We just sat through what was certainly one of the strangest press events to date, where LG unveiled its latest smartphone, the wildly-rumored G2. Dropping the Optimus moniker, the G2 is the successor to last year’s Optimus G, one of LG’s more popular smartphones. But how does LG’s 2013 flagship compare with its toughest competitors?
We’d be lying if we said it was anything but a dream come true … at least on paper. Its True HD IPS+ display measures in at 5.2-inches, diagonally, with a resolution of 1,920 by 1,080 pixels. That’s an overall density of 424 pixels per inch. That sort of density is in the same ballpark as the HTC One and Galaxy S 4, both of which have undeniably gorgeous, crystal clear displays. And it’s an impressive 98 pixels per inch more than the iPhone 5’s 326ppi on a 4-inch screen. The quality of color reproduction, viewing angle, contrast, black levels, and the usual qualifiers, obviously, remain to be seen.
The RAM and storage on the G2 is comparable, as well. It comes with 2GB of memory, like most of its foes, and it ships with 32GB onboard. That’s the only storage option available, and there’s no option for expansion via microSD. Still, 32GB is nothing to scoff at.
The camera should at least be comparable with the Galaxy S 4. LG also equipped its flagship with a 13-megapixel sensor. It also added optical image stablization with longer exposures for low-light shots. This means, theoretically, it should perform on par with the Galaxy S 4 in daylight and comparable to the HTC One, Lumia 920, and Lumia 1020 in low-light situations, provided the software side is up to snuff. But there’s no denying the Lumia 1020 is the phone for any mobile enthusiast who values exceptional picture quality.
Of the phones in our list, the G2 has the largest battery by a fairly significant margin. The iPhone has the smallest capacity battery, and at 2,600mAh, the Galaxy S 4 comes in second. But the G2 has a whopping 3,000mAh cell under its hood. At 138.5mm tall, 70.9mm wide, and 8.9mm thick, the LG G2 is the tallest of the bunch – 1.1mm taller than the HTC One. It’s only narrower than the Lumia 1020 by .5mm, and it’s smack dab in the middle on thickness – 1.3mm thicker than the iPhone 5 and 1.5mm thinner than both the Lumia 1020 and Moto X.
And practically all of the phones listed – save for the Lumia 1020, exclusive to AT&T here in the States – are available on all major U.S. carriers: Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile. Some are also available on US Cellular.
The LG G2’s true claim to fame, however, is its guts, the processor and GPU. Powering the G2 is a 2.26GHz quad-core Krait 400 CPU and Adreno 330 combination, which makes the extremely powerful Snapdragon 800 chipset. This gives it among the fastest clock speeds ever in a smartphone with some of the most efficient computing power around. The HTC One and Galaxy S 4, for contrast, are powered by Snapdragon 600 chipsets clocked at 1.7GHz and 1.9GHz, respectively. And the Lumia 1020 and Moto X, respectively, are powered by 1.5GHz and 1.7GHz dual-core Krait CPUs with Adreno 225 and Adreno 320 GPUs.
What can we take from all of this? Not a whole lot. On paper, the LG G2 is a serious monster – a true flagship. But high-powered smartphones have come up short more times than we care to count. Specifications aren’t everything, and the fate of the G2 lies in the software optimization, marketing, and availability. So far, availability is en pointe. Being LG, the software optimization is up in the air. And judging by the press event and Vienna Boys’ Choir ringtones, we’re not sure who LG is trying to target with the device. In fact, we’re not even sure LG knows who it’s trying to target, exactly.
Either way, we’ll be diving into G2 coverage as soon as we get our hands on the device, and we’ll be pitting it against the biggest and baddest smartphones currently on the market.
We leave you with one question for discussion: is the LG G2’s impressive spec sheet enough to sell the phone? We feel specifications aren’t all they’re cracked up to be, that the Moto X and HTC One prove a very valid point: it’s more about the experience and what you do with the specifications than having the absolute highest number in every category. Sound off with your own thoughts below!