LG has announced that it’s bringing its bendable G Flex to AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile later this quarter. The LG G Flex is the first flexible smartphone to make its way to the U.S. The 6-inch smartphone, which we reviewed an international version of in December and awarded 4 stars, sports a unique curved design that allows it to contour easily to your face.
The Flex isn’t just bendable, though. It also features a first of its kind self-healing rear panel that can erase scratches and scraps in minutes. The technology behind the panel is similar to what you’d find on a car. A clear molecular substructure on top of the panel absorbs scratches, bending to them and pushing them back out. The temperature-responsive material can also heal faster the warmer it gets.
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In terms of specs, the Flex offers a 720p P-OLED display that uses LG’s Real Strip technology, which makes all blue, green and red pixels the same size. The result is lifelike colors that put other handsets to shame. And with it’s curved design, LG says that watching a movie on the G Flex at a distance of 1-foot is comparable to watching a movie on a 55-inch screen at 10-feet from you.
Inside, the G Flex includes a 2.3-GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM and 32GB of onboard storage. Cameras include a 13-megapixel rear shooter and with a 2.1-megapixel up front. The G Flex’ performance rivals that of most any smartphone on the market, save for Samsung’s Galaxy Note 3, which came out on top in various benchmarks and anecdotal tests.
Though the Flex is a 6-inch phablet, its curved design makes it feel smaller than it is. Measuring 6.3 x 3.2 x 0.31-0.34 inches and weighing 6.2 ounces, the G Flex is smaller and lighter than both the 5.9-inch HTC One Max, which measures 6.5 x 3.2 x 0.41 inches and weighs 7.7 ounces, and the 6-inch Nokia Lumia 1520, which measures 6.4 x 3.4 x 0.32 inches and weighs 7.3 ounces. Of course, Samsung’s 5.7-inch Galaxy Note 3 undercuts the G Flex at 5.9 x 3.1 x 0.3 inches and 5.9 ounces.
To match its curved design, the G Flex gets the first curved battery found in a smartphone. On the LAPTOP Battery Test, which involves continuous Web surfing over the phone’s data connection with the display brightness set to 40 percent, the G Flex’s 3,500 mAh battery lasted a whopping 10 hours and 57 minutes.
That number, however, comes with a caveat. The Korean version of the handset we reviewed didn’t support LTE, so we ran our battery test of AT&T’s HSPA+ network. We would expect to get lower numbers had the test been performed over LTE. We’ll be sure to update you perform our full review of one of the U.S. versions of the handset.