It’s a beautiful sunny Sunday here in Barcelona, and while it’s a bit cold outside, we’re nice and warm inside at the colourfully appointed Sant Jordi Club for LG’s G6 announcement event, dubbed simply the LG G6 Day. This will make the third LG launch event Ausdroid has attended overseas, and this phone promises to be perhaps the best yet.
After weeks of leaks, some undoubtedly originating from LG themselves, and others from case manufacturers and others, the LG G6 is finally official, and we can now share everything we know about the phone itself.
Most of the specifications have been comprehensively leaked already, so let’s confirm the major talking points: LG G6 will feature the Snapdragon 821 SoC made popular in last year’s Google Pixel. LG knows its an unexpected move, going with an older processor than the current generation SD835, but they don’t see an issue with this — cautiously, neither do we, just yet. There’s 4GB of RAM on board, which was widely expected, and 32GB of on-board storage. In this day and age, that just doesn’t seem remarkable, except to say that perhaps 64GB should be the standard these days.
This internal storage probably doesn’t matter too much, though, with MicroSD support included to add up to 2TB of extra storage. In other hardware news, USB-C remains the go-to standard, the 3.5mm headphone jack makes a courageous reappearance, and a nice big 3,300 mAh battery as well.
Here’s a spec table with all the details we’ve got at hand:
|Key Specifications:||LG G6|
|Release date||February 2017|
|Resolution||2,880 x 1,440|
|Rear camera||13MP Wide (125°) + 13MP Standard (71°)|
|MicroSD||Yes, up to 2TB|
|Android OS||Android 7 Nougat|
|Vendor skin||LG UX 6.0|
|Dimensions||148.9 x 71.9 x 7.9mm|
While bearing some resemblance to last year’s LG G5, the G6 features a unibody design that eschews the removable battery for a more cohesive, less cheap-feeling look, and frankly it looks rather good. Unlike some competitors, the camera bump is virtually non existent, meaning you’re less likely to scratch up your lens resting it on a table surface, for example.
Slim bezels are in, and they’re here too. They might not be a slim as what some others are rumoured to be doing, but we’d argue this isn’t a bad thing; you need somewhere to hold the phone, and as the S6 Edge and S7 Edge aptly demonstrated, accidental touches at the edge of the display are a significant barrier to productivity.
Display-wise, LG haven’t been able to secure an OLED-based display, instead opting for a 2,880 x 1,440 QHD+ LCD display. This will give us a super wide 18:9 display ratio, which should be great for consuming media, lining up the perfect photo, and delivering a great user experience. At a staggering 564 pixels per inch, this screen is going to be right up there amongst the best we’ve seen, including standards like Dolby Vision and HDR 10. I can’t wait to see the Interstellar demos on this screen.
Mr Juno Cho, the head of LG Mobile, told the assembled press of the larger display:
We’re proud to have made an effort with the LG G5, but this year we need to do more. The competition today is in usability, and we have been learning from our customers.
People want a larger display, but they don’t want a larger phone. We’ve delivered just such a phone with the LG G6, which features a 18:9 display on a phone that easily fits in your hand.
LG spent most of their press conference talking about the quality of the display and the 18:9 ratio, and so were very excited how all this hype translates into quality in the hand.
On that camera, the same dual-camera setup on the rear is back this year, with improved twin 13MP sensors which are identical behind both lens setups, though unlike some other dual cameras, these are both colour, with one featuring a wide-angle lens, and one with a faster aperture (f/1.8) better suited for every day photos. We had some great fun with the 125° camera on the G5, so we expect great things this year too.
The front-facing 5MP camera has received an upgrade as well, featuring a 100° wide-angle lens now which should make for some pretty dynamic selfies, including more of the background, more of your mates, or whatever you prefer. The camera software has been appropriately updated to take full advantage of the new camera options.
The last word on hardware, and this is a big one, is that the LG G6 is now (finally) IP68 rated, meaning you can take it into the water up to 1.5 metres for up to 30 minutes. With the inclusion of heat pipes and a metal frame, the LG G6 should dissipate heat like no other, keeping it nice and cool even under heavy use.
On the software front, LG has been hard at work upgrading its LG UX skin to version 6.0, which is paired with the latest Android version 7.1. One of the most notable new inclusions is Google’s Assistant, making the LG G6 the first phone outside Google’s Pixel line to feature the increasingly popular Google AI. OK Google, how’s the weather outside? LG G6 will know the answer and share it with ease. Another key feature of the new software is a smarter camera UX (which we touched on above) which features Square Camera (which we wrote about the other day) and a new Food Mode for those that just can’t help but catalogue their meals.
What is square camera? Basically it takes advantage of the 18:9 display to give you an Instagram-like layout, showing you an instant preview of your photos below the live camera view. The instant snap and review process looks pretty sharp, but it is optional — you have to enable it, otherwise you get a more standard interface that you’d be more familiar with. Take a look at the demo video to get a better idea what we mean:
As an added incentive for LG G6 buyers, LG.will be offering a full $200 of game credit to be used for in app purchases for a collection of games, including :
- Temple Run 2
- Spiderman Unlimited
- Cookie Jam
- Crossy Road
- SimCity Buildit
We’re off now to the demo area to take a further look at the LG G6 in the hand, and we’ll be back to you with a hands-on report (hopefully with video) in the next day or so, so that you can decide whether the LG G6 might be your next, as well.