The LG G6 (see my full review) launched in early March, and I've had the chance to evaluate it for an extended period of time. Usage over months tells me a lot more about a device than what I can experience in just a couple of weeks.
As mobile tech reviewers, it is easy to succumb to the shiny new toy syndrome when a new phone, tablet, computer, or wearable is launched. We all have our preferences when it comes to size, design, look and feel, battery life, and more, so I always recommend that readers check out a number of reviews before making a judgement about a device. Sometimes a device is so bad, we avoid being overcome with emotion, but in most cases, new devices are better than the previous model and excite many of us.
Since the LG G6 arrived, I have had the opportunity to test the Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus, HTC U11, Huawei P10, and Moto G5 Plus, in addition to continued use of the Apple iPhone 7 Plus, Moto Z Force Droid, and more. My T-Mobile SIM card keeps finding its way back into the LG G6 over the others for several reasons, including the following:
- Size: The LG G6 has a 5.7-inch display with minimal bezels, which turns out to be all the screen I really need, in a form factor that is smaller than many of the other phones I've been using. There is no fancy curved edge screen or anything, but the traditional flat screen works well for me since I end up never using the curved screens after a couple weeks of the novelty.
- Price: The LG G6 launched at only $650 on T-Mobile, but I just checked the website and you can pick one up now for just $500 on T-Mobile. That's a steal when you consider the Galaxy S8 and comparable Apple iPhone 7 are both priced at $750.
- Fingerprint scanner: I tend to prefer the front fingerprint scanner, but I think my preference for the LG G6 right now may be driven by the terrible placement of the fingerprint scanner on the Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus. The rear fingerprint scanner on the G6 is lightning fast and I find it to be just about 100-percent accurate.
- Always on display: While I wear a watch every day, I still find it convenient to glance over at my phone display to see the date and time. Seeing notifications appear on the screen when it is turned off also reduces the amount of time I pick up and use my phone since I tend to only pick it up when something necessary needs to be attended to. Samsung and Motorola also have this capability, and it is something I miss on an iPhone.
- Dual rear cameras: LG led the industry a couple of years ago with the LG G4 camera and has continued to produce phones with amazing cameras. The LG G6 has two 13-megapixel rear cameras so you can capture high-quality standard and wide-angle, 125-degree shots. Wide-angle shots are important for those using their phones in the field where they need to capture more information in a single shot. I found myself using the wide-angle lens more often than I thought and it is proving to be a valuable option on the dual-camera setup.
- Water resistance: I live, work, and play in a region where rain doesn't slow you down, but lack of water resistance in any new device keeps me from taking it on my runs, hikes, or other outdoor activities.
- Wireless charging: It's just a convenience to have wireless charging, but after you experience that at the office, on your night stand, and on your desk, it is a convenience that is tough to give up. I love not having to mess with cables to top off my phone.
- Internal frame and drop protection: LG spent a lot of time designing a glass and metal phone that could survive accidental drops. The LG G6 has an internal plate designed to spread the effects of shock while also providing rounded corners and an aluminum frame around the outside of the edges. It meets MIL-STD-810G standards for drop protection, but you still have to be careful with the back and front glass panels. Many phones today, even HTC's new phones, are composed of front and rear glass panels. Gorilla Glass 5 is commonly used (not the LG G6 though), but it still gives me peace of mind knowing that LG went a bit further with its drop resistance.
- Headphone jack: Again, it's a simple thing that is being removed from phones for no reason, yet when you go to plug in your headset and can't find a 3.5mm port, it can drive you mad.
The LG G6 isn't perfect, but neither is any other phone available today. I'm in the enviable position to test out and use all the latest and greatest smartphones, but the LG G6 keeps drawing me back because it "just works" and doesn't cause me any angst.