LG vs. Samsung TV 2020: Who’s winning the smart TV war?

In recent years, two South Korean giants have dominated the smart TV market. But which one is winning? Here’s our comparison of LG and Samsung in 2020 — and a look ahead to the future of both companies.

LG vs. Samsung TV 2020: Who’s winning the smart TV war?
Samsung Q90T QLED Smart TV in a Living Room Setup

This article has been updated in July, 2020 to add the new models.

We all love a great rivalry. And there are a ton to pick from. Nikola Tesla vs. Thomas Edison, Marvel vs. DC, Coke vs. Pepsi, Star Wars vs. Star Trek… We could go on forever. But even with this small sampling, you probably have your favorite choice. Unless you’re an outlier and you’re going with Westinghouse, Dark Horse, Dr Pepper, and Firefly. In the smart TV realm, LG vs. Samsung is the battle you’re paying attention to. Unless you’re one of those outliers again, and you’re looking at Sony.

More and more people are moving to smart TVs in their homes. But what exactly is a smart TV? Simply put, it’s a TV that is able to connect to your home internet service either with a wired ethernet cord or via Wi-Fi. It can stream various apps, connect to smart home devices, or even comes with Alexa and Google Assistant. With a smart TV, there’s no need for an extra device to stream from, so you want need a Roku, or a Fire Stick, or an Apple TV.

With the amount of streaming services we use, it only makes sense to have a TV that can do it all for us. Especially since many people are ditching the cable company and moving toward only using streaming services. You can get everything you need now without cable, for for a fraction of the cost. Why wouldn’t you make the switch to ditch the cable company?

But choosing a smart TV can be a lot to take in. There are so many new terms to learn. Do you need 4K or 8K—and what does that even mean? Or do you need OLED or QLED? And what does that even mean? Why is it so difficult to pick out something you’re just going to sit around watching old episodes of The Golden Girls on? (Thanks, Hulu!)

To get you started, we’ve created a guide to help you understand all of the terminology we’re about to use below. Plus, if you’re new to the smart TV game, check this out. You’ll be able to walk into the store feeling more confident about what you need and what will work best for you. The salesperson on the floor will likely steer you toward an LG or Samsung TV, since they’re the two battling it out for numero uno right now. So, before you make the plunge and head out to get that new TV, check out our round-up of LG vs. Samsung. We decided to compare the two brands to see if we could find an outright winner.

LG vs. Samsung: the contenders

In the smart TV market, most brands borrow technology and software from other companies. It’s easier and much less expensive. But both LG and Samsung have developed their smart TVs from scratch.

LG vs. Samsung Who’s winning the smart TV war 04

Who is winning between LG and Samsung?

LG manufactures OLED displays, which are considered to be the best in terms of color and contrast. Samsung still uses QLED technology, which can’t quite match OLED for picture quality. However, QLED TVs are giving tough competition to OLED TVs in 2020. It has been observed that the most expensive QLED TVs are performing better than the cheaper ones. This is because the high-end QLEDs come with better full-array local dimming, bright highlights, and better viewing angles, which is absent in the low-end models. This kind of significant difference is missing in OLED TVs, although OLED offers better contrast and black level. Additionally, QLED is also brighter whereas OLED has better uniformity and viewing angles. But one of the most important factors that have made QLED outperform OLED this year is the fact that they are available in bigger sizes that are actually cheaper than expected.

LG vs. Samsung Who’s winning the smart TV war 03

OLED technology trumps QLED

Another unique feature that both Samsung and LG came up with this year is 8K. Both the companies have had promising entries in 8K TVs which not only give you brighter, sharper images but also take your TV experience to the next level.

Unique operating systems

In the LG vs. Samsung smart TV battle, both brands offer solid operating systems.

LG webOS

Pros

  • Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant integration
  • Fast to navigate
  • Good app support
  • Streaming apps remain open and live. What this means is that you can switch back and forth easily without losing whatever you were streaming. Need to check a game? Pause Captain Marvel, go into another app and check the game, and then go right back into Captain Marvel.

Cons

  • Nothing that would be worth noting. It’s a solid operating system.

Samsung Tizen

Pros

  • Fast to navigate
  • You’ll receive free channels with TV Plus

Cons

  • Not a great number of apps
  • The search function isn’t always the greatest

It’s clear that LG’s webOS is a better operating system that gives you more features.

LG vs. Samsung Who’s winning the smart TV war 02

LG also wins on smart features

Dolby Vision vs. HDR10

This is a big one for a lot of people. It might even be a make or break one for a lot of people. That is, if you have enough money to spend on it. Because if you have the money, Dolby Vision is absolutely the way to go. The picture quality is amazing, and you’re not going to find anything else out there like it. But, again, it comes with a cost. HDR10 is a definite improvement over SDR (standard dynamic range), and for most people, that’s enough. Especially if you’re not trying to break the bank.

A comparison image between LG vs. Samsung picture quality

Dolby Vision is the clear winner. (Picture: TechHive)

In this realm, LG wins with picture quality, since they utilize Dolby Vision, something other brands aren’t really going. But if your metric is price, Samsung will win this battle with HDR10.

The LG vs. Samsung smart TV battle verdict

So, after covering everything, you’d probably say that LG wins the LG vs. Samsung battle, right? But like we mentioned above, the price aspect needs to be taken into consideration. While LG seems to be technically superior at present, Samsung offers cheaper models that get the job done. And that’s all most people need for their home TV—something that gets the job done. And many people don’t have the budget to buy a much mroe expensive TV.

LG vs. Samsung: smart TV models

Both brands aren’t reaching for the top spot with a single TV. Instead, they both have a range of smart TVs that cover everything from the incredibly smart to the incredibly innovative. Here are some of the best new smart TVs from each of these big brands.

Below, you’ll find a variety of LG vs. Samsung smart TV models. We’ve done the work for you and have listed their main stats so you can easily look through the list and see which TV is offering what features. Because we all like it when things are easy.

2019 Samsung 4K smart TVs

Class Q50R QLED Smart 4K UHD TV

If you’re looking for a good starter TV for a small space, this is a good place to start. This model only comes in 32″, but it comes with a lot of the great Samsung features.

  • Bluetooth headset support
  • Three HDMI input/outputs
  • 120 motion rate
  • 4K Ultra HD Connected
  • 20W sound output
  • 2CH speakers
  • Dolby
  • Anynet+™
  • Smart TV with Bixby Voice
  • Apps
  • Full web browser
  • Wi-Fi Connectivity
  • Smart Hub

You won’t have the Quantum HDR the other models have, and you won’t have the Quantum Processor.

Regular price for this model is $499.99. You can find it on Samsung’s website.

A TV with pink flamingos on the screen.

Image Credit: Samsung / The Samsung Q50

Class Q60R QLED Smart 4K UHD TV

This TV is everything the Q50R is and more, with more sizes.

  • Sizes: 43″, 49″, 55″, 65″, 75″, and 82″
  • Four HDMI input/outputs
  • Quantum Processor 4K
  • Bluetooth headset support
  • Three HDMI input/outputs
  • 120 motion rate
  • 4K Ultra HD Connected
  • 20W sound output
  • 2CH speakers
  • Dolby
  • Anynet+™
  • Smart TV with Bixby Voice
  • Apps
  • Full web browser
  • Wi-Fi Connectivity
  • Smart Hub

Regular price for this model, starting at 43″, is $799.99. You can find it on Samsung’s website.

A TV with a colorful image is sitting on an entertainment center in a living room.

Image Credit: TechRadar / The Samsung Q60

Class Q70R QLED Smart 4K UHD TV

  • Sizes 49″, 55″, 65″, 75″, 82″, and 85″
  • Quantum HDR 8X
  • 40W sound output
  • 2.1CH speakers
  • Bluetooth headset support
  • Three HDMI input/outputs
  • 120 motion rate
  • 4K Ultra HD Connected
  • Dolby
  • Anynet+™
  • Smart TV with Bixby Voice
  • Apps
  • Full web browser
  • Wi-Fi Connectivity
  • Smart Hub

Regular price for this model, starting at 49″, is $1,249.99. You can find it on Samsung’s website.

A TV with an ocean image on the screen in a living room.

Image Credit: TechRadar / The Samsung Q70

Class Q80R QLED Smart 4K UHD TV

  • 55″, 65″, 75″, and 82″
  • 240 motion rate
  • Quantum HDR 12X
  • 4.1CH speakers
  • Bluetooth headset support
  • Three HDMI input/outputs
  • 4K Ultra HD Connected
  • 20W sound output
  • Dolby
  • Anynet+™
  • Smart TV with Bixby Voice
  • Apps
  • Full web browser
  • Wi-Fi Connectivity
  • Smart Hub

Regular price for this model, starting at 55″, is $1,999.99. You can find it on Samsung’s website.

A TV is sitting on the floor against a dark gray background, with a colorful rock image on the screen.

Image Credit: TechRadar / The Samsung Q80

Class Q90R QLED Smart 4K UHD TV

  • 65″, 75″, and 82″
  • Quantum HDR 16X
  • 60W sound output
  • 4.2CH speakers
  • 240 motion rate
  • Bluetooth headset support
  • Three HDMI input/outputs
  • 4K Ultra HD Connected
  • Dolby
  • Anynet+™
  • Smart TV with Bixby Voice
  • Apps
  • Full web browser
  • Wi-Fi Connectivity
  • Smart Hub

Regular price for this model, starting at 65″, is $3,499.99. You can find it on Samsung’s website.

A large TV is on a teal TV stand in a living room, and a man and woman are watching it.

Image Credit: The Big Screen Store / The Samsung Q90

2019 Samsung 8K smart TVs

Class Q900 QLED Smart 8K UHD TV

Samsung only has one 8K TV, and it starts at $2,199.99 for the 55″. This TV is going to give you a better picture quality than the 4K TV, but it will have many of the same features as the 4K TVs.

  • 55″, 65″, 75″, 82″, 85″, 98″
  • 8K AI Upscaling² means that this revolutionary upscaler will remaster your content into 8K
  • Quantum Processor 8K is Samsung’s most powerful processor
  • Quantum HDR 24X will give you intensely deep colors and super-fine details
A TV has an image of Buddhist monk statues on it.

Image Credit: Digital Trends / The Samsung Q900 TV

2020 Samsung OLED and 8K TVs

Samsung Zero-Bezel Q950 8K TV

The TV is said to come without any frame and is just 15mm thick.

  • Infinity Design
  • 15mm thickness
  • AI “quantum processor”
  • Bixby, Google Assistant, and Amazon Alexa support
  • Samsung’s AI ScaleNet technology
  • Pricing yet to be announced
Samsung Zero-Bezel 8K TV

Samsung Zero-Bezel 8K TV in the Living Room

Samsung Sero 4K TV

This TV is unique because it can rotate vertically for your social media content from Instagram or YouTube.

  • Screen size is 43”
  • Quantum HDR
  • Supreme UHD Dimming
  • 4.1-channel, 60-watt speaker system inside
  • Dolby Digital Plus audio
  • Mega Contrast with 100% Colour Volume with Quantum Dot

The pricing for this TV is around $1627 USD.

Samsung Sero TV in the Living Room

Samsung Sero TV in the Living Room

Samsung The Wall MicroLED Modular TV

Because these televisions are modular, you can create the size you want.

  • Sizes available would be 75″, 88″, 93″, 110″, 150″
  • Maximum brightness of 5,000 nits
  • This microLED television series will look almost like wallpaper
  • Practically zero bezels
Samsung The Wall MicroLED Modular TV

Samsung The Wall MicroLED Modular TV Design

Samsung Q800T 8K Television

It’ll envelop you with its sharp, deep color that you didn’t know you were missing before.

  • 65-, 75-, and 82-inch sizes
  • Uses AI technology to upgrade old content to 8K quality
  • Object Tracking Sound+ audio
Samsung Q800T 8K Television

Samsung Q800T 8K Television in the Living Room

Samsung Q60T QLED HDR Smart TV

With the Samsung Q60T QLED HDR Smart TV, you get 4K-quality images along with realistic colors.

  • Quantum Dot Technology offers more than a billion shades of color
  • Dual LED backlighting
  • It works with Bixby Voice as well as apps and a built-in web browser
  • Available in seven sizes ranging from 43 inches to 85 inches
Samsung Q60T QLED HDR Smart TV

Samsung Q60T QLED HDR Smart TV on the Wall

Samsung Q70T 4K UHD Smart TV

This 4K UHD TV adjusts to the lighting in your room thanks to its 4K Quantum processor.

  • It uses adaptive technology to recognize how bright or dark the world around it is
  • It comes in five sizes: 55, 65, 75, 82, and 85 inches
  • Integrated 4K AI upscaling technology
Samsung Q70T 4K UHD Smart TV

Samsung Q70T 4K UHD Smart TV in the Living Room

Samsung Q80T 4K Smart TV

It comes with an intelligent backlighting system that delivers incredible blacks and impressive whites.

  • Direct Full Array 8X system
  • Quantum Dot technology
  • Object Tracking Sound quality
  • Available in sizes – 49″, 55″, 65″, 75″, 85″
Samsung Q80T 4K Smart TV

Samsung Q80T 4K Smart TV on a Wall

Samsung The Terrace QLED 4K Outdoor Smart TV

This outdoor smart TV will provide you with entertainment year-round thanks to its IP55 rating.

  • World-class picture quality with QLED 4k and 2,000-nit brightness levels
  • An anti-reflection feature to reduce glare and for sharpening contrast
  • Voice activation facility
Samsung The Terrace QLED 4K Outdoor Smart TV

Samsung The Terrace QLED 4K Outdoor Smart TV on Display

2019 LG OLED TVs

LG B9 Class 4K Smart OLED TV

This is LG’s entry-level OLED TV. One of the awesome things about this TV is the gallery mode, which features world-famous travel attractions updated seasonally by TripAdvisor.

  • 55″, 65″
  • 4K Ultra HD
  • AI ThinQ for Google Assistant and Alexa
  • LG OLED Display
  • LG a7 Gen 2 Intelligent Processor
  • Dolby Vision
  • Dolby Atmos
  • 4K Upscaler
  • 2.2 Channel speaker system
  • 40W output
  • Bluetooth support
  • 3 USB ports
  • 4 HDMI inputs
  • Smartphone connectivity
  • AirPlay 2
  • 1ms response time to reduce ghosting
  • 13.1 ms Input Lag for smooth game play
  • Variable refresh rate
  • Auto Low Latency Mode

Regular price for this model starts at $1,599.99.

A TV with an image of dark rocks on the screen is on a TV stand in a living room.

Image Credit: CNet / The LG B9

LG C9 Class 4K Smart OLED TV

As with Samsung, each class of OLED TV is better than the previous. And though it starts to come with a heftier pricetag, it’s well worth the money.

  • 55″, 65″, 77″
  • 4K Ultra HD
  • AI ThinQ for Google Assistant and Alexa
  • LG OLED Display
  • LG a9 Gen 2 Intelligent Processor
  • Dolby Vision
  • Dolby Atmos
  • 4K Upscaler
  • 2.2 Channel speaker system
  • 40W output
  • Bluetooth support
  • 3 USB ports
  • 4 HDMI inputs
  • Smartphone connectivity
  • AirPlay 2
  • 1ms response time to reduce ghosting
  • 13.1 ms Input Lag for smooth game play
  • Variable refresh rate
  • Auto Low Latency Mode

Regular price for this model starts at $2,499.99.

A TV is on a light wood entertainment stand with the image of a town on the screen.

Image Credit: CNet / The LG C9 TV

LG W9 Class 4K Smart OLED TV

This is LG’s Wallpaper TV. It’s amazingly thin, and it’s pretty awesome. Anyone who came into your house would for sure be talking about this TV.

  • 65″, 77″
  • 4K Cinema HDR
  • AI ThinQ for Google Assistant and Alexa
  • LG OLED Display
  • LG a9 Gen 2 Intelligent Processor
  • Dolby Vision
  • Dolby Atmos
  • 4K Upscaler
  • 4.2 Channel speaker system
  • 60W output
  • Bluetooth support
  • 3 USB ports
  • 4 HDMI inputs
  • Smartphone connectivity
  • AirPlay 2
  • 1ms response time to reduce ghosting
  • 13.1 ms Input Lag for smooth game play
  • Variable refresh rate
  • Auto Low Latency Mode

Regular price for this model starts at $5,999.99.

A modern living room with a thin TV hanging on the wall.

Image Credit: LG / The LG W9

LG Z9 8K Smart OLED TV

It might be expensive, but the LG Z9 is pretty remarkable. With four times the number of pixels as 4K, plus support for Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, this thing is the king of smart TVs. This TV only comes in 88″, and it has a hefty price tag at $29,999.99.


2020 LG OLED, LCD, and 8K TVs

LG Z9 8K 88-inch OLED TV

Complete with 8K resolution, this television has four times the resolution of existing 4K TVs.

  • It offers eight times the resolution of any full HD set
  • Complete with the a9 Generation 2 AI platform
  • The TV processor can optimize screen brightness and adjust a tone mapping curve accordingly
  • It has Google Assistant built-in
  • You can also interact with Alexa via the Magic Remote
LG Z9 8K 88-inch OLED TV

LG Z9 8K 88-inch OLED TV on the Wall

LG Rollable OLED TV

Yes, you can actually fold this TV and roll it up just like a newspaper.

  • It comes with UHD (4K) resolution
  • Amazon Alexa integration
  • Still a prototype and not available for sale yet
LG Rollable OLED TV

LG Rollable OLED TV Concept Design

LG 2020 NanoCell LCD TV Collection 

With both Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos, these TVs are like home theaters.

  • This collection includes four series: Nano81, Nano85, Nano90, and Nano99
  • Each series comes in multiple sizes—the smallest comes in at 49″ and the largest is 86″
  • It uses the Alpha 9 Gen 3 AI Processor
  • They practically blend into your wall and look like a piece of art
LG 2020 NanoCell LCD TV Collection

LG 2020 NanoCell LCD TV Collection on the Wall

LG 2020 Gallery Series OLED TVs

The upcoming LG 2020 Gallery Series OLED TVs consists of televisions that actually look like artwork.

  • Available in 55-, 65-, and 75-inch sizes
  • Each OLED television can actually double as a piece of art
  • The 65-inch television is just 20 millimeters thick
  • Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos technology
LG 2020 Gallery Series OLED TVs

LG 2020 Gallery Series OLED TV Design

LG OLED 48CX 4K Ultra HD TV

With the LG OLED 48CX 4K Ultra HD TV, you get a high-quality television in a mid-range size.

  • It offers self-illuminating pixels for deep blacks and impressive contrast
  • It’ll let you experience billions of colors so you see every detail
  • It works with Dolby Vision IQ and Dolby Atmos
  • The TV comes with α9 Gen3 AI Processor 4K
  • Compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant
LG OLED 48CX 4K Ultra HD TV

LG OLED 48CX 4K Ultra HD TV on a Wall Setup

The smart TV war

The overall consensus is that both brands of TV are solid, and you won’t be making a poor decision if you buy one of them. In the LG vs. Samsung debate, it all depends on how much money you’re looking to spend and which features are the most important to you. Both TVs will give you fantastic picture quality, and both TVs will give you the smart TV capabilities you’re likely looking for. Do you already own a Samsung or an LG? What do you think of it? Are you someone who has owned both of these types of TVs? If so, do you have a preference for one over the other, and why?

The Gadget Flow Daily Digest highlights and explores the latest in tech trends to keep you informed. Want it straight to your inbox? Subscribe ➜

Meet Evan Varsamis

Evan Varsamis is an Entrepreneur, Founder / CEO at Gadget Flow Inc, Investor and Marketing Advisor at Qrator Ltd and Contributor at Forbes, Inc, Huffington Post and American Express Essentials.
Write your comment..
Sign up to leave a comment.
3
Click here to tag users that participate in this comment thread.
Click here to upload an image or gif.
Click or drag your image here (Maximum Size 4MB, Accepted formats JPG, PNG, GIF).
Add an emoji to your comment.
Click here to add a gif from Giphy.com to your comment.
Search for gifs
Search
powered by Giphy
John

First, I suggest you invest in a spellchecker... 


Second, relying on integrated apps in a tv is as pointless as buying a fridge with built in coffeemaker. Pointless... A $30 Roku will serve anyone better than proprietary os in a tv with apps that will be hit and miss maintained. It’s a bad idea advising people to do so when the cost of much better solutions is so small.
Reply
Suzanna
Moderator
Thanks for the feedback! Some people do prefer Roku while others may prefer smart TVs.
Reply
  • John
  • Suzanna