Once upon a time not too long ago (like, 2015), if you wanted a premium phone but not an iPhone, you had to go South Korean, namely Samsung or LG. The market is a hell lot more competitive now for someone living in Hong Kong, Singapore, London or Paris, with Chinese names like Huawei, OnePlus, Xiaomi all pumping out really good handsets too. But if you live in the states or South Korea, in which Chinese brands are still virtually nonexistent, then your options are still really Samsung or LG.
I know, I know, mainstream US media have all but anointed Samsung as the only true competitor to the iPhone in America and on a global scale. Well I’m here to say fuck that biased nonsense. LG phones are still good and still in that top tier class. The LG V40 is every bit as good as the Galaxy Note 8 (other than the terrible battery life), and after using the G8 pretty heavily, it also keeps up with the other top releases too for the most part.
Now, I have to concede this, the G8 isn’t quite the looker like the Galaxy S10 or Huawei P30 Pro at first glance. That notch on the G8 looks like it came out of early 2018, and the bezels around the screen are a tad chunkier than the S10’s razor thin bezels. I also like the look of curved screens more, so to me, the S10 is a much sleeker/prettier looking phone, at least from the front. I think most would agree.
But use the G8 a bit more and you’ll begin noticing that it is also well-craft and well-designed. It’s just that all the good stuff are sort of low-key and hidden. For example, the G8’s screen itself may not curve like the S10, but the bezels do curve on all four sides, resulting in a rounded top, bottom, and sides that even the S10 can’t match. Samsung’s phone is only rounded and curvy on the left and right side. The bottom of the phone actually has a somewhat rough edge. The G8’s bottom is smooth.
Likewise on the backside. LG has managed to place that glass plate over the camera module, resulting in zero camera bump. The entire back, other than the fingerprint sensor, is completely smooth. These are things that don’t pop off the screen in product shots, but hold the G8 in your hand and you’ll realize the phone is more “rounded and smooth” than Huawei’s, Apple’s, or Samsung’s latest flagships.
And even the outdated looking bits I mentioned serve a practical purpose. That relatively large notch? It’s to house a TOF camera, which allows real 3D face unlock. The S10 only offers flat 2D face unlock. The larger bezels around the G8 also help prevent accidental palm touches, a problem that curved screen phones suffer from.
So while the S10 is better looking, the G8 is superior ergonomically.
In terms of camera performance, in general the S10 will produce more vibrant, punchier colors in still photos, but the G8 takes better selfies, and shoots more stabilized videos. Watch the video below to see what I mean.