The World Cup has not been particularly kind to the LG G3, I would stream highlights from the previous night’s matches on my commute to work just to get the best goals while I was in bed. While the LG G3 might be rocking a Quad High Definition (QHD) screen displaying “super sharp” 2,560 x 1,440 pixels, it is lost of the GIFs and streaming videos that I catch my goals on.

Not exactly the best content to show off the phone. But it also reflects the reality at present, the content that can be used to show off the phone’s screen is few and far between. The average user would be hard pressed to find content to appreciate the sharpness on the 5.5 inch display.

But considering that we typically spend most of our time on the go with our phones, a sharper screen means less tired eyes in the long run. Or so they say. The screen is visible under bright sunlight so no worries there.


Here’s a quick and dirty comparison between the LG G3, Samsung Note 3 and Apple iPhone 5S. The details on the LG G3’s screen were more prominent when zoomed in. That might not be a true reflection of real world use but it does highlight that LG G3’s screen is packing the real deal in terms of pixels; 538 pixels per inch to be exact.

LG G3 Photo comparison
Look out for the textured grain around the frills. Click to blow up this picture.

Looking at the phone size again, notice that the screen of the LG G3 is comparable to the Samsung Note 3. LG has made a phone that has a great screen to body ratio that allows a more comfortable one handed operation. I have medium sized hands and it really boils down to how the individual operates their phones. LG figured that the best way improve a user’s experience would be to rework the default keyboard.

Tap tap revolution

The LG G3 keyboard is nice for lack of a better word. LG assumes that most users of a phone would not explore the possibility of searching for an alternate keyboard. With this in mind, one could say that LG does succeed on the keyboard front. Being able to adjust the keyboard height, swipe to text sounds awesome right out of the box.

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However, there are many keyboard replacements out there that can do the same for better. After all, LG would know considering that many of the current keyboard’s features seems to be a good mix of both SwiftKey and Google Keyboard which are both free. Plus, LG made the latest Nexus 5 as well.

Points go to LG for doing their homework but this aspect is not the deal changer despite it being trumpeted as a key feature. I tried my best to run the keyboard through its paces but having been entrenched in SwiftKey your mileage may vary in this aspect. Good default keyboard but not great.

Pew pew pew

The camera is where this phone shines. Touting an inbuilt laser, the LG G3 blasts away its competition. The phone fires off a shot simply with the user tapping on a specific location in frame and that’s it. Under low lightning conditions, it performs admirably to a level that is good enough for reap social media envy on your clubbing nights.

LG G3 Photo macro
Just tap on Homer to focus

Like many other flagships, the laser camera function only works in the default camera app. So that means that snapping a picture the traditional way via apps such as Instagram and Whatsapp. Hopefully, this could be remedied post launch but don’t get your hopes up. Keep that #Whiteagram app on standby.

Would you want an awesome bokeh effect without post processing, the HTC One M8 is for you but for everyday use, the LG G3 is where it is at.

The reservoir that does not run dry

With great power comes great responsibility. The QHD screen that the LG G3 packs must have some drawback. Thankfully, the screen does not sacrifice beauty at the cost of battery life. At the preview event I was told 20 hours of battery life was to be expected, but the conditions were never explicitly mentioned.

LG-G3-Battery-1-
We’re going on 6 hours of on screen time!

The battery of the LG G3 is stellar under my abusive hands; we are looking at an average of 5 hours of on screen use for my usage. 4G LTE, location services and heavy surfing of minimum 2 hours a day during my daily commute (Yay World Cup!) and the phone is more than able to last through a day with plenty of texting and email plus auto brightness.

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While it might not hit the same levels as the Sony Xperia Z2, the real upside of this phone would be the replaceable battery. Not many folks I know would be able to afford a new phone yearly so a replaceable battery does go a long way in terms of value.

I noticed that in the initial few days the battery was bordering disappointment but give it a few charging cycles and it should hit optimal levels soon enough.

Final thoughts

The LG G3‘s optimization between hardware and software beat my initial expectations for the battery. I had expected a much poorer experience with the QHD screen.

I learned along the way that the rear cover does have some elements of metal within that gives the phone its signature look. Anti finger print and all, the rear can get very hot when taking photos for extended periods of time.

Loaded very close to stock Android, the LG G3 packs minimal bloat and it looks impressive right out of the box both in the aesthetics and functionality departments. The keyboard certainly has well thought out features which would suffice as the default choice for most.

The perfect Android phone does not exist but the LG G3 comes pretty close. If you are looking for a phone that has best of it’s class in features, the LG G3 is the one for you. Massive points go into a removable battery as well if that is a feature that is valued in a phone.

For 2014, the LG G3 is my current pick for amongst the Android flagships.

If you are in Singapore and the phone should be available at all stores over the weekend when this review hits, the best value would be the 32GB model at S$928.


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Gerald

Gerald

Gerald currently straddles between his love of video games and board gaming. There’s nothing that interests him more than trying out the newest and fanciest gadget in town as well. He dreams of publishing a board game sometime in the future!