LG was one of the first to announce a flagship smartphone in 2017 with the G6. It's a fantastic phone but no smartphone ever has the limelight for long. No sooner does one launch, than its competition announces a rival and all of a sudden, what was brand spanking new, becomes old news.
LG is planning to steal some of its spotlight back again though. Here is everything you need to know about the second LG flagship of 2017, the LG V30.
LG V30: Design
- Premium glass and metal design
- Rear-mounted circular fingerprint sensor and dual camera
- IP68 and MIL STD 810G rated
The LG G6 was a far cry away from its predecessor, righting many of its wrongs and pushing all the right boundaries, predominately in terms of its display. While the G series has been the guinea pig in terms of design ideas though, the V series has generally nailed it first time.
The LG V20 offered a lovely lightweight aluminium build with super slim bezels, STD 810G drop protection and a sleek and stylish finish and the LG V30 follows in its path, changing a few things up while also adding several traits from its successful G6 sibling for a lovely looking device.
Confirming many of the rumours and leaks, the LG V30 offers a premium, IP68 waterproof design, almost all-screen front, circular rear-mounted fingerprint sensor and a dual-rear camera setup again. The metal and glass sandwich finish offers rounded edges, fusing the sides, front and rear together with a slick design.
Measuring 151.7 x 75.4 x 7.3mm, the V30 is slightly larger than the G6, though not by much. There is USB Type-C at the bottom, a 3.5mm headphone jack at the top and it comes in four colours: Aurora Black, Moroccan Blue, Cloud Silver and Lavender Violet.
LG V30: Display
- 6-inch OLED display, 2880 x 1440 resolution
- 18:9 aspect ratio for all-screen front
- Secondary floating display
The LG V30 arrives with an OLED display rather than the company's previously preferred choice of LCD. Prior to being confirmed, this was one of biggest rumours circulating around the device, supported by the announcement of Daydream compatibility from Google.
Despite its fantastic OLED TVs, LG has only ever opted for an OLED display on the G Flex. That was of course a little different though, given it bends, so the LG V30 is the first conventional LG smartphone to have an OLED display. You can expect brighter, punchier colours and better contrast than you'd traditionally find with LCD.
The LG V20 and LG V10 both have a 5.7-inch Quad HD display, as does the LG G6, despite the latter offering a different aspect ratio at 18:9 rather than 16:9. The LG V30 increases the display size to 6-inches though, offering the FullVision display found on the G6, meaning it adopts the 18:9 ratio and offers Dolby Vision and HDR 10 compatibility.
The resolution also increases from the V models sitting at 2880 x 1440 like the G6, which puts its pixel density at 537ppi and LG has said the P-OLED panel is mounted on a plastic base rather than glass in order to make curving the edges easier. LG also said the screen is capable of reproducing 148 per cent of the sRGB colour space, and is ideal for using with VR.
The V10 and V20 both had a secondary display at the top of their screens which presented various notification icons and information without the need to turn the main display on and the V30 also offers a secondary display but in a different format to its predecessors. Rather than a fixed bar at the top of the screen, the V30 opts for a "Floating Bar" to give users easy access to regularly used apps and settings.
The semi-transparent Floating Bar can be dragged off the FullVision display when not needed and when the main display is off, the Always-on Display can be customised even more so than previously. For example, it will show the clock and it can also be set to display Quick Tools, Music Player or a personal photo.
LG V30: Camera
- Dual-rear camera, one 13MP and one 16MP
- 5MP front camera with facial recognition
- f/1.6 aperture, glass lens
LG loves a dual rear camera and unlike some companies, it works well. The LG G5 had a great camera, as do the G6 and V20 so the fact that a dual camera setup has also been adopted for the LG V30 comes as no surprise.
There is a 16-megapixel normal lens on the rear of the V30 with a 70-degree field of view and optical image stabilisation (OIS), coupled with a 13-megapixel wide-angle lens that offers a 120-degree field of view but no OIS. According to LG, bokeh images can still be created through software even though the dual camera setup on the V30 opts for a wide-angle lens over a telephoto lens.
The 16-megapixel sensor has an aperture of f/1.6 with the adding of a glass lens element in place of the normal plastic aiming to improve sharpness, while the wide-angle lens has an aperture of f/1.9. LG says the f/1.6 lens allows for 25 per cent more light meaning the V30 should be able to deal with low light conditions better as it should improve dynamic range so brighter areas are brighter and shadows can be darker.
On the front, you'll find a 5-megapixel camera, which is the same as the LG G6 and the LG V20. The V30 will however offer facial recognition through the front camera even when the FullVision display is off.
LG has also introduced a Cine Video mode that allows for 15 colour presets for video which users can change to grade the look of their videos, as well as cine log options for those who want to do post-processing.
LG V30: Hardware
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 835
- Focus on audio with Quad DAC and MQA player
- 3300mAh battery capacity, wireless charging
The LG V30 is a flagship smartphone and therefore it offers flagship specs. This means the new device runs on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 platform, supported by 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage. The LG V30 also offers microSD support for storage expansion, just like the LG G6 and the LG V20.
In terms of battery, the LG V30 has a non-removable 3300mAh battery capacity, which is the same as the LG G6 and fractionally larger than the LG V20. There is a cooling pad in the V30, as well as a heat pipe to help direct the heat away from the battery and reduce the risk of overheating.
As expected, there is also a big focus on audio with the LG V30, as there has been with the previous V series devices. The V30 offers a Quad DAC, along with an MQA player and two microphones for video that smartly combine the feed.
There is also a B&O collaboration in some areas, though LG has yet to specify which countries and regions will get the partnership - but if you do, you'll find B&O Play headphones in the box.
LG V30: Software
- Android Nougat with LG UX 6.0+
- Similar experience to G6 but with extra features
The LG V30 arrives on Android Nougat with LG's UX 6.0+ user interface over the top.
There are several new features on board the new software, designed to make full use of the 18:9 FullVision OLED display. One of these features includes something called Graphy within the camera software.
This feature can be accessed when the camera is in manual mode and it allows you to choose from a range of downloadable preset photo modes for various types of shots. The presets have been created by professional photographers and include white balance, aperture, shutter speed and ISO.
Additionally, LG has upgraded security measures in the new software, with facial recognition stepping up its game. Users will be able to unlock their V30 just by looking at it, even when the display is off, without needing to press the power button first, as we mentioned previously. Alternatively, the V30 can also be unlocked using your voice and a set phrase.
LG has also said haptic feedback levels can be adjusted so you can completely customise the feel of the phone as you navigate around menus.
As for the Oreo update, LG wouldn't be drawn on when this might arrive, but said that it is something that they are aware of.
LG V30: Release date and price
- 31 August reveal
- Pre-orders expected to start in US on 17 September
- Available from 21 September in Korea
- V30 expected to be available globally
We've known for a while that the LG V30 was coming after Google confirmed during its Google I/O 2017 developer conference that LG would be releasing a second flagship before the end of the year, which would be compatible with Daydream VR.
LG then announced the LG V30 officially on 31 August at consumer electronics show IFA this year, along with the LG V30+, a version with 128GB storage.
LG has confirmed that it will go on sale from 21 September in Korea, before heading to other markets.
Android Authority previously claimed the device will be released in September. The site said pre-orders will start in the US on 17 September, with an on sale date of 28 September.
Android Authority also said the V30 will then launch in Europe and globally soon after. If true, it will be the first time a V-series handset has made it to the UK shores. The V30+ meanwhile, is set to be destined for the South Korean markets only.