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LTE version of LG's tablet launches

The device features an 8-inch screen, a 1.2GHz quad-core processor, 16GB of internal storage, and support for both Wi-Fi and LTE.

The LG G Pad 8.0 LTE. LG

An 8-inch tablet is hitting store shelves for those who prefer an LTE option for an Android-based device.

LG on Thursday announced the launch of the LTE version of its G Pad 8.0 tablet. The device, which looks exactly the same as its previously announced Wi-Fi-only G Pad 8.0, comes with a 1.2GHz quad-core processor. It has 16GB of onboard storage, as well as a 1GB of RAM and a microSD slot for additional storage. It sports a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera and a 1.3-megapixel front-facing lens.

LG is among several device makers doubling down on smaller tablets. A wide range of companies, including Apple, Amazon, Samsung, and others, are offering slates that come with smaller screens. However, recent research has suggested that in addition to the tablet market, in general, slowing down, slates featuring smaller screens are attracting fewer customers.

Last month, research firm NPD DisplaySearch reported that phablets -- smartphones that have over 5-inch screens -- are starting to cannibalize sales of smaller tablets. What's worse, the research firm expects tablets with screen sizes between 7 and 8 inches to experience reduced demand through 2018.

According to DisplaySearch, the secret sauce for tablet makers in the future is devices with larger screens. Indeed, the company believes that tablets with screen sizes of 11 inches or bigger "will exceed 10 percent of the market by 2018."

Regardless, LG is pushing ahead with its 8-inch slate. The company's device runs on Android, but has been skinned with LG's own UX user experience, which includes the ability to touch anywhere on a screen to snap a photo. The LG platform also includes support for a "knock code," which lets users create their own sequence of screen knocks to unlock the device.

The G Pad 8.0 LTE starts shipping this week in "key" European countries, the company said. LG also plans to offer the slate in Central and South America and Asia.

CNET has contacted LG for comment. We will update this story when we have more information.