LG has dropped a big hint that the G9 is still on track to be released by issuing a press release and image of its “new smartphone design” for “its upcoming smartphone”. Recent reports suggested LG would kill the G series, so this is perhaps a glimpse at its replacement if it’s not the G9.
This would line up with a report earlier this week that LG’s new, rebranded premium phone will launch on 15 May.
Announced via press release and on its website, the clearly premium design differs wildly from the bezel-heavy LG V60 that launched recently. The new design (two below images) has what LG calls a ‘raindrop’ camera array with lenses arranged in order of size, plus curved edges on the front and back that are symmetrical. The company calls this “3D Arc Design”.
LG even took a little dig at 2019-2020 phone design in the announcement, saying “Contrary to the trend of the squarish camera bump seen on many of today’s high-end smartphones, the upper-left corner of the LG phone’s backside hosts three rear cameras and an LED flash in descending order by size … This tactilely pleasing design layout offers the added benefit of taking up less space on the rear of the phone for a cleaner, sleeker overall look.”
The image shows the top half of the display with no obvious camera cut-out. The phone is likely to have one, or a notch, as LG hasn’t yet released a phone with a mechanised pop-up camera. That said, if LG used this phone to bring an under display camera to market before any of its rivals, it would be quite the coup.
A second image (below) of the back of the phone shows the raindrop cameras in more detail.
“Our upcoming smartphone will draw on the rich history of classic LG designs which have always been distinctive at first touch,” said vice president Cha Yong-duk, head of LG’s Mobile Communications Design Lab. “This handset will be a first-look at the competitive edge we will be bringing to every LG smartphone going forward.”
The announcement suggests the G9 (or its replacement brand) might be on course for release after all. The V60 came out earlier than expected, which broke the usual release cycle of the G and V series. The V60 is also a US-only phone for now.
If the design of the new LG phone is as good as this looks, then LG might be able to breathe some life into its smartphone line – and sales – again.