The LG Optimus L9 won’t be a popular device for us phone buffs with the LG Optimus G looming, but T-Mobile still seems to believe there’s a market for it (and there very well may be). Coming in at $80 ($50 with T-Mobile’s value plans) starting October 31st, the LG Optimus L9 will offer a low-cost smartphone experience that doesn’t look quite like a budget phone on paper.
Buyers will be getting a 4.5 inch qHD smartphone that sports a 1GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, a 5 megapixel camera with 1080p HD video recording, a front-facing camera, a 2,150 mAh battery, and more. LG hasn’t been particularly favored by Magenta customers after the Optimus 2X debacle of 2010, but the general feeling around the land is that they have improved.
Most of the praise has been due to the reemergence of the OEM’s Optimus line in the Optimus G, but there’s no reason to believe that won’t translate to a solid experience in the median range of the spectrum.
The real issue will come down to after-market support — those burned by LG in the past will need to believe that the OEM has shored its process up when it comes to bug fixes, upgrades to the latest versions of Android, and more. And the timing of the updates is only half of the issue.
There have been issues where bug fixing updates have actually made things worse, so the quality of updates also has to be addressed. But as we’ve seen with many other OEMs it’s never wise to continue to judge a company based solely on the past.
Many will give LG another chance, and it will be interesting to see if LG can finally take this opportunity to turn its public image around and restore the assurance that is needed to make a consumer want to pull the trigger on one of its smartphones. We’ll see how things fare for them starting at the very end of this month.