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LG Google Nexus 4 : NFC Review

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It's a bit of a strange world this handset world. Here you have Google. When they first brought out a device that would carry it's name, they went to Samsung and released the Google Nexus S phone. That was all well and good and I think the device did OK in the market. It even had a go with some other models from partners including HTC and ASUS.

Google then acquired Motorla handsets, and the natural assumption would be that Motorola would then build any Google monikered devices. But no. Google rinsed Motorola of all the Intellectual Property and then off-loaded it to Lenovo, and got LG to build it's latest Nexus incarnation. Makes total sense! So welcome the Nexus 4.

Still, I have to say, as far as non-descript rectangular smartphones go, this LG Nexus does a pretty good job of it. There's nothing particularly flashy about the device, there's no physical camera button, no expansion slot for a memory card, the camera is average at best, and as I said, the styling is just a little unexciting. BUT for what it lacks outwardly, inwardly it's a bit of a power beast, and the 4.7" device does seem solid in the hand.

It has quad-core 1.5 GHz processors, and all the usual gubbins of connectivity including Bluetooth and NFC. However, it is only an HSDPA device which means those looking for a bit of 4G goodness will be sorely disappointed. So it runs quickly and has loads of features under the skin.

I have seen reviews that claim it is beautiful. Now I know beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I can't help but feel that only the most least-discerning of people will call this device beautiful.

So to the NFC. Since this is standard Android (4.2.2 out of the box) ere are no real surprises when it comes to the software. Settings are as per every other Android device out there. It was nice to see the box talking about Android beam - but ultimately didn't mention NFC so most consumer's probably won't put 2 and 2 together.

NFC was on by default on the unit we received although we had a little difficulty finding the antenna, eventually locating it pretty much mid-point down the back of the device. Again, it would be really helpful if the manufacturers out a small symbol like Sony did, on the back to help people. We have had a couple of "mis-hits" with this device, where it suggests a successful scan of the NFC tag but nothing happening as a result. Then it seems to work if you try again. We don't know why that is, but it's a slight worry, especially if you are trying to gain consumers confidence in the ease of tap to interact.When it does work there's the usual resounding chime and the reaction to the action which is nice and quick. Overall I would say it's what you expect the experience to be.

Apparently this device is selling for cheaper than it's predecessor, despite the elevated spec, and although it is only available in limited channels, if you are a Google fandroid then it might be the option or you. However, ultimately this device is yet just another example of a solid OS based device peddling an experience that people expect and are happy with, so you can't really argue with it.

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Guest Monday, 20 February 2017