The new LG G8 ThinQ looks a lot like its predecessor the G7 ThinQ, but under the hood, it comes packing a ton of new and very unusual tech. For example, you can use hand gestures to unlock the screen and control different phone functions without ever touching the phone. If that sounds like some sort of abracadabra…. well, it kind of is.
At the heart of these cool new features in the LG G8 ThinQ is the Z Camera. The Z Camera powers the phone’s enhanced biometric security, gesture-based input method, and it helps improves the front-facing camera experience. To that effect, with the help of Z camera, the LG G8 can scan your face in 3D. 3D scanning is a lot more secure than the conventional 2D facial recognition that you find on most smartphones. It also enables face unlock to work better in low light because it uses infrared.
Speaking of Infrared, the phone uses infrared absorption to recognize the vein pattern in your hand – and that’s how it recognizes you. Specifically, the hemoglobin in the blood absorbs the infrared. This all certainly sounds like something out of science fiction, but we wouldn’t be surprised if this technology starts rolling out to more smartphones in the near future. To that effect, The G8 is also the first smartphone to use a ToF sensor from Infineon, but it probably won’t be the last.
To sum up, there are three ways you can unlock the G8 ThinQ: With Hand ID (using vein pattern recognition), using 3D Face Unlock, or using the fingerprint sensor.
The LG G8 ThinQ also comes with a new way to interact with it called Air Motion. Essentially the phone recognizes the shape and movement of your hand and offers you touchless control for controlling shortcuts, calls, alarms, music / videos, the volume, and capturing screenshots. This type of touch-less control can be super practical in all kinds of scenarios – eg: Imagine being able to fast forward through a video while you’re cooking – all without touching your phone. We briefly tried Air Motion ourselves on the LG G8 ThinQ, and while there certainly is a significant learning curve involved, it works.
The LG G8 ThinQ also comes with several new camera tricks and improvements. Enhanced Selfie utilizes the Z camera to improve portrait mode, allowing the camera to separate the different layers of the shot that you’re composing. This especially helps make the Studio Lighting mode look better. LG is also bringing Portrait mode to video. You’ll be able to set focal points as you’re recording video, and the focal point can focus on all sorts of objects – not just humans. When it comes to night shots, the Night View feature combines 10 photos together to produce a very clear low light shot.
LG always pays attention to audio quality, so it’s no surprise that the LG G8 ThinQ carries over the Boombox speaker and Hi-Fi DAC audio. But what’s new is its crystal sound OLED display. The crystal sound display replaces the receiver altogether, providing a clean hole-less look – and instead, the display vibrates to produce sound. The technology promises to provide clear audio when making phone calls even in noisy environments. The crystal sound OLED should also help make music and videos sound better and more immersive, and it will work in conjunction with the boombox speakers.
When it comes to hardware, the LG G8 ThinQ comes rocking a 6.1” OLED QHD+ display. It’s powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset, 6GB of RAM, 128GB of storage and a solid 3,500 mAh battery. The phone will be available in a choice of black or silver.
Globally, there will be two variants of the G8 ThinQ, as well as a lower-cost G8s for certain markets, which is not coming to US. The global version will be available in other color variants. There is only one G8 ThinQ model that is going to be available in the US.