LG G6 Hands On

27 February 2017

What is it? 

The LG G6 is LG's flagship smartphone for 2017. Key features include an extra tall display with an 18:9 aspect ratio (or 2:1), a design light on bezels, and water-resistance. While LG's been one of the few flagship manufactures clinging on to removable batteries, that's ended with the G6; the G6's battery is sealed, and the modular design introduced with the G5 is gone too. 

The G6's 5.7-inch extra tall "FullVision" display is the star of the show, running at a resolution of 2880x1440 pixels. Despite the fact that a 5.7-inch screen is distinctly phablet territory, the G6's lack of bezel and the screen's added height mean the phone is just slightly larger than a 4.7-inch iPhone 7. Essentially, it's small enough to still hold and use in one. 

Other key specifications include a Snapdragon 821 processor, IP68 water-resistance, a rear-facing fingerprint reader, 4GB of RAM, a minimum of 64GB of expandable storage, a 3,300mAh battery, and Android Nougat. The G6 also touts two-rear facing cameras: one conventional 13MP camera, and one wide-angle 13MP camera with a 125-degree lens.

Notably, the G6 is the first non-Pixel smartphone to ship with Google Assistant, Google's new replacement for Google Now. 

What did we think?

Initially, I was quite sceptical about the LG G6's "FullVision" display. I prefer my phones on the smaller size, and the iPhone SE and the 4.7-inch iPhone 7 have been the last two devices I've used as my main daily drivers. That being said, LG has not only managed to cram a phablet-sized display in a body not that much bigger than the 4.7-inch iPhone 7, it's also kept it usable. 

I found I could comfortably grip the G6 with a single hand, and for the most part, use it one handed. Reaching Q when writing a text can be a bit of a stretch, and you'll definitely need a second hand (or to readjust your grip) when you want to reach up, but for the most part, you genuinely can use the G6 with one hand. 

The G6 also feels great to hold. It sits well in the hand, has no sharp edges, and a lovely curved Gorilla Glass 5 back. I'd describe it as light but solid; it's not heavy, but it doesn't feel like it could fall apart (unlike a certain LG flagship from last year, not naming names). 

While LG has cut down on bezel, the G6 doesn't have a true edge-to-edge display; there's still a sliver on either side of the screen. In fact, it feels like most of the bezel that's been cut has come from the top and bottom in order to accommodate the taller screen. Also, unlike most other phones, the G6's display has rounded corners. 

From a practical perspective, the 18:9 display doesn't feel too different than a regular smartphone, but the extra real-estate could end up being quite useful if apps take advantage of it. For example, you can see your most recent shots in LG's camera app while still getting a full viewfinder. 

Having taken a few quick shots, the G6 looks to maintain LG's reputation for great cameras. I didn't have any issues taking photos in a somewhat dark convention centre (although I sometimes needed to take a couple of shots to get focus right, I didn't have time to dive into manual settings), and macro images have a lovely depth of the field. The G6's wide-angle lens lives up to the name, and seems to be of a similar quality to the phone's more conventional camera (whereas on the G5, images taken with the wide-angle lens were noticeably worse). The wide-angle lens does however add a bit of fish-eye style distortion to images. 

As it stands, the G6 is a big step up for LG in terms of smartphones, and recaptures a lot of what I loved about the G3 and G4. Obviously there's still questions about how it fares in day-to-day usage, battery life, and all that jazz, but it feels like LG has got a gimmick-free phone worth being excited about. 

Camera Samples

When can I buy it?

LG has yet to confirm availability for the G6.

How much will it cost me?

LG has yet to confirm local pricing for the G6.


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