It looks like the LG G6 will be a significant departure from its predecessor — and that's a good thing.
The phone, which will likely be unveiled on Feb. 26 to kick off this year's Mobile World Congress, will leave the G5's modularity behind in favor of new innovations, including a new type of quad HD+ screen. Here's what we know (or what we think we know) about the LG G6 so far.
The LG G5 - Credit: Jeremy Lips / Tom's Guide
LG has sent out invitations to a press event on Feb. 26 in Barcelona, the day before Mobile World Congress officially starts in that city. Given that the G5 made its debut at last year's MWC, we fully expect that Feb. 26 event to mark the debut of the G6.
LG's Mobile World Congress InvitationExpect to see the G6 earlier than its predecessor. Reports from Android Authority and ETOnline suggest that LG hopes to launch right away in an attempt to beat Samsung's next smartphone to market. That would give LG at least a month or so without any competition from other major new smartphones. That may be enough to win over some Samsung customers.
"It definitely appears that launching earlier can pull in sales," said Avi Greengart, consumer platforms and devices research director of Current Analysis. "Given Samsung’s Note 7 vulnerability, if LG can create a compelling superphone before Samsung announces its next flagship, LG could see some Samsung buyers switch."
Here's one thing LG has confirmed: the G6 will have an almost bezel-less 5.7-inch display with an 18:9 aspect ratio to maximize how much room the display takes on the body. The 2880 x 1440 screen is meant to make using dual-screen multitasking easy, and LG's inTOUCH tech means that the screen will likely be super-responsive with little or no delay.
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LG also says that the screen will consume 30 percent less power, though it doesn't clarify what device the new phone is being compared to (presumably the G5). Some rumors suggest there could be a secondary ticker display like that found on LG's V10 or V20, but we've seen nothing to back that up definitively.
We're mostly in the dark about the design, but Android Authority published a diagram allegedly of the G6, showing similar dimensions to the previous G5.
Credit: Android Authority
No More Friends
LG experimented with modular add-ons called "friends" that added functionality with the G5, but it seems like the company is reversing course. The Wall Street Journal reports that the next phone will ditch modularity because the G5 was a flop.
"Modular designs make tremendous sense to engineers, but consumers don’t buy phones that way," Greengart said.
An LG spokesperson told the Journal that users weren't interested in the Friends, and that the next phone will focus more on usability.
LG is planning a new interface based on Android called UX 6.0. It will utilize the 18:9 display to show two square photos side-by-side on screen (perfect for comparing prospective Instagram shots). We also expect to be able to use it for multitasking with two apps at the same time.