LG G6 review: Now cheaper, but still outclassed by Galaxy S8
Overshadowed by the S8, but it is cheaper
LG G6 review: Software
The LG G6 comes with Android 7 Nougat out of the box, with LG's latest Android overlay -- UX 6. This focuses on advanced multitasking, boasting much-improved camera software and more enjoyable ways to engage with films, games and apps.
Coupled with LG's 18:9 screen, you can divide the screen into two even squares, permitting you to run two apps simultaneously, take pictures while viewing your gallery, and even use your browser to find ratings of a restaurant while at the same time finding the directions there on Google Maps.
The software is a pleasure to use and, as it doesn't hog too much RAM, it provides the LG G6 with relatively smooth performance.
LG G6 review: Performance
Unfortunately, the LG G6's core specs are uninspiring. Instead of moving to the 10nm Snapdragon 835 chip, LG has decided to stick with the Snapdragon 821 -- the same chip used in the Google Pixel and Pixel XL phones -- and it's only a minor improvement over the Snapdragon 820 found in the G5. It's a quad-core 2.35GHz processor backed by 4GB of RAM.
For a flagship phone, we would have expected an octa-core processor with 6GB of RAM, and when we used the LG G6 alongside an octa-core smartphone, the LG a little sluggish and unable to cope with strenuous multitasking tasks. The fingerprint sensor was also a bit slow in comparison with others we've used, and it doesn't cope well with moisture either; a little bit of sweat meant you will have to resort to tapping in your four-digit PIN.
Put through synthetic benchmarks, the LG G6 achieved a Geekbench 4 single-core score of 1,777 and 4,137 in the multi-core benchmark. Compared with its competitors, the G6 offers nothing over the Google Pixel -- not surprising given that it uses the same chip. What's slightly more surprising is that the LG G6 lags behind the year-old Galaxy S7 and is completely outpaced by the Huawei P10. We're pretty sure it will be trumped by the Galaxy S8's Snapdragon 835/Exynos 8895 as well.
For gaming, the LG G6 utilises the Adreno 530, which is the same GPU found in the LG G5, but with a slightly higher clock of 653MHz versus the 624MHz one in the G5 it performs marginally better. The extra headroom comes from the Snapdragon 821's ability to manage power consumption more effectively.
Moving on to storage capacity, the LG G6 comes with 32GB of the stuff. For a flagship phone in 2017, we would have expected 64GB. The 400 OnePlus 3T offers 64GB as its base storage, as does the forthcoming Samsung Galaxy S8. Nevertheless, you can sacrifice your second SIM slot for a microSD card, which will grant you up to 2TB of extra space (although currently the biggest microSD card you can buy is 256GB).
We weren't impressed with the phone's battery life, either. Crammed inside the G6's body is a 3,300mAh battery, which looks big, but only achieved a time of 12hrs 52mins in our battery benchmark. For a flagship phone, we would have hoped for a little more juice, but it's sufficient to last you the day with medium use. If you're a heavy user, the Google Pixel's 16hrs 23mins or the Galaxy S7's 17hrs 48mins would be a better fit.
Using the 821 chip does give the LG G6 one key advantage over the LG G5, though. It means it can support Qualcomm's Quick Charge 3, which will give you around 50% charge in 30 minutes. A fast charger is included in the box alongside a USB Type-C cable and earphones.