Barcelona debut for LG's AI-assisted V30S flagship phones
As expected, LG has injected more smarts into its flagship smartphone. Users of the new V30S ThinQ and the V30S+ ThinQ phones will get an AI assist when using some of the commonly-used features of the camera, as well as be able to do more using voice commands.
LG introduced its ThinQ AI technology at CES 2018 last month, announcing that it would be rolling out the "approachable and less intimidating" smarts to some of its home appliances, consumer electronics and services. For its V30S smartphones, that tech makes using the camera a tad easier and also gives more power to voice interaction.
Both phones feature the same dual lens camera at the back, with a 16 MP F1.6 lens (71° field of view) and a wide angle 13 MP F1.9 lens (120° field of view). There's also a 5 MP wide-angle camera to the front, with an F2.2 lens covering 90° field of view. LG gives mobile snappers a helping hand courtesy of Vision AI, which is made up of three AI features.
AI CAM examines what's coming through the lens and recommends the best shooting modes from a choice of eight presets, where settings are tweaked to get optimal shots based on such things as viewing angle, color, reflections, lighting and saturation levels.
QLens taps into image recognition smarts to help improve online shopping – scanning QR codes will serve up information about the cheapest availability, while image searches offer detailed information on tourist spots, or provide similar photos of food, fashion and celebrities.
Bright Mode has been designed to make low light photography a whole lot easier, using an algorithmic approach to image clarity, brightening up dark scenes by a factor of two while also nixing noise.
Moving beyond the camera, Voice AI essentially improves on standard interactions with Google Assistant by adding more commands. There's voice and face recognition, too, together with a fingerprint sensor. And LG says that future AI enhancements will be delivered over the air, so long as the hardware remains up to the task.
Elsewhere, LG has opted not to use the top-of-the-line chip from Qualcomm, but has retained the Snapdragon 835 of last year's model. The phones also keep the same huge 6-inch QuadHD OLED display rocking 538 pixels per inch. The V30S ThinQ comes with 6 GB of RAM and 128 GB of storage, while the V30S+ ThinQ gets 6 GB of RAM and 256 GB of storage. Both phones have a microSD slot for more capacity if needed.
In common with MWC announcements from Samsung, Nokia and Sony, the new V30S phones run on the latest version of Google's operating system, Android 8.0 Oreo. They're thin and light – 151.7 x 75.4 x 7.3 mm (5.9 x 2.96 x 0.28 in) and 158 g (5.57 oz) to be precise – and have been tested to MIL-STG 810G for ruggedness. And confirmed as IP68 water- and dust-resistant.
The 3,300 mAh battery can be charged wirelessly, there's Bluetooth 5.0 and 802.11ac Wi-Fi, NFC and USB-C, and the phones are ready for use with Google Daydream VR technology. Finally, the same impressive 32-bit quad DAC as last year's model should be music to the ears of mobile audiophiles.
There's no word on pricing or availability, but visitors to MWC in Barcelona can have a look at LG's new intelligent flagships at the company's booth until March 1.