It seems like Lenovo will beat both Samsung and Huawei to the punch, and release the world's first smartphone with a display camera hole, or as it's referred to by some, "punch hole". Lenovo's exec has announced via his official Weibo (Chinese social network) page that a Lenovo Z series smartphone will become official on December 6, and everything points to the Lenovo Z5s, as that is the device that was rumored to arrive, and a device that was shown in recently-leaked renders. Both Samsung and Huawei had already announced the arrival of their smartphones with display camera holes, as both company's scheduled events later this month, though both of those phones will launch after Lenovo's offering, even though we still do not know which will become available for purchase first.
Punch Hole Showdown: Samsung vs Huawei vs Lenovo
Samsung's Galaxy A8s handset is scheduled to arrive on December 10, Huawei's offering, the Huawei Nova 4, will launch on December 17, which means that the Lenovo Z5s will be first to cross the finish line. All three of these smartphones will be announced in China, and will become available in China first, though chances are that all of them will leave the Chinese market in early 2019, and roll out in other markets. The Huawei Nova 4 will almost certainly become available in Europe, and chances are that both Samsung's and Lenovo's offering will do the same. Samsung's and Huawei's offerings are much more similar one to the other compared to the Lenovo Z5s, at least from the front, as both of those phones will include a display camera hole in the upper-left corner of the display, as confirmed by teasers, while the Lenovo Z5s will have a centered display camera hole, at the top of its display, at least if leaked renders are to be believed. All three phones will be almost completely bezel-less, as they will only sport a really thin "chin" below the display.
The Lenovo Z5s' Design & Specifications
The Lenovo Z5s, much like the other two devices we've mentioned, will be made out of metal and glass, at least if the leaked renders are to be believed. The phone will include a thin bezel below the display, and a centered display camera hole, while its display will sport rounded corners. All of the phone's physical keys will be included on the right, including the volume up, volume down, and power / lock buttons. A fingerprint scanner will be placed on the back of the device, while the phone will include three cameras on the back, all of which will protrude a bit, they won't be flush with the phone's back side. Lenovo's logo will be placed in the lower-left corner of the phone's back, while the back side of this phone will be relatively flat, compared to a ton of other phones which offer a curved back side. The phone's SIM card tray will be accessible from the left, while an LED flash will sit below the phone's rear-facing cameras.
Now, as far as specifications are concerned, there's not much to tell when it comes to the Lenovo Z5s, as its full specs did not leak just yet, all we have at this point are bits and pieces. The Lenovo L78071 aka the Lenovo Z5s did get certified by the 3C authority in China, as well as TENAA, and as part of the process, it was shared that the phone will sport a 6.3-inch display, though we do not know what resolution exactly are we looking at here, though chances are that the phone will sport a fullHD+ panel. The phone's battery info surfaced as well, the device will include a 3,210mAh unit on the inside, which doesn't seem to be all that big considering the display size on this phone, in all honesty. On top of that, we do know that the phone will measure 156.7 x 74.5 x 7.8mm, which suggests that the device will include a rather high display aspect ratio, either 19:9 or 19.5:9, otherwise it wouldn't be so narrow, having its display size in mind, of course. That is pretty much all the spec info that appeared online, we still do not know what to expect in the SoC department, as some rumors are suggesting that it will ship with Qualcomm's new Snapdragon 855 processor, while others are suggesting the company will include a mid-range chip. Chances are that the Lenovo Z5s will include the Snapdragon 710, in all honesty, as the Lenovo Z5 shipped with the Snapdragon 636, so the company will probably want to keep this phone in the mid-range segment of the market, and the Snapdragon 710 is the next logical step.
2019 Will Be A Year Of Smartphone Display Holes
A ton of smartphone manufacturers are planning to launch smartphones with display holes next year, though not all of them will use those holes in order to accommodate cameras, at least based on what we've seen thus far. Other than the Galaxy A8s, Samsung seems to be planning to include display cameras in its flagship Galaxy S10 series as well. Based on some images that surfaced yesterday, the Galaxy S10 will include a single display camera in its upper-right corner, while the Galaxy S10+ will include two such cameras in that very same place. The OPPO R19 will sport a similar setup as the Lenovo Z5s, based on leaks, as the phone is expected to have a centered display camera hole at the top of its display. LG, on the other hand, patented a dual cutout for the display, a pill-shaped one, and it remains to be seen if the company plans to include two front-facing cameras there, or will the second cutout be used for something else, a tiny earpiece perhaps. ZTE has a slightly different approach, it seems, as the company patented a smartphone design with a pill-shaped display hole, but in ZTE's case, that display hole will accommodate an earpiece, not a front-facing camera… which actually makes us wonder where will the company include a front-facing camera, as it was not shown in LG's sketches for that smartphone design. All in all, we'll see all sorts of smartphones with display holes in 2019.