Back in the day, when this site was still in nappies, we were looking at “proper” smartphones. They had numeric keypads on the front and tiny low-res screens up front. Cameras? Oh, they were a dream son. Some even had the audacity to be “flip” phones, which were great to slam shut if you were having an argument with someone.
Now LG looks to be bringing them back, at least to certain parts of the world anyway.
The LG Wine Smart was known previously in Korea as the LG Gentle, but has been rebadged for a launch in France, Italy, Poland, Spain, Kazakhstan and Japan later this year.
It has real, numeric keys up front and runs Android 5.1.1 Lollipop. There’s a 3.2″ HVGA 480×320 pixel screen and is powered by a 1.1GHz quad-core CPU. There’s 1GB of RAM, 4GB of on-board storage and a microSD card slot for expansion. Around back, a 3 megapixel camera and up front there’s a VGA shooter which you’ll never use.
It’ll do 4G, WiFi and has Bluetooth 4.1 capability. It’ll be available in navy and burgundy. We don’t have details on pricing or exactly when it’ll be available but we’ll keep you posted.
SEOUL, Aug. 5, 2015 — LG Electronics (LG) brings global consumers with its newest hybrid smartphone designed especially for a generation of users who are more accustomed to the feel of flip — also known as folder or clamshell — phones. Originally announced in the domestic Korean market as LG Gentle, the all-new LG Wine Smart will make its international debut later this month in target countries including France, Italy, Poland, Spain, Kazakhstan and Japan, among others.
The Wine Smart combines the familiarity of a folder phone with an easy-to-use touchscreen and the connectivity and power of a smartphone. Thanks to the positive response to the original Wine Smart introduced in Korea last year, LG optimized the latest model with more advanced multimedia features to make the transition from feature phone to smartphone as seamless as possible.
The new LG Wine Smart is powered by Android Lollipop 5.1.1 to run the latest apps without complaint. To truly optimize the new Wine Smart for flip phone fans, LG included a large physical 3×4 numeric keypad for easy and accurate typing and hotkeys that provide instant access to frequently used features such as phone dialer, address book, text messages or camera. Larger-than-normal icons take full advantage of the 3×3 home screen layout on the crisp 3.2-inch HVGA display. The Wine Smart includes LG’s Safety Care feature which can be set to automatically transmit emergency alerts and real-time location to pre-selected contacts whenever the user needs immediate assistance.
“Our goal with LG Wine Smart was to create a smartphone that fans of flip phones could embrace,” said Chris Yie, vice president and head of marketing communications for LG Mobile Communications Company. “Consumers shouldn’t have to miss out on the smartphone revolution because they prefer a particular phone design over another. With LG Wine Smart, they won’t have to.”
Prices and carrier details will be announced locally at the time of launch.
Chipset: 1.1GHz Quad-Core
Display: 3.2-inch HVGA (480 x 320)
Memory: 4GB ROM / 1GB RAM / MicroSD
Camera: Rear 3MP / Front VGA
Battery: 1,700mAh (removable)
Operating System: Android 5.1.1 Lollipop
Size: 117.7 x 58.7 x 16.6mm
Network: 4G LTE / HSPA+ 42Mbps (3G)
Connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11 b, g, n / Bluetooth 4.1 / USB 2.0
Colors: Burgundy / Navy
, among others.