LG G2 vs Galaxy S4 vs HTC One

LG’s announced its latest superphone, the LG G2 overnight. How does it stack up against its immediate Android competition? Update: Now with local pricing and availability!
There are naturally other smartphone choices in the premium tier — such as Apple’s iPhone 5, Blackberry’s Z10 or Nokia’s Lumia 925 as options, but while there are shared components across them, the use of alternate operating systems with differing degrees of onboard optimisation make the comparison sometimes unbalanced.
,LG G2,Samsung Galaxy S4,HTC One
Processor,2.26GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800,1.9GHz quad-core Snapdragon 600,1.9GHz quad-core Snapdragon 600
Display,5.2 Inch 1920×1080 LCD 424ppi,5 Inch 1920×1080 AMOLED 441ppi,4.7 Inch 1920×1080 LCD 468ppi
Storage,16/32GB Sealed,16/32GB + MicroSD,16/32GB Sealed
Operating System,Android 4.2.2,Android 4.2.2,Android 4.1.2
Camera (Rear/Front),13MP/2.1MP,13MP/1.9MP,4MP/2.1MP
On paper, LG’s thrown a lot of technology at the LG G2, with a cutting edge processor, high quality display screen and optically stabilised 13MP rear camera. The rear of the phone is also where LG’s made one curious choice, throwing the volume and power/select buttons just below the camera itself. The idea is that you’ll hold the phone and operate those controls with your index fingers; I’m curious to find out how much accidental volume switching happens in my pocket or if I’m just holding the LG G2. It’s also equipped with a massive battery by comparison to its immediate peers.

This is the back of the phone, and also where you'll switch it on. Good design, or kooky idea?
This is the back of the phone, and also where you’ll switch it on. Good design, or kooky idea?

On the software front, there’s no Android 4.3, but like the similarly plastic Samsung Galaxy S4, LG’s gone to town with added apps for the LG G2. Slide Aside uses a three finger gesture to swipe out apps (up to three) for quick multitasking. Knock On allows for quick phone unlocking with a double tap motion. QuickMemo (also found on LG’s lower end handsets like the Optimus L5) is there, as is a remote control function dubbed QuickRemote, and a Guest mode for when you’re handing over your smartphone to other people.
One smartphone with a lot of added software.
One smartphone with a lot of added software.

Like the Galaxy S4, I’m concerned that the clutter may make the LG G2 a less attractive phone, but it really comes down to the utility of the individual apps. The Galaxy S4’s S-Translate excited me… until I used it.
I’ll have to wait and see on the LG G2’s app front, although the claim is that it’s launching with 130 worldwide carriers in the next couple of months, so presumably a few Aussie carriers will be in that pack. The LG G2 is an interesting looking phone with a few interesting design ideas behind it, but it’ll have to work quite hard to unseat my current favourite Android handset of 2013, the HTC One.
Also — and perhaps not pertinent to the phone itself — LG’s teaser trailer for the G2 makes me want to throw up. Please… just no.
Update: Luke Hopewell at Gizmodo got some hands-on time with the LG G2 this morning, and was told it’ll retail at “roughly” $699 outright, or exclusive to Optus.
See Also: Which Smartphone should I buy?

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