Editor's Note: this preview will be continuously updated as more information on the LG V40 ThinQ emerges in the run-up to its launch. The article was last updated on September 27.
LG's 2018 mobile strategy ended up being significantly different than what most industry watchers were expecting, with the company now preparing for a launch of yet another Android smartphone – the V40. Or, how it's most likely going to be called – the LG V40 ThinQ. While the handset is still some time away from being officially announced, leaks and rumors surrounding it became more numerous in recent days and are already shaping a relatively clear picture on what consumers can expect from LG Mobile in the Android flagship department this fall.
LG V40 ThinQ Launch Date
The South Korean company traditionally announces new additions to its V series at IFA, an annual trade show taking place in Berlin, Germany, that's running from August 31 through September 5 this year. However, it already broke precedent several months back by debuting the LG V30S ThinQ, then underlined its new flagship strategy with the introduction of the V35S ThinQ. The V40 ThinQ is now rumored to be launching no earlier than the first ten days of October, with some reports suggesting LG may push its announcement as far back as November. In any case, the launch itself will arrive at an LG-hosted event or be online-only as no major international trade shows are taking place at that time of the year.
Update [September 13]: The LG V40 ThinQ will be officially announced on October 4, the South Korean company confirmed just moments ago, revealing its new Android flagship will be unveiled only five days before Google debuts its Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL smartphones.
LG V40 ThinQ Design
Leaks surrounding the V40 ThinQ have been scarce so far, though most existing signs point to the device featuring a notch that LG already embraced with its G lineup. Other than that, some sort of a metal-and-glass build is expected, together with an elongated screen using an 18:9 (2:1) aspect ratio. LG struggled with making its recently released premium devices actually feel premium in the past, with that particular point of criticism often being repeated by tech reviewers, so it remains to be seen how the company attempts addressing that issue, provided it chooses that course of action at all. The device is rumored to feature a Google Assistant button identical to the one found on the left side of the G7 ThinQ, also positioned below the volume keys. The renders that can be seen in the gallery above are currently the only known depictions of the handset, having leaked online earlier this week.
Update [August 27]: Established industry insider Steve Hemmerstoffer shared a high-resolution video render of the LG V40, with his depiction of the device being based on credible information that's in line with previous reports about the Android handset.
Update [September 17]: Another high-resolution render of the V40 ThinQ appeared online, reconfirming the presence of a G7-like display notch and a black variant of the device being in the works.
LG V40 ThinQ Specs
For the most part, the V40 ThinQ is expected to pack specs that are in line with 2018 Android flagships, including Qualcomm's Snapdragon 845 chip, 6GB of RAM, 64GB of storage space, a microSD card slot, and an OLED screen with a diagonal north of six inches, as well as QHD+ resolution support. The handset will primarily try to differ from the competition in the camera and audio departments. Regarding the former, a triple-camera setup is expected on the back, featuring three horizontally arranged sensors and a dual-LED flash unit, with at least one of them being a wide-angle affair. The handset's display notch is rumored to feature a dual-camera setup as well, which should allow LG to deliver a more natural-looking bokeh effect in selfies.
As LG confirmed to AndroidHeadlines earlier this year, OLED panels are now a V-series exclusive, and the V40 should be equipped with a POLED module similar to the one found on the last several members of this product family. The handset should also sport a 3.5mm headphone jack and a quad-DAC setup to match it, seeking to offer one of the best audio experiences ever delivered in smartphone form. Dual stereo speakers should be on board as well, together with DTS-X sound, though Dolby Atmos support likely won't be part of the package. No information on the V40's battery has yet emerged but LG is widely expected to not go under 3,300mAh, which was the capacity of the cell powering the V30 line. At least two variants are expected to be launched, with the more expensive model likely arriving with 128GB of storage space or more, as well as a premium-grade pair of headphones capable of taking full advantage of the handset's quad-DAC, whereas the regular model should be bundled with standard-quality earbuds.
Update [September 3]: a new leak gave more credence to the aforementioned claims, in addition to suggesting the LG V40's POLED panel will be a 6.4-inch affair with a 19.5:9 aspect ratio. The back of the Android smartphone will feature a 12-megapixel (f/1.5), 16-megapixel (f/1.9), and another 12-megapixel (f/2.4) camera, whereas its display notch will accommodate an 8-megapixel sensor accompanied by a 5-megapixel one, as per the same report, with the source also claiming the device will measure in at 158.7×75.8×7.79mm and weigh 169 grams.
Update [September 10]: New band support details about the device have been revealed by a GCF listing, though there are no surprises on the wireless front; the LG V40 ThinQ should be compatible with virtually every network in the world, so long as you purchase it from one of your local distributors.
Update [September 12]: LG will be launching at least eleven V40 ThinQ variants, as suggested by their newly spotted model numbers, though the exact differences between the thereof remain unclear. In many cases, the models will likely only differ in terms of band support, though some memory configuration variation is also to be expected, as was the case with the company's other recent Android flagship releases.
Update [September 27]: LG released a new teaser confirming the camera configuration of the device, as well as its name.
LG V40 ThinQ Features & Software
With the V20 previously becoming the world's first device to ship with a new version of Android (7.0 Nougat) and LG generally being quick to embrace Google's operating system revisions as far as pre-installing them on devices goes, the V40 ThinQ is widely expected to run Android 9 Pie out of the box, i.e. the Korean company's proprietary implementation of the thereof. A rear-mounted fingerprint reader and face recognition support should be on board as well, together with AI-infused photography, similar to what LG already introduced with the V35 ThinQ and G7 ThinQ.
LG V40 ThinQ Pricing & Availability
The V40 ThinQ should be available for purchase on a global level in time for this year's holiday season, though most markets likely won't have access to all of its memory configurations and colors. In terms of the latter, only the black version of the Android flagship has been confirmed so far. No details on its pricing have yet emerged, though the handset is likely to start at over $700 in the U.S. LG is reportedly only targeting 500,000 units for its initial manufacturing batch, suggesting the company lowered its mobile ambitions over the last several months, with the G7 ThinQ having a three-million sales target but missing it by half so far.
The V40 ThinQ should be a combination of the G7 ThinQ and V35 ThinQ in terms of specs and features, boasting a premium-grade display panel of the latter and pairing it with the display notch and Google Assistant button of the former, all while retaining the high-end internals associated with LG's V series of Android devices. The upcoming phablet is also expected to be LG's final flagship without 5G capabilities, with the V45 ThinQ already being rumored to debut in the first half of the year with Qualcomm's Snapdragon X50 modem.