The LG G7 is here with a new name, a new notch, and more AI
The LG G7 ThinQ is now official following the unveiling of LG’s latest smartphone today. The G-series is a fairly iconic smartphone line and one that has sustained a number through the years. Although, unlike other primary smartphone lines from major manufacturers the G-series has gone through more than one identity crises during this time. Most notable in 2016 and 2017 with the launch of the G5 and the G6, respectively. Although in many ways, the latter, was seen as a return to a previous identity following the G5 which came with a module-first approach allowing users to swap in and out modules at will to gain additional functionality. With the G5’s modular nature never really taking off the way LG had hoped (or the way it has for Motorola), the G6 returned to the design and style of a pre-G5 era by abandoning the use of modules in favor of a premium design, features, as well as an emphasis on both the camera experience and the display.
Two points which are carried over to the new G7. Although with this model also featuring “ThinQ” branding, this new smartphone adds a third main selling point to the G7 – the use of artificial intelligence (AI). In fact, the inclusion of AI on the G7 is less of a selling feature in its own right and more of an underlying technology which transcends various subsections of the phone. The cameras acting as a good case in point here as similar to the V30S ThinQ, LG is betting big on the G7’s ability to draw on AI processes to further enhance the camera experience for owners. Hence the company’s use of its “AI Cam.” Features aside, and LG has looked to maintain various design points which are very much in keeping with the smartphone industry. For example, like the G6, the G7 once again adopts a taller and slimmer display for a greater amount of display space while also ensuring the otherwise large display remain easy enough to use with one hand. Although, the G7 does take the display to the next-level as not only does it boast a change in the aspect ratio, but also another trending display-focused feature of late – a notch.
LG G7 ThinQ Specs
The LG G7 ThinQ is fueled by Qualcomm’s most powerful mobile SoC to date, the Snapdragon 845, a 64-bit octa-core processor, which includes the Adreno 540 GPU for graphics processing, and is clocked at 2.8GHz. The LG G7 ThinQ features a 6.1-inch QHD+ (3120 x 1440) FullVision display, and this is an LCD panel, not an OLED one, as was the case with the LG V30 and V30S ThinQ. This display does offer HDR support, and is said to consume 35-percent less battery than its predecessor. It’s also worth noting this display goes up to a maximum of 1,000 nits in terms of brightness.
LG has announced two variants of the G7 ThinQ, 4GB and 6GB RAM (LPDDR 4X RAM) models, the former comes with 64GB of storage, while the latter features 128GB of storage, and is called the ‘LG G7 Plus ThinQ’. LG has included a 3,000 mAh battery here, while Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0 fast charging is also part of the package, resulting in an ability to charge the battery to roughly a 50-percent level in only half an hour. The LG G7 ThinQ is IP68-certified for water and dust resistance, while the phone comes with Bluetooth 5.0. As far as audio is concerned, the company opted to include a Quad DAC (32-bit) inside of the G7 ThinQ, while the phone comes with Boombox stereo speaker setup. DTS-X Virtual Surround Sound is also on offer, as is an NFC chip here, and also a 3.5mm headphone jack.
On the back of the LG G7 ThinQ, you will find a fingerprint scanner, and a dual camera setup. This handset features two 16-megapixel cameras (f/1.6 and f/1.9 apertures) on the back, while a single 8-megapixel camera (f/1.9 aperture) is included on the phone’s front side. LG utilizes AI and ‘Pixel Binning’ to improve image quality that those cameras can produce. The LG G7 ThinQ does feature wireless charging as well Qi wireless charging, while Android 8.0 Oreo comes pre-installed on the device with LG’s custom UI. The phone measures 153.2 x 71.9 x 7.9mm, while it weighs 162 grams.
LG G7 ThinQ Hardware & Design
For some, function takes priority over form. For others, form is the most important part of the phone. In terms of the G7 ThinQ, LG seems to have thought a lot about the design. In some ways the design is uniquely LG and in others it simply follows the trends a little bit of the industry. This is evident with the LG G7 ThinGs notch, which is prominently displayed at the top of the panel. The good thing here is that unlike some phones with the notch, the G7 ThinQ does have the ability to hide the notch if consumers don’t want to view it. LG has done this by making it possible to essentially black out the top part of the display on either side of the notch so that it lines up with the bottom of the notch to appear as a regular status bar with a thin bezel. It’s not getting rid of the notch, but it at least affords a way to put it out of sight.
In addition to the notch, LG has opted to use a metal frame and a glass back panel, making this an all-metal and glass smartphone. Part of this design means the battery cannot be removed, but it also means wireless charging, so users are losing one feature and gaining another. Users will also notice that the power button has been moved from the back to the left side of the frame along with the volume keys, and on the right side of the frame there is a new button for activating Google Assistant, akin to the Bixby button on Samsung’s devices. This gives users a physical way to activate the feature so they don’t have to speak to it through the use of voice commands. While many users will certainly find it simpler to use voice commands, there might be times, such as when you’re using public transit or in a crowded office where speaking may be less convenient than pushing a button and typing out your responses to Google Assistant, so the presence of a physical button makes it possible to still interact and do so efficiently. True to LG form the G7 ThinQ will be offered in a range of color options, five in total, one of which will be split into both standard and matte colors. LG believes personalization is a part of the customer experience with buying a phone, and customers will definitely have the ability to pick their favorite here. The rear-facing camera is nicely centered towards the top edge with the LED flash module just to the left, and this centering approach continues on the front side with the front-facing camera – which may prove beneficial when taking selfie images and video.
LG G7 ThinQ Cameras
LG is positioning the imaging capabilities of the G7 ThinQ as one of the main selling points of its newest Android flagship, boasting of improvements both in terms of the hardware and the software. The main camera setup of the device is hence effectively an enhanced version of the system found on the back of the V30S ThinQ, with its primary sensor again a 16-megapixel affair mounted behind an f/1.6 lens, though its secondary module now also has the same megapixel count. A dual-LED (dual-tone) flash unit supports the vertically arranged setup whose wide-angle camera has a 107-degree field-of-view, having been designed to allow for easy capture of group shots and landscapes.
LG’s newest high-end mobile device is all about artificial intelligence and its camera is no exception to that design strategy, being one of the main beneficiaries of the company’s new AI-focused philosophy. The AI Cam introduced on the V30S ThinQ is returning with the G7 ThinQ, and is capable of automatically recognizing the subjects in your viewfinder and adjusting its shooting parameters accordingly, so as to always provide optimal results. While its main purpose sounds similar to the Auto mode phones have been supporting since the dawn of mobile cameras, its AI backend is meant to provide much better results in practice as it won’t just take basic parameters such as light levels and dynamic range into account when doing adjustments but will also tweak its settings depending on whether you’re shooting portraits, food, landscapes, sports, or are practicing another type of photography. If you like the basic Auto mode and don’t want AI messing with your shooting settings too much, you’ll be able to ignore this functionality whenever you see fit as all additional adjustments will be served in the form of recommendations you may or may not accept.
The AI Cam service also comes with four “enhanced filter options” depending on the type of results you want to get in terms of color warmness, saturation, contrast, and other similar aspects. Additionally, the intelligent camera of the G7 ThinQ will be able to adjust its exposure to offset the effects of sunlight hitting its lenses directly much like the G6 did, albeit in a more efficient manner due to the new AI technologies controlling that functionality. The same goes for the smartphone’s ability to switch to its wide-angle mode in certain scenarios, though users will still be able to choose between the two lenses manually at any point. HDR10 support is also part of the recording package, meaning you’ll finally be able to create extremely dynamic video content yourself instead of only being able to view it on your smartphone, as was the case with all 2017 Android flagships.
The G7 ThinQ also boasts improved imaging capabilities in low-light conditions thanks to its ability to create “superpixels” via the new Bright capture mode, yet another one of its AI-powered features. Much like the name implies, superpixels are an automatically created collection of individual pixels that will allow the LG G7 ThinQ to deliver up to four times brighter photographs than the G6 and V30 lineups, according to the company. The manner in which the smartphone combines pixels will depend on how dark your environment is so that the device never sacrifices image sharpness for needless brightness and only lightens up your shots when not doing so would deliver underexposed results with crushed blacks, i.e. shadows that lack any kind of detail.
The LG G7 ThinQ is pre-loaded with both 2D and 3D camera stickers and comes with an even better version of Graphy, an online service that allows you to browse through professional photographs and download presets that make your shots emulate their look. The new Android flagship also offers Portrait mode, as well as a Live Photo feature which captures multiple stills both before and after you tap the shutter button so that you’re either able to select the best one, save them all as a video collection, or do both. While its Portrait mode will allow you to capture in-camera bokeh, the handset’s post-processing capabilities can also do some additional blurring if you deem it necessary.
The G7 ThinQ’s front-facing camera also ships with Portrait mode support and has a higher pixel count than the firm’s previous products but is otherwise mostly unchanged compared to what was on offer with the V30S ThinQ; it’s an 8-megapixel unit with an f/2.2 lens that’s fairly average in the context of contemporary Android flagships. The deep Google Assistant integration will allow LG G7 ThinQ owners to leverage the digital companion in much the same ways Samsung’s customers are able to use Bixby in conjunction with their mobile cameras; among other things, you’ll be able to instruct the Google Assistant to take a photograph and even specify some basic shooting modes by e.g. asking the phablet to “capture a wide-angle selfie.” In overall, the camera setup of the LG G7 ThinQ is a notable hardware improvement over the 13-megapixel imaging system of the LG G6 but a major step forward over its predecessor in terms of software as it’s much “smarter” than what the Seoul-based phone maker delivered last year.
LG G7 ThinQ Software & AI
With the LG G7 ThinQ, the company is going all-in with artificial intelligence. This is something that we saw with the V30S ThinQ that it debuted in Barcelona back in February, and now it’s being taken a step further. The camera is full of different AI features, in an attempt to help you take better photos without needing to adjust the settings. But that’s not all. LG has also added a dedicated Google Assistant button to the left side of the device. Allowing users to quickly jump into the Google Assistant and get things done.
LG has also integrated quite a few things with Google Assistant on the G7 ThinQ. This includes being able to press the Google Assistant button to do things like open the camera with AI Cam turned on, you can also use it to toggle WiFi and control your ThinQ appliances. That’s a feature that won’t apply to everyone with the G7 ThinQ, but if you have one LG’s newer washing machines, dryers or other ThinQ appliances, you can check up on it using Google Assistant on your LG G7 ThinQ.
Artificial Intelligence features on the LG G7 ThinQ actually work offline, with everything being stored on the device itself. So as long as you are asking Google Assistant things that it doesn’t need an Internet connection to answer, you can use it without needing an internet connection. LG is also adamant that it does not collect information from its users on the G7 ThinQ. None of the logs are uploaded to its servers, the company says that everything it learns from focus groups and not from collecting data from its users. So users can rest assured that LG is not spying on them with the G7 ThinQ, and all of the AI features that are included with the smartphone.
LG G7 ThinQ Battery Life
Smartphones have tons of interesting features and an argument can be made for many of them as being truly useful, but one constant that has remained throughout every iteration of every smartphone is that the battery is always an important part of the device’s evolution. Things are no different with the LG G7 ThinQ and LG knows this, so it’s equipped the G7 with a 3,000 mAh capacity battery. 3,000 mAh is not necessarily a lot compared to some smartphone batteries but it should be plenty when paired with the features of the Snapdragon 845 chipset, such as Quick Charge 4.0, which will allow users to charge up the G7 ThinQ at a pretty rapid pace, meaning less time leaving the device plugged in and more time actually using the phone.
The device will also have wireless charging so although USB Type-C and Quick Charge 4.0 will be supported with this device — making it faster to charge the battery up — users will be able to forego the cable connection if they wish and simply place the phone down on a wireless charging pad should they have one, making it much easier to charge the device in times where the user doesn’t want to fumble with wall adapters and cables. Because of the build of the device, the battery will also not have the ability to be removed and swapped out like on past LG G-series flagships.
LG G7 ThinQ Security
LG has introduced Face Unlock to the G7 ThinQ, so that you have another option of securing your smartphone, other than just your fingerprint. It takes just a few seconds to setup and start using. LG is using the front-facing camera to authenticate the user and unlock the device. It does work in dimly-lit situations by brightening the display to illuminate your face and authenticate. LG says that it is secure enough that no one will be able to use a picture to trick it.
Those that would rather use something a bit more secure, the fingerprint sensor is still available. It’s on the backside of the G7 ThinQ, as expected. However, it is no longer a power button, and only functions as a fingerprint sensor. Now there are some gestures available for the fingerprint sensor, like swiping down on the sensor to bring down the notifications and quick settings shade. LG has given users multiple ways to secure their smartphone now, and this is in an effort to keep information from being stolen or accessed when a phone is lost or left somewhere.
LG G7 ThinQ Variants
One of the popular trends at the moment is to release a device in multiple forms. These typically only differ in minor ways on paper. Although, minor, the impact of these changes usually cater exclusively to different buyers. For example, those who want a smaller (or larger) display, those in need of greater battery capacities, and so on. While LG has taken on a number of current trends with the G7 product variation at launch does not seem to be one of them with the company so far only announcing the one G7 ThinQ model.
However, it is worth keeping in mind that LG is a manufacturer that already does offer a selection of variants for major devices and this is best seen with the V30 line that has now become available in multiple different options and in some cases, updated versions – such as the V30S ThinQ. So the absence of any additional models or variants at launch it not necessarily indicative of an absence of choice in general. As LG does often announce additional versions of a single product at different times of the year. In either case, LG is sticking with its ability to offer interested consumers a choice of customizing their experience through color as the company has confirmed the G7 ThinQ will be available in five colors in total. Though color availability may vary depending on region and carrier.
LG G7 ThinQ Availability
LG has not yet announced pricing or when the G7 ThinQ will be available, that will be coming in the next few weeks. Expect it to be available in the next month or so. LG was able to confirm that all four of the US carriers will be carrying the LG G7 ThinQ. Which includes AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon. While LG would not comment on specific pricing, and is leaving that up to its carrier partners, LG did confirm that it’ll be in that lower-tier of premium smartphones. So priced around $650-750, depending on where you pick up the device. LG did also mention that it will be selling an unlocked version of the G7 ThinQ, which should be available from LG’s website, as well as Amazon and B&H Photo in the US.
UPDATE: The phone will become available at Sprint and US Cellular on June 1.
LG G7 ThinQ Variants
LG has announced two variants of the G7 ThinQ, one sports 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage, while the other one not only comes with more RAM and storage, but also a different name. The LG G7 Plus ThinQ features 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, and those are the only differences between the two phones.
LG G7 ThinQ Gallery