Modularity seems to be the next step of progress for the smartphone industry with the likes of Google’s Project Ara evolving by the day with their aim of driving the technology to the modular era. To prepare the consumers for what’s about to come, smartphone OEMs have already begun taking their respective leaps to the semi-modular age with the LG G5 (first impressions) and Lenovo’s recently announced Moto Z being the first to arrive. Today we’ll be taking a look at what the future might mean for us when it comes to smartphones with the mentioned devices as our mediums. How does Lenovo’s latest flagship and its approach to modularity stack up against LG’s? Let’s find out.
Display and design
When it comes to design, Lenovo’s latest flagship follows the traditional full metal unibody blueprint and does it with extreme efficiency proven via its incredibly sleek chassis coming in at just 5.3mm of thickness, weighing 136g. The LG G5 works with a similar full metal build along with a comparatively sleeker frame, with 7.7mm of thickness weighing at 159g. Lenovo’s Moto Z clearly takes the cake in the design department.
Both of the mentioned phones excel in the display department. The LG G5 sports a 5.3-inch IPS LCD QHD display layered with a protective Corning Gorilla Glass 4 panel, featuring a pixel density of 554ppi. On the other hand, the Moto Z houses a 5.5-inch AMOLED QHD panel with added Gorilla Glass 4 layer exhibiting a pixel density of 535ppi. Even though both the flagships flaunts similar resolution, the Moto Z proves to be a step ahead of the LG G5 owing to the AMOLED panel providing the user with brighter hues and better saturation when compared to the IPS LCD panel on the LG G5.
Much like any other flagships announced through the present year, both the Moto Z and the LG G5 feature Qualcomm’s latest high-tier SoC that is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 quad-core chipset mated with an Adreno 530 GPU… boasting top-of-the-line processing and graphical prowess. Since both the phones house an identical CPU, one can expect little to no difference between the real time performance of the flagships. Any observable difference would be owing to the respective software integrated with each of the device which we will be discussing later on in the article.
The cameras are certainly the sweet spots for the aforementioned phones, with the LG G5 gaining a significant lead via its rear dual camera setup compromising a 16MP f/1.8 standard lens, coupled with an 8MP f/2.4 wide angle lens. The phones boasts 3-axis OIS technology and laser autofocus equipment compared to the single lens rear-facing laser autofocus-equipped 13MP f/1.8 OIS unit found on the Moto Z. LG’s latest flagship brings much more to the table when talking about shooting capabilities including the mentioned wide angle lens boasting of being able to capture shots comparable to the actual angle of sight.
Both the smartphones are capable of 4K video recording at 30fps and 1080p recording with 30fps for the LG G5, and at 60fps for the Moto Z. The LG G5 stands above the Moto Z due to the superior 3-axis OIS algorithm found in LG’s youngest of the ‘G’ line.
Coming to self portraits, the LG G5 is still preferred out of the pair with its 8MP f/2.0 front-facing shooter while the Moto Z doesn’t fall too far off with its 5MP f/2.2 secondary unit. Overall, the LG G5 is a better choice and takes our point in the camera ethos.
Battery and storage
Both the LG G5 and the Moto Z sport 4GB of RAM for all your multitasking needs, coupled along with 32 / 64GB ROM options with the Moto Z and 32GB ROM for the LG G5. Both the flagships treat consumers with expandable memory capping at 256GB.
As for the battery, the Moto Z uses a non-removable 2,600mAh Li-Ion battery which is decent, but is bested by the 2,800mAh removable Li-Ion battery in the LG flagship. The battery charge duration is significantly decreased due to the inclusion of USB Type-C ports on both of the devices enhanced by Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0 fast charging technology. When it comes to battery life, the LG G5 is clearly the winner here, given the fact that one can just swap a discharged battery for a fully charged one which is a luxury in itself.
Innovation craves appreciation which is why we have introduced yet another criteria to compare our beastly flagships on – the approach to modularity. Since we are yet to reach the snap-and-go way of a fully-functional modular phone, every OEM’s respective approach to modularity is a major factor that should be taken into account. LG has provided the consumers with a removable chin where the modular elements can snap on to, whereas the Moto Z has innovated a more hassle-free approach with a 16-pin magnetic mechanism where the modular add-ons can be connected and communicate with the device. Undoubtedly, Lenovo’s approach is the desirable one here given that it was significantly faster and more efficient.
Moto Z’s modules includes a Pico projector which projects your smartphone screen onto any flat surface, a JBL speaker capable of turning your smartphone into an enjoyable music medium, a battery pack for if one needs extra backup and a custom back plate which are reminiscent of the Moto Maker’s customisability.
LG G5’s modules (a.k.a LG Friends) include LG Cam Plus which makes the LG G5 more camera oriented than it already is and grants the user to capture steady shots with one hand and the LG Hi-Fi Plus with B&O Play which adds 32-bit Hi-Fi DAC and Amp.
More third party and first party modules are yet to arrive as mentioned by both the companies.
Pricing and availability
The LG G5 can be purchased via online shopping websites for a price tag of Rs 52,990 while Lenovo has yet to announce the official pricing for the Moto Z and is expected to arrive in the Indian market before the end of the next month.
The conclusion here is pretty simple, if you’re one for the camera and want just a peek at what modularity might mean in the future, then the LG G5 is for you and if you’re someone who wants to experience semi-modularity in all its glory with the added benefits of a flagship, then the Moto Z could be the right choice for you.