LG G5 vs LG G4: Everything’s Changed
The opening day fight for the spotlight at the MWC 2016 was always going to be between Samsung and LG. While Samsung had a very sober event, unveiling its S7 devices which didn’t really wow the mass as one would have liked, LG, on the other hand, stole the show with its new modular G5 flagship. Samsung may not have changed too much with the S7, but LG redefined the smartphone with the G5. We look at how much the LG G5 has changed from its G4 predecessor.
The LG G4 was designed in a new way back in 2015 with the introduction of a genuine leather back panel that received mixed reactions in certain religious countries. For example in India, LG refrained from mentioning that the leather back panel was made from cow hide, which prevented some people from buying the handset. The use of leather, however, was done in a brilliant way. The back panel takes 12 weeks to manufacture and uses a new technology for a process which normally takes a few days.
Although some had mixed opinions about the design and use of leather, LG had done it rather tastefully and not only did it look impressive, but also felt great in the hand.
With the G5, LG again made a drastic design change and incorporated a modular design to its new flagship, which is, in our opinion, a stroke of brilliance. The G5 introduces a full metal body and comes with impressive specifications but the what sets the phone apart from its competition is the fact that it comes with modular attachments which can be utilised to enhance the camera and battery of the phone. Over to the back, you can see the dual camera module and a rounded fingerprint sensor below it which was missing in the G4.
However, the back of the G5 looks rather dull and pales in comparison to the back of the G4. Of course, this is just going by the images of the G5 and it may just feel good in the hands. The actual look of the G5 isn’t much to brag about but what will really sell it is it’s modular nature.
The G4 had a 5.5-inch Quad HD LCD display with a 2560 x 1440 pixel resolution and a pixel density of 534ppi. Now while the display on the G4 was bright and crisp, the size factor and poor battery pack made it hard to make it through an entire day with enough juice.
LG has reduced the screen size of the G5 from 5.5-inch to a 5.3-inch Quad HD display. This will not only add much sharper colours and brightness, but will also help conserve precious battery life. Add to this, you also have a new Always On mode that displays notifications and messages without having to turn on the phone. The Always On feature uses only 0.8 percent of battery per hour, which means the phone will last a lot longer than the G4.
Like every new flagship successor, specifications are bound to get a bump. 2016 is the year of the Snapdragon 820 and many flagship devices this year will be sporting that chipset. The G5 is no different. It comes with a smaller 5.3-inch screen as compared to the G4 and is powered by the Snapdragon 820 chipset and Adreno 530 GPU. RAM also gets a bump to 4GB and adds a USB Type-C port. The battery pack drops from 3,000mAh to 2,800mAh, though it is still removable and LG has some ‘Friends’ that bring in some help when needed.
But the USP of the G5 is its modular design and modules is what you get with the G5. The handset comes with various modules that can be attached to the bottom of the device. LG calles these modules Friends that include LG Cam Plus and LG HI-Fi Plus.
The LG Cam Plus is a camera module that is attached to the device for grip and raises the battery capacity to 4,000mAh by adding an extra 1,200mAh battery pack module to the existing 2,800mAh pack. The module also includes other camera functions including auto focus with the shutter button and zoom with the analogue dial.
Next is the Hi-Fi Plus with B&O Play module. This is a Hi-Fi DAC audio player which is perfect for audiophiles. It can also play high-definition audio files encoded in 32-bit at 384KHz that will offer better sound quality over the 24-bit DAC that is already on the G5.
|Display||5.5-inch Quad HD LCD||5.3-inch screen Quad HD IPS display with Corning Gorilla Glass 4|
|Resolution||2560 x 1440 pixels / 534 ppi||2560 x 1440 / 554ppi|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 with X10 LTE||Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 Processor|
|GPU||Adreno 418||Adreno 530|
|Rear Camera||16MP f/1.8 aperture||Standard 16MP, Wide 135 degrees 8MP|
|Front Camera||8MP f/1.8 aperture||8MP|
|Expandability||Up to 2TB via MicroSD||Up to 200GB via MicroSD|
|Battery||3000mAh battery||2800mAh battery Quick Charge 3.0|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot, Bluetooth v4.1, A-GPS, GLONASS, NFC||Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot, Bluetooth v4.1, A-GPS, GLONASS, NFC|
|OS||Android 5.1 Lollipop||Android 6.0 Marshmallow|
The G4 had an impressive camera with a 16MP rear and f/1.8 aperture that gave excellent low-light captures. Over the past few years, LG has done well with its camera modules, and is among the top brands in that department.
The G5 takes the camera module from the G4 and adds a little more to it. The rear camera on the G5 comes in two this time, one with a 16MP sensor and one with an 8MP 135-degree wide angle lens, both together promise a lot more functionality, offering impressive auto wide angle captures. LG has stated that its wide angle camera offers a field of view like a human eye and doesn’t restrict photography like other standard camera modules.
There is no doubt that LG has made some crazy changes with the G5 over the G4. The company did not rest on the laurels of the latter and instead made some bold new changes while still keeping the best parts from last year. LG has basically taken one step forward towards making a truly modular phone a reality.
LG has dropped a panic bombshell on the audience and the tech industry, and the world should take notice. This is the evolution of smartphone design, and with the future only closer to what modular requirements each customer would have.