Selfies became the next battleground of smartphone photography after daylight shooting was conquered (that and low-light shots, but more on that later).
The LG G5 has the highest resolution camera - 8MP (and it's a single camera, not two like on the LG V10). The other two have 5MP cams, but with wider apertures, which may come back to haunt the LG.
Not when there's enough light, though. It captured the most detail hands down, our only complaint is that everything in the shot - including the background - is in focus. A slight blur creates a nice separation between subject (you) and the background.
The Samsung Galaxy S7 edge did okay, but the image is too soft (so it's not the resolution that's the real problem). In the LG G5 photo, skin and hair look artificially smoothed out.
The next shot was taken indoors. Here the G5 maintains the sharpness advantage, but the color of the ceiling light affected the white balance too much. The HTC 10 maintained the most accurate white balance while the Galaxy S7 gave some areas a slight pinkish hue.
And here comes the low-light shot. The G5's f/2.0 aperture is indeed a problem, but S7's f/1..7 aperture didn't give it much of an advantage.
The HTC 10 used its OIS to drop the shutter speed to 1/7s (vs.1/13s for the other two), which helped it produce a slightly more pleasing image.
For the next shot, we enabled HDR. That really helped the HTC 10 produce a much better shot while it had barely any effect on the other two.
None of the three have a proper front-facing flash, but the screen can lend a hand when needed.
The extra light helped the HTC 10 maintain its lead, though we have to say we still prefer the HDR shot. The LG G5 and Samsung Galaxy S7 edge improved, but not enough to beat the HTC.
We also recorded handheld selfie videos (no selfie sticks). While the OIS on the front-facing camera on the HTC 10 didn't help it that much when taking photos in the dark, video is where it can shine (and so far it's a feature unique to the 10). Unfortunately, the effect it has isn't huge, the LG and Samsung videos look quite steady without stabilization.
Winner: LG G5. It's a clear winner in daylight selfies but does poorly in the dark. The HTC 10 is the only reliable phone for late-night self-portraits, but its daytime performance does not impress. The Samsung Galaxy S7 edge was part of this test too.
While the LG G5 has a wide-angle camera, you can get much, much better quality out of the Panorama mode. The G5 uses its main 16MP camera to produce images with a vertical resolution of 5,000px, the Samsung 4,000px and the HTC with just 2,000px. Note that the Galaxy S7 edge panorama is huge in file size - 36MB, more than double the weight of the higher-res LG panorama! Also, some viewers had issues displaying the image, but browsers seem to do fine.
Anyway, for all that file size, S7's panorama doesn't actually have more detail. The LG G5 is the winner here and it's largely thanks to the slightly cleaner stitching (you can see vertical "stripes" in the grass in the Galaxy image, where the software couldn't quite make the pieces fit). The HTC 10 does a fairly poor job of stitching, the seams are very visible and sometimes there's noticeable ghosting (you can see the branches of the trees have been photocopied).
Winner: LG G5. It has the highest resolution image at a reasonable file size (even with fast mobile Internet, 30MB+ files can be a challenge), plus the cleanest stitching of the three.