LG Q7 rights the Q6’s wrongs, offers IP68 protection, fingerprint scanner

LG

Update (06/14): LG has confirmed pricing for the LG Q7 and Q7 Plus for its home market of South Korea and detailed its plans for a wider international release.

The regular LG Q7 will retail for 495,000 won (~$457) while the more powerful LG Q7 Plus comes in at 570,000 won (~$527). We’re still yet to hear anything on the low-end Q7a.

While LG hasn’t noted an exact release date for either device, it has confirmed that it will debut in Europe later this month followed by other markets such as Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

Original story (05/21): The LG Q6 was one of the first “budget” phones from a major brand to launch with an 18:9 display. Aside from that design decision, the phone was a paint-by-numbers device that couldn’t hold a candle to the likes of the Redmi Note 4. Now, the company has launched the LG Q7, hoping to right the wrongs of the Q6.

The LG Q7 maintains the family template set by the Q6, featuring three variants. There’s the low-end Q7a, the standard Q7, and the top-of-the-range Q7 Plus. So how does this year’s family build on the foundation set by the Q6?

First of all, the new phone includes a rear fingerprint scanner on all three variants, which was a noteworthy omission for the $200+ Q6. The omission was particularly noteworthy as the majority of phones in this price tier had fingerprint scanners. The company’s facial recognition solution still makes an appearance here, but don’t bet on iPhone X-like levels of security.

 LG Q7 PlusLG Q7LG Q7a
Display5.5-inch 18:9 FHD+
FullVision display
2160 x 1080 resolution
442 ppi
5.5-inch 18:9 FHD+
FullVision display
2160 x 1080 resolution
442 ppi
5.5-inch 18:9 FHD+ FullVision display
2160 x 1080 resolution
442 ppi
Processor1.5Ghz or 1.8Ghz octa-core chipset1.5Ghz or 1.8Ghz octa-core chipset1.5Ghz or 1.8Ghz octa-core chipset
RAM4 GB3 GB3 GB
Storage64 GB32 GB32 GB
CamerasRear: 16 MP Standard Angle sensor

Front: 8 MP Wide Angle sensor (5 MP for wide angle shots)

Rear: 13 MP Standard Angle sensor

Front: 8 MP Wide Angle sensor (5 MP for wide angle shots)

Rear: 13 MP Standard Angle sensor

Front: 5 MP Wide Angle sensor

Battery3,000 mAh
Non-removable
3,000 mAh
Non-removable
3,000 mAh
Non-removable
NetworkLTE / 3G / 2GLTE / 3G / 2GLTE / 3G / 2G
ConnectivityWi-Fi 802.11 b, g, n
Bluetooth 4.2 BLE
NFC
USB Type-C 2.0
Wi-Fi 802.11 b, g, n
Bluetooth 4.2 BLE
NFC
USB Type-C 2.0
Wi-Fi 802.11 b, g, n
Bluetooth 4.2 BLE
NFC
USB Type-C 2.0
SoftwareAndroid 8.0 OreoAndroid 8.0 OreoAndroid 8.0 Oreo
Dimensions and weight143.8 x 69.3 x 8.4 mm
145 g
143.8 x 69.3 x 8.4 mm
145 g
143.8 x 69.3 x 8.4 mm
145 g
ColorsAurora Black, Moroccan Blue, Lavender VioletAurora Black, Moroccan Blue, Lavender VioletMoroccan Blue

Two other major improvements compared to the Q6 are IP68 water/dust resistance, and a 3GB RAM/32GB storage starting configuration. Last year’s entry-level model started at 2GB/16GB — not ideal in this day and age.

The new features don’t stop there though, as we also get a Portrait Mode, DTS:X virtual surround sound (up to 7.1 support via headphones), and QLens. The latter is LG’s tool for image recognition, object search and more.

Should you get the top-shelf LG Q7?

DTS:X support is certainly welcomed, but audiophiles might want the top-end LG Q7 Plus, as it packs a Hi-Fi quad-DAC for better audio quality. This was previously restricted to its G and V series flagship phones, delivering richer sound with quality headphones. It also makes for a unique proposition in the budget space as few mid-range phones focus on audio credentials.

As for horsepower, the phone has an unnamed 1.5Ghz or 1.8Ghz octa-core chipset, 3GB RAM/32GB expandable storage (Q7 and Q7a) or 4GB RAM/64GB expandable storage (Q7 Plus). The Q7 Plus emerges with a 16MP/8MP camera pairing as well, while the standard Q7 serves up a 13MP/8MP pairing. The entry-level Q7a packs a 13MP/5MP camera setup.

Looking at the spec sheet, the Q7 certainly seems like a meaningful improvement over the Q6. Will it match the price of last year’s handset? LG hasn’t revealed an official price just yet, but it’s expected to launch in Europe next month, followed by the Americas and Asia.

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