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Moto Z: Are Mod’s the Way of the Future?

Moto Z: Are Mod’s the Way of the Future?

moto z

The Moto Z device is a new design created by Motorola. It is a thin and fast device that has a magnetic back to snap on “Mod” accessories which we find to be practical and very simple to use.

Debuted in July the premium device called the Moto Z introduced a new way of creative design. This caused waves of opinions among the crowds. This is a far cry to the LG G5 device which fell short on its own implementation of swappable components. The Moto Z offered a better take on Modular implementation which was intuitive and very easy to understand.

Alternatively the Moto Z Play was also released on September where the hardware was reduced a bit while the battery was increased. It is a more affordable variant of the Moto Z.



The Specs of the MOTO Z is as follows:


  • AMOLED display (16M colors) @ 5.5 inches and 2560 x 1440 (~535 ppi)
  • Corning Gorilla Glass 4
  • Android 6 (upgrade to Android 7 available soon)
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 820
  • microSD support moto_mods_insta-share_projetor_and_jbl_soundboost_thumb
  • 4 GB RAM
  • 13 MP, f/1.8 laser autofocus, OIS available camera
  • 5 MP f/2.2 front facing camera
  • 2600mAh Li-ion battery

According to Motorola the “Moto Mods” is more about functionality rather than form. You can snap on a higher capacity battery, an expanded speaker system, a projector, and a robust camera system developed with Hasselblad.

The functionality over form comes from the fact that these “snap on’s” actually add a bit of bulk to the device itself. Without the add on’s we are left with a phone that just feels naked and exposed at the back (with metal connectors). You can snap on a simple back cover where Motorola released a slew of various back cover designs. Nonetheless, we must applaud Motorola for creating the most simple method of using add-on’s on the device. The magnetic snap on’s are much more intuitive compared to the clunky LG G5 which requires you to remove the battery first by sliding it out which effectively disrupts your work flow.


The Moto Z is a powerful device which can easily rival other high end device’s. Even if you opt to not use the mods we are looking at a beefy processor, and high end specs that will easily power through your daily tasks.

The Death of the Note 7

The Death of the Note 7


Following the series of fires, smokes, and battery failures was the worldwide recall of all Galaxy Note 7’s. This involved over 2.5 million units that had to be exchanged for new ones. The trouble did not end here when Samsung began receiving reports that even the replacement units that Samsung had stated it should be “safe to use” began catching fire as well. A Note 7 was reduced to smoke in the cabin of a plane which caused an emergency evacuation on that specific flight. A popular video was released showing how the Note 7 begins to emit smoke in the hands of a woman who ended up fainting from inhaling the toxic fumes. Of course, drastic measures were needed. An official notice was provided by Samsung today that stated the official discontinuation of the Note 7.

The Galaxy Note 7 is officially dead. Samsung has announced this to various outlets including the CNBC, The Wall Street Journal, and Bloomberg. Samsung has permanently halted all production for the Galaxy Note 7. Some speculate with good reasoning that the “Note” brand is also officially over into the future.

The Note 7 was initially released in August but a little less than a month later the night mare of fires emerging from the Note 7’s batteries exploded all over social media and news outlets. After Samsung seemingly contained the situation they resumed sales for the Note 7 on October 1st. We know that the Note 7’s sales did not let up due to the fires. They sold fast.

Samsung has called for “all carrier and retail partners globally” to accept returns and stop sales.

Reuters has reported that killing the Note 7 will be extremely expensive. “This is translated into lost sales of up to 19 million phones, or nearly $17 billion.” This is the reason why many think the Note brand and series is now over due to this huge fiasco.

It is advised for all Note 7 users to return their devices back to Samsung as it is evident that support and future updates are dropped. A future patch may come to force users to return their devices for an exchange or a full refund via their primary sources of purchase. The initially recalled Note 7 devices received a mandatory firmware update that limited the battery capacity and pops up an error message every now and then.

Visit HERE for more information on Samsungs site

Unlock Samsung Galaxy 7 Edge

unlock samsung galaxy s7 edge

How To Unlock Samsung Galaxy 7 Edge

The Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge was until some months ago, the fastest selling mobile phone in 2016. Samsung sold around 13.3 million phones this year! The phone’s user friendly features, dual edged display, and sleek design were key factors that led to its popularity across the world. But, at $780, it does not come cheap.
Buying them through a network carrier for contract is probably the only reasonable way out. But you’ll be locked in for the contract period (a minimum of 2 years). And moving out of the country entails paying sky high roaming costs. We suggest an affordable alternative – unlock your Samsung Galaxy 7 Edge through us and switch service providers. Here’s how to do it:

– Send us your IMEI code ( Press *#06# on your device to get the IMEI number)

– We’ll scan our database to look for a code for your device

– If the code is available, we’ll send you a message asking contact information

– The code is sent via email as soon as you make the payment

– Remove the SIM card from the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge

– Insert the new SIM Card from a service provider of your choice

– Enter the SIM unlock code when prompted

– Your phone will be unlocked in a few minutes

Before you attempt to unlock, make sure that the new SIM card is compatible with the device, and you haven’t attempted to unlock the phone before. Network carriers also offer unlock codes, but only after the lock-in period. Besides, getting through customer service for the unlock codes is a tedious and time consuming process. It takes less than 5 minutes when you do it through us. We
offer them for the lowest price on the internet.

Need help to unlock your Samsung Galaxy 7 Edge? Contact us…

IP67 & IP68 Waterproofing Phones Explained

Water”Proofing” Explained (IP67 vs IP68 and others)


For some time now we have seen the likes of Sony advertise waterproof designs in their smartphone line up. Samsung introduced the IP68 rating in their S7 / S7 Edge and even the Note 7 devices this year. It seems that Apple has joined the fray and introduced the IP67 rating in their iPhone 7 line up.

Lets take a look at the original Apple Watch with the IPX7 certification. Cupertino actually stated that “[while] the Apple Watch is splash and water resistant, [the Watch] is not waterproof. You can use the product during exercise, in the rain, and while washing your hands, but submerging Apple Watch is not recommended.”

What Does the IP67 and IP68 Actually Mean?

A lot of smartphones today have various certifications with IPXX. The first digit pertains to protection against dust particles while the second number shows the devices resistance against water. This rating system was created to inform equipment operators of how well the device or equipment is protected against the elements. The digits simply conform to the conditions summarized by the information below.

IP – International Protection marking, this is a standard created by the IEC (International Electrotechnical Comission). IP can also stand for “Ingress Protection”.

6 – The “6” in IP6X translates into “Dust Tight’. Basically this means that there is no ingress of dust. A completely sealed protection against contact. As the numbers decrease we see less protection against dust elements or a different kind of protection against physical or foreign objects coming into contact with internal hardware. For example, a number 2 would allow the equipment to be effective against fingers or smaller objects. You would see this in power outlets.

7- The “7” in IP67 is effective against “Immersion of up to 1m of water”. Important factors to consider would be the amount of depth and the amount of time submerged.

8- The “8” in IP68 is effective against “Immersion beyond 1m”. The equipment is suitable for continuous immersion in water under conditions which must be specified by the manufacturer. Generally equipment with the IP68 rating should be fully sealed. However, sometimes devices such as smartphones could allow water to enter certain spaces but create zero harmful effects.


Samsung, for example indicated that the S7 and S7 edge is protected up to watery depths of 1.5 meters (5 feet) for up to 30 minutes. This is quite amazing for a smartphone device. This would be the manufacturers specification users must understand.

Apple’s iPhone 7 has a slightly lower rating of IP67. This means that the phone will survive depths of up to but not exceeding 1 meter and for a time limit of generally around 30 minutes.

Important Notes on Wear and Tear and Pressure

It is important to note that because Smartphones are very sturdy yet at the same time contain extremely delicate hardware we need to be mindful of a few things. First, these mobile devices are not water PROOF. Rather, they are water resistant. One must be mindful that this certification is not everlasting physically on the device. We will see wear and tear occurring on your phone as you use and drop it. Wear and Tear will compromise the integrity of your IP rating.

Another important aspect to consider is the type of force the liquid’s impose upon your phone. Though the phone should survive calm waters it cannot resist against water jets that make contact with your phone directly with force. There are other non smartphone equipment with stronger IP ratings that can resist extremely high pressures of water but our smartphones will not survive that at all. As the device sinks lower into deeper depths the seals that protect your internals can easily break due to increased water pressure. If the device is held under a stronger pressurized amount of water, you may see issues occurring.


What Device would be Truly Water Proof?

If you want a device that can withstand outdoor activity and other extreme activities you should look out for the IP68 + MIL-STD 810G certification. This enables your phone to withstand low pressure altitudes, high temperature, low temperature, contamination by fluids, solar raiation, humidity, salt fog, sand, dust, and a wide range of environmental conditions.

The MIL-STD 810 is extremely effective for those who enjoy outdoor recreation, extreme sports and for those who work in skill trades such as construction. These phones may be recognized as “rugged” phones.

Final Thought’s

While it is great to see manufacturers utilize ingress protection certification in their manufacturing design process it is important to note that our devices, still need our care. Get informed, look up all information online and really try to see past marketing facades.

New Google Pixel & Pixel XL Review

Google Pixel & Pixel XL Quick Review



Google set out into 2016 with a new goal in mind. Get rid of the Nexus name and usher in a new era for the Pixel series “made by Google”. The word is that Huawei was supposed to be the partner with Google for 2016. Unfortunately, once the company found out that the Huawei branding is not going to be showcased in any way in the advertisements and in the phones Huawei backed out. HTC took the spot as Google’s partner to create the two devices we see today; Google Pixel and the Pixel XL.

The review here is simply to look at the general information released by Google on these two devices and for us to make a quick judgement. Of course, we will need to spend more time with these puppies when possible to give a better review later on. So stay tuned.


What is the difference between the Pixel and the Pixel XL?

The Pixel was introduced alongside its elder brother the Pixel XL (which is a lot more expensive as well). The difference between the two aren’t that great other than the battery capacity and the display specs.

The Pixel comes with a 5″ FHD AMOLED screen 1920 x 1080 (441ppi) while the Pixel XL comes with a 5.5″ QHD AMOLED Display 2560 x 1440 (534ppi). The battery capacity is also quite different in capacity with the Pixel rated at 2770mAh and the XL sporting a 3450mAh battery. Of course, as the Pixel XL is a larger phone the dimensions are a bit larger too and a tiny bit heavier.

Similarities between the Two

This is where their differences ends. In terms of other hardware features and software features the two devices are the same. They both run on the new Snapdragon 821 processor which operates via the 2×2 Kryo cores which have higher clock speeds compared to the Snapdragon 820. The GPU will be the Adreno 530 also with higher clock speeds compared to the Adreno 530 found on the 820 SoC. Technically, the Pixel phone’s are the first devices to get the 821 SoC and this should make these phones the fastest and most up to date mobile phones in 2016 compared to the flurry of smartphone releases with the likes of the iPhone 7, Note 7, HTC 10, One plus 3 and more.

Both the Pixel and the Pixel XL will have 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM, a 32 or 128 GB internal storage base. Unfortunately, both phone’s will not feature a microSD slot.  Corning Gorilla Glass 4 glass is also used as both phones are seamlessly built from metal and glass. These are two premium devices. They will both have the USB Type C connection and a huge advertised feature is that the Pixel can charge up 7 hours of battery life within 15 minutes of fast charging. We suspect this is possible with the advent of Quick Charge 3.0.

Google Daydream VR

The Snapdragon 821 has a 10% increase in performance so we should see improved performance in VR as well.

Speaking of VR, the Pixel phone’s will be the first to be compatible with Google’s Daydream VR platform which has been announced. Google has been teasing us with the much anticipated Daydream platform for some time now. It seems that there is much fruit to their works. The larger 5.5″ QHD screen will be a lot more pleasant to use via the Pixel XL with the VR headset for certain compared to the smaller Pixel’s FHD. QHD screens generally have a lot more sharper images displayed on screen.


Mobile Photography


The Camera is a rather large part of their advertisement as well as Google stated that these phones hit the highest mobile DxO photography score of 89, a record high in the industry of smartphone cameras. DXO mark has stated that “the Pixel has the highest rated smartphone camera ever tested.” Both models carry the 12.3 MP camera with rather low level’s of noise in various lighting conditions. Both phone’s are said to have very fast autofocus, accurate exposures, and great control of white balance. Low light photography is also much improved with an aperture of f/2.0.

Many have rated the Galaxy S7 Edge as the device with the best smartphone camera. It’s DXOMark was rated at 88. The Pixel impressed us with a slightly higher score of 89. We are confident, in this case, that the Pixel will be a very strong performer.

Google Assistant

The Pixel devices are the first to have Google Assistant built into the software. Users simply need to touch and hold the home button and say the “word”. The Assistant then comes up and gets to work. Google’s event demo’ed the Assistant being used to bring out photos from specific times and places, plays music of your choice and your favorite music app as default. This feature also integrate the Google Now on Tap function which is very useful when quickly asking your phone for directions to places, for restaurants, phone calls, and access into other apps. The Assistant can also make reservations for you at particular restaurants.


Endless cloud Storage

Google has taken off the size limitation and compression of images and allows free unlimited storage space for “full resolution” images and videos shot with your Pixel. This also supports your 4K video shots.

Headphone Jack a Welcome Return

The Pixel smartphones will feature awesome 3.5mm headphone jacks! To be honest the headphone jacks are placed on the top of the phone’s so that is up for subjective opinions.

3 Colors

The handsets will come in 3 colors, “Quite Black”, “Really Blue”, and “Very Silver”. The model designs, to be honest, reminds us of a cross between the HTC 10 and the iPhone 5 model.

Fast Updates & Assistance & Connectivity

Google will be updating the Pixel as soon as updates are available. Google phones will always be first to obtain the latest Android software upgrades. Included in the handsets software is a 24 hour live support system directly to Google’s phone support. The tech support operator will be able to see exactly what is on your screen an help you out with your situation. Google has updated the Pixel’s hardware to be able to get the 7 hours of power with only 15 minutes of quick charging for awesome on the go endurance. Finally we see the inclusion of Google Duo which is Google’s own video chat application.   pixel charge





3 Things To Know Before You Contact Us To Unlock iPhone 7


3 iPhone 7 Features You Don’t Want To Miss

The iPhone 7 may look like the iPhone 6 or the phone before that. But it’s certainly got some excellent features. Here’s what you ought to know before you contact us to unlock the iPhone7:

• Water Resistant:

You can now dunk your iPhone 7 in water and yet be able to use it. And it is dust resistant as well. Apple never makes a half-hearted attempt at innovation. They re-engineered the phone inside out with new seals and adhesives to make the phone tough enough to resist a few splashes of water (it’s not yet ready to be used while swimming). The phone can resist up to 1 meter of water for around 30 minutes, but you’ll have to dry it out completely before reuse.

• Camera:

The low-light camera is a new feature that’s everyone raving about. Improved front and rear cameras ensure that photos are clearer, brighter, and sharper. The 12-megapixel high-speed sensor is fast and efficient. The image signal processor helps with focus, white balance, exposure, and extensive color capture for true to life pictures. Also, the iPhone 7 Plus has dual lens – this helps to create zoom features that allow users to switch seamlessly between standard zoom and optical zoom without losing any of the details. Facetime calls are now going to be more real than ever.

• Wireless Ear Phones:

The new iPhone 7 does not have a headphone jack. You can now listen through Bluetooth headphones. Of course, you can connect through a dongle. And if you choose to buy an AirPod, get ready to pay $159.

And then, there is a host of other minor features like stereo speakers, phones that auto – wake, and improved display, and more. For those who can’t afford to buy it outright, network carriers offer to sell it for a discount. The only downside- your SIM will be locked for a stipulated period, or until you’ve paid for the phone. We suggest that you buy it through them and contact us to unlock the iPhone 7. You can switch to another carrier if you are moving to another country without having to pay roaming fees.
Wondering how to unlock the iPhone 7? Contact us…

Google Pixel leaked in Canada

Google Pixel white color leaked in Canada


The much rumored Google Pixel series is a hot topic. As many know Google has dropped the Nexus name and is now taking on their own take in the smartphone market.

Canadian carrier Bell accidentally released marketing material which contains a picture of a White colored Google Pixel device ahead of its time. The image and promotional blurb was mistakenly uploaded to their Galaxy Note 7 pre-order page. The site seems to be deactivated now and is most likely being fixed as we speak.

Here are the images shown:


The blurb read “Introducing Pixel™, Phone by Google. Order yours today.” However, there was no clear indication as to news of the Pixel XL model. No other information was provided by Bell. This, however, confirms that the “Pixel” naming is pretty much set in stone. October 4th will be D-Day for the Pixel launch so we can’t wait till they are released finally. One interesting thing to consider was the images file name. The black version was labeled “Pixel XL” which suggests that the black colored version from Bell will be the Pixel XL.

Stay tuned for more information.pixel-pixel-xl-scale  pixel-xl-black

How To Unlock iPhone 7

how to unlock iphone 7

How To Unlock The New iPhone 7

The new iPhone 7 is predicted to sell more than 100 million units thanks to its features and a Samsung Galaxy Note 7 recall due to battery issues. At $649 this isn’t cheap, but the price is no restraint for an iphoner. With so many sweet deals in the market, it’s not difficult to own the iPhone 7. Most service providers, including Verizon, At&T, T- Mobile and Sprint are offering them on easy pay installments. The only catch here is that your phone will remain locked with the carrier for a stipulated time or until you’ve paid for it.
You cannot switch service providers, or use another SIM card when using your phone abroad. And international roaming rates tend to be eye wateringly high for more service providers. If you plan to own an iPhone 7 and worry about being tied to a service provider, read further.

• How To Unlock iPhone 7:
Contact us! We’ll tell you how to unlock the iPhone 7. All you need is the model number and the IMEI number. We’ll send you a link with payment details. Make the payment and the unlock code is yours at a cost that’s almost half the money you’d pay to the service provider!

• Why Unlock iPhone 7 Through Us:
This is a permanent unlocking solution- once unlocked you don’t have to worry about a locked phone ever again. It’s easy, safe, and quick. And it works for sure. But you’ll have to make sure that the network you plan to use supports iPhone 7.

• Network Carriers We Can Unlock:
We can unlock almost all network carriers include AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint, Fido, Bell, Vodafone, Orange, and Wind.
• But…

You will have to make sure that the iPhone has been activated with the original carrier at least once. Also, the IMEI number must not be barred or reported stolen.
Don’t pay for roaming fees; unlock your iPhone 7 through us and use a local SIM card. Call us to know how to unlock your iPhone 7.

iPhone 7 Missing 3.5mm Jack, Why?

iPhone 7 Missing 3.5mm Jack, Why?

ip 7 main

Apple is no stranger to criticism and speculation. We have witnessed the issue of “Bend gate” and of many bugs. Despite this, Apple took their most “courageous” leap yet to move into an all digital future (according to Apple). Their “upgrade” to the future is the removal of the 3.5mm head phone jack from its latest iteration of their flagship model(s); the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

The much loved 3.5mm headphone jack has been around for several years and we all have settled on a culture of headphones and earbuds that utilize this feature that ranges from cheap to downright expensive and high end. On the iPhone 7 and 7 plus the only way to utilize your 3.5mm headset is via the lightning port to 3.5mm adapter included in the box.

Unfortunately, this eliminates the ability to charge your phone while listening to your headphones free of charge. You would have to invest in a more complicated adapter to do this simple time old activity; listening while charging.

Despite all of this, there must be a reason why Apple still decided to take this route.

The Disappearance of Jack

Phil Schiller, marketing chief for Apple, actually confirmed that the company was motivated by “courage” to remove the headphone jack altogether. We quote Schiller on the topic: “Some people have asked us why we would remove the analogue headphone jack. It’s been with us a really long time and it comes down to one word: courage. Our team has tremendous courage.”

This “marketing” speech has become the subject of various jokes online around various social media sites. Schiller, however, continued by explaining that; “our smartphones are packed with technologies, faster processors… and all of it fights for space.”

It is known that the tiny bit of space that the 3.5 mm jack takes up was needed to pack extra technology to improve 3D Touch. We know that the iPhone 7 did not become thinner remaining at 7.1mm just like the iPhone 6S.

We speculate that Apple wanted more room inside to include the A10 Fusion processor and the extra bit of battery cell capacity.

Apple is looking at a truly “wireless” company. We often wonder why iPhone’s do not utilize wireless charging in this case at all.

Apple’s Alternative

In the box Apple provides owners with a pair of earphones that are not 3.5mm but have a lightning port attached at the end of the cable instead. Again if you have your head phones in you wont be able to charge the device (wireless charging could have helped here).

The box includes a Lightning to 3.5mm adapter as well which enables you to use your 3.5mm head sets again. Admittedly the adapter does not look good at all. It is an extra piece of wire you can lose and must carry around and will be annoying over time for many users. In the U.S. it will cost you 9$ to replace the cable.


The Problem with Software


The next big issue we have heard from various sources online (notable reviewers as well have reported this) is the issue of the new Lightning EarPods regularly crashing. The bug still lets users hear their music, but the EarPod’s controls are frozen. You are stuck with a pair of ear buds that play music but prevent you from controlling the volume, and various Siri activated features.

The problem is software.

Time old tested 3.5mm connections are analog while the lightning port based earphone system heavily relies on your software. This time around Apple’s iOS is riddled with a bug that causes this complicated issue. Apple has announced that they will be providing updates in future patches to address this issue. Until then, users are forced to plug and unplug their lightning earpods.

Against the simplicity of the 3.5mm port which posed no trouble we are hard pressed to find this move by Apple a “smart one”.


LG V20 Unveiled!

New LG V20 Unveiled and Reviewed!



With the Note 7 and iPhone 7 released close to one another LG reveals the LG V20 flagship model. The timing is quite impeccable for LG to release a capable, premium device. On paper we are looking at a powerful smartphone with interesting specifications. Let’s see how well it performs up against its competitors.

The latest LG flagship device is the LG V20 claims to be the greatest multimedia smartphone you would ever own. LG included the world’s first 32-bit Hi-Fi DAC (digital-to-analog) converter inside the V20 for incredible sound via your headsets (still rocking the 3.5mm headphone jack). The device also features two rear-facing cameras for super wide-angle imaging.

Interestingly, LG’s “secondary display” makes a return this year which is basically a second screen up top above your main display which displays “always-on” ticker information.

The LG V20 is the first non Nexus device to receive the Android OS update to Nougat. This comes with improved battery life via the Doze functionality and multi-window features. The Google In Apps search feature is also included which functions a lot like Apple’s iOS search which combines contacts, apps, messages, and the web to find your information via key words. This is a clean and handy tool that should have been on Android a long time ago.

The device shapes up to be quite an interesting competitor within this time of the year when major flagship models are presented. We will review the unit and also talk about how well this device works for the user.


  • Quad-Core Kryo Processors Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 CPU (2 x 2.15 GHz Kryo combined with 2 x 1.6 GHz Kryo cores)
  • Adreno 530 GPU
  • 4 GB RAM
  • 64 GB internal storage + microSD support up to 1 TB
  • Android 7.0 Nougat
  • 5.7-inch QHD IPS Quantum display 2560 x 1440 resolution (513ppi)
  • Secondary Display: IPS Quantum 1040 x 160 resolution 513 ppi
  • Dimensions: 7 x 78.1 x 7.7mm
  • Weight: 174g
  • Camera 1: 16 MP rear camera with f/1.8 aperture and OIS (75 Degree lens)
  • Camera 2: 8 MP f/2.4 aperture wide angle camera
  • Camera 3: 5 MP front facing camera with f1.9 aperture (wide angle 120 degrees)
  • Removable 3200 mAh battery (Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 enabled)
  • USB Type – C
  • 32-bit Hi-Fi Quad DAC inside
  • Finger Print Scanner on rear



  • Great Quantum display
  • Removable battery
  • Secondary display is useful
  • Impressive wide angle dual camera system
  • Premium design materials used
  • The most audiophile friendly smartphone in existence right now
  • Great High Definition triple mics for audio recording
  • Top notch specs on paper
  • Android Nougat (7.0) pre installed


  • Performance is great but there are times when the phone feels sluggish due to lags and delays turning on (inconsistent performance)
  • Slow boot time
  • Not IP68 proofed
  • Can heat up in the hand
  • Can be a bit too big for some
  • No APP drawer by default

Introducing… the 32bit Hi-Fi QUAD DAC


A huge selling point that LG has made a big deal about was the internal DAC. The V20 is the first smartphone ever to integrate a 32-bit Hi-Fi DAC (powered by the ESS Sabre ES9218) into its device. This provides powerful quality sounds through wired connections. Given that you are using high quality audio files and good pairs of can’s this would be a clear winner for audiophiles who had to choose a device for 2016. For other users this may be more difficult to distinguish, especially for those who do not use larger music files to play off of. If one spends enough time with this powerful sound setup you most likely cannot go back to any other high end phone such as the Note 7 or the iPhone 7 Plus. Did we also mention that the LG V20 comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack? Though DAC’s primarily bring high end music files such as FLAC to what it is meant to express the DAC within the V20 device can also take your simple MP3’s and make it sound louder and with great clarity. You do have the option to turn off the DAC system. The V20 enables users to revisit their old tunes and relive concert recordings, playlists, and other old songs you might find in your hard drive’s attic space.

The exterior speaker is found at the bottom of the phone and is quite good. It does not crackle or sound high like playing in a tin.

At the bottom of the device LG has included an HD 24-bit audio recording microphone system. This means your LG V20 comes with three AOP mics to ensure professional level sound recording that brings voice to the front. The mics will still record background noises that are articulated and it is works quite wonderfully. The recorded files are LPCM 24 bit audio formats with up to 48kHz sampling.

It is good to invest in a device knowing that you will have powerful music experiences that no other smartphone can offer via lossless files but also have the means to record sounds with high quality output.

To round of the tour de force of a sound system within LG is including a pair of Band and Olufsen H3 headsets in the box. If you would dare to compare these cans to simple earbuds that come with many other smartphones, you would be gravely mistaken. The quality upgrade in this decision is a huge step-up to really show what you can benefit with the DAC system inside the phone.

Double Snappers


The V20 sports a dual rear facing camera one being 16 MP (f/1.8) and the other being an 8 MP f/2.4 wide angle camera. This can really help people create awesome content with two different degrees of view. Though 75 degrees is a lot narrower than 135 degrees the wide angle camera provides an interesting fish-eye look for creative content. Users would certainly find this fun to play with among friends and family. LG’s camera also comes with laser guided detection, phase detection and contrast auto focus. We should see high quality images coming out of this device.

However, as reported by users of the pre-production model the condition must be right. While images look crisp and sharp where light is adequate, mid to low light situations tend to cause motion blur and grainy effects during AUTO mode. Sharpness is visible but definition can be soft at times. The LG V20’s camera is still a very strong contender in the smartphone camera category.

It is important to note that no smart phone today can take great photos in darkness or low light compared to a DSLR or a professional camera. These cameras, though they have come very far into the future are still companions for certain creative work and mostly used for personal life to capture your moments and other information around you. Not really for professional use.

Within the pre-production model of the V20 we found that the camera had a tendency to crash. We hope that the final release of the model will have it updated and fixed. The only way, at this time, to fix the crash is to do a phone reboot. Compared to the iphone or the faster Note 7 which launches camera’s with a double click of the home button the LG V20 will need to sort out this bug. Missing a moment because your camera app crashing is no joke. Another important note is that this may be a faulty unit.

The device can record 4K video with the assistance of Qualcomm’s EIS 3.0 technology (electronic image stabilization) (AKA LG’s Steady Record 2.0) which should reduce sync latency by up to 50 milliseconds. This feature utilizes the phones gyroscope-based electrical image stabilization and digital image stabilization. In real world this means that your hand movements will cause a lot less jitters and shakes. This can seriously help with home movie makers and other people looking to take on a challenge. User can also record in 1080p video support.

Design Language


The LG V20 features a matte metal body. It has a premium feel and is rather quite minimal and quite nice to look at. The size is a little bit large in the hand but it still feels good somehow. The device is light with the weight of 174 grams which is between the iPhone 7 and the Note 7. Physically, however, it is longer and wider then both alternatives. The larger size could possibly contribute to a well balanced device.

The look and feel of a device is very subjective and can be quite difficult for reviewers to try and please everyone with. Some may say that the V20 looks plastic and cheap when viewed from afar. Personal taste may alter on how you use the phone. Overall, we would agree that the V20 is a fantastic device.

To continue the LG tradition, the fingerprint sensor is found on the back of the phone. A USB-Type C port along with a 3.5mm headphone jack is found at the bottom of the device. An interesting point to make is that the LG V20 has a Metal back that is removable. This reveals the 3200 mAh battery, MicroSD slot, and SIM slot. To have user friendly battery exchanges right from your back is very convenient and important later on in the future. Battery life degrades over time due to heat and usage (charging) and it is unavoidable. That is why a few years down the road people start to report issues with battery life even from 100% charge. The batteries simply cannot hold a full charge like it used to on day 1. However, for the LG V20 the story changes. You can easily swap in a brand new battery pack from LG or a 3rd party company and voila you are set for another few years or more given that you do not switch out your phone so soon.

The phone is not water resistant which is a bit of a downer. The device can get hot in the hands due to the beefy CPU and GPU inside. You may feel some heat in your hands but the temperature is not crazy hot so no need to worry.

Secondary Display

The Secondary Quantum display above your main display features five quick tools which includes and are not limited to sound profiles, camera, flashlight, and Wi-fi. You can add on any other apps to an additional 5 slot row for a quick launching experience. Remember that this display does not turn off and remain on even if your main display is turned off. To add or remove the app you simply need to tap and hold the app on the secondary display and pull it down into your main screen and vice versa. The final section as you scroll on displays your name in a specific font. Notifications displaying information does show up as a rolling display. Rest assured, despite the “always – on” feature of this display, users can opt to turn it off via their settings.

Main Display

The 5.7 inch QHD IPS Quantum display is bright and has rich colors all around. The resolution is set at 2560 x 1440 pixels and is a fantastic display. The resolution is the same as that of the Note 7 while the iPhone 7 Plus uses an IPS LCD display that uses a 1920 x 1080 panel. While watching a movie or playing a game the colors are vivid, crisp and they are very much detailed thanks to its 1440p resolution. LG allows users to customize the temperature of the screen to make things easier on your eyes by applying a warmer hue.

The Internals and Battery Life


The LG V20 comes with the new UX5.0+ UI which is a slightly more refined edition of what was seen on the LG G5. The main home screen does not have an app drawer. We were grateful to see that LG included 3 different home screen options with two of them offering the App drawer back. The LG UX5.0+ UI is relatively non-distracting from the overall Android experience. LG includes other App’s that are LG flavored and are quite useful. The QuickMemo+ app is sort of like Google Keep, the Comfort view function gives you screen a bit of a yellow hue to help you view the phone at night and still be able to fall asleep. We also found the Knock-to-Wake and Knock-To-Sleep functions extremely useful. A cool app LG deploys is called the Smart Bulletin. This is a home screen slide you can add and combines all of your related information into a simple layout.

The LG V20 utilizes the new Qualcomm 820 chipset, 4GB RAM, 64GB internal storage with expandable storage via microSD, and support for X12 LTE speeds. On paper, the LG V20 is more than capable of handling its own weight right? Most of the time the device ran admirably and worked zippy and super fast as expected. However, it is important to note that there are moments time to time where the phone struggles with certain tasks such as Google Maps, Internet browsers, and other apps randomly. We are criticizing both the optimizations LG has made utilizing the Snapdragon 820 CPU and also Snapdragon as well for decreasing multitasking performance from octa core (810 cpu) down to Quad core (820 cpu). The biggest example is between the two different Note 7 (international vs North American) Exynos 8890 VS Snapdragon 820 battle. The Exynos with its octa core configuration and optimized performance destroys the Snapdragon 820 in many fronts. Snapdragon, while being an innovative silicon company who has great history in CPU and in the smartphone market, will need to come back stronger especially after the Snapdragon 810 failure. One thing we must note is that the Snapdragon 820’s Adreno 530 GPU is a powerful beast. It runs graphical tasks like no other and out ranks other silicons in the graphical department. The LG V20 has cross-platform Vulkan API support which is advertised as ushering in “console quality” graphics on your mobile platform.

The LG V20 comes standard with 64 GB’s of storage space and kept the microSD slot which supports up to 1 TB. Bluetooth 4.2, NFC and USB-Type C is also found on the phone.

The battery life of the device performs pretty well. You can expect about a day and a half of heavy usage. If you are a moderate user you can expect about 2 full days sometimes. Thanks to Qualcomm’s Quick charge 3.0 you would expect faster charging and we have seen this. It took 1 hour and 15 minutes for the battery to fully charge. A big plus to the removable battery is that you can simply swap out the battery pack when the phone dies. This eliminates the need to stand around a power source for 20 – 30 minutes for at least a good 2 – 4 days.

 Early Verdict

The LG V20 is ambitious. As LG’s next phablet-sized smartphone which strays far from standard smartphone designs we are happy to see powerful specs on the device. Despite some lag which we suspect should be fixed and non existent in most devices the LG V20 does not disappoint. With a Dual camera system on the front and back, a removable battery, and Android Nougat all in one package what is there not to love? LG V20 creates an innovative stance with the included QUAD DAC inside (compared to Apple’s rather boring iPhone 7 release) we are excited to see how users express what they feel about the LG V20. The LG V20 is a premium device that is recommended as one of the most interesting devices of 2016.