Samsung Galaxy S5 full review
As anticipation builds toward the launch of the Galaxy S5, LG has announced the LG G Pro 2. But which is best, the LG G Pro 2 or the Galaxy S5? We compare what we know about the LG G Pro 2 with the best information available about the Galaxy S5, so you can decide which handset best deserves your hard-earned cash. we'll be updating this story as we know more.
LG G Pro 2 vs Samsung Galaxy S5: UK price and availability
The Galaxy S5 is likely to be launched in just a couple of weeks at the MWC show and be on sale within the next couple of months. We expect Samsung to launch a couple of versions of the Galaxy S5: one plastic and one metal in finish, one with LTE and one without 4G connectivity. And the smart money is on these phones ranging from around £550 to £650.
A UK price and release date for the G Pro 2 is yet to be announced and availability in markets outside of Korea has "not yet been determined". It is likely to cost around the same as the S5 - although our guess is if anything marginally cheaper. (Samsung charges a premium for its premium smartphones, and LG tends to have to be marginally cheaper to compete, even with great handsets such as the G2.)
It will launch in Korea on 21 February, but expect a long wait for the LG G Pro 2 here in the UK. If you are intending to get your next phone this side of the summer, the Galaxy S5 may be your only choice.
LG G Pro 2 vs Samsung Galaxy S5: Processor and performance
The critical point is that the Galaxy S5 and the LG G Pro 2 will both be stable, and plenty fast enough to handle multiple processes at the same time, without feeling laggy. So let's talk about facts first, and then compare to the expected spec of the Galaxy S5.
The LG G Pro 2 comes with a powerful quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor running at 2.26 GHz, paired with 3GB of RAM. It's a Krait 400 chip with an Adreno 330 GPU. And that means it will be fast. Mega fast.
From the Galaxy S5 expect either an Exynos 6 or Snapdragon 805 processor, depending on territory and whether your Galaxy S5 is an LTE handset. Also expect a whopping 3GB RAM. In short, the Galaxy S5 and the LG G Pro 2 will both be superfast smartphones.
But here's the important point: both phones will be just as quick as they need to be, as has been every high-end Samsung and LG for the past couple of years. There is no value in fighting it out over synthetic benchmarks, not least because some handset manufacturers are believed to write software that games benchmarks. See also: The UK's best Android smartphones.
LG G Pro 2 vs Samsung Galaxy S5: Display
According to the most credible rumours and leaked information, the Galaxy S5 will sport a 5.25in AMOLED display with a resultion of 2560 × 1440. That's a staggering 559ppi. And typically AMOLED displays on Samsung phones are more rich and colourful than those of any rival.
That's not to say that the Galaxy S5 has a 'better' display than does the LG G Pro 2. We know that the LG G Pro 2 will come with a 5.9in display that has a resolution of 1080 x 1920. That works out as a pixel density of 373ppi. That's a true Full HD IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen, with 16M colours. The LG G Pro 2's display is made of Corning Gorilla Glass.
Typically LG displays are less colourful than are Samsung displays, and that pixel density isn't even close. So that is categorically a win for Samsung, even with the marginally smaller display.
However without seeing both screens you shouldn't automatically presume you will prefer the Galaxy S5. Not everyone is a fan of the rich colouring of Samsung AMOLED displays, and there is a good chance you won't be able to tell the difference between 373- and 559ppi. You may really enjoy the extra screen real-estate offered by the LG.
Still, that is a win for the Galaxy S5, we'd say. (See also: The 18 best smartphones.)
LG G Pro 2 vs Samsung Galaxy S5: Design and build
Here we will have to talk mainly in generalisations, as the Galaxy S5 is for the next couple of weeks anticipated rather than seen. The LG G Pro 2 measures 157.9 x 81.9 x 8.3mm and weighs in at 172g. It has a plastic body with a metal-mesh rear that has control buttons built in.
The S5 may not be a 'phablet', as is the bigger LG G Pro 2, but it will be far from a small handset. And Samsung's Galaxy phones tend to be bigger than those of their rivals anyway - big slabs that are striking to look at and offer great screen real estate, but can be physically harder to use and store. Which you prefer will be a question of personal taste.
Going on the evidence of the leaked information and all previous Samsung Galaxy phones, the Galaxy S5 will be as robust as is the LG G Pro 2. Expect both phones to be noticably big, and to combine style and built-to-last build quality. Which you prefer will of course be your own personal choice. But early reports of the metal-mesh rear of the LG G Pro 2 are positive. See also: The 7 best phablets.
LG G Pro 2 vs Samsung Galaxy S5: Storage
We expect the Galaxy S5 to offers 32GB and 64GB models, with an SD Card slot capable of offering a further 64GB of storage. What we don't know yet is how much storage is available to users on a new Galaxy S5.
Or, indeed for the LG G Pro 2. That handset comes with 'only' 16- or 32GB of built in storage, but with a microSD slot for a further up to 64GB.
LG G Pro 2 vs Samsung Galaxy S5: Connectivity
The specs we have for the LG G Pro 2 run a little something like this. GPRS: Class 12 (4+1/3+2/2+3/1+4 slots), 32 - 48 kbps; EDGE: Class 12. Expect HSDPA, 42.2 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps; LTE, Cat4, 50 Mbps UL, 150 Mbps DL. It will support 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac dual-band Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP. The LG G Pro 2 is NFC and Infrared enabled, and has a microUSB v2.0 port for wired connectivity.
The Galaxy S5 will likely offer GSM, 3G and 4G. Expect HSDPA, 42.2 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps; LTE, Cat4, 50 Mbps UL, 150 Mbps DL. It will also offer 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac dual-band Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 with A2DP. You'll get NFC, Infrared and a microUSB v2.0 port.
That's two well-connected and pretty well-matched handsets. (See also: Galaxy S5 vs HTC M8 2014 smartphone comparison review.)
LG G Pro 2 vs Samsung Galaxy S5: Cameras
We obviously haven't yet tested either camera, and you should be careful about basing a purchasing decision on specs alone.
For what it is worth, from the Galaxy S5 we expect a primary camera with a 16Mp sensor, autofocus and LED flash. Up front there is likely to be a 3.2Mp camera. You'll be able to capture video at 1080p and 60 frames per second. Suggested camera features include simultaneous HD video and image recording, geo-tagging, touch focus, face and smile detection, image-stabilization, and HDR.
The LG Pro 2 has a rear-facing 13Mp camera, autofocus and LED flash. Around the front is a 2.1Mp camera. You can capture 2160p video at 30fps, and 1080p at 60fps. Camera features include geo-tagging, face detection, optical image stabilization, panorama, and HDR.
It is likely that both phones' cameras will perform well. Without testing it is impossible to draw a clear conclusion. We do know that the LG G Pro 2 will capture 4k video, however, which is pretty special.
LG G Pro 2 vs Samsung Galaxy S5: Software
This one is relatively straightforward, as both the LG G Pro 2 and the Galaxy S5 will come with Android 4.4 KitKat.
The Galaxy S5 will come with Samsung's take on Android 4.4 KitKat. This is Google's most mature and easy-to-use mobile OS, albeit overlaid with Samsung's TouchWiz interface. If you've used a Samsung phone before you'll know what to expect.
The G Pro 2 will be closer to vanilla Android, with only a few tweaks from LG.
Both phones will offer a stable and easy-to-use interface, with multiple places from which to purchase music and other media.
LG G Pro 2 vs Samsung Galaxy S5: which should you buy?
The Galaxy S5 will be fast, well built, full featured. It will have a big bright and bold screen, and good cameras, and it will offer good storage and connectivity options. And you could say all of the above about the LG G Pro 2. The Galaxy S5 offers a better, albeit marginally smaller, display. The LG G Pro 2 can capture 4K video, but the Galaxy S5 will offer a fingerprint scanner. Ultimately availability and pricing will determine this battle. See also: New smartphones to expect at MWC 2014: What will Samsung, Sony, LG, HTC, Nokia and BlackBerry launch?
Samsung Galaxy S5: Specs
- Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors, 1440 x 2560 pixels, 5.25 inches
- 32/64 GB storage, 3 GB RAM, microSD, up to 64 GB
- Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band
- microUSB v2.0
- 16Mp, 3.2Mp cameras, [email protected]
- Android OS, v4.4.2
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 805, Quad-core 2.5 GHz Krait 400
- Li-Ion 3000 mAh battery