Google Nexus 5 vs LG G2: What's the difference?

Google has finally unveiled its Nexus 5 smartphone and juts a cursory glance at the specifications makes for pleasant reading for tech fans. Manufacturer LG has packed a lot of top spec in the phone, making it look extremely good value at £299 for the 16GB model, £339 for the 32GB.

Some are even saying that a lot of the DNA of the LG G2, LG's own-branded current and not long released flagship Android phone, has found its way into the Nexus 5. So the big question is, should you consider the Google handset over the manufacturer's own top-end device? Has LG put so much of its secret sauce into the stock Android phone that it may have sacrificed sales of its own?

We hope this little spec comparison will help answer those questions and more.

Screen

When you look at the screens of both devices they are remarkably similar. The LG G2 has a slight size advantage, having a 5.2-inch display in preference to the Nexus 5's 5-inch (4.95-inches, technically). They both utilise LG's proprietary True HD IPS+ display technology, both are Full HD 1920 x 1080 in resolution, and both are covered in Corning's protective Gorilla Glass. However, the Nexus 5 has the current generation, Gorilla Glass 3, while the LG G2 is covered in Gorilla Glass 2.

Read: Hands-on: Nexus 5 review

Size

Both the Nexus 5 and the LG G2 are lovely devices to hold in your hand. The G2 is a fraction larger as the screen size is greater, but not by much. It measures 138.5 x 70.9 x 8.9mm, while the Nexus is 137.9 x 69.2 x 8.6mm. That means the Nexus 5 is actually a tiny bit slimmer too, which is a surprise.

It weighs less, at 130g in preference to the G2's 143g.

Processor

There is no difference between the two in the power stakes. Both handsets feature the exact same 2.3GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor, and the same Adreno 330 graphics. They also both feature 2GB of RAM, so it would be hard pushed to find any differences in performance.

Camera

This is where the LG G2 starts to show its dominance. LG has used its latest 13-megapixel camera in the G2, with optical image stabilisation which promises a far steadier shot, even over rival phones with similar technologies. The Nexus 5's snapper is just 8-megapixel. It does also have optical image stabilisation mind. And we often find that an increase in megapixels is only of maximum importance if you want to view the pictures at full size.

The front-facing cameras are different too. The LG G2 has a 2.1-megapixel front-facing cam, while the Nexus 5's is 1.3-megapixel.

Read: Google Nexus 5: Where can I get it?

Battery

Even though it runs the same processor and has but a tiny increase in screen size, the LG G2 comes with a bigger battery. It has a 3,000mAh battery, while the Nexus 5's is just 2,300mAh. This could actually make a difference for those looking to eke as much as possible out of their phone without having to recharge it too often.

Storage

The Nexus 5 comes in 16GB and 32GB flavours. And, perhaps surprisingly to some but not to Nexus 4 owners, has no microSD card slot for expansion. The LG G2 however, is similarly available with either 16GB or 32GB of storage space, but also has a microSD card slot that allows for expansion by up to a further 64GB.

Update: As some have pointed out, it is only the Korean LG G2 that has a microSD card slot, it is absent on the models in other territories. That might make a difference in your purchasing decision, unless you import the phone from South Korea - and that in itself may present some problems.

Conclusion

We've looked at the most obvious features that are important to all smartphones and their owners, but there are others too, such as the brand new Android 4.4 KitKat operating system on the Nexus 5 or the volume rocker on the rear of the LG G2. Those could make a big difference depending on preference.

As too could price. The Nexus 5, as previously stated, is £299 for the 16GB model, while the 32GB model is £339. A 16GB LG G2 is £430 SIM-free (according to Carphone Warehouse, which stocks both) so is quite a bit more. When taken into account, the slightly lesser spec of the Nexus 5 doesn't seem so bad. Especially if you are after the stock Android experience and fewer bells and whistles in software terms.



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