The LG Velvet is likely to be the phone for you if you were waiting for the LG G9, as it looks like we won't be getting the latter, but the LG Velvet will be landing in place of it and it has now been announced in full – although so far only for South Korea.
This isn't quite the LG G9 in all but name, as it's a bit more mid-range than we expected that phone to be, but it still has the potential to be an exciting handset if the price is right.
Below then you'll find full details about the LG Velvet, as well as information on what this means for the LG G9 and the LG G range in general.
Cut to the chase
- What is it? The next major LG phone
- When is it out? Announced on May 7, 2020
- What will it cost? Likely around $730 / £600 / AU$1,140
LG Velvet release date and price
LG announced the LG Velvet on May 7 (today at the time of writing), although that launch was only for South Korea. However, an English-language announcement is planned for later in May, according to The Verge, suggesting the phone will likely land in the US, UK and Australia.
As for price, LG has confirmed that in South Korea the LG Velvet will cost 899,800 Korean won. That's around $730 / £600 / AU$1,140. If that price conversion roughly pans out then it would be cheaper than flagships, including the $819 (around £640 / AU$1,200) LG G8, but pricier than most mid rangers.
That makes sense though based on the specs, and there might be a way to get it even cheaper, as in South Korea it will be possible to lease the phone, swapping it for another LG handset after 24 months for a massively discounted price, though it remains to be seen whether such a scheme would be available elsewhere.
LG Velvet name
There were rumors that LG was ditching the G range even before we'd heard the Velvet name, and in April LG all but confirmed the move, saying that the LG Velvet is the first device "to implement the company’s new branding strategy for its mobile devices, moving away from alphanumerical designations in favor of familiar and expressive names."
It's worth noting that the company hasn't outright said that the G range is dead, or that the LG Velvet is a replacement for the LG G9, but the statement above certainly suggests there won't be any more G handsets, and the specs and timing of the LG Velvet should make it a viable alternative.
LG Velvet specs and features
While the LG Velvet was fully unveiled on May 7, the company took the odd approach of drip-feeding information in the weeks running up to that date, so much so that we knew almost everything ahead of time.
The biggest information drop from the company's drawn-out announcement revealed that the LG Velvet has a 6.8-inch 1080 x 2460 OLED screen with a 20.5:9 aspect ratio, an upper mid-range Snapdragon 765G chipset (with 5G support), 8GB of RAM, 128GB of storage, and a microSD card slot.
The LG Velvet also has a 48MP main camera, an 8MP ultra-wide one, and a 5MP depth sensor, while on the front there's a 16MP snapper. The main camera is capable of 'pixel binning' technology that combines four pixels into one for improved low light performance.
Video recording meanwhile should benefit from a 'Voice Out Focus' feature, that lets you separate background noise from voices, while an ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) mode can be used to increase the sensitivity of the phone's two microphones.
The battery meanwhile is 4,300mAh and supports both wired fast charging and 10W wireless charging.
Other features include a 3.5mm headphone port, an IP68 rating (for water resistance), an in-screen fingerprint scanner, and stereo speakers with 'AI sound', which can analyze media to automatically optimize the audio. Plus there's support for LG's Dual Screen and Stylus Pen accessories, which are sold separately.
LG also fully revealed the design of the Velvet long before the official launch, including in some of the images that you can see above.
The LG Velvet is 167.2 x 74.1 x 7.9mm, 180g, and sports a '3D Arc' design, meaning that the edges of the screen and rear glass are symmetrically curved, which is supposed to lead to a more natural feel in the hand.
It will be available in Aurora White, Aurora Gray, Aurora Green, and Illusion Sunset shades, and has also been certified to meet military drop test standards, so it should be more durable than most smartphones.
In all its teasers and now the final announcement, LG has also paid a lot of attention to the Velvet's cameras. Not so much the specs, but the design.
As you can see in the images, the lenses are laid out vertically in descending order of size (with the flash at the very bottom), in a move that's meant to evoke images of falling rain drops. LG is calling this a 'waterdrop' design.