Google's Nexus (ten points to anyone who can tell us if Nexi is the correct plural) smartphones have always set the standard when it comes to a pure Google experience.
The first Nexus One was a true geek device. Sold only through Google directly (apart from a brief flirtation with Vodafone), it never achieved massive sales. But it gave the world the true raw power of Android without the bloatware of other variants. As of January 2010, the ball was well and truly rolling.
We've had several now – and everyone, it seems, had a go: HTC, Samsung, Asus and LG – though strangely, not Motorola, which is now part of Google itself.
Some handsets we look forward to with much anticipation – only to feel deflated when we actually use them. Others, we wait for with little expectation – and they absolutely blow our socks off.
A stealth surprise. We'll lay our proverbial cards on the table here from the outset. The Nexus 4 is one of those rare devices.
LG's not had the best track record of late. Sure, we thought the Optimus 4X HD was a pretty decent offering, but too little, too late compared to what was already out there by the time LG got it to market.
And whereas LG did have good form when it came to innovation back in the day (who remembers the Chocolate, the Shine – and even the dubious widescreen BL40?), the mojo seemed to have passed.
That's not a dig at the South Koreans – far from it. But just to set the scene to show why we weren't expecting much from the Nexus 4.
Size wise, the Nexus 4 comes in at 133.9 x 68.7 x 9.1 mm – which means it is similar to its predecessor. But it is far more stunning to look at and hold.
The front is all glass in piano black. Extra tough too thanks to the Corning Gorilla Glass 2. Think iPhone 4S territory, but just a little nicer looking (we are aware that is a matter of opinion, iFans!)
There's no way of getting the back off – so you know what that means, peeps. No removable battery and no expandable storage. The former doesn't faze us too much since the 2,100mAh battery pack is no slouch but the lack of memory card allowance is annoying.
Yes, we know that ever since the Nexus S, expandable memory is out. Google's said that it doesn't offer it because it's confusing. But for those with lots of content who can't or don't want to stream, it's a real pain. We don't quite buy Google's argument.