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LG V40 ThinQ rumor review: specs and release of LG's 4th flagship for the year



The LG V35 ThinQ may be the harbinger of the V40 ThinQ to be released October 3 in terms of overall looks, but not so much in specs. LG's project "Storm," the V40, will be its fourth flagship for the year, turning it into a Sony of sorts, but on steroids. First, there was the V30S, which started the whole ThinQ thingy, and enriched the V30 with AI shenanigans, then came the G7 ThinQ, then the V35 ThinQ, so let's preview the next ThinQ.

Design


Thankfully, on the V35 LG didn't run with the wildly-annoying notch trend it went with on the G7, but leaked V40 renders show that it will a have protruding bezel, encroaching into the sacred screen panel space. Those same bezels will be kept to a minimum, though, says LG, and the V40 will be one of the lightesst, most compact phones with 6"+ displays, it claims. The V35 is already one very, very compact phone for its display size, and we'd like to keep the line this way indeed. 

An IP68-rated water-resistant glass body can be reasonably expected, but LG already hinted that it will keep its V-line "more innovative" in the future, so we wouldn't rule out design surprises, just hope that they aren't of the modular, snap-on type. Yes, LG went there with the G5

What LG hinted at when it spoke about the V40 design, is "dotted" glass rear in three colors - Aurora Black, Platinum Gray and Moroccan Blue -  that will make gripping traction better, while at the same time remaining durable and allowing wireless charging current to pass through. The proprietary tech is called Silky Blast by LG, and is a "treatment to etch microscopic pits on the rear glass of the LG V40." Hopefully, the matching cases you will inevitably slip on the phone, will be as nice to the touch as the Blast treatment.


Display


In the runup to the G7 ThinQ launch event we went to in New York City, LG explained that it opted for an LCD panel in its latest flagship because G-series devices are considered more mainstream by the company. In fact, LG appears to be positioning the G7 as a more entry-level flagship, although it said that pricing of the panel wasn’t the chief factor for the decision.

Instead, the company’s use of LCD stemmed from its plans for future V-line smartphones. Last year’s LG V30 introduced a new OLED panel, the V35 follows suit, and it appears LG has similar plans for the fall’s LG V40, with the South Korean brand confirming that it is saving its OLED panel production for future V-series devices. 

As far as size or resolution, it will be "with a display measuring greater than six inches," so LG isn't bucking the trend here. The latest rumors peg a 6.4-inch notched display carrying a 1440 x 3120 resolution. That works out to an aspect ratio of 19.5:9, and will probably take a large toll on the battery due to the QHD+ resolution.

Specs


While a Snapdragon 845 chipset, and 6GB RAM seem to be almost certain for an eventual V40, given that it will likely be the last flagship for the year from LG, and will have to go against Samsung's Note 9, plus Apple's iPhone XS Max, LG likely won't skimp on the internal storage in this thing, so 128/256GB models are entirely plausible. 

We are certainly inclined to ask for a larger battery than the 3300 mAh pack that powers the V35, as the high-res display, coupled with a powerful chipset, is likely to kill the capacity in no time, unless LG pulls a Note 9 (at least as far as rumors are concerned), and intro's a battery closer to the 4000 mAh mark, then to the 3000 mAh one.

Camera



What would a reported V40 ThinQ do in the camera department that LG hasn't already done in one form or another? It's had dual-cam flagships for a while now, and is even unique in offering wide-angle secondary lens, instead of the usual depth sensor or telephoto lens that most others are now equipped with. It also was the first with triple-focusing tech by introducing laser AF, in addition to the usual shenanigans. 

Well, LG will jump on the triple camera bandwagon that was started by the Huawei P20 Pro, but is now carried over by Samsung with the A7 (2018), and rumored for the Galaxy S10. The three cameras are mounted horizontally, and the camera on the right features a 16MP sensor that takes "Standard" pictures. The 12MP middle camera produces "Super-Wide Angle" shots, and the camera on left has an 8MP "Telephoto" lens.

In front, we expect to see an 8MP camera for "Standard" selfies, and a second camera that delivers "Wide-Angle" images. A triple cam setup with wide angle plus telephoto lens would be the dream mobile snapping kit, so, thank you, LG.


Price and release date


The V40's announcement is set for Wednesday, October 3, but as far as the release date, the phone will likely be launched a week or few after. The pricing is actually less murky - given that the G7 ThinQ landed at $750, the V35 at $900, but was quickly BOGO'ed afterwards, we expect nothing less than $900, and perhaps a bit more, for LG's finest for 2018. What do you think?

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