Have we got a good one for you today – the newest LG G Flex 2 goes up against the newest in the Note series, the Samsung Galaxy Note 4. Both devices are awesome looking with their small bezels and build quality. Samsung went with a full metal frame and trim that really accentuates the faux leather backing, giving it that much desired premium look and feel. LG retained an improved version on its self-healing curved back and while a fingerprint magnet, it is very catching and pleasing to the eye…not to mention comfortable to hold.
Even though these devices have vastly different audiences and built by competing companies, they do have several items in common. The displays are very close in size – 5.5-inches for the G Flex 2 and 5.7-inches for the Galaxy Note 4 and both use a form of OLED technology. Both U.S. devices chose to use a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, although different models, and both have 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage, as well as having a microSD card slot for expansion. Both devices are very similar in size, although the Galaxy Note 4 outweighs the G Flex 2 by 24 grams – probably the metal and larger battery. Both devices have the usual Dual-Band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.1, NFC capability, a microUSB connector, IR Blaster, and Quick Charge 2.0 courtesy of the Qualcomm 800 series processors.
Check out the Specifications below and really compare them side-by-side…then we will take a look at each device on an individual basis and point out their strengths and weaknesses. After that, I will pick the winner based on specs and execution.
LG G Flex 2
The newest LG G Flex 2, that will not even be available for purchase until probably February, really turned a lot of heads at the CES show in Las Vegas last week. The original G Flex had a very loyal band of followers, and LG did nothing but improve upon its original design. They reduced the size from 6-inches to a more likable 5.5-inches and upped the dismal 720p display up to a respectable 1080p. They also threw in the latest 64-bit octa-core processor, increased RAM and increased the camera specs and improved the self-healing back – LG listened and responded very nicely to its customers.
The new and improved LG G Flex 2 sports a nice 5.5-inch FHD curved P-OLED display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels and 403 pixels-per-inch (PPI)…not quite up to the Quad HD (QHD) display found in the Galaxy Note 4 with 515 PPI. The processing area is the one place that the G Flex 2 really shines. One of the advantages of coming out with your device after the other guys, is that you sometimes get to pick a more up-to-date processor and that is exactly what LG did – they used the newest and first 64-bit Snapdragon 810 octa-core processor with four cores clocked at 2GHz and four clocked at 1.5GHz. The Galaxy Note 4 uses the 32-bit Snapdragon 805 quad-core clocked at 2.7GHz – a terrific processor, but unable to take advantage of the 64-bit of 5.0 Lollipop. Both devices have 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage and both devices have a microSD card slot for expansion.
Both devices also have excellent cameras – the G Flex 2 uses a 13MP sensor with Laser Autofocus, dual-tone LED flash and OIS+, which goes up against a 16MP sensor, Autofocus, LED flash, OIS+, Samsung's ISOCELL technology and live HDR photos. The G Flex 2 uses the more common 2.1MP front-facing camera for selfies and video chatting, whereas the Galaxy Note 4 ups theirs to a 3.7MP wide-angle lens for a wider group shot. The G Flex uses a large 3000mAh battery versus the even larger 3220mAh found in the Galaxy Note 4.
The extras that the LG G Flex 2 possess over the Galaxy Note 4 – if you are a fan, certainly the curved display and body with the self-healing back, Dolby Mobile, and FM Stereo radio and it comes with Android 5.0.1 out of the box. For now, it is available only on AT&T, Sprint and US Cellular. The pricing should be approximately $300 on a two-year contract or about $650 off-contract with availability most likely in February.
Samsung Galaxy Note 4
Just as there is a loyal band of G Flex followers, there is also a loyal following for the Note series, and the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 is no exception. It, like the G Flex 2, was improved in every department – from the display, the build, to the processor, the camera and even the S-Pen. Most people, even its past critics, liked the improved metal frame, trim and back panel, making it even a more premium looking device with a build quality that felt great in your hand.
Since we already compared most things under the G Flex 2 segment, I will try not to repeat comparisons here – just the Galaxy Note 4's specs. The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 sports, what was described by DisplayMate, as the best display they have ever tested. It is a 5.7-inch beauty with a QHD resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels and a whopping 515 PPI. It is running the excellent Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 quad-core processor clocked at 2.7GHz (US market) – the same one used in the Droid Turbo and the Nexus 6. It packs 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage with a microSD card slot for expansion.
Its camera has really been improved over the Galaxy Note 3 with a 16MP sensor, Autofocus, LED Flash, ISOCELL technology, and adds in OIS+ and Live HDR shooting. The FFC was increased to a wide-angle 3.7MP sensor and lens for excellent group selfies and conference style video chats. The 3220mAh battery will certainly last you all day and should you need to extend that time you can use Samsung's UPSM and its Quick Charge feature.
As far as additional features that the Galaxy Note 4 possesses over the G Flex 2 – it has VoLTE and Wi-Fi Calling capabilities, can use LTE Cat 6 Bands, has an all metal frame, and three microphones for improved calling and noise reduction. It comes with Download Booster, a Fingerprint Scanner, Heart Rate Sensor, UV and Oxygen Saturation Sensor, and an improved S-Pen with twice the sensitivity and its software and the functionality that it brings to the Note series.
It is currently running Android 4.4.4 KitKat, but will hopefully be updated to 5.0 Lollipop by the time the G Flex 2 is available for sale. It is available on all major US networks and will cost you $300 on a two-year contract or about $700 – $800 off-contract, depending where you purchase it.
…And The Winner Is…
My apologies to the many LG fans, especially to those of you that love the Flex series – my boss included – but in my book, the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 offers the user so much more in a smartphone or Phablet experience. I will certainly forgo the curved 1080p display in exchange for a 1440p Super AMOLED display and I will begrudgingly forgo the 64-bit Snapdragon 810 for the 805 for the useful features of the Galaxy Note 4. The Laser autofocus on the G Flex 2 is nice, but the Galaxy Note 4 takes awesome pictures as well, and it comes with a larger and removable battery. It does not have an FM Radio, but it has three microphones for better sound and noise reduction. It also has the Download Booster built-in, a Fingerprint Scanner, Heart Rate Sensor and UV and Oxygen Saturation Sensor. It also has the S-Pen and all of the attributes that it brings into play, fantastic Multi-Window Tasking, and Samsung's great Ultra Power Saving Mode (UPSM) should you ever need it.
Please hit us up on our Google+ Page and let me know which one of these great devices you would pick as the winner and WHY…as always, we would love to hear from you.