All the details have been ironed out for LG’s new “superphone”, the Optimus G, to enter the local market. It’s going to be Telstra exclusive and you’ll have to wait until March to get your hands on it. Does this sound like madness to anyone else?
The Optimus G will be launched exclusively on Telstra’s 4G network come-March. The two won’t announce prices just yet, but expect it to be in the $60-$80 per month price bracket. Whatever the price, I’m just going to come out and say it: the Optimus G won’t sell very well in Australia.
It’s not because it isn’t a good phone. Far from it, in fact: the Optimus G is a great phone. It’s the phone Google chose to base the Nexus 4 on. It’s running the incredible Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro+ processor, a beautiful screen and a bunch of cool gear like Miracast. Make no mistake: the Optimus G is a top phone. The reason it won’t sell very well in Australia is because it’s far too late an entrant in the market.
The Optimus G has been out in South Korea, Europe and the US since November 2012. Australians had been told to wait patiently for the device as LG pledged to bring it to market around late January. Instead, it’ll now launch in March, after all the incredible announcements from Mobile World Congress. Nobody who knows phones is going to want to commit to this device for two years after they see Mobile World Congress-hotness, and that’s a real shame.
Mobile World Congress may even produce the successor to the LG Optimus G, making the phone even more irrelevant here. If we do see the heir to the Optimus G’s superphone throne, it’s a fair bet we’ll have to wait a year for that to come here, too.
The only thing that can save the Optimus G is price. If you grab the attention of consumers looking for a bargain and drop the price to, say, $400 outright or $0 upfront on a $40 plan, you’ll sell them like wildfire. I doubt either Telstra or LG are willing to make this sort of a loss for a market LG clearly doesn’t care about in the first place.
Despite all this, I’m still excited for the Optimus G.