LG G7 is shaping up to be among the most talked-about smartphones in recent times. It was expected to debut at Mobile World Congress last month, but the company cancelled it at the last moment since the mobile division chief didn’t see any meaningful upgrade over its predecessor.
Then a smartphone codenamed ‘Neo’ appeared at LG’s show floor, indicating it could be the scrapped device. Since then the smartphone has also been spotted in the form of renders and most rumors suggest the only major addition will be a notch similar to the one seen on the Apple iPhone X. According to leakster Evan Blass, the G7 will debut sometime in June with Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 chipset, and reports from Korea also hint at a variant without the notch.
According to market analysts, LG will not go for bold experiments, and stick to tried and tested formula this year. That includes return to the LCD display from the P-OLED display seen on LG V30 and Google Pixel 2 XL. LG was widely criticized for its P-OLED panel, which exhibited blue tint and warmer colors than panel from Samsung Display.
LG is said to be switching back to LCD panel not because of embarrassment with last year’s panel but due to cost. This comes in contradiction to a report last week claiming that G7 will be more expensive than last year’s flagship smartphone. An OLED panel has multiple advantages over LCD panel including no need for a backlight layer, more flexibility, and energy efficiency. It is, however, expensive to make and the equipment needed to create OLED panels are very difficult to procure at this moment.
Korea’s The Investor adds that LG G7 will feature a “MLCD+” type of liquid crystal display, which promises 35 percent less power consumption, and higher level of brightness. It is not known whether it will be able to match OLED in terms of brightness and thinner profile.
The switch from OLED to LCD also raises questions over company’s own OLED manufacturing. LG is one of the largest players in the large-screen OLED market, but its entry in the smaller OLED panels for smartphones has not played out the way it would have hoped. Samsung’s OLED panels are superior in every way, and its first batch of plastic OLED displays have failed to match the industry standard.
LG was said to become supplier to Apple this year, but it now seems unlikely considering that iPhone maker is cutting down on OLED orders from Samsung, and will have a LCD model next year. LG has reported loss for 11 straight quarters, and the launch of G7 is seen as critical by financial analysts around the world.
Corroborating rumors so far, the LG G7 is said to launch with Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 chipset like all other flagship devices launched so far. It will have variants with 4GB or 6GB RAM, but there is also rumor of a higher variant with 8GB of RAM. The G7 is said to come with 64GB or 128GB internal storage. One of the differentiators between G7 and G6 will be the notch, which may or may not be the an useful addition, but it will have native support with the release of Android P later this year.