LG launched its G4 flagship smartphone in April 2015 and with it came a lovely leather finish, fantastic display, competitive price and a great camera. The South Korean company has now announced the successor to that perfect balance of phone meet phablet with the LG G5.
There were a couple of things that let the G4 down including a lack of fingerprint sensor and a not-so-great battery life so the question is, does the G5 right the wrongs?
We have compared the LG G4 to the new LG G5 to see what changes, what stays the same and what the G5 brings to the table over the G4. Read on to find out the differences between the LG G4 and the LG G5.
LG G5 vs LG G4: Design
The LG G4 measures 148.9 x 76.1mm and it has a curved rear that measures between 6.3mm at its slimmest point to 9.8mm at its thickest. The G4 has rear-mounted volume controls, making it slightly different from the norm. It hits the scales at 155g and features a removable back with shells that came in plastic or leather options.
The LG G5 brings an entirely new design however. A full metal unibody has been introduced, and unlike most metal smarthones, there are no antenna slits thanks something LG is calling "microdising". Despite the new design, the lime-coloured battery is still removable thanks to a removable bottom section of the handset, so no love lost there.
The G5 moves its volume and power controls to the more traditional side position, while the rear sees a fingerprint sensor within the power button and a dramatic camera array above. It measures 149.4 x 73.9 x 7.7mm and weighs 159g.
LG G5 vs LG G4: Display
One of the best things about the LG G4 and its predecessors is the screen to body ratio. LG manages to squeeze a 5.5-inch display into what is almost the same size as other smartphones that only offer around the 5-inch mark. The G4 features a Quad HD resolution for a lovely sharp, pixel-packed 534ppi display.
The LG G5 offers a 5.3-inch IPS LCD display, also with a Quad HD resolution. This means that while the display size is smaller than the G4, the pixel density is slightly higher at 554ppi.
The G5 will offer what LG is calling an Always-on display that features partial on and off illuminations, showing key information without the application processor needing to be woken up. This results in very little power consumption with LG claiming the Always-on function will use only 0.8 per cent battery per hour. The display is also 900nits, brighter than the G4, so overal, the G5 should offer a better, more useful display experience over its predecessor.
LG G5 vs LG G4: Camera
LG made a big deal out of the G4's camera when it launched - claiming its larger pixels would help the device deal with low light conditions much better than competitors. The G4 arrived with a 16-megapixel rear camera and 8-megapixel front snapper, both of which performed very well.
The LG G5's camera isn't about being better in terms of numbers though. LG claims the new flagship is about giving you more functions instead, such as auto wide angle. To do this, the G5 features a second 135-degree wide-angle rear camera.
There is a main sensor that offers a 16-megapixel resolution and allows you to take images as you normally would. This main sensor is coupled with a secondary 135-degree wide-angle sensor with an 8-megapixel resolution for the times you want to get more into a shot. The front-facing camera wasn't mentioned but we don't expect it to be lower than 8-megapixels.
LG has said the wide-angle feature will offer a field of view that is closer to the human eye rather than restricted like a regular camera. It won't do anything "geeky" like 3D but the new camera will allow you to take photos and video at the same time, as well as add filters and effects like fish eye.
LG G5 vs LG G4: Hardware
The LG G4 comes with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage and microSD support for further storage expansion. There is also a 3000mAh battery on board.
The LG G5 ramps up these specs quite significantly, bringing the latest Snapdragon 820 chip, supported by 4GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage. Despite the full metal body, microSD support is still on board and LG adds USB Type-C to the mix too. The battery capacity drops to 2800mAh but as it is still removable, we can't see many complaining too much.
The LG G5 also comes with various modules that can be attached to the bottom of the handset, which are being called Friends. These Friends including the LG Cam Plus and LG Hi-Fi Plus, giving the G5 a modular edge over the G4.
The Cam Plus is a camera module and the aim is to offer a more natural user experience. It brings the G5's battery capacity up to 4000mAh for all day snapping, while also delivering better grip and several other camera functions including auto focus with the shutter button, and zoom with the analogue dial.
The Hi-Fi Plus has its own headphone socket in addition to the socket already on the smartphone. It is a 32-bit DAC and amp tuned by B&O that will allow for a higher quality sound in comparison to the 24-bit DAC that is already on the G5.
LG G5 vs LG G4: Software
The LG G4 arrived with the latest version of Android at the time, along with LG's own interface over the top. This device will be updated to Marshmallow eventually, although it hasn't happened as yet.
The LG G5 will arrive with Marshmallow from launch. The company has also removed the app tray for "simpler structure". We're yet to fully explore the G5's software, but like the G4, most aspects of the UI are altered from the Android norm.
LG G5 vs LG G4: Conclusion
Flagship successors always bring some form of upgrades and improvements. Whether these are small or large depends on the manufacturer and its release pattern.
The G5 not only makes the various performance upgrades but it also offers a complete redesign while still offering key features such as a removable battery and microSD support. These all contribute to making the G5 the most exciting LG smartphone since the LG G2.
A faster processor over the G4, coupled with an improved camera experience and a more exciting design and display, as well as the latest software makes the G5 a true winner over the G4 based on the specs.
Then you have those modules you can switch in and out, with takes the LG G5 into completely new territory.