This was supposed to be yet another rumor roundup. A closer to reality version of our rash LG G4 preview from back February, but still highly reliant on speculation, guesswork and unconfirmed gossip.
Only the manufacturers of last year’s critically acclaimed G3 essentially put “professional” leaksters out of business. With one noteworthy exception, “inside” sources became useless as the Korea-based OEM gradually revealed sans any restraint G4’s display, cameras and Android-skinned user interface.
What’s left to do now is gather all the sure-fire and near-guaranteed intel and see how LG’s next big thing could stack up against 2015’s phone to beat. Yes, Samsung’s sizzling hot Galaxy S6. Here goes:
LG G4 – what we know for sure
- April 28 – the big day. “See the Great, feel the Great”. New York, London, Paris, Seoul, Singapore and Istanbul. Six venues, one hour, one phone. A little too much fuss for a device that’s already so out in the open? Perhaps, but maybe some surprises are in store.
- 5.5-inch True HD-IPS+ LCD screen with 2,560 x 1,440 pixels (aka Quad HD) resolution. Sounds familiar? Well, the numbers are identical to the ones boasted by G3’s panel. Diagonal size, pixel count and, obviously, ppi – 538. What’s new is 30 percent improved brightness, 50 percent “higher than conventional” contrast ratio, and “richer and more accurate colors.” With no impact on energy consumption, allegedly. Also, a subtly arched profile. It’s time we stopped caring so much about overkill figures, and concentrated on real-life enhancements, don’t you think?
- 16 MP rear-facing camera with f/1.8 aperture. Again, at first glance, this doesn’t seem like a huge upgrade. Just three more megapixels than last year? Come on, LG, even HTC can do 20 MP these days. Yes, but HTC and Samsung’s aperture technology is inferior, so the G4 may well prevail in low-light photo activity.
- 8 MP selfie-friendly front snapper. Now that’s a spec bump everyone can understand and support. 8 is bigger than 2.1, hence self-portraits should look better than ever.
- Android Lollipop with LG UX 4.0 on top. Not sure about the pre-installed L version yet (it could be 5.0 or 5.1), but the proprietary UI is rather pretty. “Human-centric” and intuitive, it’s a bit on the intrusive side. Still, it favors camera customization and aims to bring important notifications and news closer to every particular user.
LG G4 – what’s yet to be confirmed (but looks fairly certain as well)
- Hexa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 CPU + Adreno 418 GPU. Not quite as zippy (on paper) as the 810/430 combo, it’s really LG’s only choice if the Snapdragon 810 indeed still suffers of overheating woes.
- 3 GB RAM. Just 3, no 2 gig option this time around. No leap to 4 either, probably to keep production costs as low as possible.
- Plastic construction with optional leather back covers and the same iconic rear physical buttons. Sad LG isn’t following Samsung’s suit on the premium metal path? We bet, but at least G4’s battery will remain user removable, and microSD support isn’t going anywhere. Also, how cool is genuine leather? Granted, Motorola did it before, but it’s still gorgeous… when not painted in pukey brown.
- G Pen? No G Pen? Separate G Pen variant? That’s a key question we can’t answer at the moment.
- 3,000 mAh battery with Qi wireless charging functions and Quick Charge 2.0. Nothing altogether revelatory or innovative, nothing disappointing here either. Autonomy should be decent, not record-breaking
- 32 GB and up internal storage. The age of 16 GB flagship phones is finally reaching an end. Probably. Hopefully.
LG G4 vs Samsung Galaxy S6 – preliminary specs comparison
We’ll of course be back with a more comprehensive, rigorous versus post once the G4 goes official, but for now, let’s explore a few of the areas LG could handle the heavyweight bout in.
Firstly, it’s obvious the expandable storage and replaceable battery will be extraordinary advantages. Cell capacity should also be a plus, at 3,000 vs 2,550 mAh. Then you’ll likely have a superior front cam, matching native storage space and slimmer bezels, resulting in a 75 percent or so screen-to-body ratio (the Galaxy S6 sits at a similarly respectable 70.7%).
In the screen sharpness department, it’s too early to proclaim a winner, though the slightly smaller footprint should stem a better ppi on the Galaxy S6. Under the hood, the Exynos 7420 chip will almost certainly outpace the Snapdragon 808, while the main photographical unit looks like a delicate subject we’d rather not approach so soon in the game.
Oh, okay, we have a tie as far as the megapixel count is concerned, and optical image stabilization across the board. But phase detection, laser autofocus and a wider aperture might allow LG to put another precious one in the win column.
Last but not least, there’s the retail cost matter. Since the G4 is clearly less premium than its arch-rival from a design standpoint, we wouldn’t be surprised if it were to go for roughly $600, which is $150+ south of Galaxy S6’s factory unlocked tag via Amazon. Bottom line, the race to gold is wide open.