The big day has finally arrived, and after many rumours, leaks, and much speculation, we finally know what the LG G4 looks like. But seeing what the phone has is one thing; we also need to compare it to the rest of the competition. Specs certainly aren't everything, but they can give you a good starting point for deciding which phone is right for your next upgrade.
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Just like the G3 before it, the G4 comes packing a 2K screen. That's not really an upgrade, but it's still a pretty mighty screen for any smartphone. Sure, the Samsung Galaxy S6 might have a crisper image thanks to its smaller screen and slightly higher pixel density, but the layman is hardly going to notice that difference. It's still a higher resolution than the likes of the HTC One M9, Xperia Z3, and far higher than the 720p display included with the standard iPhone 6.
LG also revealed that the G4 would have a "Quantum IPS" display, which is supposed to offer improvements to colour reproduction (20 per cent), brightness (25 per cent), and contrast (50 per cent) when compared to its competitors. It wasn't specified which competitors though, so we won't know for sure until people start getting their hands on handsets for direct test lab comparisons.
The fact that LG has not removed the microSD support is, sadly, a major selling point and it gives the G4 an advantage over most other flagships, including the Galaxy S6 and iPhone 6. The level of expansion is typical of all other microSD wielding phones out there, allowing you to add an extra 128GB of storage space on top of the 32GB already installed. It's nothing remarkable, but it's a great feature for those of you who were disappointed by Samsung's decision to completely ditch external storage. On the off-chance that that's not enough, G4 owners also get 100GB of Google Drive space free for two years.
As expected, LG opted to power the G4 with Qualcomm's Snapdragon 808 processor instead of the 810 flagship. While this might seem like a poor decision, recent benchmarks have shown that the 810 deliberately under-performs to prevent overheating. The 808 may only have four cores, instead of the 810's eight, but if that stops it from overheating than it may not be a bad thing. It still means there's a little bit of a boost over phones like the Nexus 6 and the Moto X, both of which run on older Snapdragon models.
With the G4 packing 3GB of RAM, it's matched with the higher end G3 models and every other Android flagship that isn't the Moto X.
A 16MP camera is nothing outstanding, but resolution isn't everything -- as any good photographer will know. Sure people with the 20MP toting One M9 and Xperia Z3 will be able to make their photos a lot bigger without loss of quality, but that isn't really a priority when it comes to taking great pictures. What it great, though, is that the G4's camera has an F/1.8 aperture lens, the widest of any smartphone on the market. That means the G4 is going to have a welcome boost when it comes to snapping shots in low-light environments. On top of that, low-light photography will also get an extra boost from the laser-guided focussing system and larger image sensor (40 per cent larger than the G3).
The G4 also happens to be the first Android smartphone to let users alter the white balance and colour temperature on the fly, and with the option to control shutter speed and take pictures in RAW format along for the ride then the G4 is could end up doing better within the photography community. But we won't know how good the camera actually is until people are able to do some hands-on testing.
The eight-megapixel front shooter does push the G4 well ahead of it's competition. Couple that with a feature that lets people take pictures using gestures and the G4 is bound to be a popular choice amongst the selfie-snapping members of the public.
Weighing in at 155 grams, the G4 isn't the lightest phone available. Only the HTC One M9, Lumia 930, and Nexus 6 are heavier. There's a 26 gram difference between it and the iPhone 6 (the lightest flagship currently available), so people used to an exceptionally light phone might be a little bit surprised.
The same goes for the thickness too. The ridiculously thin iPhone 6 is just 6.9mm, and if you're used to that then you might notice the 2mm different between it and the G4. But for most Android users, maybe barring Samsung fans, you probably won't even notice the difference, given how similar they all are. All in, an impressive on-paper performance from LG's latest.