Samsung and LG have finally announced their flagships for 2016 at the Mobile World Congress, the Galaxy S7/Edge and the G5 respectively. While the former has polished the things it got wrong last year, the latter has completely altered its strategy in order to stand out. They both are powered by the best hardware available in the industry but there are some major differentiating factors that might affect your decision.

So let’s take a look.

Design

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Samsung has kept the same design pattern they introduced last year, the Galaxy S7 features an all-glass build with metal chassis running on the side, although this time they’ve made it a bit more natural and less slippery in terms of overall feel. LG, on the other hand, has taken a whole different approach, this time, the G5 offers an aluminium body that looks a lot better than its plastic predecessors. The G5 is a bit heavier than the S7 but that’s because it comes with a 0.2-inch bigger display.

LG has gone for a modular design with the G5 that allows the handset to evolve itself into a more functional device, something the S7 misses completely. The modular design also provides the comfort of a removable battery.

The fingerprint scanner on the S7 has been widened for better accuracy and is located on the front, the G5’s sensor is situated on the back and it also acts as a power button dropping one extra button for you to worry about.

Both the handsets justify their price by offering premium builds, choosing one will be completely user based as they both are extremely unlike. Also, the looks are very subjective, so we leave that for you to decide, although we personally think the Galaxy S7 look a lot better than the LG G5.

Display

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Samsung devices are known for their impressive display panels and the Galaxy S7 is no exception. It features a 5.1-inch Super AMOLED display with a Quad HD resolution, while the LG G5 has a 5.3-inch IPS LCD display, also featuring a Quad HD resolution.

In theory, Samsung’s AMOLED display will offer vibrant colors and higher brightness over G5’s IPS screen. Both phones offer an “Always-On” feature, although they both make use of different technologies to achieve battery optimization. On paper, they both will lose about 1% of juice in an hour. It’s not easy to choose one over the other, but we have learnt it isn’t wise to bet against the Super AMOLED screens from Samsung.

Hardware

Being the flagships, both new handsets showcase best performance hardware available out there. Samsung’s Galaxy S7 runs on Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 820/ Exynos 8890 processor along with a whopping 4GB of RAM, the SoC will, however, depend on where you live. LG’s G5 sports the same configuration minus the Exynos complication.

There’s a MicroSD slot on both with Galaxy S7 supporting 200GB of external storage while G5 supports a whopping 2TB. In terms of internal storage, the G5 offers 32GB while the Galaxy S7 comes in 32/64GB variants. Also, the Galaxy S7 is IP68 water resistant which can be a big deal for many people.

One of the most substantial upgrades for the S7 lies in the battery department as it provides a 3000mAh pack compared to a mediocre 2550mAh on last year’s flagship. LG G5’s comes with a slightly smaller 2800mAh battery but it holds the advantage of a removable one. Samsung’s Galaxy S7 sort of makes it up with wireless charging support.

Software

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The Galaxy S7 and the LG G5 will launch with Android Marshmallow right out of the box along with custom skins on top. Not much has changed with LG’s UI other than the removal of the app drawer. LG has also gone the other way and removed features like Q-Slide and Multi Window, all to offer a much cleaner and less complicated software experience.

Samsung’s TouchWiz remains same all around except for the addition of a setting that lets you disable the app drawer but here you have an option. We don’t know if this a coincidence or not. End of the day, it’s Samsung’s Touchwiz vs LG’s skin.

Camera

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Another unique selling point that the Samsung devices come with is the camera, the new Galaxy S7 features a 12MP rear shooter with a big f/1.7 aperture lens which this time presents much larger 1.4µm pixels resulting in better low light photography.

The G5 has its own upgrades to show off. LG has provided a dual camera setup, one is a 16MP standard lens while the other is an 8MP wide angle module and the good news is that you can use this lens separately. We reserve the judgment till we actually see and use the cameras on these two devices, but they both are definitely a quality upgrade over last year’s flagships.

Conclusion

LG’s new G5 impresses at a lot more levels than just specs on paper with the new modular design approach. LG is trying to create an ecosystem of sorts with “LG Friends” set of companion devices. On the other hand, Samsung has fixed most of the things it got wrong with the Galaxy S6 which could result in an all around great smartphone.

Stay tuned for the detailed reviews of both these smartphones on TechPP and let us know if you want us to do a detailed comparison which goes beyond the specifications.


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Shubham is based out of Ahmedabad, India and is studying to be a Computer Engineer, while specializing in mobile applications. He loves covering what's new in the smartphone space and aims to make it his primary profession some day.