LG G3 vs. HTC One M8: how do they compare?

May 28, 2014
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The LG G3 blasted into the smartphone market pushing everyone aside. The device is so impressive that only the best of the best are competing against it, but only one device can win in the battle for your hard-earned cash. Surely, the HTC One M8 is one of the main contenders.

Which phone is better? Let’s take a quick look.

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Design & build quality

We must say the HTC One M8 and LG G3 will hold one of the fiercest battles of the year. This is because both devices have done away with traditional plastic builds. LG is finally giving HTC some competition in terms of build quality, which is an area not many manufacturers tend to stand up against HTC in.

With that said, we also need to point out LG’s device is not made truly made of metal, and instead uses what LG calls a “metallic film”. Essentially this means a mostly polycarbonate shell with a metallic treatment. This is completely different from HTC’s body, which is 90% metal. But we must also say LG’s device gives the HTC One M8 a very good fight. It is very well-built, as well as scratch and fingerprint resistant.

Regardless, HTC continues to be the king of design and build quality and it does feel more solid in hand, albeit not by much. Some of you may still like the G3’s design better, though. It’s near-inexistent bezel makes it look gorgeous and we all know HTC didn’t do a great job trying to take advantage of space, with that dreaded black bar. LG also has the advantage of a removable back.

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Display

It will take some time for LG to be beaten in this department. It is really an unfair fight, but let’s move on. The LG G3’s 5.5-inch QHD (2560x1440p) display offers unprecedented quality. It’s large, yet doesn’t make the device huge. Its resolution is unmatched by any of its competitors. LG will no doubt take the crown here.

Now, this doesn’t mean you should choose the LG G3 over the HTC One M8 due to this fact. The LG G3’s 534 PPI (pixels per inch) density may be too high for many users. The average user usually considers 1080p to be more than enough for a device this size.

In fact, a QHD display may be considered wasteful to some, as it could affect battery life. LG has a solution for this, but we don’t know how well it works just yet.

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Performance and hardware

In terms of hardware, the LG G3 and the HTC One M8 fall in the same arena. Both feature a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor with 2 GB of RAM. The LG G3 is clocked slightly higher at 2.5 GHZ (compared to HTC’s 2.3 GHz), though this should make little difference in real world use.

Ultimately, both devices are snappy and super powerful. You will see very little difference in performance, if any.

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Camera

It’s hard to compare such different cameras. They just offer completely unique experiences, so which one wins depends fully on what the user gives priority to.

The LG G3 offers a 13 MP camera that is much like the G2’s, but the company has a few surprising tricks. It uses laser autofocus, which results in impressively fast focusing speeds. In addition, the 2.1 MP front-facing camera also allows for more light to enter (much like HTC’s UltraPixel technology), and it will use the display as a white flash, if you so choose to.

Now let’s take a look at the HTC One M8’s camera. It may not have a fancy laser, but it does feature its very own set of talents. It’s dual-camera set-up allows it to distinguish distances between objects, allowing you to add better blur effects to photos.

HTC’s UltraPixel camera is also very well-known for its low-light performance, even if it does output only 4 MP images. At least these will be very good 4 MP photos!

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Battery

LG is known for its flagship devices’ battery life. This is an area where HTC is improving, but they are nowhere close to LG. LG’s 3000 mAh battery and 3A battery technology will keep your device alive for quite some time. In addition, LG has gone back to removable batteries and features Qi wireless charging, making it easier to keep your phone well charged.

Meanwhile, HTC’s amazing build quality and unibody forces the manufacturer to keep the battery out of our reach. It can not be replaced or accessed by the user. The battery is also not huge at 2600 mAh, but it will stay alive for a good amount of time.

We will have to see how well that 3000 mAh battery and 3A technology can handle the 2560x1440p display. Only then will we know how big the difference is.

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Software

The LG G3 and HTC One M8 are closer than other devices from these companies have ever been, even in software. This is because both LG and HTC have resorted to a more simplified user interface. Both are “flatter” and offer a more stylized experience.

It’s also nice to see LG getting rid of that cluttered notification bar, which forced you to scroll down just to see your notifications! Ultimately, this is more about personal preference. I do believe LG’s new experience is cleaner and simpler than HTC’s, but you may also enjoy HTC’s features.

Of course, the LG G3 gets Knock Code and Knock On, while HTC doesn’t make too much hype about its tap-to-unlock features. In addition, the LG G3 has its Smart Notice feature, which gives you notifications and serves as your assistant of sorts. Like Google Now, Smart Notice does this automatically, which is what makes it interesting.

Specs comparison

 
LG G3
HTC One M8
Display5.5-inch display with 2560 x 1440 resolution5-inch display with 1080 x 1920 resolution
Processor2.5GHz Snapdragon 801 CPU2.3GHz Snapdragon 801 CPU
RAM2GB or 3GB w/ 32GB model2GB
Storage16GB or 32GB, microSD with expansion16GB/32GB
Camera13MP rear cam with OIS and laser auto focus, 2.1MP front cam4MP UltraPixel Duo camera
Battery3000 mAh removable2600 mAh non-removable
ConnectivityBluetooth 4.0, NFC, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, USB v2.0, Slim PortWi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Wi-Fi Direct, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, USB v2.0
Networks4G LTE support4G LTE support
SoftwareAndroid 4.4 KitKat with LG UIAndroid 4.4 KitKat with Sense 6
Dimensions146.3x74.6x9.1146.4 x 70.6 x 9.4 mm

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Conclusion

On paper the LG G3 is completely unbeatable right now. That display puts it above everyone else. Not to mention, the specs are astounding and build quality has been improved immensely. Software is also much better than previous LG devices, yet the phone continues to be very feature rich.

It’s not all about the specs, though. You may still have your reasons to go for the HTC one M8, and every day performance shouldn’t be too different. The HTC One M8 also continues to be considered the best-built smartphone out there, no matter how close LG may get. BoomSound also gives it the best speakers in the market. You may also prefer HTC’s better low-light camera over LG’s fast-focusing one.

What’s your take, which device do you prefer?

Comments

  • frhow

    G3 but by a slim margin only because they do have overall better features built into their UI than HTC. i.e. Qslide. Both are great phones at such a high price point so with that being said, I am going to give my money to OnePlus for their One flagship phone. Pretty much identical specs to the G3 minus the screen but half of the price with interchangeable premium back covers to completely change the look of the phone without the need of a case. But if it wasnt for that the G3 would be my next device. Now lets see what the Moto X+1 will offer.

  • K

    Had the G2 and was waiting to upgrade to the G3. I got impatient though and went with the M8 a couple weeks back. Excellent device all around. The G2 was easily the most underrated device of 2013 but the G3 will easily be up there this year. Waiting to see what Moto pushes out.

    • thartist

      Why did you have to update a G2 in the first place?? :/ and for an M8, what’s the spec difference?

    • Romel

      I also switched from a G2 and now own a M8. I am very happy with the switch. I prefer Sense over LG’s UI, at least the one on the G2. I find the M8 a bit more responsive and battery life a little better than the G2. I have pretty much the same apps and accounts synced on both phones. The G2 felt cheap compared to the M8, obviously because of the metal vs plastic but also because it was a bit heavier which made the M8 feel more premium to me. The G3 seems very impressive but I can and will wait till next year before considering moving on to another new phone.

  • Raghav Kapur

    I find the LG UI very ugly. On my M7, I love the option of having two awesome UI’s- HTC Sense 6 and Stock Android(Custom ROM). There are many aspects of the M7 and M8 which I really love (eg. speakers, low light camera, UI, updates, build quality). Despite the killer specs of the G3, I would prefer the M8 anyday because of the aspects as mentioned above.

  • geospa300

    Because I use hangouts a lot the 5mp front facing camera means htc wins hands down.

  • dontpanicbobby

    The M8 also has MicroSD expansion.

  • Jesus

    Come on. It’s simple – G3.
    Multiwindow? LG has it.
    Screen size? 0.5 inches more on the LG, but the phone size is comparable with the HTC.
    HTC’s camera is still considered good for low light situations, with the new Xperia and new Samsung? Is this still 2012? Also, 4mp… can’t get over that.