ALL the talk might be about the Google Pixel, Samsung Galaxy or Apple iPhone but there is another lesser known model that could be a contender for device of the year.
WHEN you are talking about LG’s impressive product range, the company’s OLED TVs and Dolby Atmos soundbars are at the top of the list.
But what might surprise you is the South Korean manufacturer also has an excellent range of smartphones, with the latest just released. It’s been a big year for consumers, with the Galaxy Note 8, Huawei Mate 10 and Google Pixel XL 2 all delivering unprecedented design, quality and performance, LG had its work cut out if it wanted to beat the competition. So how does the new V30+ measure up? Long story short, we have a genuine contender for smartphone of the year. DESIGN Instead of a radical new design, LG has opted to follow the 2017 mould with minimal bezel and no physical home button to offer maximum space. The six inch display has an 18:9 aspect ratio and the LCD screen has been swapped to an OLED — a move that makes sense given LG Dominates Tv market. While the OLED display does offer breathtaking colour accuracy for the most past, I did find a slight blue tinge when looking at the screen from strange viewing angles. The screen is housed in a smooth glass back and has a shiny aluminium band around the sides, with the later housing the volume rocker and SIM/microSD tray. On the bottom of the device is a USB-C charger and bottom-firing speaker grill, while the 3.5mm headphone jack is located at the top. The phone’s power button is cleverly located on the rear of the device where it doubles as the fingerprint scanner used to unlock the V30+ — thankfully it’s more central than the off-centre scanner found on Samsung’s flagships. For those who are coming from the company’s previous V-series handsets, you will notice the second screen has been removed, although you can get a similar feature by turning on the new Floating Bar in settings. CAMERA LG offers a dual 16MP/13MP rear camera set up, with the later used for wide angle shots. The camera offers bright, sharp pictures with very little noise in both bright and low light situations, however it doesn’t match the likes of Samsung of Google’s flagships. While auto mode will offer great shots, playing around with the manual settings can increase the quality. On the front of the device is a 5MP shooter, which is a little lacklustre compared to the quality of other competitors on the market — something that shouldn’t be too much of a deal breaker for those who avoid taking selfies. One of the biggest changes to this phone is a comprehensive suite of options in the camera software, with cinematic video filters developed to enhance the 4K footage. This means users can essentially add an Instagram-esque type filter to footage, giving it the appearance it’s been shot by a professional videographer. Another new addition to the camera software is Point Zoom, which moves your camera closer to the subject without jagged movements that would usually occur. The video camera also lets you capture footage in a LOG format so you can colour-grade at a later date with proper editing software. EVERYTHING ELSE LG has stepped away from the removable battery to offer better design, but the 3300mAh cell still offers decent life. Heavy users will likely need to recharge during the day, while light users could easily get a day without charging. In addition to adding the ability for wireless charging, the device can be topped up quickly using the USB-C port — 15 minutes will charge the phone 30 per cent or a full charge can be completed in just shy of two hours. Instead of moving its operating system to Android Oreo, LG has opted to stick with Nougat with its own visual interface overlaid. The device comes with 64GB of storage as standard, which can be expanded up to 256GB. LG has also made the V30+ IP68 water resistant, meaning it can be submerged in 1.5m of water for up to thirty minutes. Facial recognition technology has been included to unlock your phone with ease, while enhanced voice recognition technology can be set to respond only to your voice. The V30+ also offers Hi-Fi Quad DAC Audio, which essentially converts your digital music into an analog signal so it can be amplified by speakers and headphones without distortion. Premium listening is only made better with the ability to further tweak and adjust audio to your own taste. The use of the three microphones on the V30+ also means you can capture superb sound with less distortion, even in loud and noisy environments.