Can it really be over so quickly? Our LG G Flex2 Testmodo season draws to a close, meaning this is your chance to take a look at what our readers (Jassen Payen, Tom Price, Suzanne Atkins and Samuel Hudson) have to say about LG's curvy G Flex2 phone. In previous week's they've sang the praises of its design, tested the camera and turned the smartphone into their own personal handheld cinemas.
Now, for this last Testmodo installment of the season, our talented Testmodoers do their best Jerry Springer impressions and offer their final thoughts on LG's curvy smartphone overall.
Having spent some quality time with the LG G Flex2, there are a number of things I think that help to make it stand out from the competition:
The Curved Screen – This is the defining aspect of this device. That subtle 23 degree inward arc makes a brilliant impact when viewing media, and when viewed under the right conditions, that visceral screen ‘pops’ to life with an immersiveness that makes the screen look bigger than what it is. For media it is a real treat to use.
The Camera – The combination of Laser Auto Focus and OIS+ helps create sharp, colourful pictures, and stable video that would do well in replacing your snapshot camera. It works best outside with a lot of light. However in my tests I found that it performed very well for indoor shots and video, especially concerning the time taken between cuing up and capturing photos, which is quicker than the average Android phone in low light situations.
The Rear Buttons – Having the volume and power buttons on the rear gives the device clean lines all around, making it good to grip, and easy to control without fumbling around the sides. Your fingers will naturally find the recessed buttons along the rear, and they are designed in such a way that they can’t be pressed accidentally when not directly handling the phone (in pockets and bags, for instance).
Other notable mentions include using a knock code to unlock the phone, and sliding a finger on the screen when off to ‘peek’ at time/notifications, both of which I found to be very intuitive. The ‘self-healing’ back, which seems able to bear minor scrapes , was impressive too, and means I don't have to worry about needing a case and can rock it ‘au naturel’. The extra modes in the camera software were also a delight to play with, including the “Cheese” shutter and Beauty Shot mode for selfie lovers.
In terms of battery life, I've found it to be better than average for minimal/normal use, and can last up to three days with occasional checks and push email. When factoring in heavy use and media consumption, the battery life declines rapidly, and lasts up to a day, which is equivalent to the average smartphone out there. Still pining for the day we’ll see week-long battery as standard, so one can only hope something like the LG G Flex3 fixes this!
As a phone itself, the LG G Flex2 is a solid device, and I found call quality for both making and receiving calls to be loud and clear. I am generally pleased with the performance of the phone overall. However there are odd moments of stutter and pause within the OS. Sometimes it's a bit jarring tapping on an application, and waiting up to five seconds for an action to take place. This isn't frequent but when it does happen, it can catch you off guard. It doesn't appear to affect the experience once within apps and games, where it then remains fast and fluid with pretty much anything.
The LG G Flex 2 is a very good smartphone with some interesting twists. I found it a joy to use, and it's a great all-rounder.
Confession time. Prior to owning the LG G Flex2, I had never owned a flagship level smartphone. I was always the person who opted for the budget smartphone for the lower contract cost, over a flagship. My previous phone was the Motorola Moto G. My boyfriend, however, is the polar opposite, so I’ve previously enviously played with his Samsung S3, and then LG G3, without personally owning it.
That has all changed. The Flex2 is a wonderful piece of kit. I actually prefer it over his G3 overall due to finding that I'm handling it a lot easier thanks to the slight curve of the body. I now find the G3 almost too bulky to handle, even though the two phones are not all that different in physical size. The curve does make it a very comfortable phone to use, from browsing the Internet to taking a call.
My favourite thing about the Flex2 is definitely the camera. I was the kid who used up a whole film on nothing just because I liked taking pictures, so having a decent camera on me all day means I am very snap happy. A camera which reacts well to light, bright colours, and has a decent burst mode for movement, is ideal for city living! The macro is fantastic, and the HDR mode helps to pick out the shadows, which allows the user to utilise various photographic opportunities.
The screen in general is very pretty to look at. The G3’s screen is a higher resolution, but the difference isn’t really noticeable unless you’re looking for it. The Full HD of the Flex2 ensures that photos, videos, and games all stand out beautifully.
There are a couple of small points which I would want LG to look at for the third generation of the Flex. Firstly, the brightness levels, as mentioned in my previous review, could do with having a larger range. The screen needs to be a little brighter for outside, and darker for when a bright screen is a hindrance. Secondly, I don’t find the sound levels that impressive when watching a video. They’re okay for music, but just aren’t loud enough to watch and listen to a TV show if there’s any background noise. The noise of the London Underground trains are louder, even with headphones.
Overall, I really do like the Flex2. After just 24 hours I was unable to go back to my Moto G. Yes, it’s bigger which took some getting used to, but the power behind it and the general better quality of phone definitely makes up for it. It has nice little extras which I like, such as double tapping the screen to turn it on, and spreading two fingers on the screen to remove the apps so you can see the wallpaper image. It’s comfortable, easy to use, and looks great. I would definitely recommend the LG G Flex2.
There are two things you need to think about… do you want to run Android? You should, as Android is absolutely fantastic. It has endless customisation options and yet is brain shatteringly simple to use. It's only downfall is if you plan on pairing with an Apple OS X, computer, which can be difficult. However, LG do supply a program to aid you with this While being basic it is also fairly easy to use.
Secondly, why choose the LG G Flex2?
The buttons are well placed at the rear of the phone and the phone looks sleek and performs well, as well as being one of the smallest phones with the 5.5-inch screen on the market -- a big factor for me. It is a gorgeous phone and it fits beautifully in the hand.
The camera is good too, but it could be better, especially with the front facing one. Nokia is where you should look).
The processor is good: the Snapdragon 810, an eight-core jobby that performs extremely well, but it really seems to only go as well as the apps let it. I found that it crashed with Snapchat, and struggled slightly with Android Wear. Compared with my G3, which only has a Snapdragon 801 processor with four cores, there really wasn’t much difference.
It is also worth noting that there is space for an SD card. Just so you know.
The screen of the G Flex2 is outstanding, and whilst it has that immersive quality, I still found myself missing the extra resolution of my G3. This is probably because I don’t view many videos on my phone and view mainly photos. What I would say is that if you spend a lot of time commuting or on your phone viewing media, you should buy the Flex2. In my opinion it is the best phone to view videos on.
The biggest problem? The battery life. This is a serious issue for me. It can’t last a full day of use without requiring the battery saving mode, and this was at times when I wasn’t necessarily using it that much. I also miss wireless charging: what I originally thought was a gimmick is something I find to miss when it is gone. LG either need to give it more battery, or give it a replaceable one, or improve the efficiency of its eight-core set up.
There is also the matter of deciding between the LGs. The G flex2 does everything, but its defining factor really is the curved screen.
This phone is a phone that you should buy, but I don’t think you will, simply because LG is competing against itself. The Flex2 is stuck between the G3 and G4 but is also trying to be its own success. Oh and every time you take the Flex2 out someone will joke that you’ve sat on it… which still isn’t funny.
Can you quite believe we’re in the fourth week? Back in the first review, I stated that I wouldn’t normally consider anything but an iPhone when upgrading – and I think the LG G Flex2 has convinced me otherwise. It has completely expanded my horizons. I’ve not missed Apple, and the G Flex2 has proven to be an amazingly capable phone.
Whether it’s the screen capacity including the immense brightness, to the immersion you feel due to the curve – it feels as though LG has really thought through every element of the phone. I’ve even had a lot less problems with pocket unlocking since the first week, and the back buttons have been incredibly easy to get used to – I don’t know whether I’d be able to go back to buttons on the side of a phone!
This week, I thought it was the perfect time to see how the battery life lasts. On my incredibly lazy bank holiday weekend, I unplugged the phone at about 1pm – and used it quite heavily over the course of the day only giving it a two hour break. From Twitter to games to Netflix, 4G to wifi, the phone was put to its test and ran out just as I was going to bed at midnight. I know for a fact that my old iPhone 4s would have died hours before that – yes I’d have liked the G Flex2 to last a bit longer but I’m greedy with what I expect from a battery, and maybe LG will focus on the battery in future editions of the phone.
I have had some general problems over the course of the month – the phone has overheated on a couple of occasions, mainly when watching videos, and the phone has completely crashed once or twice needing a total restart. These can be forgiven though as I have been overworking it, and for general usage, the G Flex2 should be perfect.
If you’re a selfie king/queen, you’ll be ecstatic about all of the camera features from airbrushing to just shouting ‘cheese’ to capture. If you’re crazy about watching videos or playing games, I think you’ll find the curve adds enough to seriously consider this phone instead of other leading competitors. And for me? I started off feeling a bit distant from the phone, but I’ve taken it to my heart over the last month and now I couldn’t be happier with it!
Previously on the LG G Flex2 Testmodo Challenge…
Testmodo Challenge #1: Four Readers Put the LG G Flex2's Curved Design to the Test
Our four plucky Testmodo winners get to grips with LG's curvy handset. Read More >>
Follow our Testmodo winners' tweets using the hashtag #testmodoGFlex2, and keep an eye out soon for your chance to take part in our next Testmodo season.