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LG G5 impresses with cutting-edge hardware, innovative modular design

By Shawn Knight
Feb 21, 2016
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  1. All eyes were on LG as the technology company took the stage at the Sant Jordi Club in Barcelona, Spain, hours before South Korean rival Samsung to unveil its flagship smartphone for 2016, the LG G5. We had a pretty good idea of what to expect thanks to a series of leaks and thankfully, LG didn't disappoint.

    The LG G5 features a 5.3-inch Quad HD IPS Quantum display (2,560 x 1,440 / 554 PPI) that's powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 820 processor and Adreno 530 graphics alongside a hearty 4GB of RAM – all packed inside a full-metal unibody design.

    LG introduced an always-on display with its LG V10 smartphone. With the LG G5, they're taking it a step further by integrating the always-on function into the main display by selectively backlighting only a small part of the overall display. This affords the benefits of an always-on display without the need for a goofy secondary display; it consumes just 0.8 percent battery life per hour.

    The LG G5 is offered with 32GB of local storage (expandable to up to 2TB via microSD card slot) and features a 16-megapixel rear-facing camera, an 8-megapixel wide-angle camera, an 8-megapixel front-facing shooter and a removable 2,800mAh battery. The primary rear camera captures images using a 78-degree lens and is flanked by a 135-degree wide-angle shooter which LG says is the widest available in any smartphone.

    Connectivity-wise, the LG G5 features 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2, NFC, an X12 LTE modem and has a USB Type-C connector. It'll ship with Android 6.0 Marshmallow, we're told.

    As impressive as the LG G5 is on its own, what really makes the handset stand out is its modular design and ecosystem of peripherals.

    The LG Friends, as they're collectively called, are modular components that deliver added functionality to the LG G5. The bottom section of the handset slides out, allowing you to quickly replace the battery and / or swap in an alternative module.

    The CAM Plus module adds a camera grip as well as physical buttons for power, shutter, record and zoom, allowing you to shoot with one hand should you so desire. The CAM Plus also offers autofocus and exposure locks and includes a 1,200mAh battery of its own, booting the handset's total battery capacity to 4,000mAh on-the-fly.

    The Hi-Fi Plus with B&O Play is a digital audio converter (DAC) that was developed in collaboration with Bang & Olufsen. It supports 32-bit, 384Khz high-definition audio playback either as a module for the LG G5 or as a standalone DAC for use with any smartphone or PC.

    To say it was a busy day for the South Korean technology company would certainly be an understatement as LG also showcased a series of non-modular accessories including the LG 360 VR headset, the LG 360 CAM, the LG Rolling Bot, the LG Tone Platinum Bluetooth headset and H3 by B&O PLAY earphones.

    The LG G5 will be offered in silver, gold, pink and titan color schemes when it goes on sale globally early next month (AT&T has already committed to carrying it). No word yet on pricing.

    Permalink to story.

     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 21, 2016
  2. teddy

    teddy TS Rookie Posts: 57

    I just wish it was 4k battery instead of lower than 3k. and without apple ( b&o ).
     
  3. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,178   +72

    I like the idea of an always on partial display.
     
  4. SirGCal

    SirGCal TS Maniac Posts: 365   +136

    With the screen that small, at normal distance, it's more then enough that your naked eye will never likely be able to see the difference regardless. All you're doing is burning battery beyond that.

    I'm happy they continue with removable batteries (though this one is small) and SD cards.
     
  5. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,917   +683

    I think he was talking about battery size, not screen resolution.

    It does appear that the CAM attachment adds another 1,200mAh into the mix though.
    2,800mAh + 1,200mAh = 4,000mAh which was exactly what he was after.
     
  6. teddy

    teddy TS Rookie Posts: 57

    I have a 12k power bank to my note 5, so ill get 15k with your way ;) the 1200 is only when using the camera gimic. wich you have to buy extern. and for the battery and screen, it should be max 1080p for 3k batteries. so the phone will last 2 days on daily usage and fun. but just as samsung just showed, it wont last much more than a day on battery. bc of the 2k screen, no matter how big. the resolution says it all. as we saw on meizu pro 5, that beat note 5 on perfomance and lifetime, bc of max 1080p.
     
  7. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 1,630   +431

    So the G in G5 stands for gimmick. I didn't expect this from LG.
     
  8. seefizzle

    seefizzle TS Addict Posts: 278   +142

    I didn't expect much from the promo video. It made me laugh though. that's gotta count for something. Right?
     
  9. ikesmasher

    ikesmasher TS Evangelist Posts: 2,549   +852

    This is an astounding feature and im honestly amazed that anyone could complain about it, a DAC addition is something that alot of people I know would love and this will only have more modules in the future.
     
    psycros and agb81 like this.
  10. Arturo

    Arturo TS Member Posts: 81   +26

    My only problem with this new phone is the form: It looks like that of Samsung!

    I dislike round phones. I am glad that I didn't wait and bought my V10.
     
  11. SirChocula

    SirChocula TS Booster Posts: 71   +50

    I'm with you. The G5 was so close to being my perfect phone. I was expecting a shaping similar to the G3 and G4 and a screen that's 5.5+. I would have bitten if the G5 had those aspects. Otherwise, it's a great phone.
     
  12. Technician

    Technician TS Addict Posts: 677   +113

    Phones have become so same-same its really boring. None stand out anymore at all.
     
  13. Badvok

    Badvok TS Booster Posts: 121   +50

    I think you are a little confused, although B&O make stuff that connects with Apple kit they are not in any way synonymous. Both are indeed known for producing grossly over-priced technology which makes B&O a strange partner for LG who generally aren't.
     
    psycros likes this.
  14. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,646   +520

    They moved the buttons to the side, that's too bad, the back of the phone really makes a better place for buttons, allows for a cleaner look, easier to protect with a case. Finally they switched away from the plastic fantastic body of previous generations, looks good, just not in that ugly pink color.

    Not sure why two cameras with such different specs, so you can take wide angle shots in lower quality like a fool I would presume, or you can use the high res camera and take multiple shots that can then be stitched together with a dedicated app. The ladder may take more time but results will be far better.

    The modularity is neat, but sadly I'm afraid of it just becoming a gimmick with a couple over priced accessories made by a select few manufacturers appointed by LG. If this happens it could damage the concept of a modular cell phone before it gets to truly be something good, although at the same time if LG does it right this could very well be a step in the right direction for the dream of a modular, user up-gradable, smartphone.
     
  15. SirGCal

    SirGCal TS Maniac Posts: 365   +136

    Ahh. I've heard people barking about the screen resolution before so I started there. Plus my autism doesn't let me see the k for the battery. it's mAh so 4000 is actually just 4. Although a real 4k battery would be so awesome (4,000,000 mAh). Just the way my brain works when I work with those numbers all day (frim Pico to Tera (10e-12 to 10e12). So to me K is really what it is.. ohh well. As for the screen, my point is still valid.

    However, I'd still buy this before the S7 cause this has a removable battery. Plain and simple. Not for any other reason than in a few years I can buy a new fresh battery and have a 'new' lasting phone again instead of one that goes from 100-30% by booting up and opening email cause the battery can no longer hold a good charge after heavy use over time.
     
  16. teddy

    teddy TS Rookie Posts: 57

    k is 000 kk is 000. but you need to be a gamer to understand that term :) I ordered s7, and I really hope it wont be as bad as s6. I dont care about removeable battery, but if you like to spend a lot of money on gadgets, then lg is the way. samsung at least give you a gadget with the sale. lg you get a removable battery, but need to buy all xtra stuff.
     
  17. amstech

    amstech TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 1,455   +606

    It's like no phone we have ever seen before! Ohh wait, it looks like every other smartphone out there.
    Hey its just money right?

    Its true. All of these little gizmos and gadgets on new phones make a great sales pitch but don't account for much.
    1440p on a 5"-5.5" screen is a nice gimmick too, after 1080p on a phone your not seeing much of improvement, if any at all for your standard user.
    Battery life, screen quality and power are what matters.
    All phones now have amazing camera's, so thats a mute point too.
    The new phones, while quicker, aren't much better at practical real, world performance, don't offer anything captivating; and thats why more and more people are sticking with their phones for 3-5 years.
    If you spend $500-$600 on a phone, your getting something thats barely better then a $300 phone for 95% of what is phone is used for.
    These are the same people who buy a TitanX for $1000, and act like its much better then a 980Ti, when really its not. At all.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2016
    Phr3d likes this.
  18. Technician

    Technician TS Addict Posts: 677   +113

    I have yet to see a phone with an amazing camera. :) They all suffer in low light or with high speed movements.
     

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