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Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo vs LG G2: first look

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo vs LG G2: first look

Samsung just outed its first more affordable phablet, dubbed Galaxy Note 3 Neo, as it was known in previous rumors. With its decent specs it comes as a rather nice alternative to even the flagship handsets of last year, such as the LG G2, adding value with S Pen stylus and adjacent apps. If you can make do without top-shelf specs, but want a larger panel, the new Note will certainly be on your radar, so let's see how it stacks up next to one of last year's finest – the LG G2...

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo vs LG G2: first look
Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo vs LG G2: first look
Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo vs LG G2: first look
Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo vs LG G2: first look
Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo vs LG G2: first look
Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo vs LG G2: first look
Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo vs LG G2: first look

The two devices have only a third of an inch difference in screen diagonal, yet the LG G2 is much more compact than the comparatively unwieldy new Note. LG did an excellent job at trimming down the bezels so the G2 sports an excellent screen-to-phone-size ratio, which can't really be said for the budget Note. LG G2 is definitely pocket-friendly, and very easy to operate with one hand compared to the phablet, where the top left quadrant is still completely out of reach for your thumb.

Note 3 Neo has the advantage of a removable back cover, though, so you can quickly swap the battery or add more storage. The S Pen stylus also adds to its extra functionality before the G2, as it lets you draw and annotate on the phablet's display, which you can't do the same way with your fingers on the screen of the G2.


Note 3 Neo has a 5.5” Super AMOLED display with 720x1280 pixels of resolution, which works out to a 267ppi pixel density of the panel. LG G2 flaunts a much higher pixel density, at 423ppi, thanks to its 1080x1920 pixels Full HD 5.2 inch display. This means that small detail is much more defined on the LG G2 than on the Note, not to mention how much brighter its screen is compared to the oversaturated, cold-colored Super AMOLED panel.


Our prototype Note 3 Neo runs TouchWiz Nature UX on top of Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, and we hope to see KitKat on it shortly after release. LG has its own Optimus interface overlay, and is on Jelly Bean too, still, with an imminent KitKat upgrade in the waiting.

On the Note you can expect all the bells that come with Samsung's interface, like Smart Stay, which keeps the screen on while you are looking at it, and the multi-window mode, that can run two different apps on a split screen. LG has a similar to Smart Stay function, too, and it lets you hover numerous Qslide apps on top of the homescreens for better multitasking.

The display size of the Note is nicer for multitasking, though, enhanced further by stylus-specific apps like S Note, plus various drawing and annotating functions in the Gallery or Calendar.

Processor and memory

The new hexacore Exynos in the Note 3 Neo caomes with two Cortex-A15 cores, clocked at 1.7 GHz maximums, and four Cortex-A7s, clocked at 1.3 GHz. This one is reserved for the LTE version, though, as the 3G one has a 1.6 GHz quad-core CPU, likely the same as in the Note II.

The hexacore Exynos is paired with a decent graphics processor, too, ARM's Mali-T624, so it's unlikely you'll have interface or app lag and hiccups. It's clocked much slower than the 2.3 GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 in the G2, so the difference in benchmarks is likely to be large, and the same goes for the graphics processor. There are 2 GB of RAM in both handsets, which are more than enough, but the Note offers 16 GB of internal memory, plus a microSD slot for storage expansion, while the LG G2 gives you directly 32 GB, yet has no memory card slot.


We get an 8 MP camera with LED flash on the Note 3 Neo, while the G2 sports a much more resolute 13 MP shooter on the rear, which can capture more detail. On top of that LG's phone sports optical image stabilization, that does wonders to amend shaky video recording, and offers blur-free night shots, too. Both camera interfaces offer an abundance of easy to access shooting modes like HDR or Panorama, as well as plenty of color effects you can apply to your pictures and videos. We won't comment on the samples quality, as we compare with a non-finalized version of the phablet, yet the Note 3 Neo probably won't measure up to the optically-stabilized unit on the G2. Both handsets are able to do 1080p video recordings, captured with fluid 30fps.


If you want a larger display than the one on the G2, the Note 3 Neo is a decent choice, but the screen size advantage is very small, yet the LG phone is way more compact and easy to carry. If you don't absolutely need the S Pen stylus functionality, the G2 is better in every aspect compared to the budget Note. LG's phone has a better screen, faster processor, and better camera, all wrapped up in a package that is actually pocketable, and easy on the hand, plus it measures up to the phablet in terms of battery capacity.

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