UI flaws aside, there's no denying that the G5 is an incredibly ambitious device from LG, and it's by far the most unique smartphone I've ever tested. Initially, I had my doubts over whether departing from the G4's handsome leather looks was a wise move, but the G5's surprisingly attractive when you get up close, and its smooth metallic coating feels great in the hand. The grey model I had for review might not look quite as shiny or flashy as either of Samsung's handsets, but at least the G5's matt finish means it doesn't pick up any dirty fingerprints, which is a welcome relief after the grubby Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge.
Of course, some might find the G5's looks a little dull compared to Samsung's handsets, but LG's handset delivers where it counts, as it not only has a fantastically flexible camera, but its speed and raw processing power make it just as capable, if not better, than its Samsung rivals. It's also got a beautiful display and its interchangeable batteries give it a big advantage over its sealed competitors.
Admittedly, this could all change when HTC announces the M10 next week, but right now, the G5 has just as much right to sit alongside the S7 and S7 Edge as one of the best Android smartphones you can buy today – particularly when several UK networks are also throwing in a pair of B&O's H3 headphones for free when you sign up for a contract, which normally cost around £150. This makes the G5 better value than the S7 overall, particularly when the cost of each phone practically neck-and-neck. At £500, the G5 is slightly cheaper SIM-free than the £539 S7, but a contract will still set you back at least £36-per-month on top of an initial fee upfront.
You can expect similar levels of performance across both phones and there's little to divide their displays. As a result, which phone you go for will ultimately come down to a matter of personal preference. For most the convenience of a long battery life on the S7 will trump the replaceable battery of the G5. However, the latter is a good bet in the long term as the S7's sealed battery will inevitably fade, plus I love the wide-angle camera, superior gaming performance and the potential of those interchangeable modules. All that makes the LG G5 just as much of a Best Buy as its Samsung counterpart.