South Korean electronics manufacturer LG recently launched the LG G7 ThinQ in India, exclusively on Flipkart. First introduced in May this year, the phone is a late entrant in the country’s smartphone market. However, for its price tag of Rs 39,990, it offers a solid list of specifications and features that make it count as a flagship smartphone.
Design and display
Built on the template of the LG V30+ and the LG G6, the LG G7 offers the best of both worlds in a package that looks premium. The phone has a glass-metal-glass design, a notch-based 6.1-inch QHD screen on the front, and a four-side (4D) curved glass on the back. The notch screen is an improvement over the 18:9 aspect ratio screen that the G6 and V30+ had. Though the notch is small and looks identical to most current-generation smartphones like the OnePlus 6, it has an optimised area around it which the company calls ‘second screen’.
The second screen is enabled by default, but can be turned off from settings. It can also be customised for a different colour to make it look different from the rest of the screen area. The screen area around the notch shows app notifications, making it better than many other notch screen-based smartphones.
On the back, the phone has a dual-camera module aligned horizontally on the upper-middle side, with a circular fingerprint sensor below it. The glass back looks plush but is a fingerprint magnet that dulls its sheen. Overall, with a camera module that sits well within the chassis, the phone’s back looks clean.
Speaking of the LG G7 ThinQ dual-camera module, it features dual 16-megapixel shooters of different aperture sizes and focal lengths. The primary 16MP lens has a regular focal length and an f/1.6 aperture. This sensor is assisted with optical image stabilisation (OIS). The secondary 16MP sensor is a wide-angle lens of f/1.9 aperture, fixed focus and no OIS. Both these cameras work independently in different situations. However, for portrait shots, the secondary wide-angle lens shares depth information with the primary one to create a bokeh effect for natural-looking portraits. The LG G7 ThinQ camera also boasts an artificial intelligence-based automatic scene detection which also works without internet. This feature allows the camera module to change camera settings automatically by recognising the scene.
The image output is fairly good — better than other midrange flagships like the OnePlus 6 and Asus Zenfone 5z, but nowhere close to the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S9-series and the Apple iPhone 8-series. The camera takes detailed shots in daylight, recognising a scene quickly and mostly getting the settings right. However, in some cases, it goes overboard and makes the image look artificial. Switching to wide-angle camera is quite easy and requires just a tap on the wide-angle icon on the top side of the screen. Zooming out also changes the camera from regular to wide-angle lens which is even more convenient. However, the wide-angle lens, due to its fixed focus, is better only for landscape shots or when there are several objects to fit in one frame. Low-light photography in this smartphone is better than other midrange flagship phones and its super bright mode manages to take stable long exposure shots with good details.
The 8MP selfie camera sports a fixed focus lens of an f/1.9 aperture size. The front camera also boasts the portrait mode, which manages to do proper segmentation of the object and background to create enhanced portrait shots with a good amount of background blur. The camera takes detailed shots in daylight conditions, but shows some weakness in low light.
Performance and multimedia
The LG G7 ThinQ is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 system-on-chip (SoC), paired with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage. The phone boots Android Oreo out of the box under the LG user interface. The interface is sleek and the phone runs smoothly irrespective of what you make it do. Running power-intensive apps is not a problem, but the phone warms up a bit during extended gaming sessions. Connectivity, though, seems to be one major letdown; the phone keeps missing WiFi connection even where the signals are strong. LTE connectivity is also not up to the mark and the phone moves to 3G in sketchy 4G zones and moves back to 4G LTE network only after a reboot, or after enabling the flight mode and then disabling it. Due to connectivity issues, the phone also tends to miss calls and receives messages with some delay. This is a huge let down for a smartphone. However, there are chances that a future software upgrade will address these issues.
Coming to multimedia capabilities, the LG G7 ThinQ boasts a mono speaker that uses phone body as an acoustic chamber to amplify the overall audio output. The speaker output is clear and powerful. However, it is the audio quality through wired headphones that makes this phone a suitable choice for audiophiles. It is equipped with a Hi-Fi Quad DAC, coupled with the DTS:X technology that makes it a delight to use as an audio device. The output remains loud and does not miss any detail. This makes the LG G7 ThinQ a worthy rival to the HTC U-series smartphones in terms of overall audio output.
The LG G7 is powered by a 3,000 mAh battery that keeps it going for almost a day. For a smartphone with super bright display, always-on feature and QHD resolution, the on-battery time is respectable.
Priced at Rs 39,990, the LG G7 ThinQ is a clear winner in the midrange flagship segment — except for its connectivity troubles. Otherwise, the phone has a bright screen, powerful performance, a useful dual-camera module and an okay battery life.