We’ve heard a lot about the LG G5‘s unique modular design, its new all-metal build, and its solid performance. But what about its software?
LG typically attracts some criticism for its somewhat heavy-handed, gaudy Android reskins. Will UX 5.0 be any different?
We’ll have to wait for our full review to be sure, but LG has at least chosen to focus on its new interface with a fresh press release.
LG says that its UX 5.0 provides “a more playful and innovative mobile experience”. It’s based on Android Marshmallow, but it adds a bunch of new functions.
One of these functions is LG Friends Manager, an app that helps you manage the LG G5’s new modular add-ons – or LG Friends, to use LG’s terminology. The app automatically detects nearby accessories and helps with the pairing process, downloading any additional apps from the Google Play Store if necessary.
LG Friends Manager also generates a different custom display for each Friend.
LG also talks about the new camera experience in LG UX 5.0, but this seems to relate more to a new stand-alone camera app. Still, the ability to switch between the LG G5’s two cameras with a pinch of the screen, essentially zooming in and out, sounds interesting.
In terms of the general UI experience, LG talks of how its has combined the home screen with the app drawer, which serves to simplify the experience (rather like Apple’s iOS). LG reveals that it’s possible to activate the app drawer from the settings menu should you prefer the traditional Android approach.
It also mentions the new Always-on display, which provides key information including the date, notifications and incoming SMS notifications.
Related: LG G5 vs Samsung Galaxy S7
LG Health has also been tweaked to add Beginner and Advanced modes, while Smart Doctor keeps your phone healthy with tips to optimise your usage.
Finally, there are a bunch of other minor additions that LG mentions, including a tweaked world clock and an improved File Manager, as well as the addition of fingerprint recognition.
It remains to be seen if LG can match the impact Samsung has had with the Samsung Galaxy S7. It’ll stand a much better chance if it improves its Android skin significantly, as this is arguably the one major area of weakness for Samsung’s otherwise brilliant device.