LG G6 vs HTC U11: Beyond the product specs

2017 has seen two welcome additions to the Android space: the LG G6 vs HTC U11. Both releases aimed to improve on previous LG and HTC models. Which were often thought of as underwhelming phones that would never stand up to the likes of Samsung.

The emergence of the G6 and U11 has brought a new level of competition to the market. Both phones boast premium specs that indicate top-notch cameras and sound performance. A glance at the features will tell you that these phones are capable of matching rivals such as the Google Pixel and Samsung S8. But the specs will leave you a little lost as to which phone is better (on paper, there’s not much in it).

To help you work out exactly where these phones outperform one another we’ve tested them out and created this like-for-like comparison. Get ready to dig deeper than the specs and see just how good these phones are.

LG G6 vs HTC U11 at a glance

  • The LG G6 has a sharper display creating a superior viewing experience
  • The HTC U11 has a more stylish design if you ignore its ugly front
  • Both phones have good cameras and an excellent battery life

Buy LG G6 from £34 per month at Carphone Warehouse
Buy HTC U11 from £37 per month at Carphone Warehouse

 Smartphone Display

The LG G6 has a taller display than the HTC U11. The LG has an 18:9 (2:1) aspect ratio that broadens your vision and creates a more immersive viewing experience for watching videos. What’s more, the LCD screen is pleasing to the eye, giving colours depth and vibrancy.

LG G6

LG G6 display

You’ll notice that the LG G6 has very narrow bezels. The narrow bezels allow the phone to make full use of its surface area, so it can have a tall display without being too big to hold. In fact, the G6 is a fraction shorter than the U11, which means you’re getting a larger display and a phone that’s just as easy to carry.

By contrast, the HTC U11 has a wide bezel that eats into the display. The presence of the bezel makes the phone look dated and takes away from the otherwise stylish finish. Most likely, the bezel was left due to the higher cost of borderless display panels. What’s more, the HTC’s Quad HD screen does offer a sharp resolution, but next to the LG’s super crisp display you’ll find it lacking.

 Camera

The LG G6 has a versatile camera that’ll please most photo enthusiasts. You have optical image stabilisation to reduce noise quickly; a handy feature when shooting videos in busy areas. Another cool feature is the phone’s rear-facing wide-angle lens. The lens broadens your field of view, letting you take panoramic images in a single shot.

The HTC U11 has the same autofocus as the Samsung Galaxy S8, which allows you to lock into the subject of your photo at lightning speed. You’ll notice this when whipping your phone out to snap something in the moment. Also, capturing moving objects won’t result in a blurred photo if you have a steady hand.

HTC U11 camera

HTC U11 camera

 Phone design

The design of the LG G6 isn’t anything special. The metal frame gives the phone a sturdy look and feel; a show of strength that makes the design quite manly. The phone’s macho vibes will please some men but could alienate female LG fans.

Another gripe with the LG G6 is that the corners of the display don’t match up to the corners of the phone. The imbalance that makes the screen feel awkward and off-centre. It’s a minor flaw, but one that’s difficult to forget about once you’ve picked up on it.

LG G6 Design

LG G6 colours available: white, black & silver

Its appearance clinches the HTC U11 a victory over the G6 for design. The U11 has two faces: there’s an ugly front face that looks desperately outdated for a top-end flagship, but a chic back face that radiates a luxury gadget. The beautiful back almost makes you forgive the rather less trendy front.

In the UK, you can buy the HTC’s 3D glass overlay in one of five colours – silver, blue, black, white and red. The blue is a particularly attractive finish, which makes the phone stand out in all the right ways. In comparison, the LG G6 comes in just three colours – black, silver and white.

HTC U11

HTC U11 design

Beware: the glass finish on both phones is superb when you first buy them, but after a couple of days use you’ll notice fingerprint smudges show up easily.

 User friendliness

Quirky new features improve the user-friendliness of these phones. For example, the LG G6 comes with a nifty app that lets you take notes while on calls. Also, when holding the phone sideways, you can split the keyboard in half – pushing the letters to either end of the screen where your thumbs are.

Similarly, the HTC U11 utilises EdgeSense to give you a smooth user experience. EdgeSense is the name for HTC’s squeeze control function, which lets you operate your phone by applying pressure to its sides. When HTC first released the U11, you couldn’t do much more than open the camera with a squeeze. But HTC has since made it easier to train your phone to take different actions with a squeeze depending on the app you’re using.

Both phones also come with an AI assistant. The LG G6 is the first non-Google phone to include Google Assistant – the best AI at responding to voice searches and instructions. Meanwhile, the HTC U11 includes Sense Companion. Sense Companion isn’t as intuitive as the Google Assistant, but it does provide useful updates, such as telling you to take a brolly when rain is forecast.

 Speed and battery life

Having been released a little earlier than the HTC U11, the LG G6 comes with an older processor (Snapdragon 821). As a result, the LG G6 is a touch slower than the HTC U11 when running multiple apps at the same time. In fact, Qualcomm claims its Snapdragon 825 processor (found in the U11) is 27% faster than its predecessor.

Despite the HTC U11 having a smaller battery, the phones last for the same amount of time when used regularly. Both handsets will easily get you through the day and come with power saving modes that help to optimise battery life.

How the LG G6 and HTC U11 compare in reality

Off paper, you get a clearer picture of how these phones match up to one another. As you take a closer look at the phones’ design and set up, you’ll spot little differences between the two that are more to some people’s taste than others.

That said, there are areas where one phone trumps the other. When it comes to the phones’ display, the LG G6 proves that size matters. Not only does the tall display provide a superior viewing experience. But it also lets you pack more onto a single screen. You’ll appreciate this when turning on multi-window mode; a feature that lets you split your screen in half. Multi-window mode lets you place visuals up top while displaying information on the bottom half of your screen. Thus removing the need to swipe around when using apps.

Meanwhile, the HTC U11 has a better design and a more powerful processor. So, you can game and watch videos to your heart’s content knowing you look great while doing so. As a provider, HTC also has a better track record of making updates to their software, so you can expect more regular improvements to your device.

Choosing between these two phones is going to be a matter of personal preference. Either way, you’re going to get a fast handset that comes with a range of features that truly enhance your mobile experience.

  LG G6HTC U11
Pricecirca £549.99circa £649.00
Body
Weight163g169g
Dimensions148.9 x 71.9 x 7.9mm (5.86 x 2.83 x 0.31in)153.9 x 75.9 x 7.9 mm (6.06 x 2.99 x 0.31 in)
Display
Size 5.7 inches5.5 inches
Resolution1440 x 2880 pixels (~564 ppi pixel density)1440 x 2560 pixels (circa 534 ppi pixel density)
Platform
OSAndroid 7.0 (Nougat)Android 7.1 (Nougat)
ChipsetQualcomm MSM8996 Snapdragon 821Qualcomm MSM8998 Snapdragon 835
CPUQuad-core (2x2.35 GHz Kryo & 2x1.6 GHz Kryo)Octa-core (4x2.45 GHz Kryo & 4x1.9 GHz Kryo)
GPUAdreno 530Adreno 540
Memory
Card slot microSD, up to 256 GB (dedicated slot) - single SIM
microSD, up to 256 GB (uses SIM 2 slot) - dual SIM
microSD, up to 256 GB (dedicated slot) - single-SIM model
microSD, up to 256 GB (uses SIM 2 slot) - dual-SIM model
Internal32/64/128 GB, 4 GB RAM64 GB, 4 GB RAM or 128 GB, 6 GB RAM
Camera
Image captureDual 13 MP (f/1.8, OIS, 3-axis, phase detection AF) + 13 MP (f/2.4, no AF), dual-LED flash12 MP, f/1.7, phase detection autofocus, OIS, dual-LED (dual tone) flash
Video2160p@30fps, 1080p@30/120fps, HDR
Sound
Audio2160p@30fps, 1080p@30/60fps, HDR, 24-bit/192kHz stereo sound rec.24-bit/192kHz audio
Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic
LoudspeakerYesYes