It might look the same, but it’s not the same. Last year’s LG G5 tried — unsuccessfully — to get the world interested in modular smartphones, and this year LG’s aim is at the same time a little more restrained and a little more bold. Built around a 18:9 ratio display, the G6’s form factor is completely different to the phones we’re all already using.
The G6 is LG’s newest and most high-end phone yet, and it’s sizeable: the phone’s front is dominated by a 5.7-inch ‘FullVision’ LCD display, one with a 18:9 (or 2:1) ratio that makes it longer and slimmer than the 16:9 widescreen displays we’ve become familiar with over the past decade. Apart from a few notable standouts like Blackberry, touchscreen smartphones have been almost entirely designed around 16:9 panels — it’s the widescreen format that almost all TV shows and movies are delivered in.
The LG G6’s 2880x1440pixel 5.7-inch panel, though, has more screen real estate — at its ‘top’, if you want to think about it like that — compared to a 16:9 phone. LG has been experimenting in the past with extra top screens on models like last year’s V20, and the G6 is the natural extension of this. The company says a 18:9 phone is slimmer and easier to hold in one hand, and the 2:1 ratio also makes it possible to snap and review square-ratio (1:1) photos simultaneously.
Apart from the screen, though, you may as well have seen most of the LG G6’s specifications on the V20’s retail box. It packs a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 quad-core processor with 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM, will be sold in either 32GB or 64GB variants both with expandable storage via microSD, and with a nonremovable 3300mAh battery. Running Android 7.0 Nougat, the G6 is LG’s first waterproof flagship phone, too — it’s IP68 rated, so can survive a 30-minute dunk in 1.5 metres of water. Data and charging comes over USB Type-C.
LG’s now-familiar dual camera setup returns, with the G6 packing twin 13-megapixel sensors on the centre rear of the phone above its fingerprint reader; one camera use a 125-degree wide-angle lens with f/2.4 aperture, while the (relatively) standard lens is a 71-degree one with a f/1.8 aperture and integrated optical image stabilisation. Pricing and availability, we’re told, will be announced for Australia in the future.