Last month at the Mobile World Congress 2017 in Barcelona, LG impressed everyone with the announcement of its newest flagship smartphone, the G6. The G6 happens to be a major leap forward for LG’s G-series lineup, but for some, the changes may not be convincing enough. As we discussed in our LG G6 vs Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge specs battle earlier this month, the G6 isn’t the most convincing flagship device that LG has launched so far, so it might be a little difficult for LG to convince buyers that the G6 is a better option when compared to upcoming devices such as the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+.
However, the LG G6 will not only be taking on smartphones from rival brands, it will also need to take on LG’s own V20 that debuted late last year. While the G6 may have some pretty big advantages over the older V20, the V20 has its own strengths. Today, we will be putting these two LG flagships against one another in our specs battle to find out if the newer G6 is a better buy when compared to the V20. Like all our previous spec comparisons, we are going to be comparing the LG G6 and V20 across ten categories – Display, Dimensions, Battery Life, Connectivity, Memory, Processor, Camera, Design, Operating System, and Price. We will be awarding one point to the winner of each category, so the smartphone that manages to bag the maximum points by the end of our comparison today will be declared the winner of our LG G6 vs LG V20 specs battle. So let’s get started and find out if the G6 is truly a significant upgrade over the V20, or if the older V20 still makes more sense than the newer G6.
Let us begin our comparison today by comparing the displays on these two LG flagship smartphones.
The LG G6 comes with a “FullVision” display measuring 5.7-inches diagonally, offering a rather unique 1440 x 2880 Quad HD+ resolution in an 18:9 aspect ratio. The display is protected by a layer of Corning Gorilla Glass 3 on top and not the latest Gorilla Glass 5. LG being the pioneer of IPS LCD panels, is using a Quantum IPS on the G6, just like its previous flagship smartphones. Thanks to the higher than usual resolution, the G6 display boasts a higher pixel density of 564 pixels per inch. LG has retained the Always-on display feature from last year, similar to what Samsung offers on its flagship Galaxy handsets. Even though an IPS display isn’t ideal for the feature, LG has used some hardware tweaks that allow to feature to work quite well while consuming very little battery life. That said, we don’t recommend turning the feature on all the time, as it does have an impact on battery stamina. The feature basically lets you glance at the date, time, and your missed notifications without having to unlock the phone. As we mentioned earlier, the LG G6 features a “FullVision” display. What that means is that the bezels around the display have been trimmed significantly, maximizing the actual display area for a more immersive viewing experience. The smartphone has a screen-to-body ratio of 80.7%, which is a significant improvement when compared to the LG G5. That’s higher than most other flagship smartphones on the market, but not quite as high as the Xiaomi MI MIX. The G6 display supports HDR as well, making it the first smartphone from LG with a HDR-compatible panel. Like the company’s 4K televisions, the G6 too supports both the HDR10 as well as Dolby Vision HDR standards. This means you get to enjoy a wider variety of HDR content from streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video. In terms of actual quality, the panel used on the G6 is a definite step-up over the G5, with higher peak brightness, improved contrast ratio, and better color accuracy. It even beats the V20 display by a small margin in all these areas. That said, the IPS LCD panel of the G6 is still no match for the best AMOLED displays out there, be it in terms of sunlight legibility or color accuracy. The LCD panels used on Apple’s iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus smartphones are also superior when it comes to color accuracy. Still, the G6 display is in way a disappointment. It is in fact one of the best LCD panels out there on a flagship smartphone currently.
The LG V20 features a 5.7-inch Quantum IPS display with 1440 x 2560 Quad HD resolution, resulting in a lower pixel density figure of 513 pixels per inch. Protecting the display is a layer of Corning Gorilla Glass 4, which is believed to be slightly stronger than the Gorilla Glass 3 used to protect the G6 display. However, in all other parameters, the V20 doesn’t impress as much as the G6 display does. This is of course to be expected, as newer models usually have better displays than previous models. That said, the V20 display is also quite impressive in most areas, so we don’t think you will have any complaints from it. The panel offers high peak brightness of around 600 nits, impressive contrast ratio, and offers decent color accuracy as well. To minimize eye strain during the night, the V20 comes with a blue light filter setting, which minimizes harmful blue light emissions from the display. On top of the main 5.7-inch display lies the V20’s secondary display measuring 2.1-inches diagonally and offering 160 x 1040 pixel resolution.
Overall, the LG G6 display is definitely an improvement over the V20’s in almost every area. That means the clear winner of the display round is the LG G6.
Even before we get to the actual numbers, some of you may have already guessed that the new LG G6 clearly has a huge advantage over the V20 in the dimensions department.
The LG G6 measures 148.9mm tall, 71.9mm wide, and is relatively thin at 7.9mm. In terms of weight, the G6 isn’t too heavy for a device with a 5.7-inch sized display, tipping the scales at 163 grams. In comparison, the LG V20 is 159.7mm tall, 78.1mm wide, and 7.6mm thin. As for the weight, the V20 is heavier than the G6 at 174 grams.
As you can tell from the numbers above, the G6 is a clear winner in the dimensions category. Thanks to the “FullVision” display, the G6 is more compact than most other smartphones out there with a 5.7-inch display.
Unlike many other smartphone makers, LG hasn’t been very keen on improving battery life on its flagship handsets. In fact, LG flagships have more or less consistently been quite disappointing in the battery life department for many years now.
Compared to the LG G5, the G6 is definitely a major improvement in terms of battery life. While the G5 sports a 2800mAh capacity battery, the G6 includes a 3300mAh capacity battery inside. A healthy 500mAh increase in battery capacity allows the G6 to deliver improved battery stamina, although it still isn’t stellar when compared to some of the other flagship smartphones out there. For fast charging, the G6 supports the Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 standard, allowing the 3300mAh capacity battery to fully charge in around 96 minutes. Wireless charging unfortunately is limited to the US variants of the G6, which is a bit disappointing. What is also disappointing is that LG hasn’t made any mention of fast wireless charging, which means you will have to be very patient in case you wish to wirelessly charge your G6. On the software front, LG offers various options such as adjusting the video resolution when playing games to extend the battery life further. However, like other similar features offered by rivals, it will have a negative impact on performance. One thing that you should note is that the battery inside the G6 is non-removable, so you cannot replace it yourself, at least not easily.
The LG V20 on the other hand packs a 3200mAh capacity removable battery inside, smaller than the G6 unit by 100mAh. Like the G6, the V20 too supports the Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 standard for fast charging, allowing the battery to get fully charged really quickly. There is no wireless charging support though, which is a disadvantage when compared to the US variant of the LG G6. But you can swap batteries on the V20, something that is not possible on the G6 and most other flagship smartphones on the market currently. As far as actual battery life stamina goes, the V20 is a decent performer, although not very impressive when compared to most of its rivals.
Thanks to a larger battery, the battery life round goes to the newer LG G6.
After three consecutive victories over the V20, will the new LG G6 continue its domination in the connectivity round?
The LG G6 features Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac dual-band MIMO, Bluetooth 4.2 Low Energy, Wi-Fi Direct, Wi-Fi hotspot, NFC, USB OTG support, GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS, USB 3.1 Type-C port, DLNA, and 4G LTE (Cat.12) with maximum supported download speeds of up to 600 Mbps. The smartphone includes a fingerprint scanner as well, mounted at the back like its predecessor.
LG V20 comes with Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac dual-band MIMO, Wi-Fi Direct, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth 4.2 Low Energy, Infrared port, USB Type-C, GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS, and 4G LTE (Cat.12) with maximum download speeds of up to 600 Mbps. The circular fingerprint scanner, similar to the G6, is positioned at the back.
As you can tell, the G6 doesn’t really have a major advantage over the V20 in the connectivity department. The V20 on the other hand has an IR blaster, which lets you control your home entertainment and other appliances such as televisions, home theater systems, and even ACs. Still, we are going with a tie here as both smartphones are more or less identical in the connectivity department.
The G5 proved to be quite an impressive performer in the camera department last year. Is the new G6 any better?
LG has with a dual-camera setup on its latest flagship smartphone, although the resolution of the primary sensor has been downgraded. Instead of a 16MP primary snapper on the G5, the LG G6 uses a smaller 13MP resolution IMX258 Exmor RS sensor with 1.12 micron sized pixels, optical image stabilization (OIS) and phase detection autofocus technology. It should be noted that the Sony IMX258 is a sensor that is more commonly seen on mid-range smartphones from Chinese Android OEMs, so it does look like LG is cutting costs in the camera department. Laser autofocus has been done away with as well, as is the color spectrum sensor from the G5. The secondary camera at the back also uses the same Sony IMX258 sensor, offering 13MP resolution. However, the primary sensor has been paired to an f/1.8 aperture lens while the secondary sensor is paired to a wide-angle f/2.4 aperture lens with wide 125-degree FOV. The wide-angle lens makes the secondary sensor ideal for capturing landscape photos. For everything else, you should use the primary sensor which has a much narrower 71-degree FOV but delivers crisper images. In terms of video, the LG G6 is able to capture videos at up to 4K resolution with 30 fps frame rate. In 1080p resolution, the smartphone captures at both 30fps as well as 60fps. To complement good video quality, the G6 features two high AOP microphones that allow you to capture high-fidelity audio. Rest of the key highlights include all the usual HDR photos, panorama shots, face detection, and more. There are a host of new software features on offer too. These include Grid Shot, Guide Shot, Match Shot, and more. Similar to the G5, manual controls are available too, allowing pro users to tinker with the settings to achieve better results. For selfies, the G6 comes with a 5MP resolution snapper on the front, paired with an f/2.2 aperture 100-degree wide-angle lens.
The LG V20 too features a dual-camera setup at the back, but with each sensor offering a different resolution. While the primary sensor offers 16MP resolution, the secondary sensor on the V20 is an 8MP unit. Similar to the LG G6, the secondary 8MP sensor on the V30 offers a wide 135-degree field-of-view while the 16MP snapper features a 75-degree field-of-view. The 16MP sensor is paired with an f/1.8 aperture lens while the 8MP unit is paired with an f/2.4 aperture lens. Similar to the G5, the V20 uses hybrid autofocus with laser autofocus + phase detection autofocus + contrast AF technologies being used together to achieve fast focus speeds. As expected from a LG flagship, the V20 does include optical image stabilization as well, helping the low-light performance. In addition to optical image stabilization, the V20 comes with Steady Record 2.0, which basically uses gyro-based electronics image stabilization (EIS) to capture shake-free videos. Some of the other key features include HDR, face/smile detection, 4K video recording, and a wide range of manual control while taking photos as well as videos. The advanced manual video controls let you customize options such as focus, white balance, AE lock, EV, as well as audio directivity control. The phablet includes 3 High AOP microphones, which allow it to record HD audio. So if you are someone who goes to concerts quite often, the V20 camera will definitely impress you. On the front is a 5MP selfie snapper with an 83-degree wide-angle f/1.9 aperture lens. When you want to take group selfies, the 2-in-1 selfie snapper can capture 120-degree wide shots as well.
Overall, the LG G6 and the V20 smartphones offer pretty impressive image quality in almost all conditions, although the V20 does have a slight edge in quality thanks to its larger primary sensor. That means the older V20 has a very slight edge over the new G6 in the camera department. However, if you are more interested in taking landscape shots with the secondary sensor, the 13MP unit on the G6 does a better job. Since there isn’t a convincing winner here, we’re going with a tie.
The LG G6, unlike most of its rivals, comes in a single memory configuration. In most markets, the smartphone will include 32GB of internal storage, which can be further expanded by up to 2TB with a microSD card. Like the G5 from last year, LG has used UFS 2.0 internal memory on the G6 as well, which offers significant performance improvements when compared to traditional eMMC 5.0 memory chips used in previous generation LG flagship handsets. Select markets such as South Korea, Hong Kong, India, and Commonwealth of Independent States will be getting the G6 with 64GB of onboard storage. The LG G6 is no different from its predecessor when it comes to RAM either. It features 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM, which is a bit disappointing when compared to the latest crop of flagship Android smartphones from Chinese OEMs. It would probably have made more sense for LG to equip the G6 with at least 6GB of LPDDR4 RAM. That said, the G6 does deliver a decent multitasking experience, so most consumers aren’t likely to have any complaints from the smartphone as far as the performance goes.
Depending on the market, the LG V20 comes with either 32GB or 64GB of built-in storage. However, unlike the G5 and G6, the V20 uses UFS 2.1 flash memory sourced from SK Hynix. It also uses 3D-V2 NAND, making it the first smartphone on the market to do so. This combination, at least on paper, makes the V20 superior to both the G5 and the G6. However, in real-world usage, most users won’t really notice much of a difference as the gap in performance isn’t that significant. There is a microSD card slot on offer as well, allowing you to expand the onboard storage further by up to 2TB. The phablet also includes 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM, making it a decent performer in terms of multitasking.
As you may have guessed, there isn’t much separating these two LG flagships in the memory department. However, in markets such as the US, the V20 does come with twice the onboard storage as the G6, which is definitely an advantage. It also uses faster UFS 2.1 memory, giving it a slight edge over the newer G6. So the memory category goes to the V20.
The LG G6 runs on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 quad-core SoC, the same chipset that powers quite a few flagship handsets released in the second half of 2016. In a way, the G6 is very similar to the G4 from 2015. Similar to the LG G4, the G6 runs on an outdated SoC that cannot match its rivals in terms of benchmark performance. However, the G6 does have an edge over other Snapdragon 821-powered smartphones thanks to higher clock speeds. Most of you might be aware that the Snapdragon 821 is a quad-core chipset with four custom Kryo cores. On the G6, the two high-performance Kryo cores are clocked at 2.34 GHz while the two efficiency-oriented Kryo cores are clocked at 2.19 GHz. In addition to the CPU cores, the Adreno 530 GPU too has been clocked higher at 653 MHz. Unfortunately for LG, the higher clocks do not result in higher benchmark scores, perhaps due to less than stellar optimization. In case you’re wondering, LG decided to go with the older Snapdragon 821 SoC because rival Samsung has apparently secured the initial batch of Snapdragon 835 chips for its flagship Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ smartphones. For other OEMs, Qualcomm is expected to begin shipping Snapdragon 835 chips in adequate quantities only by the middle of April. Since LG wanted to get an early lead over Samsung with the G6, it decided to stick with the Snapdragon 821 instead of delaying the G6 launch.
The LG V20 is powered by the quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chipset under the hood, the very same SoC that powers the G5. Like other smartphones powered by the Snapdragon 820, the V20 features two high-performance Kryo cores clocked at 2.15 GHz and two high-efficiency Kryo cores clocked at 1.6 GHz. Handling the graphics is Qualcomm’s Adreno 530 GPU, the same one inside the Snapdragon 821, just clocked slightly lower. In benchmarks, the V20 performs similarly to other smartphones powered by the Snapdragon 820 chipset, although it does fall behind the higher clocked Snapdragon 821 SoC powering the G6 in most benchmarks. Still, the difference is very small and nobody will notice any difference in actual performance between the V20 and the G6.
Even though the difference isn’t significant, we will have to give the win here to the LG G6 thanks to slightly better benchmark performance. That means the G6 wins yet another round.
The LG G6 is a significant upgrade over the G5 as far as the design and build quality go. As we have discussed earlier, the front of the handset is mainly dominated by the “Full Vision” display. At the back however, things aren’t that different as far as the camera layout and fingerprint scanner positioning are concerned. What is very different though, is the build. While the G5 features a “metal unibody” build, the G6 uses a glass sandwich design with an aluminum frame in the middle and glass on the front and back. The front of the handset is covered by Corning Gorilla Glass 3 while the back features Corning Gorilla Glass 5. Thanks to the glass back, the US variant of the LG G6 supports wireless charging. However, as we have mentioned earlier, the international variants do not come with wireless charging support. LG’s latest flagship smartphone is also its first to feature dust and water resistance. Thanks to an IP68 certification, the G6 can be submerged in fresh water up to 1.5 meters deep for up to 30 minutes. This means you can take the G6 along with you to the pool or use it outside in the rain without having to worry about water causing any damage. In terms of color options, the LG G6 is available in three colors currently – Black, Silver, and White.
The LG V20 on the other hand is a more rugged yet premium smartphone in terms of design and build. Like the V10, the V20 too comes with MIL-STD-810G certification, making it one of the toughest flagship smartphones on the market currently. LG has used aircraft-grade aluminum in most areas of the V20’s body, while the top and bottom of the handset feature siloxane-polycarbonate to protect the smartphone in case of an accidental fall. Unlike most other smartphones that feature a metal build, the V20 offers a removable back cover, which means you can swap batteries easily. On the other hand, the V20 does not feature water resistance. However, for most people, the lack of water resistance isn’t likely to be a deal-breaker. The overall build is very impressive and it does feel premium enough for a flagship device. In terms of color options, the LG V20 comes in Titan, Silver, and Pink.
Both the LG smartphones are definitely a lot more premium than the company’s previous flagship models. Picking a clear winner between the two isn’t that simple though. While the G6 is more compact and comes with IP68 certification, the V20 is more rugged and should be able to handle an accidental drop to the floor much better than the G6. We are going with a tie here, as it depends on what your priorities are. If you want a phone that features water resistance, the G6 should be your pick. On the other hand, if you aren’t too careful with your phones then the sturdier V20 makes more sense.
The LG G6 runs on the Android 7.1 Nougat operating system, with the manufacturer’s UX 6.0 UI layer running on top. LG’s new UX 6.0 skin makes full use of the G6’s unique 18:9 aspect ratio. The company has made significant changes to the various UI elements as well, with predominantly rounded icons being used. Another major highlight on the software front is that the G6 is the first non-Pixel smartphone to be equipped with the new Google Assistant, which is a more refined and smarter version of Google Now that we find on most Android smartphones. However, Google has rolled out the new assistant to a number of devices lately, so it isn’t an exclusive feature anymore. The new LG UX 6.0 also offers improvements to multitasking, a redesigned notifications bar, new homescreen animations, and a few other touches.
LG V20 on the other hand is currently running on Android 7.0 Nougat operating system, which it launched with last year. While the G6’s UI focuses on the 18:9 aspect ratio, the key highlight of the V20 is its secondary display. Similar to the Galaxy ‘Edge’ smartphones, the V20’s secondary display provides various app shortcuts, quick tools, and the ability to glance at your recent apps. Rest of the key highlights on the software front include QSlide floating app feature, Quick switching between apps, support for various themes, and others. By default, the V20 does not use an app drawer. But if you want to use the app drawer, you do have the option of bringing it back.
Both smartphone are running on Android, with the LG G6 running a newer version. Apart from that though, there aren’t too many differences that would make us pick one over the other. LG is known to provide good software support to its flagship smartphones, so we do expect both handsets to receive consistent software support in the near future. Since there isn't a clear winner here, we are going with a tie.
The LG G6 is now available in the US from all the major carriers such as Verizon Wireless, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and US Cellular. Depending on which carrier you get it from, you will end up paying a full retail price of around $650. That’s definitely too bad for a flagship handset that has just been released on the market. On an installment plan, you will need to shell out roughly $28 on a 24-month contract and $24 monthly if you opt for a 30-month contract from AT&T. We expect these prices to remain steady for at least the next few weeks. You may expect to see some big discounts as we head closer to the launch of the V30 sometime in Q3.
LG V20, similar to the G6, is available from all the four major carriers in the US – AT&T, Verizon Wireless, Sprint, and T-Mobile. Since it is no longer the hot new device in town, you should be able to find great deals on the V20 from carriers as well as retailers such as Best Buy. The 64GB LG V20 can be purchased on a 24-month contract for roughly $28 while AT&T is selling it for $23.46 monthly on a 30-month contract. In case you wish to purchase it off-contract, you can get it for a full retail price of around $450 if you are able to grab a good deal.
Since the LG V20 can now be bought for roughly half its original retail price, we have to give this round to the V20. The LG G6, being a new device, is obviously more expensive.
Now that we are done comparing the LG G6 and V20 against each other in ten different categories, it is time for us to find out the winner of our specs battle.
The LG V20 managed to reign supreme in only two out of the ten categories. Three categories ended up in a tie, while the G6 managed to win the rest of the five categories. Quite clearly then, the winner of our LG G6 vs V20 specs battle is the company’s latest flagship, the G6. However, if you’re confused between these two handsets, we would suggest going with the V20 if you can find it for a significantly lower price than the G6. While the newer G6 is no doubt superior in most areas, the V20 is still a great handset and offers a comparable experience in almost all areas.
Which one would you pick? The LG G6 or the V20?