In this post, which will be updated regularly, we’re taking a closer look at the latest LG G8 ThinQ rumors and leaks.
Turn back the clocks 12 months and you’d be forgiven for thinking a G8-branded LG smartphone was never going to happen. One year later, LG’s bold claim that it would be abandoning a yearly release cycle for its flagship phones rings incredibly hollow, as the LG G8 ThinQ rumor mill has begun churning away as expected.
Despite its mobile division’s continued losses, LG is seemingly going full steam ahead in 2019 with a “turnaround expert” at the helm and a foldable phone, 5G phone, and a new G-series flagship all in the pipeline.
While the 5G phone and LG’s foldable experiment are both still something of a mystery, leaks and rumors are finally beginning to piece together the puzzle that is the LG G8 ThinQ. Here’s everything we know so far!
LG G8 ThinQ: Release date
- The LG G8 ThinQ is expected to launch at MWC 2019.
- That would put the G series back on track after the LG G7 ThinQ’s delayed launch in 2018.
It seems like every year more and more OEMs avoid announcing their latest phones at Mobile World Congress to avoid getting lost in the shuffle.
LG was one of those OEMs last year, but that seemed to be more through necessity than choice. The company was forced to rethink its LG G7 ThinQ launch plans after a few turbulent months of major staff changes and strategy shifts. The G8’s predecessor eventually debuted in May.
For 2019, however, LG is be back at the biggest event in the mobile industry calendar with its latest G-series phone.
The apparent thinking at LG is that getting the G8 ThinQ out the way in February will help accelerate its 2019 production schedule, giving it time to get its foldable phone consumer-ready and introduce a 5G phone, which could arrive at MWC as well.
Early rumors suggested that LG would unveil the LG G8 ThinQ on February 24. This was all-but-confirmed by an official teaser, with LG encouraging mobile fans to save the date for a launch event at MWC in Barcelona.
There’s no word on when the phone will actually hit shelves, but based on LG’s previous launches it’s likely to launch in South Korea first before making its way to other global regions. Expect to see it in the U.S. by at most a month or two after the phone officially breaks cover.
LG G8 ThinQ: Design
- Renders purporting to show the G8’s design have been refuted by LG.
- Is it the LG G8 ThinQ or another LG phone?
There was some initial speculation that LG would use the G8 name as a platform for its foldable ambitions, but those rumors have lost steam as we approach the G8’s predicted launch.
With folding tech off the table, that leaves us with a big question: What will the LG G8 ThinQ actually look like?
LG’s highly publicized strategy shift in early 2018 indicated new phones based only on iterative changes would be out of the window — has that policy changed or will the G8 have something truly new to show us?
At present, the answer to all this depends on who you believe — LG’s head of global PR Ken Hong or respected leaker Steve Hemmerstoffer a.k.a. OnLeaks and a few anecdotal comments from members of the tech press.
It all kicked off with a bunch of renders (above) for an alleged new LG phone that looked incredibly similar to the LG G7 ThinQ. OnLeaks claimed the images showed a phone codenamed “Alpha,” which he noted was likely to launch under the G8 moniker.
Hong then took to Twitter to refute these claims, describing the images as “speculative rendering” and “not real.” OnLeaks later revised his position, stating that the renders reflect an LG phone that is/was in development, but may not be the G8.
The confusion was then compounded by Android Police’s David Ruddock who remarked that the renders do represent what the G8 will look like, bar some possible “minor changes.”
I’ve seen the G8. The @OnLeaks leak is legit. Maybe there are some very, very minor changes to the phone that aren’t accurately represented in the CAD renders (perhaps color, textures), buuuuuuuuut that’s definitely a G8.
— David Ruddock (@RDRv3) January 18, 2019
It’s impossible to tell who is in the right at this stage, although it’s worth noting there are a few inconsistencies when comparing the renders with other rumors coming out of South Korea.
The phone in the renders sports a wide notch, just like the G7 ThinQ, however it’s been speculated that the G8 ThinQ will feature a waterdrop-style notch like the OnePlus 6T. The pictured device also only has a dual-lens rear camera, but the G8 is rumored to carry a triple-lens shooter.
There are some things we hope do make it over from OnLeaks’ renders — the returning dedicated Google Assistant button and the 3.5mm headphone jack chief among them — but otherwise we’ve got our fingers crossed that LG has a fresher design template up its sleeve.
If it doesn’t, however, LG fans might be interested to hear rumors that a possible second variant could debut alongside the LG G8 with two screens. The additional screen will apparently arrive as part of a case for the phone to deliver a dual-screen experience, but that’s all we know so far.
LG G8 ThinQ: Specs and features
- The LG G8 ThinQ could be powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 855 SoC.
- The G8 is also rumored to sport a triple-lens camera and feature Sound on Display audio tech.
- It won’t be 5G ready, however.
Solid rumors are few and far between for LG G8 ThinQ specs and features, but there are a few rumblings that are slowly gathering speed.
One significant feature hint has come from LG itself in its MWC 2019 premiere teaser. In the animated video we see a hand swiping away the words “goodbye touch” on a piece of paper with a quick gesture in mid-air.
The teaser seems to suggest LG is incorporating some kind of touch-less gesture controls. This wouldn’t be the first time we’ve seen hand gesture on a phone, but it’s been a while since any OEM looked beyond the touchscreen as a main form of navigation input.
In terms of core hardware, there are question marks over which SoC will be powering LG’s latest G series phone. While it’ll almost certainly be Qualcomm silicon, it remains to be seen if the G8 will feature the latest Snapdragon 855 chipset or the same processor that graced the G7 — the Snapdragon 845.
Reports out of South Korea suggest that LG has managed to negotiate around Samsung’s usual exclusivity agreements with Qualcomm and will also use the Snapdragon 855.
That said, the phone almost certainly won’t make it to market before Samsung’s flagship(s) if that’s the case.
LG has previous with opting for older processors for its G series — the LG G6 housed the Snapdragon 821 instead of the 835 — but it sounds like the G8 will be able to take on the big boys in raw processing power.
Even if it does pack the 5G-ready Snapdragon 855, the G8 won’t be compatible with fifth generation mobile networks. That honor will instead go to LG’s 5G phone that it plans to launch in partnership with Sprint in the U.S in Q1 2019.
While the disputed renders noted in the last section would beg to differ, there are also rumors the LG G8 ThinQ will have a triple-lens rear camera with 3D capabilities for advanced augmented reality features. Here’s hoping LG has improved on the LG V40 ThinQ’s lackluster triple camera.
Audio has been an increasingly important area for LG flagships and it sounds like that legacy will continue for the LG G8 ThinQ. The V-series has the 32-bit DAC, while the G7 had its extra-bassy Boombox speaker.
For the G8, LG is reportedly bringing a feature called Sound on Display. Judging by the name, it sounds as though the G8 will produce audio by vibrating the display instead of traditional speakers — this is something LG already does with some of its TVs.
Will 2019 finally be the year LG brings OLED to the G-series? Don’t get your hopes up.
Speaking of the display, will 2019 finally be the year LG brings OLED to the G-series? The brand traditionally reserves its OLED panels for the V-series. That could be the case yet again if early rumors are to be believed.
As for the rest of the LG G8 ThinQ specs and features, everything is a mystery. Will LG join the RAM arms race? Will it retain the headphone jack? How big will the battery be? We’ll let you know as soon as we hear anything!
LG G8 ThinQ: Price
- Could LG increase the G series’ price yet again? We hope not!
Smartphone prices are on the up every year and LG has followed that trend with the G series. The LG G6 launched at $650, while the LG G7 bumped the price up to $750.
Could the LG G8 ThinQ go up to $850?
Samsung’s cheapest S10 smartphone is expected to retail at around $850, so it’s certainly not out of the question that LG would aim for a similar price point. The V40 ThinQ hit the market at upwards of $900, so it’d still technically be the cheaper option if you want a recent LG flagship.
Related: LG in 2019: No more excuses
The problem LG might have is convincing paying consumers that any price increase is actually worth it. The company’s mobile division is already haemorrhaging money and facing record low sales, with smartphone fatigue and the rise of affordable flagships eating away at the firm’s market share.
Will the LG G8 ThinQ be the phone that turns those fortunes around? Time will tell.
That’s all the LG G8 ThinQ rumors we’ve seen so far! Are you excited to see LG’s latest flagship phone? What features would you like to see? Let us know in the comments.