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LG V50 ThinQ Hands-on, Quick Review: Stopgap Phone

We go hands-on with the LG V50!

With both Samsung and Huawei unveiling foldable, 5G-equipped phones during Mobile World Congress, Korean manufacturer no doubt felt like they had to release their own take on the new tech lest it loses face during the biggest mobile show on Earth. But their answer, the V50 ThinQ left much to be desired thanks to its lackluster looks and clunky execution.

A chunky frame to accommodate 5G tech

The V50 looks a lot like LG’s V40 flagship released a few months ago, with a few cosmetic differences. The phone is a lot thicker to accommodate a bigger battery. LG also made the triple camera module flush with the body, though the modules along with the LED flash now look…weird, since they’re offset to the right.

Aside from that, the V50 looks and feels like the flagship LG announced last year.

The biggest changes for the V50 lies in the inside. The phone now rocks a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, and with it, Qualcomm’s new X50 5G modem. The phone is meant for 5G markets so you’ll probably not going to see it in the Philippines anytime soon (LG’s status in the Philippines notwithstanding).

There are three cameras on the rear, and two in the front: the rear shooters are composed of a standard 12-megapixel 27mm camera, 12-megapixel 2x optical zoom lens and a 16-megapixel ultra-wide angle shooter. The front cameras are composed of an 8-megapixel and 5-megapixel camera.

 

The display on the LG V50 is identical to the V40 released last year. Same 6.4-inch OLED panel with 3120×1440 resolution and 19.5:0 aspect ratio. The display still looks hella nice though, with vibrant colors and deep blacks.

Speaking of the screens, LG made a second screen accessory specifically for the V50. It has the same 6.2-inch OLED panel as the V50, and attaches to the phone much like a case. A really, really bulky case, one that’s hard to use one-handed and is near impossible to stuff inside your pant pocket.

That second panel allows you to multitask more efficiently and probably serves as an analog to the folding efforts of its rivals but to put it bluntly, it’s far more clunky and unintuitive compared to either the Samsung Galaxy Fold or the Huawei Mate X. You can’t join the two screens to form one continuous surface, and you actually have to open the case to get to use either display.

The phone and its second screen accessory feel more like a stopgap measure rather than an attempt at a real flagship device, and it shows. While releasing the V50 was necessary to hop on the 5G bandwagon, the second display accessory is completely superfluous, and more likely an attempt to try and cash in on the whole folding display bandwagon that’s currently taking over MWC this year.

The LG V50 will only be sold in countries that have 5G later this year.

LG V50 ThinQ Specs

  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 octa-core processor
  • Adreno 640 GPU
  • 6GB of RAM
  • 6.4-inch QHD+ FullVision POLED Display; 3120 x 1440 resolution with HDR10 support
  • 128GB of expandable storage
  • Dual SIM
  • 4G, LTE, 5G
  • Triple Rear Camera: 12-megapixel f/1.5 main camera with OIS, 1.4um pixels, and dual pixel AF, 12-megapixel f/2.4 telephoto camera, and 16-megapixel f/1.9 wide-angle camera
  • Dual Front Camera: 8-megapixel f/1.9 primary front camera and 5-megapixel f/2.4 secondary front camera with studio lighting portrait
  • WiFi 6, Bluetooth 5.0
  • GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS
  • Fingerprint Scanner, IP68 Rating, 32-bit QuadDAC, BoomBox speaker
  • 4000mAh battery with support for QuickCharge 3.0 and Wireless Quick Charging
  • Android 9.0 Pie

John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

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