LG ISAI LGL24: The Japanese LG G3 Variant for a Bargain

The LG-based isai FL LGL24 is quite a good deal at the moment. This is a G3-similar model that’s branded for the Japanese market, offering the 5.5″ QuadHD display, yet at significantly lower prices. It is available from overseas sellers on Lazada as export sets, but it offers LG G3 similar specs at a low low price of around $296-$350. Prices are still fluctuating, as demand for this phone seems to be rather popular. The cheapest G3 in Singapore at the moment is around $660.

Overview

The LGL24 offers similar specs to the LG G3, so the Snapdragon 801 2.5GHz, 5.5 inch Quad HD display etc are all still present but key differences are in, only 2GB RAM, no laser focus, no OIS, no wireless charging. The power button is also located on the side of the phone, instead on the rear of the phone. The volume button still remains on the rear though. Knock code support is still present. It uses a Nano SIM card, instead of Micro SIM on the G3.

Physical dimensions sees the LGL24 being slightly thicker 10.5mm as compared to the G3’s 8.9 and about 10g heavier at 160g. The phone is also certified waterproof too. It comes with a slightly different OS skin, using the motion launch feature catered to the Japense market. Antutu benchmark still reasonable, with scores at around 39k points.

LTE bands in Singapore are supported, so you would still be able to connect to the local 4G networks. However, it doesn’t support Voice over LTE (VoLTE). What happens is this: when you receive a phone call, your network will switch to 3G For the voice call. You can still access data over the 3G network. After the call, the phone will then reconnect back to LTE/4G.

The bezel is super thin, like the LG G3. Difference here is the top bezel and proximity to the screen, but where’s the front camera? It’s actually located near the bottom left corner, which is an extremely weird place to locate the camera. Try doing a video call on Skype and most likely your fingers will obscure the camera unless you hold it the reverse orientation. It is also only 1.3 megapixel so selfie lovers, take note – this is not the phone for you.

The package contents does NOT come with a charger. You would need to use your own microUSB charger.

lgl24_detail_05

It comes in three colours, Blue, Pink, White. It looks like the white option has a matte casing which I generally would prefer.

Specifications

CPU: MSM8974AC 2.5GHz Quad-core
Size (W x H x D): Approx. 76 x 145 x 10.5 mm
Weight: Approx. 160 g
Battery Capacity: 3,000mAh
Battery removal – No
Internal Memory Capacity (ROM) : 32GB
Internal Memory Capacity (RAM) : 2GB
Display Type Main: AH IPS display
Display Size: Main:Approx. 5.5 inches
Display resolution: Main:2,560 x 1,440 (FHD)
Waterproof: YES (IPX5 / IPX7)
Dustproof : YES ( IP6X )
OS: Android 4.4.2

Accessories

The isai LGL 24 has it’s own circle flip case, just like the G3, with the same quick window functionality. If you are interested to get one, you can get it from

Another useful accessory would be the full edge to edge tempered glass for the isai LGL 24.

Bloatware

As the phone was designed for the Japanese market, there are many pre-installed Japanese and Au KDDI apps on the phone. You can try to uninstall them or disable if they are system apps. Another option is to root the phone and install a custom ROM. There are instructions for this particular model on XDA but be careful. SMS also through the default app is not working due to the Japanese customisations, and I suggest you use third party apps like Hangouts.

If you want to access the isai LGL24 service menu – at the dial screen, enter 3845#*24#. Finally, if data APN settings are not working, it should be pre-installed with your SIM card, but otherwise you can use the following.

Singtel
APN: e-ideas
Username: 65ideas
Password: 65ideas
Mobile One (M1)
APN: sunsurf
Username: 65
Password: user123
Starhub
APN: shwapint
Username: Blank
Password: Blank

If you are in the market for a new phone, this LGL24 is a great bargain at current prices. It’s priced even lower than the OnePlus One (similarly an export model phone), trades off slightly on the CPU and RAM but offers a Quad HD display, bigger storage capacity (versus the 16gb model, and the LGL24 is still cheaper), and is a phone you can actually order. It is currently listed at $358 on Lazada, and expected to be cheaper on 12/12 due to Lazada online sale. The only worry is no warranty and the seller is also mainly based overseas so if you have any problems, it could be a hassle to resolve. That being said, there are many existing happy buyers on Hardwarezone already.

Sean

Sean is a tech geek and star wars fan. He loves playing with new gadgets, writing little code snippets in Python, JS, and dabbling with Android programming from time to time, while keeping a lookout for the next biggest happening in the world of tech!

6 thoughts to “LG ISAI LGL24: The Japanese LG G3 Variant for a Bargain”

  1. Dear Sean,
    I’m very interested in getting this phone but here are my concerns:
    1. no laser autofocus/OIS – but isn’t that a laser button stated next to the volume rocker at the rear of the phone? because you don’t get that laser thing at the rear of the previous LGL22.
    2. SMS……………If I were to choose not to root the phone, would I still be able to use the default sms app?
    3. updates !!! will this phone get an update to Lollipop like the G3?
    4. Local compatibility. I live in Malaysia. So can I just purchase the phone and get a nano sim from a local carrier and everything gonna work just fine?
    Thanks

  2. Hey buddy, thanks for your comment.

    1 – i think the button you are referring to next the rocker is the infrared port actually – look at the manual here (http://media.kddi.com/app/publish/torisetsu/pdf/lgl24_basic_e.pdf)

    2. SMS is a small issue actually. you don’t need to root the phone. you can always install a third party sms app, Google Hangouts is recommended. if you want to use the default app, generally should be ok, but some contacts may not work if they are without the country code.

    3. local compat – this is the international version with 3g/4g bands. the only issue is whether the 4g bands are compatible with malaysia. I know that they are for Singapore.
    The phone supports LTE 800 MHz(Band 19, 1800 MHz(Band 3), 2100 MHz(Band I), 2600 MHz(Band 7) -LTE . from the list of LTE network in Malaysia, it seems like only Telekom Malysia on the 850 MHz band is out.

    hope it’s helpful :)

    1. Thanks for the clarifications Sean. Much appreciated. Just one more thing, I can’t seem to find sample photos from the 13mpx shooter online or is there any comparison done between the cameras of the lgl24 and the G3? I’m a big fan of the G3’s laser autofocus and OIS and I hope that the shooter is not the watered down version of the G3.

  3. after update to 10k version, phone network lock, tried install LGflashtool but seems not work to me, any idea?

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