The competition on the smartphone market will be fierce in early 2014 with Samsung’s Galaxy S5 and LG’s G2 being two of the biggest players. Even though Samsung’s flagship smartphone is yet to be released on the market, we though we should compare it to LG’s 2013 flagship in a Samsung Galaxy S5 vs LG G2 specs battle.
In our previous Versus articles we’ve put the smartphones head to head in ten rounds, each worth one point, and the same rules will be applied for the Samsung Galaxy S5 vs LG G2 specs battle. The performance of the two devices will be judged in terms of Display, Dimensions, Processor, Memory, Connectivity, Camera, Battery Life, Price, Operating System, and Design and, at the end of the battle, the smartphone that manages to score most points is named winner.
There were rumors saying that the Galaxy S5 would sport a Quad HD (2560 x 1440) screen, but the South Korean company decided a Full HD unit would suffice, fitting their flagship with a 5.1-inch Super AMOLED display with 1920 x 1080 resolution, 432 ppi, and Gorilla Glass 3 protection.
LG G2 has a 1080p 5.2-inch True HD-IPS + LCD display with 424 ppi pixel density and a layer of Gorilla Glass 2.
Both smartphones have similarly-sized amazing displays with unrivaled contrast and brightness and there’s no way to tell which one is better as each panel type has its pros and cons. We’re calling this a tie.
The LG G2 is 138.5 mm tall, 70.9 mm wide, and 8.9 mm thin, while weighing 143 grams. On the other hand the Samsung Galaxy S5 measures 142 x 72.5 x 8.1 mm and weighs 145 grams.
Despite having a slightly larger display, the G2 is a bit more compact than Samsung’s handset, so it wins the Dimensions round.
I the red corner it’s the LG G2 sporting a Qualcomm MSM8974 Snapdragon 800 chipset with quad-core 2.26 GHz Krait 400 CPU and quad-core Adreno 330 GPU.
In the blue corner it’s the Samsung Galaxy S5 boasting about a Qualcomm MSM8974AC Snapdragon 801 SoC with four Krait 400 cores clocked at 2.5 GHz and quad-core Adreno 330 GPU.
Besides having the Krait 400 cores running at 2.5 GHz, the Adreno 330 GPU of the Snapdragon 801 SoC is also running at a higher speed so the Galaxy S5 outperforms the G2. The Samsung handset wins the Processor round.
Both the Galaxy S5 and the LG G2 pack 2 GB of RAM so they’ll deliver similar multitasking experiences, but the two devices are pretty different when it comes to storage.
The LG G2 is available with either 16 or 32 GB of storage and it lacks support for microSD cards. The Galaxy S5 has 16/32 GB native storage expandable with microSD cards up to 128 GB, with a maximum of 160 GB of storage.
The S5 wins the Memory round.
The high-end Android smartphones post-2013 are fairly similar when it comes to connectivity features.
The Samsung Galaxy S5 sports HSDPA, 42.2 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps; LTE, Cat4, 50 Mbps UL, 150 Mbps DL, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, DLNA, Wi-Fi Direct, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy, NFC, IR blaster, and microUSB 3.0, USB On-the-go, USB Host.
On the other hand, LG G2 arrives with 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 Low Energy, NFC, IR blaster, and microUSB 2.0,USB On-the-go, USB Host.
As you can see, connectivity-wise, the only difference between the two devices is the microUSB standard, with S5 using 3.0 and G2 using 2.0. This isn’t enough for the Galaxy S5 to win this round, therefore we’ll call it a tie.
LG G2 packs a 13 MP shooter with autofocus, optical image stabilization, LED flash, 1/3.06″ sensor size, F2.4 aperture, Simultaneous video and image recording, geo-tagging, face detection, HDR, and 1080p@60fps video recording capabilities. G2’s user-facing camera is a 2.1 MP unit.
Samsung Galaxy S5 features a 16 MP primary camera with phase detection autofocus, LED flash, 1/2.6″ sensor size, F2.2 aperture, Dual Shot, Simultaneous HD video and image recording, geo-tagging, touch focus, face and smile detection, image stabilization, HDR, and support for 4K@30fps and 1080p@60fps video recording. The secondary camera has a 2 MP sensir.
Besides recording videos at 4K resolution, the S5’s camera also has the fastest autofocus time for a smartphone (0.3 seconds) and the cool Selective Focus feature that allows the users to choose the focus point after a picture was taken, Lytro-style. Samsung’s flagship definitely has the higher quality camera, so it wins the Camera round..
The Samsung Galaxy S5 doesn’t depart too much from the design language introduced last year by its predecessor, the Galaxy S4, but it does come with a handful of changes. The back lid is built using dimpled plastic that is meant to offer better grip, while the body has less rounded corners and sharper edges. The Galaxy S5 is also IP67 certified which guarantees that the handset is dust and water resistant.
The new Samsung handset also arrives with a fingerprint sensor embedded in the Home button and a heart rate monitor mounted on the back, below the camera module and next to the LED flash. S5 is available in Black, White, Gold, and Blue.
The LG G2 has an interesting design with the Volume and Power buttons placed unorthodoxly on its back, below the camera sensor. Even though you might believe that they are hard two use, you’ll only need a couple of hours to find out that they are in fact quite handy. Another remarkable design element of the LG G2 is the really thin bezel that surrounds the 5.2-inch display.
The clumsy customers will definitely appreciate S5’s water and dust resistant body and grip-friendly back lid, so we’ll name it the winner of the Design round.
Launched with Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean out of the box, the LG G2 is now upgradable to Android 4.4.2 KitKat. G2 brings LG’s custom interface with features like Guest Mode (allows the owner to control which apps are available for other users), Audio Zoom (zero in on a specific audio source by zooming in on your subject while recording video), Text Link, Capture Plus, Clip Tray, and Knock On, the later one enabling the user to wake up the device by knocking twice on the display.
Samsung Galaxy S5 leaves the factory gates pre-loaded with Android 4.4.2 with the latest version of TouchWiz UI on top of it. Besides the features that debuted on the likes of Galaxy S4 or Galaxy Note 3 (Air Gestures, Smart Pause, Sound & Shot), the S5 has learned a couple of new tricks: Selective Focus, Download Booster (combines WiFi and LTE to improve download speeds), mobile payments via PayPal using the fingerprint sensor, Private Mode (hide selected apps and photos and password protect them), and Ultra Power Saving Mode (switches the display black and white and turns off unnecessary processes to drastically improve battery life).
Galaxy S5’s UI looks cleaner and it brings far more useful features, therefore the Samsung handset wins the Operating System round.
The battery life is the major issue of the modern smartphones and you can barely find one capable of going past 24 hours of usage on a single battery charge.
As you may know, the Galaxy S5 wasn’t yet released on the market, so we didn’t get our hands on it to test its battery life. But we will try to estimate its autonomy based on the one of its predecessor.
When we tested the S4 its 2,600 mAh battery was capable of getting it through about 24 hours of normal usage. Considering that S5’s battery is 200 mAh bigger (Li-Ion 2,800 mAh cell) and that its Snapdragon 801 chipset is more battery-friendly that S4’s Snapdragon 600, we estimate that Samsung’s latest and greatest handset has an autonomy of around 36 hours.
On the other hand the LG G2 has a non-removable Li-Po 3000 mAh battery that’s capable of keeping its lights up for around 2 days on a single charge.
Since S5’s Ultra Power Saving mode is out of question (you can barely call it a smartphone after you activate it), G2’s 48 hours battery life helps it win this round.
May the cheaper smartphone win!
The Galaxy S5 will debut globally on April 11, but US’ biggest carriers have already listed their pricing for the new handset: AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint will all sell it at $199 with two-year agreements. On Amazon, you can pre-order the AT&T Galaxy S5 or Sprint Galaxy S5 at $189.99.
As about the LG G2, AT&T is offering it for free with a two-year deal, while Sprint and Verizon sell it on-contract at $99. On Amazon, the Verizon LG G2 is $49.99 with contract, while the Sprint LG G2 and the AT&T LG G2 are both only $0.01 with two-year agreements.
If it reads “Conclusions” above, it means that we are at the end of the Samsung Galaxy S5 vs LG G2 specs battle and that it’s time to see which smartphone has scored most points.
The Display and Connectivity rounds ended as tie, because both the Galaxy S5 and the LG G2 have similarly sized displays with identical resolution, while boasting about the same connectivity features.
The LG G2 outmatched the Galaxy S5 when it came to Battery Life, Price, and Dimensions, because it has an autonomy of around 48 hours, is a lot cheaper than its Samsung rival, and more compact. The G2 scored 3 points.
The Galaxy S5 has won five rounds: Processor, Memory, Camera, Operating System, and Design. The Samsung flagship impressed us with its more powerful CPU, higher storage capacity, better and smarter camera, its water and dust resistant design, and with the software customizations brought by TouchWiz UI: 5 points for the GS5.
In our opinion, the Galaxy S5 is better than LG’s G2, but some of you may think otherwise. Maybe we have misjudged certain rounds or maybe we were unfair to one of the two competitors of the battle. Please share your opinion with us in the comments section below.