Showdown: LG G2 vs iPhone 5, HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4

Showdown: LG G2 vs iPhone 5, HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4

Does LG’s new flagship have what it takes to tempt people away from its main Android and iOS peers?

LG has just unveiled the G2, its new flagship Android phone and a
concerted attempt by the Korean company to enter the smartphone big
leagues. But how does the G2 size up against three of its chief rivals:
the Samsung Galaxy S4, the HTC One and the mighty Apple iPhone 5? We
break it down for you below.

Hardware

The LG G2 is the first smartphone to sport Qualcomm’s quad-core
Snapdragon 800 chip, here clocked at 2.26GHz. It’s teamed up with 2GB of
RAM. That sounds like an awful lot of processing power.

The iPhone 5 has a proprietary dual-core 1.3GHz A6 chip and 1GB of RAM,
and the HTC One rocks a quad-core Snapdragon 600 running at 1.7GHz and
2GB of RAM. The Samsung Galaxy S4 also sports 2GB of RAM and a
Snapdragon 600, but it’s clocked slightly higher than the One at 1.9GHz.
All, on paper, lag behind the LG G2. But will that translate into
real-world performance? We’ll have to reserve judgement until we get our
mitts on a review unit.

Screen
The LG G2 has a 5.2in 1920 x 1080 screen that runs almost edge-to-edge
on the front face; despite its giant dimensions, this means you can
still hold the phone (reasonably) comfortably in one hand. It uses IPS
LCD tech and, from our hands-on, appears to offer better brightness (if
not sharpness) than the HTC One’s 4.7in 1920 x 1080 LCD.

The Samsung S4’s 5in Super AMOLED matches G2 for resolution, while the
iPhone 5’s 4in LCD Retina display features 1136 x 640 pixels, putting it
at the bottom of this particular pile.

Build quality
The G2’s outer body is mostly constructed from plastic, but unlike the
S4 doesn’t have a removeable backplate, so it’s less creaky than
Samsung’s phone. It’s sleek too, thanks to the only physical buttons
being the rear-mounted power and volume keys.

The metal-bodied iPhone 5 and HTC One are a level above the G2. The One
in particular, with its beautifully machined, seamless unibody, feels
like a phone apart in this group.

Camera
LG has equipped the G2 with a 13MP camera and optical image
stabilisation (OIS) to combat the blurriness that can occur when taking
photos with unsteady hands. It’s the only phone here to offer OIS, but
the feature is available on certain Nokia Lumia models (like the
excellent 1020).

The Galaxy S4 comes with a 13MP sensor, while the iPhone 5’s snapper
offers 8MP and the HTC One musters 4MP. Of course, the One’s sensor has
an “UltraPixel” design that cuts down the number of pixels in order to
make each individual pixel larger and more effective in low light. So
it’s not really helpful to merely compare megapixel counts when
discussing which camera is best. There’s also the quality of the lens,
colour reproduction and contrast to consider. The iPhone 5, for
instance, is widely regarded as better for photos than the Galaxy S4
despite its smaller number of megapixels.

That said, combining 13MP with OIS should make the G2 an impressive
shooter, with the stabilisation aiding low light shooting especially.
We’re excited to give it a proper test soon and look at the shots in
detail.

Battery
The G2 comes with a giant non-removeable 3,000mAh battery that should
combine snugly with the Snapdragon 800’s power-saving capabilities to
deliver a lot of use. It’s the biggest battery here, but it’s worth
noting that it has the biggest screen to power as well.

The iPhone 5 has a 1,440mAh battery, the HTC One 2,300mAh and the
Samsung Galaxy S4 2,600mAh. The S4 is the only model here with a
user-swappable battery, however, so you’re able to carry a spare around
with you in case of power running low.

Extras
The G2 comes with either 16GB or 32GB of non-expandable storage. All
the other models offer up to 64GB built-in – the iPhone 5 comes in 16GB,
32GB and 64GB options, the HTC One in 32GB and 64GB and the Samsung S4
in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB. The S4 also features a microSD slot supporting
up to 64GB of additional space.

There’s no IR port on the G2, something you’ll find on both the One and
S4. But it does have sport a 24-bit, 192kHz DAC, which can mean better
audio quality through headphones (you’ll need to have compatible files
on the phone, naturally).

Verdict
The LG G2 has impressive hardware, and on paper is the equal or better
to all of these other flagship devices when it comes to almost all
specs, storage excepted.

Of course, there’s much more to a smartphone than specifications –
software and usability are equally significant – so we’re not calling
the G2 the best phone around, especially not before we’ve properly
tested it. Stay tuned for a full review soon.

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