The LG G4 was not present at the last Mobile World Congress and it was not until April that it was officially presented by its manufacturer. He has been with me for a little over a week now and the time has come to take stock of the operation quickly.
LG having only left me the phone for a few days, I will unfortunately be unable to produce a test as complete as usual and you will therefore have to content yourself with this summary.
However, it will not be limited to the design and ergonomics of the terminal. I will also stop on its screen, its performances and its overlay.
Never change a winning team. So I will start by briefly reminding you of the technical characteristics of the beast story that you have them well in mind.
The LG G4 is equipped with a 5.5-inch TFT screen capable of displaying QHD type definition (2560 × 1440) for a pixel density of 534 ppi. It is therefore positioned on the segment of (small) phablets and it should also be noted that its screen is slightly curved.
On the processor side, there is a Snapdragon 808 chip made up of six cores (2 x A57 and 4 x A53) clocked at 1.8 GHz and coupled with 3 GB of RAM. The on-board storage space reaches 32 GB but it will be perfectly possible to expand it through the integrated micro SD port.
A port that can read cards up to 128 GB.
The photo part is not left out and we thus find a main sensor with a definition of 16 million pixels surmounted by stabilized optics capable of opening at f / 1.8. The front camera for its part reaches 8 million pixels.
Not much to say in the area of connectivity. 802.11 ac WiFi is part of the game, as is Bluetooth 4.1 and 4G. The battery of the phone reaches for its part a capacity of 3000 mAh and it is also removable.
The G4 is quite large (148.9 x 76.2 x 9.8 mm), of course, but it does not exceed 155 grams on the scale. Price side, it will take 649.90 euros for the plastic model, or 699.90 euros for the leather model.
In any case, these are the prices offered by Amazon .
Design & Ergonomics
The LG G4 looks a lot like the previous model and we finally find the same lines. The same goes for the borders surrounding its screen, borders reduced to their strict minimum.
As indicated above, LG has chosen to equip its phone with a slightly curved screen. The angle is however much less marked than on the Flex 2.
Its protective glass seems less prone to glare to me, but it is perhaps just a simple impression.
The terminal is available in several versions and in several colors. The manufacturer sent me one of the “premium” models covered with vegetable leather. It's really cool to look at and it's super soft to the touch.
Be careful, however, because it is also very sensitive to scratches and it will be better to avoid putting it in a pocket with a key ring, for example.
LG has opted for a plastic chassis and it is ultimately quite disappointing considering what the competition offers. I may be choosy but I would have preferred to find a metal part, like what the Galaxy S6 or even the Xperia Z3 + offer. Well, afterwards, it's really to nitpick.
No big changes to the ergonomics of the terminal. The manufacturer has placed the usual three physical buttons (volume +, power on, volume-) at the back of the shell, in a row under the photo module. The latter is accompanied by a dual LED flash and laser autofocus. The focus will therefore be ultra fast, even when the light will fail.
The headphone jack and the micro USB port are both placed on the lower edge. On the other side, at the top, we're going to find an infrared port. The telephone can thus be used as an auxiliary remote control.
You have to remove the shell to access the port for the SIM card, the port for the micro SD card and the battery. LG has placed several notches in strategic places to make our life easier.
The LG G4 looks great and it doesn't look like its competition at all. The leather model is really superb and the ergonomics are as formidable as on the previous model.
Screen, Power and Autonomy
LG opted for a screen with a diagonal of 5.5 inches. The panel is IPS LCD. The blacks are much shallower than on AMOLED, it's true, but it still offers very good results.
I am thinking in particular of the color rendering, but also of the general brightness of the panel. Not much to say about the definition that aligns with that of the S6 and S6 Edge.
On the processor side, there is a Snapdragon 808 consisting of six cores divided into two clusters with two A57 and four A53. Qualcomm has opted for a big.LITTLE type architecture and the fastest cores will activate only for the most complex calculations.
The chip is engraved in 20 nm and it consumes less energy than previous generations. In addition, it is also necessary to count on an Adreno 418 GPU and on 3 GB of RAM in LPDDR3-933.
Due to lack of time, I could not pass the usual benchmarking solutions on the terminal.
But what does it look like in everyday life?
The LG G4 is quite responsive. I did not notice any obvious slowdown during this week of testing and this is particularly true for multitasking or for dual display. It handles the load very well and this also applies to games and to playing movies in high definition.
I had the opportunity to watch a few episodes of Ray Donovan in 1080p on it and he showed no signs of weakening.
Autonomy disappointed me quite a bit, however. I really expected more from the Snapdragon 808 and the built-in 3000mAh battery. As it is, you will have to recharge the phone every day since it cannot last more than 14 hours with a single charge.
It therefore aligns with the Galaxy S6 Edge ( tested here ) while the latter has a very small battery of 2,600 mAh.
We are therefore very far from what Sony offers on the Xperia Z3 and it is a real shame. LG had a card to play but didn't grab the pole. The good thing about it is that you can always change the battery on the fly.
I have always liked LG overcoats. They are often simple and accessible. That of the LG G4 is no exception to the rule and it rather respects the visual identity of Lollipop with visuals that are both colorful and stripped down.
I won't go through every feature, but there are a few nuggets worth checking out.
I'm thinking in particular of the Smart Notice widget which will display information about the phone, but also some tips. He will even be able to inform us of the day's weather.
The Smart Bulletin, for its part, will centralize a ton of information from our applications. Thanks to him, we will be able to know the appointments of the day or even our progress on LG Health. It will also give us direct access to Smart Settings.
Thanks to these intelligent settings, we will be able to modify the behavior of the G4 according to certain criteria. For example, it will be possible to switch off WiFi on the move or even launch a specific application after plugging in our headphones.
Just like the S6 Edge, the LG G4 will also be able to display two applications side by side and it will even allow us to change the size of each window on the fly with a simple button.
But the master asset of the terminal is its camera. It sets the bar very high technically and its stabilizer is formidable, of course, but the application is not left out either and it will give us control over a lot of advanced settings such as sensitivity, speed. or depth of field and white balance.
In short, you will understand, the overlay imagined by LG is frankly worth the detour.
It's not in a week that you can get a feel for a product, of course, but I can at least share my first impressions of the LG G4.
The first thing that strikes you are obviously its lines and finishes. It is in line with its predecessors, it's true, but its leather upholstery is a game-changer. The phone is indeed very pretty to look at, but it is also very soft in the hand.
Not much to say about the screen or the on-board processor. They didn't particularly impress me but they fulfill their role well. Autonomy, on the other hand, is really disappointing.
The overcoat is very pleasant to use, there is no doubt about it, but the applications did not leave me with lasting memories either. LG Health is doing well, for example, but it falls short of S Health.
I did not mention it above but the LG G4 does not have a heart rate monitor or fingerprint reader. I find that quite a shame because they can be very useful on a daily basis.
Especially the second, by the way.
There remains the question of price positioning. The LG G4 is a bit cheaper than its competition, it's true, but I think the manufacturer should have gone even further to drive the point home.