LG's G Pad 8.3 is, at least for the moment, the company's most high-end tablet available on Verizon's proprietary CDMA/LTE network. Today this carrier-specific model (VK810) gets a small software update to address one big user issue, one small carrier issue, and an outdated app. The latter is the Redbox streaming video app, formerly supported by Verizon, and now out of service. The latest update removes the RedBox app completely.
While owners of Nexus devices have been getting Android 5.0 updates all over the place for the last few weeks, Google Play Edition owners have had to wait a little longer. The first GPE device to get an over-the-air Lollipop update seems to be the LG G Pad 8.3 - or as it's affectionately known around here, the LGGP83GPE. Users on Twitter and XDA are reporting at least some OTA updates, and you can grab the ZIP file for a manual flash here (direct link).
Newegg wants to give you a good deal on the LG G Pad 8.3, as we posted yesterday. But strangely, they're giving an even better price to customers who peruse the company's official eBay outlet: $199.99, a full $25 off of the Newegg sale price. This is the same standard LG G Pad 16GB Wi-Fi model, sold new, and only available in black. Why eBay buyers get a better deal we couldn't say, but it looks like cheap things come to those who wait.
LG went a long time between tablets, but when they returned to the market with the G Pad 8.3 last year, they did so in style. This metal-clad tablet didn't have the latest and greatest processor, but it made up for it with a sleek mid-sized design, 2GB of RAM, and extras like a MicroSD card slot. LG has since transitioned to more budget-oriented models (not unlike Samsung's main Galaxy Tab series), but you can pick up the original for $224.90 at Newegg today.
I really like my LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play Edition (or as we call it 'round the office, the LGGP83GPE), and it's a bit disheartening that the standard version isn't getting more traction. But at least Verizon's LTE model is now on Android 4.4, as confirmed by Google+ users. Verizon's standard upgrade page says that the KitKat 4.4.2 OTA update adds a few changes to LG's software skin as well.
Google officially pulled the HTC One M7, Galaxy S4, Xperia Z Ultra, and LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play Edition devices from the Play Store not too long ago. Since then we've seen a couple of them pop up on sale across various distributors. When an eBay seller offered the Galaxy S4 for $499 ($150 off) last month, we considered that a deal. Before that, Expansys USA offered the Z Ultra for the low price of $349, $100 less than what Google last asked for it.
Last month, we reported that the Xperia Z Ultra, LG G Pad 8.3, HTC One M7, and Galaxy S4 Google Play Edition devices were all appearing as out of stock on the Play Store for several weeks. Today, Google officially removed the Z Ultra, G Pad, and M7 from the Play Store, and they no longer appear under the Google Play Edition devices section.
The remaining three phones are the One M8, Moto G, and Galaxy S4.
Google took its sweet time updating the Nexus-style Google Play Edition of the G Pad 8.3 to Android 4.4.3, but it looks like they had a good reason. The tablet has been zipped straight to 4.4.4, and the over-the-air update should be going out now. If you're not willing to wait - and it might be a few days, considering the staggered rollout - we've got a link to the update ZIP file below.
Customers who want Android tablets on Verizon's admittedly excellent LTE network tend to have only a few options, but there are two more this morning. Flagships from both LG and Samsung, the G Pad 8.3 and Galaxy Note Pro (or NotePRO) 12.2, are now available as branded Verizon devices. You can pick both of them up on the carrier website, and they should be available at retail stores either today or soon after.