LG G6: Focussing on a Big Screen Without an Unwieldy Phone

By Tom Pritchard on at

Up on stage at MWC, LG has just given us our first official glimpse of the LG G6. The announcement is still on going, but LG has ditched the modular gimmick from last year, in favour of maintaining a minimalist display-focused design. That means the G6 has a fairly smooth display without the annoyance of protruding elements (like the camera), and what LG is calling 'Full Vision'.

Full Vision means having a larger display (in this case 5.7-inch Quad HD with resolution), without having to deal with a larger phone. Full Vision is designed to make sure your phone fits in your pocket, can be used with a single hand, and does this by slapping the phone into a compact phone. They claim its the same body as a typical 5.3-inch body. This display will ditch the usual 16:9 ratio we're used to on smartphones, switching to 18:9 instead. Film nerds will know that 18:9 is the standard in the film industry, and bringing it to phones makes the screen narrower and (supposedly) more immersive. It also means watching films on your phone won't require any cropping, not that I've ever really noticed this problem in the past.

LG also announced that the G6 will be the first smartphone to come with support for Dolby Vision and HDR 10. It's not 4K, but that's certainly an improvement from standard 1080p and QHD displays. Anyone worrying about the lack of HDR content need not worry either, since LG revealed that both Amazon and Netflix will start streaming Dolby Vision content to mobile devices, so you can enjoy HDR content on your phone and TV.

On top of the display aspects, the other main focus of the G6 is usability. For this, they brought out an ergonomics expert from Penn State Universityt to sing praises about the design. According to him the G6 has a stable grip, in part due to the fact LG hasn't sacrificed the bottom bezel of the phone. He also claimed that testing showed a higher satisfaction rate for an 18:9 ratio, and promised the 5.7-inch display was the perfect size - since larger displays supposedly tire out your hands and increase the frequency of errors. That sounds nice, though you have to feel sceptical given the context of these claims.

The G6 also has a 3,300 mAh battery, with a design that's built on keeping it safe. LG made a point of saying it tested its phones to a much higher standard than what was required. Clearly it's not keen on its phones going up in flames. The G6 also has IP68 water and dustproofing, which should keep your phone nice and safe next time you drop it in your drink.

The rear camera has had a resolution upgrade to 13MP, though LG was clear to express that they're not just focussing on resolution. It promised an upgrade to picture quality, though didn't give us many details. What we do know is that the camera has the same standard and wide angle sensors as the G5, but the wide angle has been upgraded to 125-degrees to ensure photos look exactly like what you see with your own eyes. The front camera now has a 100-degree wide angle lens as well, for people who can't stop taking pictures of their faces. Resolution there is only 5MP.

The big news is that the camera comes with a 2x optical zoom, powered by the phone's Snapdragon 821 processor. So we'll start seeing other phone makers follow in Apple and LG's fooptsteps. That feature's only available on the standard angle lens, however, so don't get any ideas. The cameras can also snap shots in a variety of different aspect ratios, so if you plan to upload it to places like Instagram you won't need to spend time cropping everything to perfection.

For anyone who cares about old mobile games, LG will also be giving G6 owners "$200" of free gaming content. It didn't specify everything, but you'll be able to unlock damn near everything in Temple Run 2, Crossy Road, Sim City Buildit, Cookie Jam, Genies and Gems, along with Spider-Man Unlimited. Great news, I guess.

Other features of note  include a fingerprint scanner, Google Assistant, and Qualcomm's Quick Charge 3.0. It will also come with 4GB of RAM, a choice of 32GB or 64GB of internal storage, microSD expansion, and runs on Android 7.0 (Nougat).

The LG G6 will be available in three colours, which the marketing team have clearly had some fun with. Ice Platinum, Mystic White, and Astro Black. Anyone else miss regular colour names?

No release date yet, but that should be coming along fairly soon. We'll keep you posted.

Giz UK is on the floor at MWC in Barcelona! We're going to have plenty of coverage coming in over the next few days, and you can catch up on it all here.