- Supreme performance for a midrange device
- Great battery life
- Solid rear camera
- Ergonomic design
- Low display resolution
- Small storage space
- Huge dimensions for a "mini" flagship
With a 4.7-inch display, the LG G2 mini isn't exactly diminutive, but it provides an respectable midrange package regardless.
It’s hard to see a smartphone with a 4.7-inch screen as a “mini” device, but the LG G2 Mini is actually a shrunken version of its 5.2-inch bigger brother, the LG G2. But considering that the hardware of this newer phone — from its processor to its display to its battery — has been downgraded almost across the board, ‘Mini’ is actually an appropriate moniker for this relatively large smartphone.
More specifically, the LG G2 Mini comes with a 540 x 960 IPS screen, with Qualcomm’s quad-core Snapdragon 400 quad-core chipset running at 1.2 GHz. The back-facing camera has 8 megapixels, the battery is rated at 2440 mAh, and 8 GB of storage is included by default. (Luckily, that meager amount is expandable through a microSD card slot, which is something the larger LG G2 lacks). All of this runs with Android 4.4.2 (KitKat), which itself is covered by LG’s Optimus UI skin.
These features are more or less standard for the majority of today’s smaller flagship iterations, with the continued exception being Sony’s outstanding Xperia Z1 Compact. The difference here is that LG’s ‘mini’ handset purportedly offers a lusher display. This tempered approach has its advantages, of course, but some well-worn shortcomings as well. Let’s give it a look.
Build and Design
With dimensions of 130 x 66 x 9.8 millimeters (5.10 x 2.60 x 0.39 inches), the LG G2 Mini doesn’t seem anywhere near small until it’s placed next to the original G2, since the two share an almost entirely identical design. Like the G2, the G2 mini is fully carved out of 121 grams (4.27 oz) of plastic, making it quite light for a 4.7-inch phone. This, along with its intensely rounded back edges and smooth back plate, makes the device feel fantastic in the hand, and doesn’t allow it to be a burden when it’s jammed in your pocket for an extended period of time.
The G2 mini’s front is absolutely dominated by its display; outside of the screen on LG’s new G3 flagship, the G2 mini’s panel takes up a higher percentage of real estate than most other phones on the market. At least 70 percent of the phone’s front is pure screen, a setup that is primarily due to the G2 mini’s super slim side bezels, which are less than 3 mm thick. A small LG logo and set of capacitive Back, Home and Menu keys are fitted underneath the panel, and a speaker and 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera are above it, but that’s it.
Like the rest of LG’s latest high-end devices, it’s the back of the G2 mini, not the sides, that is equipped with the phone’s power button and volume rocker. This signature detail requires some getting used to, but once you familiarize yourself with the setup, it begins to feel like the logical way of doing things. This is a genuinely unique idea for LG, and it’ll surely score them some loyalty points amongst its users. Also on the back is an 8-megapixel camera with an LED flash, which sits above all of those buttons.
Due to the atypical location of the keys, the left and right edges of the device are absolutely clean, while the lower edge includes a set of stereo speakers and a micro USB hub. The upper edge includes the infra-red transmitter and the audio jack.