Right this moment, LG is making its newest flagship smartphone official and asserting the “LG G7 ThinQ.” After attending to spend a few half-hour with the telephone, my predominant takeaway is that it wasn’t all that totally different from the LG G6, simply with an iPhone X-style notched show and some inside upgrades.

First let’s get the goofy identify out of the way in which. The “ThinQ” model debuted in LG’s equipment lineup (it is pronounced “Skinny Q”) in December, the place it denoted which home equipment had been good home equipment. So why is LG’s newest smartphone named after a dishwasher? As a result of, like each smartphone launching this 12 months, the G7 comprises some nebulous “AI” options—every thing has to have AI now. On the G7, “AI” means it has 18 totally different automated digital camera modes, that are chosen through laptop imaginative and prescient. It may possibly detect issues like “Meals,” “Beverage,” or “Animal.” After taking an image, the G7 may mechanically recommend a photograph filter for you.

Proper off the bat, the G7 spec sheet is an enormous enchancment over the G6, because it launches with the most recent Qualcomm SoC, the Snapdragon 845. The LG G6 shipped with a year-old SoC final 12 months, instantly placing it behind most of its 2017 competitors. The G7 has a 3000mAh speaker, and its twin rear-camera setup has a 16MP predominant digital camera and second 16MP wide-angle lens. The US model has 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage (with an SD card slot in order for you extra), however LG’s hometown of Korea will get an upgraded mannequin with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. The demo items had been working Android eight.zero.

The show on the G7 ThinQ is a 6.1in 3120×1440 show with an more and more widespread (with system makers, anyway) notched show. LG has struggled to fabricate OLEDs, and after the poorly-received LG OLED panels within the LG V30 and the Google Pixel 2 XL, LG is switching again to LCD with the G7.

That does not imply the G7 has a bog-standard LCD although. LG is asking this a “Tremendous shiny” show, due to the additional white sub pixel together with the same old purple, inexperienced, and blue sub pixels. The objective with this RGBW show is each a brighter LCD and extra environment friendly LCD, and LG says it may possibly hit 1000 nits of peak brightness. This is not spectacular for a smartphone, contemplating Samsung’s OLED show on the Galaxy S9 show has a peak brightness of 1130 nits, however it’s fairly good for an LCD.

LG was good sufficient to allow us to take the telephones outdoors and see the show below the solar for ourselves, and the outcomes weren’t that spectacular. On a cloudy day, the show did not appear any brighter than the Pixel 2 XL that I had readily available, which is to say, like all smartphones, the show nonetheless is tough to learn in any sort of daylight.

The notched show comprises the 8MP front-facing digital camera, an earpiece speaker, and the same old fundamental smartphone sensors like auto brightness and proximity. Not everybody likes the look of a notched show, so LG lets you black out the realm across the notch, making it look extra like a standard smartphone design. LG had a G6 readily available on the occasion and famous that, even for those who black out all the G7 notch space and depend it as a prime bezel, it is nonetheless the identical dimension as the highest bezel on the G6. Mixed with a smaller backside bezel, the G7 is one other step towards making the entire entrance of the telephone a show. So far as notched smartphone designs go although, it is onerous to see the G7 as something aside from inferior to the iPhone X design, which does not have a backside bezel in any respect.

The G7 is constructed similar to the LG G6, with an all-glass physique and IP68 water resistance. Glass smartphones are all the time disappointingly fragile, however the materials makes implementing the returning wi-fi charging characteristic simpler for system makers. The again options LG’s ordinary dual-camera setup—organized vertically this 12 months as an alternative of horizontally—and a rear fingerprint reader. LG went with a extra conventional facet energy button this 12 months (the G6’s energy button is the fingerprint reader), and together with the quantity rocker, there’s a complete further facet button particularly for Google Assistant.

Together with the Google Assistant facet button, the G7 options “Tremendous far subject voice recognition,” which LG says will enable it to reply to the “OK Google”  hotword from farther away than ordinary. Google and LG additionally labored collectively to present the G7 customized Google Assistant instructions for options in LG’s Android pores and skin. The one examples LG gave had been camera-released, like “Take a photograph with meals mode” or “Take a photograph with low gentle mode.” The button is just not remappable.

The G7 nonetheless has a headphone jack, and it is nonetheless powered by the identical nice sounding DAC (an ESS Sabre ES9218) because the LG V30. The one bottom-firing speaker has gotten an enormous improve this 12 months. Along with being 39 p.c bigger than the G6, the speaker now makes use of the entire telephone as a resonance chamber. Certain sufficient, when taking part in sound, the entire telephone vibrates, serving to it to pump out as a lot noise as potential. LG says the speaker is 3 times louder than the G6, and after listening to the telephone in particular person, I imagine it.

LG would not discuss launch dates or pricing, since within the US that is as much as carriers. The LG G6—which, bear in mind, launched with a year-old SoC—value round $650.

That is about it for the LG G7. The telephone seems like an LG G6 with a couple of upgrades, but it surely’s not an enormous change. It appears unusual to make to make a telephone just like the LG G6, complain in regards to the G6’s low gross sales numbers, after which not change all that a lot for the G7. Possibly pricing info will paint the telephone in a extra compelling gentle.

Itemizing picture by Ron Amadeo

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