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Is it worth keeping your LG G4?

AndroidPIT LG G4 9652
© nextpit

The LG G4 certainly isn’t an unremarkable smartphone, particularly the version with the leather casing (which received as much praise as it did criticism). However, aside from this stylistic choice, the LG smartphone that launched in 2015 stood out thanks to its excellent performance. So, two years after its release, is it still worthwhile to hang on to it? Or, has the time come to replace it?

LG G4: it’s worth keeping because…

It has a removable battery: an increasing rarity

New smartphones today barely ever have a removable battery. Even LG, which, until now, was adamantly holding onto its removable battery with the G5, has decided to finally get rid of it on the G6. Thanks to quick charge technology, removable batteries aren’t quite as necessary as they were before, but it’s still a feature that can come in handy if you’re out all day and you don’t have access to a power source. In addition to this, despite the optimizations carried out by Google on new Android smartphones, battery life is still one of users’ biggest issues and researchers are trying to find a worthy alternative to lithium.

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Under the leather casing of the LG G4 hides a precious removable battery. / © ANDROIDPIT

It has a large QHD screen

While some flagships still offer Full-HD resolution (the Huawei P10, for example), in 2015, the G4 was already offering a 2,560 x 1,440-pixel screen with 534 ppi. The IPS LCD 5.5-inch screen on the G4 made it possible to display photos and videos with DCI technology, which offers natural and realistic colors. Thanks to its excellent brightness and visual angle, as well as the dedicated app, you can make the most of the night mode, which is often offered by the latest flagships, to read more comfortably in the dark.

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The LG G4 has a great QHD screen. / © ANDROIDPIT

It has a camera that speaks for itself

The camera is one of the LG G4's strongest points and, if you’ve been using this device for a while, you’ll have to agree with me. The main 16 MP sensor, with an aperture of f / 1.8 and a CSS color spectrum, guarantees photos with natural colors and precise details. A manual mode is also available for changing the ISO sensitivity, contrast, white balance and so on. DxOMark, a point of reference in the field of image quality, ranks it at 8th place among the best cameras, with 83 points.

Of course, the G4’s camera doesn’t include real-time filters or beauty effects, but apps for this can easily be found on Play Store.

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You won’t have access to real-time filters, but the G4’s photo quality is still good. / © ANDROIDPIT

…but you should get rid of your LG G4 because...

You can forget about Android O

Released with Android Lollipop, your G4 will not receive the Android O update. In March, LG confirmed that Nougat will be rolled out to all LG G4 devices in the US in the second half of this year, so unless there’s been a change in schedule, Nougat should arrive on smartphones between June and August. However, this will be the last official version of Android for the G4.

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Android O(reo) will be elusive to the LG G4. / © ANDROIDPIT

There is no fingerprint scanner

The fingerprint scanner has almost become a standard feature on new smartphones, so much so that many brands have started to integrate it in their mid-range smartphones. The G4 doesn’t have one though, and while it’s not an indispensable feature and you can replace it with a dedicated app, it's not exactly the same.

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On the G5, the fingerprint reader is located at the back. / © ANDROIDPIT

Its processor isn’t from the latest generation

The Snapdragon 808 isn’t a chip that was recently released on the market, and it wasn't even the most recent on the market when the G4 was released. LG preferred to stay at a distance from Snapdragon 810, which suffered a few overheating issues. The Snapdragon 808, with its two Cortex A57 cores operating at 2.5 GHz, offers good performances but it can’t rival the chips integrated in new top-range smartphones (such as the Snapdragon 835 or Kirin 960), which are often accompanied by 4 GB of RAM.

LG G4: what should you do with it?

If you already have an LG G4 that runs without any delays and you use it every day without any major problems, we would advise you to keep it. There's no doubt that new flagships are better equipped, offering more attractive designs and integrating interesting technologies and features, but that’s normal. Mobile technology is evolving every year and brands are constantly adding new elements to their smartphones. As useful or attractive as they are, these new features aren’t always necessary.

If you play games on your smartphone, you’ll probably need a device with an integrated Snapdragon 835, but if you use your G4 for less demanding games, to chat on WhatsApp or to check your emails, you can stick with your device. If you wait a few months, you’ll be able to buy one of the most recent top-range devices at a more affordable price (LG G6, Huawei P10, Galaxy S8, HTC U11, Sony Xperia XZ Premium, etc.).

If you have to replace your old Android device, and if you want a top-range smartphone that won’t be out of date after a year, I recommend you don't buy the G4 now. The G4 is still a good smartphone by today’s standards but, in 2018, it will have had its day. If you consider the fact that you can buy the device on Amazon for under $200, I would rather opt for the Galaxy A5 2017 or Honor 8, for example.

What do you think of the LG G4? If you have one, will be you keeping it? Let us know in the comments below.

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Jessica Murgia

Jessica Murgia

Italian editor and Android lover: with her, all the most intimate secrets of Android will be revealed! Chronic traveler, a lover of good wine and good food, Jessica is crazy for shopping and passionate about technology! What's never missing in her bag? A book, an MP3 player, her Android smartphone and an external battery!

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  • Lula 1
    Lula Feb 8, 2020 Link to comment

    It looks like I’ve just lost my LG4 to a boot loop today and will have to figure out what to replace it with. I got it brand new in 2015 and it’s now 2020 so it looks like mind has outlasted what I’m seeing here. My LG4 camera is the feature I use most, bar none. I don’t play games on my phone or anything like that so I don’t care about that stuff. I started with 2 batteries for this phone (so I’d have a backup) and in 5 years I’ve bought just 1 replacement. Until today, I’ve never had a single thing go wrong with this phone, but I have no idea what I’m gonna get to replace it. It’s gonna boil down to the camera feature, whatever the replacement is.

  • 1
    Frank Jun 1, 2018 Link to comment

    I recently switched from LG G4 to the Nokia 6 2018. I have really enjoyed my LG, but since the security updates never came and I had to install android 7 from the XDA site, I felt I dont like LG anymore because of their poor support. My Nokia has Android One and will have its monthly security updates direct from Google. This is important since I do my banking and other important stuff on it. Sorry LG.

  • Daniel Högberg 1
    Daniel Högberg Mar 14, 2018 Link to comment

    Well, as my boyfriend recently got the Galaxy S8 I have done comparisons. The G4 still beats the S8 very much. Of course the S8 is faster, but the image quality is just not on par with the G4. Both the jpegs and the raw files from the G4 blows the galaxy S8 out of the water, especially the Raw files are just still amazing in 2018. Theres still no android phone that can beat it. I find this really sad, Samsung really should put a bigger sensor in their new models now.. but I guess they want to make money and re-use old crappy sensors for as many generations as possible.

    • Madars G 10
      Madars G Mar 14, 2018 Link to comment

      Bullshit. It is already long time ago when g4 just stopped working. Can't turn on anymore keep restarting and thats it. And it was wery slow as well. It has great camera yes, but definitely you can't compare with s8 you can compare with s6 and even then g4 was just a little bit better.

  • Madars G 10
    Madars G Jun 10, 2017 Link to comment

    No it is not worth to keep anymore. It is very slow now.

  • 1
    Raphael S. Jun 6, 2017 Link to comment

    My G4 is 18 months old and it's only problem is screen ghosting. Since I learned about bootloop a year ago it's like having a ticking time bomb, but otherwise this phone is like a dream come true, so I will hang on to it till it stops working.

  • Brian Helman 1
    Brian Helman Jun 5, 2017 Link to comment

    Battery, battery, battery. If battery life is still a top issue, why take a step backward? I frequently go through 2 batteries a day. if you don't spend your day at a desk, quick charge is still useless. if i wanted an inflexible phone, I'd buy an iphone.

  • Technosquid 1
    Technosquid Jun 5, 2017 Link to comment

    My last phone was the G4 and I upgraded to the G6. The two things I liked better about the G4 we're the rear speaker and the rear volume buttons. There are about a dozen things I like better about the G6. I never liked the curved back of the G4. The flat back of the G6 means you can set it down on a flat surface and tap the screen without rocking from side to side. The G6 is also much cooler compared to the G4's finger-burning SoC behind the volume keys. I did like the G4's battery swap ability, but the energy efficiency improvements from the 808 to the 821 mitigate that shortcoming. The G6 comfortably gets me through the day with 6-7 hours of mixed use screen-on time over LTE. If you want to wait and see what the V30 offers I wouldn't blame you, but I felt the G6 was worth the upgrade.

    • Madars G 10
      Madars G Jun 10, 2017 Link to comment

      just the LG g4 with curved back is much easier to hold in hand. Yes the rear speaker is one of the best so far I haven't heard better rear speaker. Camera is good enough even a bit better than s6. But it is getting very slow in these days. I'm using now S8 Plus and it is almost perfect, but S7 Edge was the best phone I've used in my life.

  • mgshouldice 1
    mgshouldice Jun 4, 2017 Link to comment

    My G4 is still cooking. It runs fine, the 2nd version. I lost the 1st to a boot loop issue, but LG replaced it for free. The video streaming works great and I've not had issues with apps. A decent performer still.

  • 14
    Nickname303 Jun 4, 2017 Link to comment

    All of this is assuming that it hasn't bootlooped and died by now...

    Jay Viper

    • 20
      Reg Joo Jun 5, 2017 Link to comment

      Yeah, the bootloop, to not working at all, issue killed my G3(Demigod errors). and from some forums, I've heard that the G4 had the same problems. Heat around the camera, was a sign that something was wrong. My nephew got so mad at his G4, that he smashed the screen eventually,in a fit of rage. I was thinking of getting a new board for my G3, but time marched on and I have this honor 5X, that's updated to 7.1.2, but those LG's did have great cameras. I miss that. If I could, and if everything was compatible, I'd crack the 5X open, and install the G3's camera module in it.

      • 14
        Nickname303 Jun 8, 2017 Link to comment

        Yeah, my girlfriend still goes on about how good the camera was on her G4. She doesn't have it anymore of course, because, surprise surprise, it bootlooped and died after less than a year...

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