LG G4 review: Sharp and shooter

Sharp and shooter

GSMArena team, 22 May 2015.

Phonebook and dialer combined

Tapping the dedicated Phone and Dialer shortcuts merely take you to different tabs of the Phone app. Selecting a contact displays the basic details: name and photo, numbers, emails and such. The dialer has smart dial, which searches for both digits and letters.

You have the option of reorganizing tabs and removing the Favorites and Groups tabs. This is great for simplifying what is oftentimes a crowded interface.

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Phonebook and dialer interface • editing tabs

From the call settings you can enable Noise suppression (for your voice), Voice clarity (for the other person's voice) and VoLTE quality (Clean or Soft).

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In-call screen • call settings

The smartphone packs a neat set of call-related tricks such as automatically silencing the ring of an incoming call just by putting the phone face down or automatically answering an incoming call by raising it to your ear. You can also set the phone to automatically block calls from certain callers.

The quality of the loudspeaker is good and the slight curve of the phone keeps it from getting muffled. Still, sound is pointed away from you. Anyway, the speaker performs very well for music and ringtones, though it's a bit weak when it comes to human voices, which earns it a Good score.

Speakerphone testVoice, dB Pink noise/ Music, dB Ringing phone, dB Overall score
Apple iPhone 6 Plus 67.3 65.7 66.5 Below Average
Sony Xperia Z3 69.7 66.6 67.2 Average
HTC One M9 65.2 64.6 76.1 Average
Samsung Galaxy S6 68.1 66.3 73.7 Good
LG G4 66.9 71.8 74.7 Good
LG G3 70.2 66.6 80.2 Good
Samsung Galaxy Note Edge 72.7 75.7 70.8 Very Good
OnePlus One 74.8 73.5 80.2 Excellent

Ringtone ID can compose a unique ringtone for any of your contacts by turning the digits of their phone number to notes. The results are quite pleasing and diverse. You can preview each contact's Ringtone ID from their phonebook entry.

Messaging, email and text input

SMS and MMS messages are handled by Material Designed app with some customizations. They are displayed in threads and LG lets you customize the look of the messaging app by assigning custom backgrounds and message bubbles.

A built-in spam manager lets you block pushy SMS ads.

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Messaging • customizing themes and bubbles

The LG G4 comes with two email apps - the traditional Gmail app and the LG Email app. Since Gmail handles third-party mail hosts we've gravitated to it, but the Email app has a lovely Material look and handles multiple accounts (with a Combined inbox).

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Gmail and LG's own Email app

LG offers a wide array of typing methods, voice recognition, handwriting recognition, and Path input (LG's take on Swype). Split keyboard, a narrower landscape keyboard and a one-handed keyboard give you ample opportunity to find the typing setup that works best for you.

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LG G4's keyboard

Even in portrait mode, the keys are amply-spaced on the 5.5-inch screen. You can resize the keyboard to make the keys bigger or to leave more room for the app. There's a dedicated number row too.

The keyboard offers a boatload of customization options, including adding/removing dot and symbol keys, White and Black themes, pens and colors for the handwriting recognition (this is more for looks than functionality).

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Customizing the keyboard • handwriting recognition

Reader comments

  • Anonymous

Going from the g4 to a newer 'flagship' device (s8) was one of the biggest downgrades in terms of camera image quality. The g4 packs quite a capable shooter. I've taken so many long exposure shots with it.

  • Chris

I am on my second one (2017-today). Still working fine, runs a bit hot in summer. The batteries tend to bloat after a year. Camera has a slow shutter, but photos are really good. Friends with new phones still get impressed with the photos. Headphone ...

  • wekesa

please give me the update of its availability