Just a few short years ago, your humble narrator had never so much as picked up a smartphone, much less owned a device with a data plan – such is the way in the Midwest for many still today, and by the looks of LG’s newest announcement of the Optimus P698 handset, it’s the same situation over there in Mother Russia. Though tech blogs like the one you’re reading right this second take the best of the best into our arms and write about how amazingly fantastic they are and how you should toss the rest of the trash in the garbage, there’s a gigantic cross-section of people in the world that, believe it or not, have not yet stepped into the world of being able to watch Beavis and Butthead from the comfort of their car.
What this new device from LG shows us is that even though here in the United States such a tiny device (even though it’s stocked with Android’s second-newest version Gingerbread) would be dismissed by most of the major news networks, it’s still worth an ad campaign in the motherland. The cost of this device over there converts off-contract to about $200 USD, aka 8,990 rubles and relatively affordable by their upper middle-class. You won’t find the Galaxy Nexus over there (not yet, at least), and you can basically just forget about the ASUS Transformer Prime. But look at this little monster and recognize this at the same time: the vast majority of the people that I come in contact with here Minnesota, USA, do not have smartphones.
I’m certainly not claiming that Russia and the midwest section of the United States are living back 5 years from everyone else, but the proof is in the pudding: smartphone marketers are still targeting new users with entry-level smartphones. Once you purchase an entry-level smartphone, you see what you’re able to do in the mobile arena – but more importantly, you’re able to see what you’re NOT capable of without a higher-grade device. In Russia, you can see how fun it is to use an Android device even when its one with such basic specs as this LG Optimus. Here in the United States the same is true across the nation, but especially here in the still very sparsely smartphone populated midwest.
Do you live here in the tundras of Minnesota with me, your humble narrator, Chris Burns? If so, do you own a smartphone or otherwise smart mobile device? Let me and us know!
Chris Burns is currently head editor for SlashGear and executive editor for Android Community. Based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, he's responsible for editorial decisions made for the USA-based day-team of SG and AC and he uses an iPad 3 as a VCR. Follow him @ t_chrisburns and inside Google+ at http://chrisburns.co/+ for tech, gadget, and design news galore.
The opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of SlashGear