Slowly but steadily, LG has become an Android phone maker to watch.

Its G series of phones have been solid devices so far, but they haven’t managed to compete against the Samsung marketing behemoth.

With the G3, LG’s most recent flagship phone, that trend may finally change. The company’s big focus this year? Simplicity, killer technology, and closer deals with carriers.

“Basically we’re building up — we think we have momentum with the G3 in terms of brand status and the [potential] consumer base is rapidly expanding,” said LG marketing executive Chang Ma in an interview.”The G2 had a big contribution to that, and also the G Flex launch helped claim (our title) as one of the most innovative manufacturers on the market.”

The G3’s interface has been dramatically simplified, compared to the G2. And LG is betting on a few key technology elements to wow consumers. The phone packs a large 5.5-inch screen with a sharp Quad HD display, which offers twice the resolution of 1080p displays. And its 13 megapixel camera has laser-powered autofocusing, so it’s ready to take pictures almost instantly.

In my brief hands-on time with the G3, it felt surprisingly comfortable for a phone with such a large screen. I also spent a lot of time staring at the screen, and while I’m not sure it’s significantly better than a 1080p resolution, it certainly looked sharp.

LG G3 Hands-on


This year, LG will focus on attracting a broader range of customers, and it will also have an “aggressive” investment in marketing, Ma said.

“There’s always fierce competition, but the most important thing is that you must understand your position in the market,” he said. “We want to be number one, but there are steps to take.”

Ma notes LG will also collaborate more closely with carriers for the G3, though he couldn’t say much since those deals are still in the works. He hinted that carriers may want to position the G3 as an alternative to the iPhone and Samsung’s Galaxy devices to offer something new and different to their customers.

While LG’s past phones haven’t been huge hits, they’ve been enough to convince Google to collaborate with the company for its Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 phones. While LG’s OEM team designed these, Ma says it’s still helpful to work with Google to get an early look at the latest versions of Android.