LG G2 Review
The LG G2 is running Android 4.2.2 out of the box, but LG has, naturally, used its own custom user interface to shake things up. LG's UI is highly-customizable – probably the most customizable custom UI present, and while Android purists will most probably frown upon that, LG argues that such features are much appreciated in its home market of Asia. In terms of looks, the G2's interface is quite TouchWiz-like – bright and vivid colors are present in pretty much every screen, while not-so-subtle animations are adding a generous amount of playfulness to the whole experience.
Processor and Memory
The LG G2 is a beast of a smartphone. With the most powerful Qualcomm processor available — Snapdragon 800 — the G2 simply blast through them benchmarks like no other phone currently on the market. The CPU is a quad-core 2.2 GHz Krait 400 monster, while the graphics chip is the capable Adreno 330. We're absolutely certain that the G2 is more than up to the task of running each and every 3D game or app out there. System-wise, the G2 is also a great performer — noticeably better than the GS4 — as it exhibits no visible lag throughout the system.
When it comes to the system memory, the G2 will be well-equipped to handle your multitasking activities with its 2 GB of RAM, while internal storage comes in 16 GB or 32 GB flavors. Sadly, you cannot expand this using a microSD card, since such a slot is missing from the handset.
Higher is better
LG G2 20654
HTC One 12481
Samsung Galaxy S4 12078
Sony Xperia Z 8221
Higher is better
LG G2 35376
HTC One 23308
Samsung Galaxy S4 24701
Sony Xperia Z 20835
GFXBench Egypt HD 2.5 onscreen (fps)
Higher is better
LG G2 50
HTC One 31
Samsung Galaxy S4 39
Higher is better
LG G2 1229
HTC One 781
Samsung Galaxy S4 704
Sony Xperia Z 626
Vellamo HTML 5
Higher is better
LG G2 2951
HTC One 2395
Samsung Galaxy S4 1702
Sony Xperia Z 2198
The G2's phonebook is absolutely full-featured, as it has separate tabs for the dialer, call log, contacts list, favorites and groups. Needless to say, LG's giving users the option to categorize and organize their contacts any way they like. On the whole, working with the phonebook is quick and easy – you can call people directly from the contacts list, thanks to the green dial buttons placed next to their names, which seems cleaner and more appealing than Samsung's 'swipe-to-call' gesture, or 'click-on-the-contact's-icon-to-display-quick-dial-buttons' option. Thankfully, LG has also added the option to search for contacts using the dialpad (in a T9 manner), which is a very convenient way of finding contacts. If you're mostly calling a bunch of people, though, the 'Call logs' tab will work perfectly for you, as it manages to fit a good number of contacts on the screen. Still, there's also the Favorites tab, which might prove to be even more convenient for you, as it automatically displays the people you've called most frequently.
But, being such a great fan of customization, LG has also included tons of other options to let you personalize your phonebook, including the ability to reorder the tabs themselves! Thankfully, since those options are hidden in the contextual menu, they don't really stand in the way of normal usage.
Typing on the LG G2's onscreen keyboard is pretty good, as it should, considering the enormous 5.2” screen. We enjoy using the portrait keyboard as it's spacious and even has a separate row of numeric keys above the letters, but the landscape one is a mixed bag. While there's more than enough width to the keys, they are a bit stubby, which doesn't make them very easy to press accurately.
And now that we've gotten the general software part out of the way, it's time to take a look at the mix of unique software features that LG has produced for its new flagship phone. Here are the more prominent additions:
- Knock on: Double tap on the screen when it’s off, the phone will automatically turn on. Do the same when it’s on at any dead space of the screen, it’ll turn off the display. This one is actually very useful, especially if you can't get used to the new position of the power/lock key. It's a feature that's also found in Nokia's new smartphones, and we can definitely see ourselves using it very often. Unfortunately, turning the screen off using this gesture may be a bit tricky sometimes, depending on exactly where you tap. Sometimes, this may actually cause you to run an app or do something else, which may be quite irritating. In that line of though, the feature is very useful, it's just not implemented perfectly and takes a bit of getting used to.
- Guest mode: Two different lock patterns for you and your guest. Essentially, it adds another user profile for the phone, which gets them to guest mode where the admin can restrict certain apps. Naturally, it’s a useful thing to find, especially if you don’t want any unwanted app purchases. We're happy to report that the feature does work as advertized – there's absolutely no problem setting guest mode up with all the accessible apps that the admin has selected.
- Answer Me: When the LG G2 rings, you simply pick up the phone, hold it up to your ear, and it’ll automatically pick it up. No need to finagle with turning it on and actually pressing on the answer key.
- Text Link: The LG G2 inspects various texts, and automatically suggests links to relevant apps. For example, if someone sends you a text regarding a time and date for a meeting, you can have the LG G2 automatically populate the appropriate info to the respective apps – such as putting it into your calendar.
- Slide Aside: Simply swipe to the left with 3 fingers on a specific app (any app in fact), the app will be placed into a saved state. Once you select up to 3 apps for Slide Aside, you can access them at any time by swiping right with 3 fingers – essentially another way to multi-task (like multi-windows for TouchWiz). Unlike Sammy’s implementation, this one works with any and all apps. However, due to the requirement for a three-finger gesture, Slide Aside isn't particularly comfortable to use. Even if you do get used to it, though, the limitation of just three apps is somewhat counter-productive, because the phone simply won't let you slide-aside any additional apps, meaning that you'll be required to do some Slide Aside app management. On the other hand, it might be useful if you just need one or two (or three) apps always ready for you.
- Capture Plus: Capture everything on a page, not just the cropped image on the screen – like stuff in the web browser and email. For example, you can capture an entire web page – stuff you'd normally need to install a browser add-on on the computer to work. Once again, impressive functionality, though we're not sure how many people are going to need this. Maybe there's a reason why such functionality is available as an optional add-on on the PC?
- Quick Remote: Universal remote control with IR blaster. Now, the G2 learns the pattern from ANY IR remote controller – like garage car openers too, on top of the usual TV ones. Point the other remote to the LG G2’s IR blaster, and it’ll learn the pattern of the IR.
Internet and Connectivity
The LG G2 is choke-full of connectivity features. It has the must-haves such as LTE, HSPA+, 3G and 2G, as well as Wi-Fi a, b, g, n, n 5GHz, ac. Additionally, there's also A-GPS (works flawlessly), Glonass, NFC, DLNA, MHL and an infrared port.
11. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5278; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
Agree. That is where the real information awaits. Interesting on its own, but compared to say, the Sony? Even the HTC One isn't that far behind for a ~6 month older phone.
Props to LG, though for stepping up their game.
16. Commentator (Posts: 2178; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
Instead of to Moto, who stepped it back...
(Yeah yeah yeah, experience over performance, okay...)
29. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5278; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
Moto's Droid offerings underwhelm with their 720p display and mushy camera function. Moto hasn't had a compelling camera offering after the Droid X. I was hoping Moto would have stepped up their game with the camera, but as you posted, more like stepping back. If the camera had been competitive, I would have even given Moto a pass on the 720p display.
145. xmusicianguy (Posts: 96; Member since: 13 Jul 2011)
This is why I have a Galaxy S4 over the Droid Ultra/Maxx. Motorola has had YEARS to step up thair game. However they never do. They are always a year behind! It's nice to have a phone that can ALMOST compete with this phone (LG G2). No Motorola phone out right now can come close. Even I can tell the G2 beats the GS4 camera hands down. But looking at where I came from with a Maxx HD. Yeah. I'm happy.
91. AnTuTu (Posts: 598; Member since: 14 Oct 2012)
Hi Ray, you missed some points in the video:
1. Does it have NFC?
2. Has it got a removable back?
3. Can you expand storage via SD?
4. Some real usage of rear volume rocker keys?
95. special4u (Posts: 63; Member since: 22 May 2013)
ya, samsung s4 is just so old
who need removable battery when u have greater capacity power bank and no need to turn off ur phone when swap the battery.
for sd slot, i found myself doesn't used it where i used to be when cloud storage is so convenience nowadays. Perhaps some old folks still love sd slot as they havent adapt into new technology
97. AnTuTu (Posts: 598; Member since: 14 Oct 2012)
"Perhaps some old folks still love sd slot as they haven't adapt into new technology" ?????
Does that mean Millions who have bought S4 are Old Folks who still love SD slots and haven't adapted new technology??
That's just a ridiculous comment you have made. Go do some research.
157. the.masters (Posts: 3; Member since: 08 Mar 2014)
Having a sd slot dont make the phone better and if your looking for big storige get a hdd not a phone
105. NexusKoolaid (Posts: 257; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)
@special4u - Perhaps some folks still love the SD slot because they have low data caps or don't have unlimited data plans? Maybe they don't have access to Wifi at all times of the day? Maybe they find themselves in area with poor coverage?
And does having to deal with any one of these challenges make one old?
110. JEverettnow (Posts: 139; Member since: 11 Mar 2013)
I love having physical backups. Cloud storage isn't for me. I use dropbox, but I have a plethora of 32 and 16 gig sd cards. I want an SD card slot. Especially since SD storage capacity and speed is increasing every year.
Also, removeable batteries are great. I'm a phone tech and removing a battery can solve a lot of issues. The HTC one and Evo 4g LTE has a horrible problem with not turning back on once they fall asleep while being charged. Opening the HTC Evo 4g LTE and unplugging the battery works every time. For the one it isn't that simple. I love removeable batteries and the ability to swap them when I need extra juice and cant wait for a charge. You sir are a festigio
147. jinxed (Posts: 107; Member since: 10 Jan 2013)
i understand wad ur saying. But i had an xperia s (non removable battery)and der was dis thingy where u hold down the power button for 10 secs or sumthin and the system will power off exactly like when one removes the battery. And like u,when ma Xperia went crazy sumtyms, i just did that nd after restart worked just fine! Maybe even G2 has that. :)
121. buccob (Posts: 1046; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)
When the largest portion of the world today wants good phones but the network is poor, cloud services just dont cut it... I rather have all my music, video and pictures handy all the time, without depending on network connection...
Having options is always a plus... thats why Android is on top...
124. RiseAgainst94 (Posts: 271; Member since: 03 Mar 2012)
Samsung just got pooped on. In every way.
131. mobilespecs.pk (banned) (Posts: 45; Member since: 15 Dec 2012)
Have you seen Note 3 Yet????
134. downphoenix (Posts: 2231; Member since: 19 Jun 2010)
it also costs more, is too big to be comfortable to use, and has a stylus that most people wont need.
For the time being, G2 is on the top.
140. Michaelhall43 (Posts: 2; Member since: 15 Mar 2013)
I take it you have never used a Note device before, for any sustained period of time, because most Note users would say they got used to the size in one week.
142. mobilespecs.pk (banned) (Posts: 45; Member since: 15 Dec 2012)
Note 3 is a device with which you can actualy work. However if you just play games on a phone g2 is better
158. the.masters (Posts: 3; Member since: 08 Mar 2014)
Yes note 3 is a nice phone but plastick the only thing making it difrant is size and pen nothing more the G2 is all out difrant 1st the OIS the 1st of its kind the trim also the 1st go look at the efort that went into the phone that makes it better now look at the note3 its the note2 on crack same thing more power better look nothing more and yes i have a note3
2. HeWhoDoesNothing (Posts: 152; Member since: 15 Jul 2013)
Is there a video up? Either way, it's the G2 or the Z1, preferably both!
38. _Bone_ (Posts: 2061; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)
Usually takes some time for it to upload.
Gotta say I got caught unguarded, vowed never to have another LG device after a miserable battery failure years back with no alternative presented, but this is an absolute stunning device in every way, if this is what the Nexus 5 is based on, my Nexus 4 - coming next week - will have a short visit over here.
40. _Bone_ (Posts: 2061; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)
If I can have a small criticism about the otherwise spectacular camera: the dynamic range seems more on the average size, the same Exmor RS on the S4 Octa and the PureView 808 do a better job in more challenging bright conditions. HDR is a bit off too. That's all the negativity I can say, saturation, level of details, compression, everything is on the raw side of things.
3. imkyle (Posts: 947; Member since: 18 Nov 2010)
Was there even a mention of the phones specs as far as processor and GPU? Ant performance tests?
6. pooop (Posts: 7; Member since: 30 Aug 2013)
There's already a benchmark video; the specs are (might be off with the GPU):
-CPU: Quad-core Qualcomm Krait 400 @ 2.26GHz
-SoC: Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 SoC
-GPU: Adreno 330
4. Jericho (Posts: 302; Member since: 12 Nov 2011)
9.4!!!!LG G2 Rockx. NOW waiting for the Z1. LG has finally gone big with this phone.
12. GTR722 (Posts: 209; Member since: 20 Oct 2012)
Z1 and G2 are going to kill the S4...Samsung needs to hurry with the S5 xD
20. PapaSmurf (Posts: 6615; Member since: 14 May 2012)
G2 will affect the S4 sales, but Z1 won't. If the XZ didn't, what makes you think it will be different? Samsung sold over 20 million S4's already, don't see it stopping anytime soon.
22. lee480 (Posts: 162; Member since: 24 Sep 2012)
The G Pro didn't touch S4's sales. The Z did. What makes you think it will be different? Wipe your anti Sony crap here.
48. PapaSmurf (Posts: 6615; Member since: 14 May 2012)
G Pro was aimed at the Note II hence the 5.5" screen. The Z affected the S3 and the S4? Lol I'll have whatever you're smoking because it really didn't. Get that pro Sony crap out of here.
23. Long1 (banned) (Posts: 399; Member since: 18 May 2013)
"Z1 and G2 are going to kill the S4"...... NEVER.
With no SD support, and no swappable battery , all the Samsung rivals will just take the crumps.
25. Commentator (Posts: 2178; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
Yeah, because those are OBVIOUSLY the two things consumers are clamoring for...
31. pooop (Posts: 7; Member since: 30 Aug 2013)
Actually, for some people, those things are really important. Sure, if the devices have 32GB of storage, most can be fine without the microSD card slot, but being able to remove your battery or replace it if it gets damaged or something is a nice feature. Nowadays, it's a given, unfortunately. Would love to have that back, but the G2's stolen me with everything else that is great about it (especially the 32GB of storage which should tide me over for 2 years).
34. Commentator (Posts: 2178; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
Yeah, for "some people," but I wouldn't argue that Samsung's mainstream success has been due to its removable batteries and SD slots.
(Shout-out to me for starting two comments with "yeah"!)
159. the.masters (Posts: 3; Member since: 08 Mar 2014)
Yes for the s4 battery is a big problm g2 no prob at all so y do i need to remove it
70. taz89 (Posts: 1943; Member since: 03 May 2011)
Agree don't thinks it's something the average consumer are clamouring for but I think when they do go into a shop and say they are looking at a phone with those 2 features and a phone without it, they do take it into consideration especially if a sales person say you can add more memory for x amount or will give you a 16gb SD card for free etc, I think the average consumers might consider when it's sold to them that way. I see so many ads saying finds with free 32gb card lol my s4 cane with a free 32gb card so even though a customer might not want it, I think they might like the idea.
80. JMartin22 (Posts: 642; Member since: 30 Apr 2013)
The G2 and some random Sony phone aren't going to be killing Samsung lol. The sales will reflect this and that's all that matters.
139. Jillxz (Posts: 130; Member since: 04 Jun 2012)
Not really they're not. The avearge consumer couldn't care less about an sd card slot and a removable battery.
146. xmusicianguy (Posts: 96; Member since: 13 Jul 2011)
I came from the Motorola Maxx HD. So I had a MASSIVE battery (non removable) and a HORRIBLE camera. To a Galaxy S4. Now I have 2, 2600 mAh batteries and an external Samsung charger. I do have to swap them durning the day sometimes. But because 1 is charging while the other is being used then I NEVER have to charge the phone itself. Now that's a downside if the phone is doing something I don't want to power it down for. But I love it compaired to the Motorola. I can see this G2 is knocking Samsung off their block. I'm not loyal to Samsung. But seeing the design of the G2 they could have made a battery removable.
49. PapaSmurf (Posts: 6615; Member since: 14 May 2012)
But no removable batteries, which almost everyone I know seems to care about.
58. Commentator (Posts: 2178; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
The last time I remember seeing "removable batteries" being marketed in any meaningful way:
I'm not saying people don't care, but I'd bet it's not a deal-breaker for most people.
Maybe if Sammy brought that commercial back now it would be a different story. People tend to want what companies advertise.
90. Long1 (banned) (Posts: 399; Member since: 18 May 2013)
I would like (because you are big fish somehow) , to see Samsung to make next GS and Note, without SD support and non-swappable battery, and then to see how much will sell. LOL.LOL.LOL
You guys are brainwashed .
122. buccob (Posts: 1046; Member since: 19 Jun 2012)
I used to care about removable batteries... but trading phones in less than 2 years make that unnecessary... also ask apple users if they care? they still are a great deal of people...
I care more about microSD support than remobable battery... last time I bought a secondary battery was for my blackberry 4 years ago.
133. mobilespecs.pk (banned) (Posts: 45; Member since: 15 Dec 2012)
Samsung have another weapon comming Galaxy Note 3. Which outclasses every smartphone in the world
106. abrahavt (Posts: 4; Member since: 10 Oct 2012)
Actually the Z1 has the same specs as this G2 and also has an SD card . The Z1 also has a camera with a bigger sensor (better low light pics) (newer and bigger sensor than the S4 and G2). If their Bravia screen is as good Sony could take over the throne of the best Android phone. We should know in a couple of days.
53. _Bone_ (Posts: 2061; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)
Don't, get this or pray to the Lord Almighty for the G2 to get Nexus'd.
8. PapaSmurf (Posts: 6615; Member since: 14 May 2012)
This just proves a phone doesn't have to be completely glass in order to achieve a high score. I give props to LG, this phone is a beast phone, and definitely deserves it.
9. ghassangs7 (Posts: 9; Member since: 13 Aug 2013)
This phone is crazy with uninspired design!
13. Commentator (Posts: 2178; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
Well, I wouldn't say the back-buttons are uninspired, I'm just not sure they were inspired correctly.
I love the amount of customization LG allows with its UI, but I still hate how cartoon-y it looks. It's not 2009 any more, LG:
24. LetsBeHonest (Posts: 544; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)
Agree it does look cartoonish...
UI should look modern like WP,Android UI
these cartoonish UI is kinda old and bored
the main reason i switched to WP is its UI
i think its fantastic modern unique lookin good job by MS.
hope LG also alter it to something close to stock.
63. Feanor (Posts: 273; Member since: 20 Jun 2012)
I agree. This seems to be a fantastic smartphone but the design is really cheap, both the hardware and the UI. If the Xperia Z1 is 80% as good a smartphone as the G2, I will go for the Sony, because it looks so much nicer and more expensive.
152. actuallyknowathingortwo (Posts: 2; Member since: 24 Sep 2013)
are you kidding???? have you not seen ios7 yet? if you think this looks cartoony check out the joke ios7 and apple are still playing on everyone! releasing a NEW iphone 5c with 1 year old specs and a 5s with a fingerprint scanner thats gonna "revolutionize" phone security. im happy another phone company besides samsung is actually improving there phones over the old models. and to anyone questioning whether or not the buttons on the back feel awkward or are misplaced.... they arent. they feel just right and actually make sense.
27. Commentator (Posts: 2178; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
Also, camera-humps are one thing... but rear-button humps...? Is it too much to ask for a flush back from a company that isn't Apple or Sony? LG got so close, their camera lacks any kind of hump, and they blow it like this?!
30. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5278; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
Rear-button hump is to 'protect' the camera lens....
35. Commentator (Posts: 2178; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
And to accrue noticeable wear-and-tear from the pressure that's being placed on a tiny surface-area.
57. _Bone_ (Posts: 2061; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)
Completely flat back scratches like super-eary, to the point of Google adding extra bump dots to the Nexus 4. There's nothing wrong with the back buttons if it actually feels easy in the hand - which is I'm eager to test - plus you can double tap to lock or unlock, so you won't really use the power button.