When it comes to 2015’s flagship Android smartphones, HTC struck the first blow with its One M9. The smartphone has largely been overlooked as a warmed over refresh of its predecessor (both in terms of specs and its design, which dates back to 2013). Samsung then stepped into the fray with its Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge, and has already opened up a third manufacturing facility to keep up with Galaxy S6 Edge demand.
And now, it’s LG’s turn to show us what it has in store for Android fans. Unfortunately for LG, many of the details of its next generation G4 (including pictures) have already leaked to the web. So today’s announcement just makes things official.
LG’s tagline for the G4 is “See the Great, Feel the Great” and the first major addition to the smartphone is definitely all about “touch.” Unlike its competitors which have switched to metal and glass construction, LG has thrown in a minor wrinkle with the addition of optional high-grade leather-clad backplates which give the device a more premium feel. Motorola has been offering leather options for its Moto X for quite some time, so this isn’t exactly a new frontier in Android Land. Other options include “contoured ceramic” and “hammered metallic” backplates, but you won’t find any actual metal on the G4.
The device itself is actually slightly larger than its predecessor, measuring 5.9” x 3” x 0.4” compared to 5.8” x 2.9” x 0.35” for the G3. But it does bring with it a IPS Quantum 5.5-inch display (1500:1 contrast ratio), yet retains its Quad HD (2560x1440) resolution. You won’t find the toasty Snapdragon 810 processor under the screen of the G4; instead you’ll be greeted with a 64-bit, hexa-core Snapdragon 808 processor paired with 3GB of RAM. The G4 will come standard with 32GB of storage, which can be expanded via a microSD slot. You’ll also receive a 16MP rear camera with an f/1.8 aperture. It features laser autofocus and is capable of shooting 4K video (like the G Flex 2 which came before it). You’ll also find an impressive 8MP front-facing camera.
When it comes to communications, you’ll find a Qualcomm X10 LTE modem when can deliver speeds of up to 450 Mbps. The usual staples like Bluetooth 4.1 and 802.11ac wireless are also included. And in a knock against Apple’s Jony Ive, LG says that its customers would rather have longer battery life (and the ability to swap batteries when needed) than a slimmer device. The result is a huge 3000 mAh battery that will power the G4 – it’s also removable, unlike the batteries in the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge. And if you’re a Volkswagen driver, the G4 will also work with MirrorLink to display information on your vehicle’s infotainment screen.
The G4 is of course running Android 5.1 Lollipop and brings with it LG UX 4.0. And Google will throw in 100GB of Google Drive cloud storage space (free for two years) for G4 owners which is a nice bonus.
We’ll bring you details on availability and pricing as soon as its announced, but for now the LG G4 looks like a nice addition to the current crop of Android flagship smartphones.