LG has now confirmed the upcoming LG G8 ThinQ smartphone will come equipped with an Infineon REAL3 image sensor.
Although this was effectively the only thing that was announced, it does provide a better overall picture of what the G8 ThinQ will offer consumers when it arrives.
For one thing, this sensor is specifically for use on the G8 as part of the front-facing camera setup and this means LG is going to make a play for the front-facing camera experience as one of the phone's major selling points.
For example, in the same announcement LG confirmed the use of the REAL 3 image sensor means the G8 will offer enhanced security and depth measuring. In other words, buyers of the new phone can expect to take advantage of face unlocking and payment authentication, as well as an improved augmented and virtual reality experience in general.
The chip itself, although being touted in this latest announcement is not entirely new as it was first announced by Infineon (in collaboration with pmdtechnologies) back in January of 2018 during CES.
It is a Time-of-Flight (TOF) 3D sensor that is basically capable of capturing a 3D image of the person’s head. This is not the only type out there as Vivo also unveiled its own ToF sensor solution during 2018. Even more recently, Honor launched the View20 smartphone which also comes with a ToF sensor although its sensor is included on the rear of the device which rules out aspects such as facial recognition.
One of the benefits of these ToF solutions is their ability to capture infrared light that’s reflected off something. As LG points out, this differs from traditional 3D-based solutions that rely on algorithm-based calculations to determine distance.
Due to this difference, LG states this solution will be “faster and more effective” and will place less of a drain on the processor and battery. This will also be irrespective of whether the device is used indoors or outside.
LG also took a moment to suggest that although this technology will be included on its G8 smartphone, it very well might come to the company’s “lower-cost devices” at a later time.
This (ToF) sensor is a secondary sensor on the front of the device and this now explains one of the issues that had cropped up when leaked (albeit debated by the company) images of the LG G8 surfaced online.
Those images showed what seemed to be a notch that included unaccounted for elements leading to the suggestion a traditional dual camera setup might be included, or as we now know - a primary front-facing camera that’s accompanied by a ToF sensor.
You can expect to hear much more about this sensor, as well as what else it can do in detail, along with everything else the LG G8 is hoping to sell you on when the phone is announced ahead of the public opening of MWC 2019.
Although, as evidenced by today, LG is fairly likely to announce more G8 features before the official unveiling. An exercise that’s now become commonplace when it comes to LG and its phone pre-launch cycle.