Now that the Nexus 5 is finally official and since the competition is very tight on the high-end smartphone segment this year, we though we should put the new Nexus flagship head to head with its main rivals. So far, we’ve seen the Nexus 5 dueling against the Samsung Galaxy S4 and the HTC One and winning in front of both terminals, now it’s time to see whether the Android 4.4 KitKat-powered terminal can cope with the LG G2.
The Nexus 5 vs LG G2 battle is even more interesting since the hardware platform of the later one was used by Google and LG to underpin the newest Nexus smartphone.
The LG G2 was announced in August and released on the market in September and is currently one of the most powerful smartphones on the market. LG G2′s particularity is the position of the Volume Up/Down and Power buttons, but we will talk about them in the Design round.
The Nexus 5 is probably the most anticipated smartphone of the year and, just like its predecessor, it brings a high-end hardware platform at an affordable price.
If you followed our previous Versus articles you would probably know that the Nexus 5 vs LG G2 battle will be split in to rounds, where the smartphones’ performance will be judged based on Dimensions, Display, Processor, Memory, Camera, Operating System, Battery Life, Price, Connectivity, and Design.
Each round is worth one point and after the battle comes to an end the smartphone that manages to score most points is declared the winner.
With screens growing in size each year the smartphone makers are trying to make their devices as compact as possible, therefore we’ll talk Dimensions right now.
The Nexus 5 measures 137.9 x 69.2 x 8.6 mm and has a weight of 130 grams. The LG G2 measures 138.5 x 70.9 x 8.9 mm and has a weight of 143 g, being a pretty compact considering that it has to accommodate a 5.2 inch display.
As you probably noticed, the G2 is 13 grams heavier than the N5, also being 0.6 mm taller, 1.7 mm wider, and 0.3 mm thicker than its competitor. Well, I guess it’s obvious that the Nexus 5 has to win the Dimensions round.
The full HD resolution has pretty much became the standard on the high-end Android smartphone market and the only features that make a difference between the modern smartphones is the touch panel and size.
The LG G2 packs a 5.2-inch True HD-IPS + LCD with a resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels (424 ppi pixel density), protected against scratches by a Corning Gorilla Glass 2 layer. On the other hand the Nexus 5 comes with a 5-inch True HD-IPS with the same resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels and a slightly larger pixel density of 445. Nexus 5′s display is covered by a Gorilla Glass 3 coating.
The True HD-IPS touch panels used for both smartphones come with unrivaled brightness and contrast, great color accuracy and almost 180 degree viewing angles.
The Display round goes, in our opinion, to the LG G2, because its slightly larger screen is more appropriate for the basic tasks you perform on your smartphone, like web browsing, playing games, or watching videos. +1 LG G2.
Back in January, at CES 2013, Qualcomm has officially unveiled the Snapdragon 600 and Snapdragon 800 chispets as their main weapons for the 2013 mobile segment. While the first chipset, the Snapdragon 600, was used for the smartphones and tablets launched in the first half of the year (see HTC One, Samsung Galaxy S4, ASUS Padfone Infinity, etc.), the Snapdragon 800, which is also the more powerful of the two, made it under the hoods of the terminals launched in the second half of the year (LG G2, Nexus 5, Samsung Galaxy Note 3, Xperia Z1).
As I was mentioning above, LG and Google have decided that the hardware platform of the LG G2 would be perfect to underpin the Nexus 5, therefore, you will be able to find a lot of similarities between the two devices.
Both the LG G2 and the Nexus 5 are powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 chipset with four Krait 400 cores clocked at 2.26 GHz and an Adreno 330 GPU at 450 MHz.
Since the two handsets have the same processing unit under the hood this round of the Nexus 5 vs LG G2 battle ends as tie.
As of July 2013 there are more than 1 million applications available for download in Google Play Store so you will a decent amount of internal storage. Not to mention about your music collection, movies, TV shows, or photos and videos taken with your smartphone’s camera. Because Android brings real multitasking, the amount of RAM is important too.
Last year, the Nexus 4 was only available with either 8 or 16 GB of internal storage, which made most of the power users unhappy because there was no microSD slot either. Well, Google and LG knew they made a mistake last year, and increased Nexus 5′s storage to 16 and 32 GB, respectively. There is no microSD cards support, still.
On the other hand, the LG G2 comes with the same storage options as its sibling, namely 16 or 32 GB.
It’s also worth mentioning that both handsets come with 2 GB of RAM, thus the multitasking experience will be similar.
Because there’s no way to make a difference between the LG G2 and Nexus 5 in terms of Memory, this rounds ends as tie, as well.
Many of the smartphone customers are making an acquisition based on the camera unit mounted on the back of the device. I know most of you would like to take high-quality photos with your smartphone, therefore next up we will be talking about Nexus 5′s and LG G2′s cameras.
Even though the rumor mill suggested that the Nexus 5 will also borrow the 13 MP camera from the LG G2, the Google flagship only comes with an 8 MP shutter. The Nexus smartphones were never considered one of the best camera phones out there, still they came with pretty decent performance.
The Nexus 5 has an 8 MP camera with autofocus, LED flash, and OIS (optical image stabilization) which is an improvement from the last generation. The primary camera mounted on the back of the Nexus 5 also comes with Geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, and photo sphere, and is capable of recording 1080p videos at 30 fps. The front-facing camera of the flagship co-developed by Google and LG has a 1.3 MP sensor. It’s also worth knowing that Nexus 5′s camera brings HDR+, while most of the smartphones on the market only bring HDR.
The LG G2 features a 13 MP rear-facing shutter with autofocus, optical image stabilization, LED flash, simultaneous video and image recording, geo-tagging, face detection, HDR, and 1080@60fps video recording. It also brings Photo Sphere-like capture, called VR Panorama, and other goodies like Audio Zoom (lets you zero in on a specific audio source by zooming in on your subject while recording video), Dual Recording, or Dual Camera. G2 has a 2.1 MP user-orientated camera.
The real-life tests have shown that LG G2′s camera outperforms the primary unit of the Nexus 5, thus the LG flagship scores another point.
Even though both smartphones involved in the Nexus 5 vs LG G2 specs battle are Android-powered devices, you will see that there are enough differences between the two.
The Nexus 5 is the first smartphone in the world to come pre-loaded with Android 4.4 KitKat and, according to the latest reports, the only one to pack the new Google Experience launcher that is centered on the Google Now and Google Search features. Courtesy of the new launcher, you will be able to say the “OK, Google” command when on your homescreen in order to activate the search.
Besides this you will also get the new full screen Album and Movie art, Immersive Mode (makes your ebooks, movies, videos, or games full screen, hiding both the status and the navigation bars), improved multitasking, Smart Caller ID (whenever you get a call from a phone number not in your contacts, your phone will look for matches from businesses with a local listing on Google Maps), Cloud Printing, Emoji support, and many other new features and improvements.
On the other hand the LG G2 is running Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean with a custom user interface developed by LG. Among its interesting features you will find Guest Mode (which works just like Android 4.2′s multi user for tablets), Text Link, KnockON (allows you to wake up your smartphone by tapping twice on the screen), Tracking Zoom, Zoom to Track, Capture Plus, or Clip Tray.
Even though LG’s user interface is one of the most innovative on the market, here at Android Geeks we appreciate the pure Android experience brought by the Nexus 5, therefore this round goes to the Google flagship.
If you asked me to change anything about the modern smartphones it would be their battery life, as you can barely find one nowadays that can stay awake for more than 24 hours.
The Nexus 5 packs a Non-removable Li-Po 2300 mAh battery, which, according to Google, will keep the smartphone alive for up to 300 hours of 3G standby or up to 17 hours of 3G talktime. Well, our tests have shown that the Nexus 5 can survive about 16 hours of moderate usage, which means that you can unplug it in the morning when you leave the house, then plug it back in late at night, which is pretty convenient.
The LG G2 comes with a Non-removable Li-Po 3000 mAh battery and courtesy of the added GRAM chipset you will get about 36 hours of moderate usage (at least that’s what our real-life tests have shown). In case you want to hear what LG’s battery life figures, hear that the Korean phone maker says that its flagship can stay awake through up to 900 h (3G) and 17 hours and 30 minuts of talk time (3G).
Because the G2 has longer battery life it scores another point in the battle against Nexus 5.
The Nexus 4 has shown everybody that the price is the difference between a popular smartphone and one that gets dusty on the store shelves.
The Nexus 5 is available for purchase both via Google Play Store (unlocked) and via Carriers. The Play Store Nexus 5 has a price of $349 for the 16 GB model and $399 for the 32 GB variant. The US carriers that already have the handsets in stock ask $49.99 for the 16 GB Nexus 5, of course, after you agree two sign a two-year deal.
On the other hand, the on-contract price of the 16 GB LG G2 ranges between $49.99 (Verizon) and $99.99 (Sprint and T-Mobile). After a quick look on Amazon and other US retailers we’ve noticed that you can’t acquire an unlocked LG G2 for less than $549 (the 16 GB variant).
The Nexus 5 is cheaper than the LG G2, thus it wins another round of the battle.
As the 4G LTE networks are becoming mainstream all over the world, all the high-end smartphones launched over the past two years integrate this standard.
In terms of connectivity the Nexus 5 comes with DC-HSDPA, 42 Mbps; HSDPA, 21 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps; LTE, Cat3, 50 Mbps UL, 100 Mbps DL, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, and microUSB (SlimPort) v2.0.
The LG G2 brings HSDPA, 42 Mbps; HSUPA, 21 Mbps; LTE, Cat4, 50 Mbps UL, 150 Mbps DL, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, IR blaster, and microUSB 2.0.
The main difference between the two is that the G2 has an infra red port, which is not enough to separate the two smartphones. Another round ends as tie.
The LG G2 is a good-looking smartphone, but just like the Samsung flagships, it’s made using a glossy plastic that makes it look cheap. Anyway, there’s no way you can’t appreciate the really slim bezel around the 5.2-inch screen.
Even though you might be tempted to believe that the position of the G2′s Volume and Power buttons is awkward, after a few hours of usage usage you will get used to the new position, and even find it more handy than having them on one side.
The Nexus 5 has a design that it’s a reminiscent of its predecessor, but it’s no longer using the glass back that was so prone to breaking. The back is now manufactured from the same soft-touch material used for the Nexus 7, which provides great grip and a great look, as well.
There’s nothing spectacular about Nexus 5′s design but it’s definitely better looking than the G2. Another point for the Nexus 5.
This is part of the Nexus 5 vs LG G2 battle when we start counting points.
Let’s see, we had three tie rounds: Processor, Memory, and Connectivity, because both the Nexus 5 and the LG G2 have the same chipset, same amount of storage and RAM, and almost the same connectivity features.
The LG G2 managed to score three points after it won the Display, Camera, and Battery Life rounds, as it packs a slightly larger screen, has a higher-quality camera, and better autonomy than the Nexus 5.
The Nexus 5 is thinner and lighter than the G2, runs the latest Android version, is cheaper and better-looking, so it wins the Dimensions, Operating System, Price and Design rounds, scoring four points.
In our opinion, the Google flagship wins the Nexus 5 vs LG G2 battle, but you may think otherwise. Please use the comments section bellow to share your opinions about the encounter between Nexus 5 and LG G2.