The camera is an area where the iPhone 5S has significantly improved on its predecessor’s (already impressive showing). True, the sensor is still 8MP, but this time each pixel is 15 percent larger. The aperture is wider too (F2.2 to the 5’s F2.4), and as a result of these tweaks low light performance is much better. Factor in the True Tone double LED flash (exclusive to the iPhone 5S in the smartphone world) which helps to deliver more natural-looking flesh tones, and things are mightily impressive.
The LG G2 has a 13MP rear camera with optical image stabilisation (a boost for low light photography, as it negates the blurriness which can occur when the shutter is open for longer) and again is a truly fantastic camera for a phone.
On the video front, both can capture 1080p, although the iPhone at 30fps while the G2 manages 60fps. The iPhone, however, has slo-mo 120fps video up its sleeve.
This is a hard one to call. The LG G2 has more megapixels, but with the iPhone 5S each megapixel is superior. Both perform well in low light and each has exclusive features (the flash for iPhone, the image stabilisation for the LG) that enhance the quality of your shots.
The iPhone 5S comes with iOS 7, Apple’s brand new, skeuomorphism-free take on its mobile operating system. It’s lovely (you can read exactly why in our full review) and on the 5S it works like a charm – a slick, well-oiled and speedy charm, to be exact. Add in the extra ease-of-use that comes courtesy of the Touch ID fingerprint sensor and you’ve got a smartphone that’s simply a joy to use.
The LG G2 sports Android Jelly Bean 4.2.2 with a series of customary proprietary UI tweaks laid over the top. It’s a somewhat cartoonish-looking skin with which we’re not hugely enamoured (stock Android is much more tasteful in our opinion), but there are some handy software extras: eye-tracking that pauses videos when you look away from the screen and a Guest Mode that essentially sets up a partition that keeps your vital info and purchasing abilities out of the hands of kids and friends among them. It all runs fast and lag-free thanks to the G2’s beefy innards.
Winner: iPhone 5S (just)
The G2 sports a huge, custom-designed 3,000mAh battery that can’t be removed by the user. And it’s a monster, delivering around 19 hours of mixed use when we tested it. It also charges speedily, getting from 0 to 30 percent capacity in as little as 20 minutes.
Apple has improved battery life over the iPhone 5 by a small but worthy amount, and claims up to 10 hours talk time (on 3G), or 10 hours of video playback. That about fits in with what we found when testing it. So the 5S is a bit more longer-lasting than previous iPhones, but not up to the G2’s standards.
Winner: LG G2
The iPhone 5S comes in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB options priced at $988, $1,148 and $1,288 respectively. So it’s not cheap. The LG G2 is $898 for 16GB, with the 32GB price unclear at the time of writing. It’s a substantially cheaper phone and, build quality aside, you can’t really say that the iPhone 5S feels like it justifies being $90 pricier.
Winner: LG G2
Both of these smartphones are fantastically powerful and well-designed pieces of cutting-edge technology, and neither will let you down should you decide to slap down your hard-earned dollars. Both phones were awarded a full five stars in our reviews.
But if we have to pick a winner, it can only be the LG G2. More affordable, faster, packing a bigger and sharper screen and a battery that lasts for ages, it’s still the best smartphone on the market at the moment. Apple may win when it comes to style and build quality, but delve deeper than the G2 becomes a worthy winner.