At an event in New York City this morning, LG Electronics revealed its latest flagship smartphone, the LG G7 ThinQ, and there are a couple things about it that immediately jump out (aside from its slightly awkward name). It has a really bright display (1,000 nits compared to the iPhone X’s 726 nits), a built-in quad-DAC for hi-fi listening and an iPhone X-esque notch; though the notch isn’t a true notch, but what LG calls a “second screen” — users can toggle between the notch and a regular horizontal edge, like the one on your iPhone 7 or 8.

The smartphone has an AI-assisted camera that supposedly can calculate the ideal settings for the specific photo; for instance, if you should increase the aperture or switch to the wide-angle lens, the camera will tell you. Likewise, it can identify what you’re taking a photo of, be it a person, animal, building or landscape, and can give you scene recommendations to take the best possible picture. Neat. The LG G7 ThinQ has a pair of 16-megapixel cameras that are able to shoot very well in low light, thanks to what LG calls “pixel binning,” a feature that combines four pixels into one to increase its light sensitivity.

The smartphone has a dedicated button for Google Assistant, which seems a little suspect given the mixed reception of the Samsung’s experience with a dedicated Bixby button. Double tap this button and you’ll activate “vision search”; take a photo of something or someplace and the camera will supposedly tell you what it is. (Bixby is able to do something similar.) Also, the smartphone has a built-in quad DAC with a “Boombox” mode that lets the speaker get 39% louder than last year’s G6. The smartphone supports DTS:X for immersive listening, too. It’s clear that LG is again targeting the audiophile crowd with the G7 ThinQ.

At first glance, the LG G7 ThinQ seems like a pretty safe bet for a flagship smartphone in 2018. It has a new-and-common Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, 4GB of RAM and microSD card expansion port. It also has a rear fingerprint scanner and a headphone jack. There’s no face-ID technology or complete edge-to-edge display (even with the notch, there’s still a noticeable bezel on the bottom of the phone). And the display is LCD rather than OLED, meaning you get quite the same contrasting black levels that you’d get from the iPhone X or Google Pixel 2.

This is just a “first look” post, so we’ll further test the G7 ThinQ in the coming weeks. No release exact price or release dates have been set for the G7, but that should be made available shortly.

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