Want an Android smartphone without breaking the bank? You may want to consider Sprint's new LG Optimus F3, which launches on June 14 for just $29.99 with a new two-year contract. No, it doesn't offer high-end specs that you'll find on the LG Optimus G Pro or other devices, such as the HTC One or Galaxy S4, but it does offer a nice array of mid-range features.
The Optimus F3 is equipped with a 4-inch IPS display, a dual-core processor clocked at 1.2GHz, a 5-megapixel camera, support for Sprint's 4G LTE network, NFC and a 2,460mAh battery. The phone runs Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean and LG's custom software offerings including VuTalk3 for collaborating in real-time with drawings and hand-written messages, QSlide for running two applications at the same time, QuickMemo for fast note-taking and more. Sprint also said it's the "first U.S. smartphone to allow the visually impaired to receive voice prompts right out of the box with TalkBack by Google."
The device will be available online at first but Sprint said it will land in all retail stores this summer.
LG Optimus F3 from Sprint Boasts Advanced Accessibility and Unmatched Affordability
First U.S. smartphone to allow the visually impaired to receive voice prompts right out of the box with TalkBack by Google
ARLINGTON, Va. (BUSINESS WIRE), June 06, 2013 – LG Electronics and Sprint today announced the upcoming availability of the LG Optimus F3™ smartphone offering features designed to make the device more accessible for people with vision loss or other disabilities. The LG Optimus F3 offers access to the Sprint 4G LTE network, a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, a long-lasting 2,460mAh battery, a vivid IPS display, and premium features that allow customers to connect and share with ease.
At just $29.99 (excluding taxes) with a new line or eligible upgrade, two-year service agreement and $50 mail-in rebate via reward card, this device will be the most affordable 4G LTE smartphone from Sprint at launch. Available in two colors – silver and purple – the LG Optimus F3 can be purchased beginning June 14 at www.sprint.com or by calling 1-800-SPRINT1. It will be available in all Sprint retail channels later this summer.
The LG Optimus F3 is the first phone to come preloaded with TalkBack, which is accessible when users take the phone out of the box and power it on. Talkback is a text-to-speech accessibility feature from Google that helps blind and vision-impaired users interact with their devices more easily. With the TalkBack feature "on" from the get-go, customers will benefit from voice guidance as they go through the activation and setup process on their device.
"Sprint is committed to providing technology that meets the needs of all of our customers," said Dan Hesse, Sprint CEO, who announced the device today at the M-Enabling Summit in Arlington, Va. "The LG Optimus F3 offers a robust list of features for any customer, and it is uniquely empowering for people with disabilities."
"Combining intelligent features with the user-friendly LG interface, the LG Optimus F3 allows users to easily collaborate and communicate while handling a variety of tasks or enjoying entertainment content," said Wayne Park, president and CEO of LG Electronics USA. "This device exemplifies LG's commitment to delivering compelling accessibility features."
The LG Optimus F3 is Sprint ID-enabled, allowing users to download the new Accessible Education ID pack. This ID pack makes it easy for millions of K-12 students with print disabilities – individuals who cannot effectively read print because of visual, physical, perceptual, developmental, cognitive or learning disabilities – to access Web-based educational resources on their smartphone. The Accessible Education ID pack is a package of applications and mobile Web services available in a single download.
The Accessible Education ID pack features customized mobile Web services that are designed to eliminate clutter and display only the parts of Web pages of interest to the user. It also provides students who do not have computers or Internet connections at home with mobile-friendly interfaces and Web-based educational resources.
Applications within the Accessible Education ID pack, developed by Apps4Android, include:
Six applications that simplify access to WebMATH, a free website hosted by Discovery Education that helps students learn how to solve math problems. Solutions to all problems are presented in a real-time, step-by-step, manner.
KhAndroid: a fully accessible Android application that enables its users to view Khan Academy's library of more than 2,200 micro lectures via video tutorials. Topics covered include math, history, finance, physics, chemistry, biology, astronomy and economics. IDEAL Equation Finder: a speech recognition-based application, designed to take advantage of EqsQuest's semantic search technology for math and science. Semantic search technology seeks to improve search accuracy by understanding a searcher's intent and the contextual meaning of terms as they appear in searchable data spaces.
With nearly 90 Sprint ID packs available today, Sprint ID allows consumers, on select Android-powered devices from Sprint, including the LG Optimus F3, to download "ID packs" – a bundle of content that delivers a complete mobile experience in a few simple clicks. ID packs include applications, widgets, ringtones and wallpapers. Whether they are an environmentalist, sports lover, music enthusiast, fitness fanatic, gamer or an individual with disabilities, Sprint ID makes it easy for customers to personalize their smartphone by allowing them to download ID packs with content to fit their lifestyle.
In addition, the unique LED indicator on the LG Optimus F3's home button offers a rainbow of color options that can assist those with hearing impairment, such as green for a phone call or red for a text message. Specified colored and patterned light provides charging status and notifications, such as alarms, calendar reminders, new messages and missed events.
Built with a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera and convenient front-facing camera, the LG Optimus F3 is packed with nifty camera features that allow users to enhance special moments and photos. With Beauty Shot, users can snap photos that enhance their friends' and their own appearances. Cheese Shot lets users take a voice-activated photo by simply saying "cheese" while Panorama Shot helps users to capture the entire scene in a single photo.
Additional features include:
VuTalk3 allows users to send handwritten messages, photos or drawings back and forth in real time to visually share ideas and collaborate.
QSlide 2.0 allows users to overlay up to two application windows on an existing open application, adjusting size and transparency as needed for greater multitasking functionality.
QuickMemo™ lets users add their own creative commentary to pictures or screenshots with the swipe of a finger then share it via social media, email or SMS.
QTranslator allows users to translate words and phrases from 44 different languages into 64 native languages.
Android 4.1.2, Jelly Bean
Vivid 4-inch IPS display with super strong Corning® Gorilla® Glass 2
1,080p full-HD video capture
Multilanguage support with 53 keyboard input languages
SmartShare – share media wirelessly to DLNA® enabled devices
Wi-Fi Direct™ file sharing
Android Beam to share content via Near Field Communication (NFC) and Bluetooth® technology
LG Tag+ – preset, individual phone profiles activated using NFC technology tags
Quiet Mode – specify times to disable notifications for calls and messages ULE Platinum Certified – the highest level of environmental performance recognized by sustainable requirements established by UL Environment and Sprint