Samsung Galaxy Round versus LG G Flex

The Galaxy Round and the G Flex. (Credit: Scott Stein/CNET)


Samsung and LG are known to be 'friendly enemies' -- both companies are based in Korea and manufacture a large range of electronic products in similar categories, from refrigerators to TVs. It's not uncommon to see the two Korean rival chaebols launch similar products at the same time -- in fact, earlier this year, both companies revealed new curved OLED TVs at CES.


The announcement of the Samsung Galaxy Round and LG G FLex at the same time should raise no eyebrows then. Both smartphones sport an OLED curved-display, but differ in size and form factor. The Samsung handset curves horizontally, while the LG phone bends vertically.


Both handsets have their own unique features, and we've compiled the highlights in this article. If you're looking for a more in-depth read, do head over to the respective hands-on for the Galaxy Round and the G Flex.


Samsung Galaxy RoundLG G Flex Processor

Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (2.3GHz)


Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (2.26GHz)


Display

5.7-inch, horizontal curve


6-inch, vertical curve


Memory and storage

3GB RAM, 32GB internal storage


2GB RAM, 32GB internal storage


Battery

2,800mAh


3,500mAh


Dimensions

151.1 x 76.6 x 7.9mm, 154g


160.5 x 81.6 x 7.9mm, 177g


Key Features

Samsung Galaxy RoundSamsung started with a Galaxy Note 3, then bent it. (Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET) The Galaxy Round features a similar design to the Galaxy Note 3, down to the faux stiched-leather rear. It also packs a 5.7-inch full-HD display. The smartphone runs Samsung's own Touch Wiz interface on top of Android 4.3, which comes with multi-window and one-handed mode software tweaks.


Samsung has added two new features: roll effect and Bounce UX. The former activates when you push down a side when the handset's lying on a table. It turns on the screen briefly to show you the date, time, any missed calls and battery information. Bounce UX, on the other hand, lets you control music playback by tilting the phone to the left or right to trigger the rewind or skip the current track.


LG G FlexThe G Flex is equipped with a 6-inch curved OLED screen. (Credit: Scott Stein/CNET) Taking its cues from the flagship LG G2, the G Flex features rear-buttons but comes loaded with a 6-inch display. It runs LG's Android 4.2.2 instead of 4.3 and has its own LG skin called Optimus 3.0. Software tweaks include the KnockOn function (wake the handset by tapping on the touchscreen twice), and Q Theatre, which lets you photos and videos from the lockscreen.


While the G Flex isn't as flexible as the name suggests, you can actually push down on the handset when it's placed on the table face down -- which makes it a bit more durable than expected. The G Flex also has a self-healing rear that heals scratches made to the back. Check out LG's video below to see how it works.


Outlook and availability

Both handsets are pretty unique at the moment, but the LG G Flex does stand out a little bit more, thanks to its self-healing rear. The curvature of the G Flex also makes a little more sense to me, especially when pressed against the face, but the Galaxy Round is likely to fit in your pocket better.


While both smartphones are pretty similar to the current generation of devices in terms of the hardware, the curved displays help both the Round and Flex stand out. There's talk of the screens being gimmicky, but we could be seeing more devices sporting similar features next year once manufacturers find out how to best make use of the curvature.


The Samsung Galaxy Round is currently sold only in South Korea, while the G Flex is set to debut globally early next year. If you're looking to get one now, you could import one -- but be prepared to pay a premium.


About the author

Aloysius Low is a Senior Writer at CNET Asia and covers all things mobile. A former World of Warcraft addict, he now dabbles in social media to stave off the withdrawal symptoms. As a lover of all things furry, he's also the unfortunate slave/minion of two adorable cats.


The Galaxy Round and the G Flex. (Credit: Scott Stein/CNET) Samsung Galaxy RoundLG G Flex Processor

Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (2.3GHz)


Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (2.26GHz)


Display

5.7-inch, horizontal curve


6-inch, vertical curve


Memory and storage

3GB RAM, 32GB internal storage


2GB RAM, 32GB internal storage


Battery

2,800mAh


3,500mAh


Dimensions

151.1 x 76.6 x 7.9mm, 154g


160.5 x 81.6 x 7.9mm, 177g


Samsung Galaxy RoundSamsung started with a Galaxy Note 3, then bent it. (Credit: Sarah Tew/CNET) The Galaxy Round features a similar design to the Galaxy Note 3, down to the faux stiched-leather rear. It also packs a 5.7-inch full-HD display. The smartphone runs Samsung's own Touch Wiz interface on top of Android 4.3, which comes with multi-window and one-handed mode software tweaks.


LG G FlexThe G Flex is equipped with a 6-inch curved OLED screen. (Credit: Scott Stein/CNET) Taking its cues from the flagship LG G2, the G Flex features rear-buttons but comes loaded with a 6-inch display. It runs LG's Android 4.2.2 instead of 4.3 and has its own LG skin called Optimus 3.0. Software tweaks include the KnockOn function (wake the handset by tapping on the touchscreen twice), and Q Theatre, which lets you photos and videos from the lockscreen.


About the author

Aloysius Low is a Senior Writer at CNET Asia and covers all things mobile. A former World of Warcraft addict, he now dabbles in social media to stave off the withdrawal symptoms. As a lover of all things furry, he's also the unfortunate slave/minion of two adorable cats.


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