Does anyone else find it freaky how closely LG is copying Samsung?

In tech circles, Samsung is often branded a copycat because of their imitation of Apple. However, while I think it's clear that there was a fair amount of Apple "inspiration" that went into the original Galaxy S, I think it's also clear that since then, Samsung has tried hard to break away and develop its own individual brand aesthetic in terms of both hardware and software design. (As a stock Android fan, I can't say I actually like their particular aesthetic, but that's beside the point.)

So, it's interesting to me that, while many tech writers (especially on the Apple side of the spectrum) still see Samsung as a copycat, LG has arguably become far more brazen in its copying than Samsung ever was. Furthermore, LG is copying Samsung, not Apple:


If you compare the default homescreen of the G2 to that of the S4, it's striking how similar they look. They both have a big, blue, rectangular weather widget. They both have an ICS-style Google Search widget under that, even though both phones run JB, not ICS. They both have a GB-style app drawer icon, and they both put the app drawer on the right-hand side rather than the centre. (And yes, the homescreen layout can obviously be customised by the user, but the factory default settings appear in all the press photographs and heavily influence the brand identity of the phone).

The icons for the system apps look very similar. The icons share a similar skeuomorphic look that is also very dissimilar to stock Android. The physical hardware design and proportions of the two phones is very similar. The tabbed settings menu look similar. The notification tray looks similar (although it's so cluttered that it makes TouchWiz look like a model of economic design).

I mean, it's just hard to avoid the impression that LG designers went through TouchWiz with a fine-tooth comb, found every area where it departs from stock Android, and copied those departures as closely as they could.

Now, I'm not trying to lambaste LG as evil or whatever. I'm skeptical that aesthetic details like these should be copyrightable; if LG wants to imitate the (imho) ugliest Android skin around, that's their decision. The G2 looks like a very nice smartphone - at least in terms of hardware. I would quite happily buy one, provided it came in the form of a GPE.

However, I just find it weird that people aren't talking more about this. If another manufacturer, especially Samsung, were to copy iOS as closely as LG is copying TouchWiz, there would be front-page stories on The Verge, outrage on Apple blogs, links from Gruber, etc. But when the victim is Samsung, nobody seems to care much. I assume that this is because Apple has a cottage industry of fan bloggers who generate clicks by stoking anger over this stuff, while poor Samsung does not.