Pantech unveiled its new Vega Racer 2 smartphone on Thursday, throwing down the gauntlet to Samsung and LG in a market they dominate. The first Vega Racer sold more than 1.7 million units in Korea last year.
At the launch, Pantech vice chairman Park Byeong-yeop focused more on the phone's battery than on its performance and design. He claimed the gadget has a longer battery life than any other 4G LTE smartphones released around the world so far. It can manage 245 hours of standby and 570 minutes (9.5 hours) of talk time. Rival models like Samsung's Galaxy Note and Galaxy S2 LTE have 450 minutes and 345 minutes of talk time.
The Vega Racer 2 uses a "one-chip processor," an integrated communications chip and applied processor, for the first time, which explains why the power efficiency is greater and the battery lasts longer. The phone is smaller than its predecessor but has a bigger screen because chip space dwindled. It comes with a 4.8-inch screen but can be held in the palm of a hand.
A Korean-language voice recognition feature makes it easy for users to make phone calls or take pictures. Running on Android's new Ice Cream Sandwich operating system, it also features the face-recognition lockscreen and "simple mode" option.
"The Vega Racer 2 will compete in the market with new products from Apple and Samsung," Park said. Samsung introduced the Galaxy S3 in London the same day, and Apple is expected to release the iPhone 5 in June.