through Top Paid, Top Free, Top Grossing, Top New Paid, Top New Free and Trending. New sections are available such as Staff Picks, Editor's Choice and more.
Downloads are easy and won't take more than a couple of seconds. Before you agree to download an app, the Market will show you what features the app requires access to (e.g. Internet connectivity, access to the file system, etc.). You can also see if updates are available for your currently installed apps by going to My Apps in the contextual menu.
The LG SmartWorld app store is also on board. It's similar to the SamsungApps market - there you can find various content and promotions exclusive to LG users.