iPhone 5s vs LG G3 comparison review

The iPhone 5s is now nine months old, and since then some worthy smartphones have been launched to rival its success. One of those rivals is the LG G3, which with its incredible display and impressive specs, is certainly a strong contender. Here's an iPhone 5s vs LG G3 comparison to help you discover which is best for you. We've compared the design, specs, display and price of the two devices, so read on to find out more.

iPhone 5s vs LG G3 comparison review: Display

Let's start with the most obvious difference between these two devices: the display. The LG G3 has a whopping 5.5in display, and an incredibly stunning one at that. It's Quad-HD so you'll get a pixel density of 543ppi with the LG G3. Honestly, it's really, really gorgeous.

For many, 5.5inches for a smartphone display will be a bit too big, particularly for those used to the 4in screen on the iPhone. We're beginning to think that the iPhone 5s's display is just a bit too small, but rumour has it Apple agrees with us, so we're expecting a 4.7in iPhone 6 to arrive within the coming months. That'll be a much more comfortable size than the 5.5in of the LG G3, we think. Really, LG's new phone fits into the 'Phablet' category, so sits between the smartphone and tablet.

Right now, though, Apple's iPhone 5S has a 640 x 1136 pixel display, with a pixel density of 326ppi, so that is significantly less pixels than the LG G3. It's still Retina, which means it's so high-res that the human eye can't make out individual pixels, so it's still an incredible display that we're certain you'll love. But there's no denying that the LG G3's is even better. See: What is Retina display?

We're hoping that Apple will take a close look at the display of the LG G3 ahead of the launch of the iPhone 6, as an iPhone with a display as stunning as that, but not quite so huge, would spur smartphone buyers to rush to the Apple Store to get their hands on one (us included).

iPhone 5s vs LG G3 comparison review: Design

With that huge screen comes a pretty big chassis for the LG G3, but not as big as you'd imagine thanks to the thin bezels. It's unlikely that it'll fit nicely into your pocket, though. Unless your pockets are exceptionally large, of course.

Looking closer at the LG G3's measurements, its 8.9mm thick, and 75 x 146mm overall. That's compared with the iPhone 5s's slim 7.6mm design and obviously smaller 58.6mm by 123.8mm body. With that extra screen estate comes a bit of extra weight too, which can make a big difference if you're using your phone in your hand for lengthy periods of time. The iPhone 5s is exceptionally light at 112g, while the LG G3 weighs 149g.

We love the overall design of the iPhone, and it's one of the big selling points for many smartphone buyers. The iPhone 5s has a delightful aluminium body available in Space Grey, Silver or Gold, each of which has a different appeal, even the gold one. The front is completely glass, and you'll also find glass inset into the top and bottom of the back of the iPhone.

The LG G3 also sports a metallic design, but it's actually not metal at all. It does have a removable back though, unlike the iPhone 5s.

We definitely prefer the design of the iPhone 5s, but LG hasn't done a bad job with the LG G3, by any means. Plus, the portability of the iPhone 5s compared with the LG G3 is a big deal to us. We'd prefer the LG G3 to be smaller, but that said we'd also like a slightly bigger iPhone 5s. Given the choice based on design, we'd choose the iPhone 5s. Or, we'd wait those extra months for the iPhone 6, which will probably arrive in September.

iPhone 5s vs LG G3 comparison review: Processor and performance

Now let's take a look at what's on the inside of these two smartphones. The iPhone 5s boasts Apple's 64-bit A7 processor running at 1.2- to 1.3Ghz. It's a dual-core Cyclone processor paired with 1GB of DDR3 RAM. The LG G3 appears to trump this with its hardware specs, though. It's worth highlighting that the software plays a big part in the feel of performance too, so the specs don't paint the whole picture. We'll talk more about the software in a moment.

First, we'll share the impressive specs of the LG G3. It has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor, clocked at 2.5GHz. It has 3GB of RAM if you choose the 32GB model – the 16GB model has 2GB RAM instead.

As you can see, the LG G3's internal hardware is better than the iPhone 5s on paper, but both are exceptionally zippy and smooth to use. Plus, iOS 7 is built specifically for Apple's unique A7 chip, so that helps make swiping, switching between apps, launching apps and other tasks a joy.

We've not been able to test the LG G3 fully yet, but when we do we'll update this article with the results for both devices for a closer performance comparison.

iPhone 5s vs LG G3 comparison review: Storage

As mentioned briefly above, the LG G3 has two storage options: 16GB or 32GB. They both sport a microSDXC slot so you can add an extra 128GB to the device if you buy a compatible card.

The iPhone 5s, on the other hand, has three different models available: 16GB, 32GB and 64GB. This means you won't be able to expand your storage, but for most users, 64GB will be plenty. Of course, it'll cost you a fair bit more for that top-of-the-range iPhone 5s model.

iPhone 5s vs LG G3 comparison review: Battery life

The LG G3 has a big, 3,000mAh battery, and it needs it because of that huge, bright display. LG says that the display won't put too much of a strain on the battery life, though, because it's worked hard to tackle the issue with adaptive features.

But it's highly likely that the LG G3's battery life is lower than the iPhone 5s's (we'll update this article after we've carried out full battery tests on the G3). Apple's figures claim that the iPhone 5s will last for up to 250 hours on standby, 10 hours of talk time, 8 hours of web surfing on 3G, 10 hours on LTE and WiFi, 10 hours for video playback and 40 hours of audio playback. We found these figures to be largely accurate.

You could carry a spare battery for the LG G3, unlike the iPhone 5s which has an non-swappable battery, but you'll find that there are lots of external battery backs that'll do the trick for the iPhone 5s if you find it runs out of power too quickly for your needs.

iPhone 5s vs LG G3 comparison review: Camera

The iPhone 5s has a brilliant rear-facing camera. It may have less megapixels than many of its competitors, at 8Mp, but Apple has changed the size of those pixels to 1.5µ to improve the quality instead. It also has an ƒ/2.2 aperture, and True Tone flash with two LEDs that adapt to suit the photography conditions.

The LG G3, meanwhile, has a 13Mp camera, also with a dual-LED flash. LG has impressed many by adding the ability to record video in 4K resolution, and also by adding laser auto focus technology.

We expect that the iPhone 6 will get some brilliant new camera features, but we love the iPhone 5s's camera nonetheless, which comes complete with a Burst Mode feature, filter options, Panorama, Slo-Mo and more thanks to iOS 7 and the A7 chip.

On the front of the iPhone 5s is a 1.2Mp FaceTime camera, which offers 720p HD video recording. The LG G3's front-facing camera is 2Mp and can shoot video in Full HD.

iPhone 5s vs LG G3 comparison review: Price and UK availability

The LG G3 is not yet available to buy in the UK, but you can expect it to arrive at the end of June. The iPhone 5s, on the other hand, has been out since September, so you should be able to pick it up from any Apple Store, carrier store or third-party reseller.

Prices of the iPhone 5s start at £549 SIM-free, and range up to £709 if you want the 64GB model.

The LG G3 is expected to cost £499, so is cheaper than the iPhone 5s though not as cheap as some of the other good Android competitors out there.

iPhone 5s vs LG G3 comparison review: Software

Now comes the matter of software, which to us is one of the most important aspects to consider when choosing a smartphone. After all, it's all well and good if your smartphone looks good and performs quickly, but if it's difficult to use and has a clunky operating system, you're soon going to grow tired of it.

The LG G3 comes with Android 4.4 KitKat, Google's latest mobile OS. It's been overlaid with LG's interface, similar to the one found on the LG G2 but with some improvements. It is easy to use if you're used to Android, and does offer a wide range of apps, but we'd choose iOS over Android any day.

Why? Well to start with, iOS is more secure than Android, so if you're concerned about security you should investigate this further. You'll also be more likely to get new games and apps first in Apple's iOS Store. Plus, as we're already iOS users, and we love it, we've got lots of apps, games and settings that we'd hate to lose or buy again.

If you're completely new to smartphones, we'd also suggest that iOS is easier to use, but it really is down to personal taste. After all, Android offers much more customisation, which we know appeals to many. 

OUR VERDICT

We were wowed by the LG G3's display, there's no denying it. But we think it's just too big at 5.5in and much prefer the smaller, lighter and more portable form factor of the iPhone 5s, which also has a delightful display. They're both powerful handsets, and don't differ in price dramatically, so it's going to be down to personal preference when choosing between these two great smartphones. If you want bigger and prefer Android devices, it's a no brainer that the LG G3 is for you. But for anyone who already owns an iPhone, we say buy the iPhone 5s or wait for the iPhone 6. Plus, those new to smartphones will probably find iOS easier to get used to, and anyone looking for a phone they can carry in their pocket and operate with one hand should also choose the iPhone 5s.

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