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LG’s V30 aims for the smartphone sweet spot

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It's not too big; it's not too small. LG’s new V30 is aiming for the smartphone sweet spot.

Announced Thursday at Berlin's IFA electronics show, the new V's big, curved display offers six inches of viewing area – a third of an inch more than last year’s V20 but not as much as the 6.3-inch Samsung Galaxy Note 8.

Despite a fair amount of screen, the V30 fits comfortably inside the body of a medium-size smartphone, prompting an existential review as to whether LG has built a phablet here or not. Thickness-wise, it sits just above a standard iPhone.

the LG V30

Six inches of screen, palmable.


For those who have been following LG's V smartphone series for a couple of years, you should know that the "second screen" found on the top of the V10 and V20 phones is not present on the V30. (You are likely not heartbroken to learn this.) More good news: The V series screen has switched to OLED, which means it looks more dynamic and has a nicer-looking always-on display.

For power, the V30 has the same processor as Samsung’s latest Galaxy phones (Snapdragon 835) but packs less RAM (4 GB) than its main competitor, the new Note 8 (6 GB). There are 64 GB and 128 GB storage versions of the V30, but both are expandable by popping in an SD card (up to 2 TB).

Most of the standard 2017 smartphones features are all here: Always-on display, water-resistance, wireless charging, a rear fingerprint reader and the latest version of Android (7.0 Nougat at release).

The camera lenses on the back of the V30 are a 16MP standard and a 13 MP wide. By offering the largest aperture on any smartphone to date (f/1.6 on the standard lens), the camera on the V30 should hypothetically fare well in low-light shoots.

A couple of new additions on the video side of the camera – Point Zoom for smooth punching on specifics parts of a frame and Cine filters for spicing up the footage you shoot – the V30 should appeal to smartphone filmmakers. (Because those do exist.)

Point Zoom

Point Zoom – which is exactly what it sounds like – seems like an idea that should have come to phones a long time ago.

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The V30 is coming to carriers this fall. The phone will be 5G Evolution-capable on AT&T – aka faster speeds in the handful of areas where 5G Evolution is up and running – and the first T-Mobile handset to be 600 MHz-compatible, which is a spectrum the company recently added to expand its coverage into more rural parts of the U.S.

Pricing for the V30 has yet to be announced, but reports indicate it should cost somewhere between the price of the iPhone and the Note. The sweet spot, you might say.

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