Samsung Galaxy S7 vs LG G5: The two biggest Android phones of 2016 go head to head

Should you buy the Samsung Galaxy S7 or opt for the LG G5? Another year, another tricky decision on which flagship smartphone is worth your money.

Samsung Galaxy S7 vs LG G5: The two biggest Android phones of 2016 go head to head

Worry not, because Alphr has gone through the difficult decision process for you. We’ve weighed up which phone is best, comparing design, display, specifications, camera, battery life and more.

Neither phone is out just yet, although pre-orders are now open for two of this year’s most exciting smartphones. Now’s the time to sit back and mull over which one you want to pick up as your next smartphone.

Samsung Galaxy S7 vs LG G5: Design

Samsung’s Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge were a world apart from the Galaxy phones that came before. They were curvaceous, premium and felt like a revolution for Samsung’s mobile hardware. For the Galaxy S7, however, Samsung has decided to simply refine what came before.

Interestingly, Samsung has taken yet another leaf from Apple’s book, producing a slightly smaller 5.1in S7 alongside the 5.5in Galaxy S7 Edge. Aside from a slight size difference and the Edge’s curved display, both phones are identical. Buttons and ports are also in similar places to where they were on the S6.

LG, on the other hand, has given the G5 a complete overhaul. Thanks to the G5’s new modular design, you’d be hard-pressed to believe the G4 and G5 were even related to one another.


While the G4 was stylish and solid, the G5 looks rather dull and – some may say – rather ugly. Fitting with its design ethos, the G5 certainly looks functional, but in doing so it loses a lot of the charm of its predecessor. Still, it’s not all bad: the rear-mounted fingerprint reader feels great, and LG has finally moved the volume buttons from the phone’s rear onto its side.

The G5 should also be commended for its innovative use of modular components and how it factors that seamlessly into the phone’s design. In terms of pure aesthetics, though, there’s only one winner here.

Winner: Samsung Galaxy S7

Samsung Galaxy S7 vs LG G5: Display

Samsung has long been known for excellent smartphone displays, and with the Galaxy S7 things are no different. It has a 5.1in Super AMOLED display with a 1,440 x 2,560 resolution – the same resolution found on the Galaxy S6. The S7 Edge sports the same resolution, but across a 5.5in screen.

The LG G5 has decided to switch out the G4’s curved 5.5in screen for a smaller 5.3in display. Don’t worry, the resolution hasn’t dropped, ensuring that its 1,440 x 2,560 screen is still super-sharp with a pixel density of 554ppi.


From our benchmarking tests on the Galaxy S7, we can see that Samsung’s Super AMOLED panel has a perfect contrast ratio of 1:1 and a maximum auto-brightness of 469.8cd/m2. Switch off Samsung’s screen-boosting tech, and the S7 cranks out a reasonable 354cd/m2. Currently we don’t know what the LG G5 is capable of, but as it uses an IPS display it won’t be able to achieve the same perfect contrast ratio that the S7 does.

Due to the G4 losing the G4’s curved screen, it’s evident that LG isn’t using the same IPS display as its previous handset – therefore it’s difficult to draw comparisons between the two. Until we can test out the LG G5 for ourselves, this is a straight-out draw.

Winner: Draw

Samsung Galaxy S7 vs LG G5: Specifications and performance

Samsung has settled upon the incredibly odd decision of using two different processors in its latest flagship. UK and European customers can look forward to Samsung’s own Exynos 8890 chip – an evolution of the S6 processor. However, the US seems to be getting Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 820 processor.

The difference in power between the two is minimal, but in terms of gaming, Qualcomm’s processor pulls ahead of Samsung’s.




The rest of the S7’s specs are reasonably commonplace. It has 4GB of RAM, 32GB of storage space (with up to 200GB more via microSD), runs Android Marshmallow and has IP68 dust and water resistance too. It also has a 15% bigger battery, pushing the S6’s 2,550mAh power pack to 3,000mAh – the S7 Edge goes even larger to 3,600mAh. The S7 also has watercooling functionality to help eke out even more from its CPU and GPU.

While the LG G5 is modular, its core specs won’t change. Every G5 comes with a Snapdragon 820 processor, 4GB of RAM, 32GB of storage and a microSD slot, and a 2,800mAh removable battery. It also has a modular expansion slot, should you wish to add functionality via a bigger camera or audio module, or even snazzy VR glasses.

Even when we finally get to put the LG G5 through our benchmarking process, it’s unlikely it’ll be able to keep pace with the S7 – even if it is running a Snapdragon 820.

Winner: Samsung Galaxy S7

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