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Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Review: Is It the Best?

Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Review: The Beast Unleashed

Is the Galaxy Note 8 the best?


Samsung’s latest flagship offering is the Samsung Galaxy Note 8. The Note series have always been known for it’s large body size, high-end components, vibrant displays, long battery life, and the advanced S-Pen stylus experience. The very first Galaxy Note received a lot of ridicule but little did the majority know the first Note was a huge success and thus Samsung was the first ever to create the “Phablet” category. Every other manufacturer (including Apple) followed suit eventually and here we are today with jumbo sized smartphones with jumbo sized specs. Let’s dive in for a quick look as to what the Note 8 has to offer.

Specs Cheat Sheet:

  • Body Specs:
    • Dimensions: 162.5 x 74.8 x 8.6 mm (6.40 x 2.94 x 0.34 in)
    • Weight: 195 g (6.88 oz)
    • Corning Gorilla Glass 5 on front and back + Metal material on sides
  • Display Specs:
    • 6.3 inch 2960 x 1440 resolution (~521 ppi pixels per inch)
    • Infinity Display
    • Super AMOLED Display Technology
    • HDR 10 compliant
    • “3D Touch”: Pressure sensitive home button tech under the display
    • Updated Always On Display
  • Processing Power:
    • CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 Octa-Core processor (North America) OR Exynos 8895 Octa-Core processor (International)
      • Snapdragon 835: 4 x 2.35 GHz Kryo cores + 4 x 1.9 GHz Kryo cores
        • GPU: Adreno 540 (North America)
      • Exynos 8895: 4 x 2.3 GHz + 4 x 1.7 GHz
        • GPU: Mali-G71 MP20 (International)
    • RAM: 6 GB
    • Battery: 3,300 mAh capacity
  • Other Specs:
    • Storage space: 64 GB / 128 GB / 256 GB
      • MicroSD storage Available
    • 3.5 mm headphone jack available!
    • IP68 certified – dust/water proof over 1.5 meter and 30 minutes
    • Bluetooth 5.0
    • USB Type-C
    • Security:
      • Iris Scanner, Face Recognition, Finger print sensor, Samsung Pass, Samsung Knox
    • Available Colors:
      • Midnight Black, Maple Gold, Orchid Grey, Deep Sea Blue, Star Pink (Taiwan only)
  • Camera:
    • New Samsung Dual Camera
    • Selfie Camera
      • 8 MP Autofocus f/1.7 camera




The Note 8 is a power house of a smartphone and can tackle any task you throw at it with ease. This is a premium high-end Samsung flagship that should not have any performance issues. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 (US / China / Canada) or the Exynos 8895 (International) processors both exhibit high level’s of performance. This is no longer 2016 where Samsung included an octa-core exynos processor for international Note 7’s while including a Snapdragon 820 QUAD-Core processor for the North American/Chinese units. The 820 was noticeably slower, got hotter faster, and had stutter issues that comes randomly compared to an octa-core. This year Samsung did it right with the 10nm Snapdragon 835 octa-core processor which does not heat up, is super speedy, and exhibits no stutter at all. 3D gaming is easy for the Note 8 as you will get high fps and smooth gameplay.

To elaborate on how hot the Note 8 gets, at the very most we felt it get slightly warm. We were playing Final Fantasy 9 and it stayed cool in the hands, maybe slightly warm. Watching youtube videos, browsing the web, browsing instagram, editing photos, and playing some more Pocket Morty was definitely not enough, by far, to even get the Note 8 warmed up. In conclusion, unless you are running a stress test of the highest degree we cannot see the Galaxy Note 8 produce any significant amount of heat either with the Snapdragon 835 nor with the Exynos 8895 variant. Bravo Samsung. We theorize that due to the larger body of the Note 8 and being slightly thicker also contributes to a much more efficient natural heat management system.

The 6 GB RAM is a first for Samsung and we welcome it even though they are behind compared to OnePlus. Regardless multitasking has become even more easier as the larger RAM can take on larger amounts of apps opened and tasks demanded.



The Note 8 comes with a massive 6.3 inch display with a resolution of 2960 x 1440 (521 ppi). The display is a Super AMOLED Infinity Display so it basically wraps to the edges and eliminated most bezels save for a tiny bit on the top and bottom. You can only see the volume, power and the bixby button on the sides if you look straight down. Depending on the wall paper you use the image seems like it flows off of your Note 8 and onto the reality behind it, almost blending in with the world. It is a beautiful display, the most beautiful display we have seen yet even with the iPhone X coming out. The Infinity Display tech makes more sense when compared to the Essential or the iPhone X which both have this bezel sticking in the center from the top giving the phone’s annoying “ears”. The Note 8’s Infinity Display has curved edges on both the right and left sides (just like the S8) but the difference here is that the Note 8’s “edge” is a lot less pronounced and is only a slight edge. This is something we have seen on the Note 7 before and it only contributes to a more comfortable user experience.

The display is sharp, vibrant, with deep blacks (as we always expect from OLED panels) and high brightness levels. You can’t go wrong with this bag of magic. The Note 8’s display is massive which means that you get a lot more screen real estate than ever before. We viewed web pages and found that we did not need to scroll anymore in a lot of cases. We only scrolled from old habits we gained from using smaller screened phones. There is just so much space! All in a slim, light packaged phone that still somehow fits comfortably in your hands.

Build and Handling:


The Galaxy Note 8 is bigger and heavier than most flagship smartphones we have seen yet. It weighs about 195 grams and has a very large 6.3 inch display. It is also slightly thicker than the S8+ and noticeably at least an inch taller than the S8+. The phone is still thinner than the iPhone 7 Plus which has a considerably smaller display despite the iPhone’s massive bezel’s surrounding that smaller display. The iPhone 7 Plus, consequently, is just a big unwieldy smartphone compared to the elegant design of the Galaxy Note 8. The Note 8 is taller, however, compared to the iPhone 7 Plus but we prefer that than having a fatter, larger iPhone that has a smaller display. The Note 8 is packaged in a water/dust proof build with an IP68 certification. That means up to 1.5 meters and 30 mins of water.

The phone is built out of Corning Gorilla Glass 5 on the front and back which is bound together by a metal bezel that goes all the way around the phone. It is beautiful to look at (especially the Deep Sea Blue and the Midnight Black) and screams premium when you hold it. With 195 grams it does have some heft to it but it is far from being “heavy”. Despite being slim and slender considering that it has that massive 6.3 inch Infinity Display flowing like rainbow waterfalls off the edges it is still a relatively large smartphone. Nothing like the Nexus 6P or the iPhone 7 Plus large but still large. People with smaller hands will need to consider all of their options before looking at the Note 8.

The Finger Print sensor makes a return to it’s high throne above and sits as the left hand wing man beside that dual camera. Samsung did switch up the arrangement this time around as the flash and heart rate sensor is lodged between the camera module and the finger print sensor. This should help users make less errors (mistaking the camera as the sensor) when reaching for that sensor. The sensor is quite hard to reach due to the phones tall build and requires more than finger gymnastics to get used to this. You may need two hands.

The camera module along with the heart rate sensor and the finger print sensor is flush on the back which is good to see. The only thing is that the color of that rectangular piece (which holds the cameras and sensors) will always be black. So even if you purchase the Deep Sea Blue the panel holding the sensors will still remain black. This could be a good thing for some folks.

The Note 8 comes with wireless charging back (fast charging) and also a USB Type C. The Speaker grill is found at the bottom beside the USB connection port which is also flanked by that beautiful 3.5mm headphone jack. The S-Pen is nestled in its silo beside the speaker at the bottom right corner of the Note 8. The phone also supports microSD cards.

The Home Button is re introduced in the Note 8 as the same pressure sensitive strip under the display but only for the home button at the bottom and center of the Note 8’s display. This has a huge resemblance to the iPhone’s new home button introduced with the iPhone 7 with haptic feedback emulating a button click. The tech works very well without any flaws or issues and we even sometimes felt that the phone’s bottom half is a button that is clickable. It feels great. The home button works even with the display turned off.


Battery Life:

The 3,300 mAh battery is smaller than the 3,500 mAh battery found in the S8+. Last year we all know what misfortune overtook our beloved Galaxy Note 7, but the good thing is that Samsung learnt a big lesson from this and has implemented an 8 point safety check system that guarantees safety and also it seems like Samsung tweaked with the Note 8’s battery chemistry which enables the battery to retain about 95% of its charge even after 2 years of usage. The typical smartphone (even flagships, such as Apple) can only retain about 70% battery life after 1 year of usage.

From our initial tests the Note 8 shows a very respectable 4 – 5 screen on time with about 55% battery life remaining at the end of the day. This is with mild usage including: browsing 9 GAG, playing Pocket Morty, engaging in social media apps, a lot of messaging back and forth and browsing the web for info. The Note 8 easily lasts you throughout the day but if you need to top up it only takes minutes for you to last an additional several hours. You can forget your anxiety and worries surrounding smartphone battery life if you own the Galaxy Note 8. It just lasts.

Despite the smaller battery size and a bigger 6.3 inch display the Note 8 is equal to or even better than the S8+ with a larger 3,500 mAh battery. We assume that the 6 GB RAM, and optimized Snapdragon 835 processor is providing high efficiency performances leading to less battery consumption needed.

Camera Quality:

The GALAXY line has been known for some time now for their high quality picture quality. The S7 Edge, in particular, received high praise and awards for having such a fantastic low light camera that reproduces vibrant colors and details. That same 12 MP camera with phase detect autofocus and a wide and fast aperture of f/1.7 is also included in the Note 8. The only difference is Samsung’s brand new attempt at their own Dual Camera set up. Beside the 12 MP 23mm standard camera we now have a 56mm telephoto lens which also contains a 12 MP sensor but with a narrow aperture of f/2.4. The telephoto, consequently, cannot take in as much light as it’s partner beside it but has a unique ability to capture photos farther away with original optical quality without sacrificing data by pinching in to zoom (digital zoom).

Granted, Samsung is actually quite late to the dual camera party but with good reason. Samsung worked hard to include, for the first time, OIS (optical image stabilization) into BOTH len’s in the dual camera setup. No other manufacturer had this until the recently announced iPhone X. Having OIS in a telephoto lens is crucial in getting clearer, sharper shots. Telephoto photography is much too shaky without OIS or some form of stabilizers.

The Telephoto lens enables Samsung to include their own variation of Apple’s Portrait mode which Samsung calls “Live Focus”. Live Focus is basically portrait mode except this time the user can adjust the amount of background blur a photo should have before, during and AFTER the shot is taken, even if you come across the photo several days later and decided that less blur should be used. This is a cool touch indeed. Another new feature Samsung has introduced with the Note 8’s dual camera set up is “Dual Capture”. Dual Capture takes two photos with both the wide angle lens and the telephoto lens when you shoot with the telephoto lens. We actually found this to be very useful because when we shot a portrait shot of a friend she wished she could see more of the background, so all we had to do is click the “Normal Picture” button while you are reviewing the photo to see the wide angle version of the photo with more of the background captured. Since you cannot travel back in time (yet?) to take that exact same photo with your wide lens, we are grateful Samsung thought this through and included the Dual Capture feature.

The Selfie is an 8 MP sensor f/1.7 lens and we found it to be just that, it works in low light and captures good amounts of details. It is a typical Samsung flagship selfie camera unit with high quality results. The auto focus included helps in various situations but we found that we had to tap the screen to refocus time to time. Despite the f/1.7 fast aperture low light selfies are difficult for any smartphone since smartphone’s only have a tiny sensor. We enjoyed using it and we are certain selfie lovers will love the Samsung f/1.7 selfie camera.

Regardless, the software and algorithm that Samsung deployed is new (starting with the S8) which enables faster autofocus, faster shooting, sharper photos, and photos with deeper tones. The camera shoots three photos whenever you shoot with your main camera and combines them into one image (this all happens during the time it takes you to hit the shutter button, nano seconds).


The New and Improved S-Pen:


The S-Pen is a staple feature to the Note series. We must admit that the stylus has it’s appeal and use to only a small percentage of users while most will most likely forget about it after their “honey moon phase” with it. Despite all of that the S-Pen is chock full of actually useful features and functions. This year the Pen is the same as the Note 7 with its thinner and more pen like 0.7mm tip and with a 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity under the display the S-Pen brings you closer to a digital “pen and paper” experience. I personally use my Galaxy Tab with S Pen and the Note phones for my journal entries everyday and note taking and handwriting has never been so fluid and natural. It is an awesome thing to have in an advanced smartphone.

Samsung includes a button on the S-Pen that which you can click while hovering the pen above your display to launch a wheel that contains all sorts of functions.

There are many cool features including: GIF capture by creating a box around something and it will record the animations or video clip within that box. You can share gifs that you normally can’t with this method.

Translation by hovering your S-Pen over menu’s and websites that are in a different language during travel’s was absolutely indispensable and made the experiences of travel that much better in those small scenarios.

Smart select (create a box to capture), screen write (write on any screen you captured), and bixby vision (hovering your pen over certain images and texts will enable your AI Bixby to tell you more.

Drawing and writing has never been easier and natural, we know you will enjoy it. The S-Pen is built of plastic but has metal accents and a click top which is the Note users age old fidget spinner for some years now. The pen does not fit backwards and is light weight and feels high quality. Best of all the S-pen does not need a battery to operate! (Looking at you Apple pen).

The stylus has been ridiculed by many manufacturers, users, and reviewers including Steve Job’s himself. However, seeing how Apple launched their own official stylus (Apple Pen) and the S-Pen not going away in any foreseeable future the use for it is still very much alive. The S-Pen is the most advanced smartphone / device stylus implementation in the market and no one does it better than Samsung. Samsung has had several years to keep innovating and building on it and it is paying off. The Note lines S-Pen is a highly recommended tool for bloggers, people who love to write with their hands, to play games with a stylus (instead of with fat fingers blocking the way), and any creative minds who love creating art. We have seen some of the most detailed and fantastic artworks created on the Note smartphones throughout the years.

Should You Buy the Galaxy Note 8?


This is an age old question in the consumer market asked by all. Given the information above and a lot more floating around on the web the Galaxy Note 8 is a strong contender among the high end smartphone segment. The two major downsides to the Note 8 is the Price, and the fingerprint sensor positioning. The fingerprint position beside the camera is not that big of a deal on the S8 or even the S8 Plus because we can get used to it and because we can reach it. However, the Note 8 is substantially taller and require you to double your efforts to reach that sensor, it is difficult. The price of 930$ or 1299 CAD is expected as the general market price for Smartphones is on the rise right now. Even the iPhone X is currently priced at 1400 CAD on the website which is more than the Note 8.

The things we must consider when buying a Note 8 are the following: can you afford it?, do I use the S-pen habitually or am I really interested in gaining that new habit?, how will the size of the Note 8 affect me? What other phones are there available?

If you doubt that you will use the S-Pen, just go for the Galaxy S8 Plus. The S8 Plus has essentially all the same specs as the Note 8 minus the dual camera, size, and extravagant price tag. If you want smaller we recommend the Galaxy S8. However, other highly recommended smartphones include the iPhone 8 Plus, and the LG V30. All the high end phones will be priced similarly (except for the LG V30 which under cuts the competition) but if money is a large issue then we also recommend looking at the mid-tier phones that perform admirably with older tech repackaged such as the Asus Zenfone 3.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 is a fantastic phone with powerful specs, long battery life, barely any heat emissions, huge Infinity Display, and a high quality dual camera setup. The S-Pen is the main reason people go for the Note phones due to its versatility and usefulness. If all of these things are in your realm of interests and needs and if you have the deep pocket required for this, then by all means, go for the Note 8. Otherwise check out the other phones we mentioned above.

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Samsung Finally Allows Users to Disable the Bixby Button

Samsung Finally Allows Users to Disable the Bixby Button


Samsung initially really wanted to force users to use Bixby their new AI platform which has been mapped to that Bixby button on the left side of the S8/S8 Plus/Note 8 below the volume keys. Many third-party apps attempted to work around this but Samsung also tried to stop this from happening. However, it seems that Samsung is finally lowering their guard and is enabling users to disable the Bixby button via a new option in your settings.


The update is still being rolled out to all handsets and is distributed in stages. It may be some time before you can gain access to this option. Many users have lodged complaints against Samsung stating that they keep accidentally hitting the Bixby button when in fact they were trying to hit the Volume Keys instead. Also accidentally launching Bixby while pulling the phone out of your pocket is a common issue. Bixby is not going anywhere, however, because the company is pouring resources into this AI assistant. This new option should be a welcome change in allowing users to disable that hardware Bixby button.

Bixby is still quite too young to be the most useful assistant available today as it still has too many holes in it’s capabilities. It certainly will mature into the future and there are still a lot of features that we hope to see very soon.

The Apple iPhone X is Worth the Upgrade

The Apple iPhone X is Worth the Upgrade


Apple just uncovered the wraps on the brand new Apple iPhone X, the most talked about smartphone immediately during and after the Apple Keynote today. This is a beautifully crafted iPhone with beefy specs, amazing technology and a hefty price tag. Let’s quickly dive into what Apple is giving us for the holidays. Is the Apple iPhone X worth the upgrade for users who already own the iPhone 7 Plus? Is it worth switching over from Samsung’s S8 and Note 8? Let’s find out.


Quick Tech Specs:

  • Dimensions:
    • 143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7 mm (5.65 x 2.79 x 0.30 in)
    • Weight: 174 g (6.14 oz)
  • Body Design:
    • SIM: Nano-SIM
    • IP67 Water and Dust Resistant
    • Apple Pay enabled
    • Strong Glass on front and back with Stainless Steel wrapping around the sides
  • Display:
    • Super AMOLED (Super Retina Display) touch screen
    • 5.8 inches (~458 ppi pixels per inch) 2436 x 1125 resolution
    • Edge-to-Edge Display Panel
    • 3D Touch Display
    • Dolby Vision / HDR 10 compliant
    • True-Tone Display
    • Display Zoom
  • System Specs: 
    • OS: iOS 11
    • Apple-Designed A11 Bionic Processor (64 Bit Architecture)
      • 6 – Core processor (2 high performance + 4 high efficiency cores)
      • Embedded M11 Motion Co-processor
    • microSD: NO
    • 3.5mm headphone jack: NO
    • Internal Memory: 64GB / 256 GB
    • RAM: 3 GB
  • Camera Specs:
    • Primary:
      • Dual 12 MP , f/1.8 & f/2.4 phase detect autufocus lens.
        • OIS in both lens’
        • 2x optical zoom on telephoto f/2.4 lens
        • Quad-LED True-Tone Flash
          • Video:
            • Able to record 1080p @ 240 fps for ultra slow motion
            • 4K video recording @ 24/30/60 fps
    • Selfie:
      • 7 MP f/2.2 with Face Detection
        • Portrait Mode / Portrait Lighting Mode
          • Video:
            • 1080p @ 30 fps
  • Wireless Communication:
    • Bluetooth: 5.0, A2DP, LE
    • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, hotspot
    • USB 3.0 (Lightning) Reversible Connector
  • New Features and other Features:
    • New: Face ID
    • New: Animoji
    • New: Augmented Reality Implementation
  • Battery:
    • Unspecified: Claimed to have 2 hours More than the iPhone 7
    • 30 minutes of charging provides 50% battery life (Fast Charging)


What is the iPhone X?


The iPhone X is Apple’s celebration for their 10th anniversary by providing the best components and the best product they can at this point in time. The iPhone X or the iPhone 10 was unveiled at the Steve Jobs Theatre alongside the more traditional iPhone 8 and the iPhone 8 Plus. The iPhone X matches up with most of the leaks and rumors we have already seen with that edge-to-edge bezel-less display that resembles a cross breed of the LG G6 and the Essential Phone. What is most exciting, however, is not in the design of the phone but the hardware and software that Apple presented. It comes with AR (Augmented Reality) capabilities backed by powerful hardware and professional software engineers who put it all together into a cohesive package that, so far, does not feel like a gimmick. The iPhone X also comes with a chock full of senors at the top of the display within that tiny strip of black bezel which can measure the depth of your face and shoot 30,000 invisible dots to create a security image based on your face. This is so advanced and I have not seen such a thing launch with a smartphone yet. Samsung’s face recognition is full of holes and can be bypassed with a printed picture of the owner of the iPhone. The new Apple-Designed processor is the A11 Bionic which is a 6 core processor with 2 high performance and 4 high efficiency cores. There is also an M11 Motion coprocessor and a Neural Engine that processes the new Face ID feature. There is so much more to cover about the iPhone X so read on below and we will try to explain what we witnessed in each category of the phone.

So far, the iPhone X is shaping up to be Apple’s best offering as many people are already raving about the innovations of Apple and this new refreshing design choice that brings the already well received breath taking AMOLED display panel that goes edge-to-edge.

Lets Break it down…

iPhone X: The Display


Apple calls it the Super Retina Display which is basically the leaked Edge-to-Edge near bezel-less Retina Display now built on an OLED display panel for the first time for an iPhone. OLED panel’s have been around for a long time and Samsung and LG are the primary manufacturer’s of said display technologies. It provides deeper colors, deeper blacks, high brightness levels and more. We are happy to see that the iPhone X boasts a 5.8 inch Super Retina Display with a (~458 ppi pixels per inch) 2436 x 1125 resolution, The display panel curves around the edge’s of the display. There is only a tiny piece of bezel that sticks in from the top and center which contains an impressive array of sensors and cameras.

The display is quite beautiful to look at. Period. We are already deep in an age of high end smartphones that provide amazing display experiences so though we are not utterly blown away we still greatly appreciate Apple joining the bezel-less wars. The 5.8 inch display is awesome to look at and to have more display real estate is always welcome. With true blacks, and awesome colors popping Apple also engineered the device to provide accurate color gamuts.

iPhone X: The Specs, Battery Life and the removal of the Home Button

As mentioned the new iPhone X is powered by Apple’s newly developed A11 Bionic processors which is a six core 64 bit processor with an M11 motion co-processor and a Neural Engine. The A11 Bionic CPU is 25 percent faster than last year’s A10 chip and it the four core high efficiency component is 70 percent faster than the older model. The new Apple-Designed GPU is 30 percent more efficient than last year making it on par with the A10 at half the power.

The flagship is rated at IP67 which is water and dust resistant. The iPhone weighs about 174 grams which is quite light compared to the Galaxy note 8 and the phone itself is not that big in the hands with a spacious 5.8inch AMOLED (Super Retina) display.

The Processor is not slow at all but rather the opposite. IT is fast, powerful and speedy. Gaming will never be an issue as the new GPU also supports Metal 2 API and console quality gaming. Heavy duty apps won’t be an issue either as the processing power can handle up to 600 billion operations per second. Apple hasn’t been clear on a few front’s though; we have still yet to figure out what the battery capacity is. Apple simply dismissed any comments about battery specs with a simple statement that the iPhone X will last 2 hours longer than the iPhone 7. So far we have heard that the iPhone X should have 3GB of RAM but this is not officially confirmed yet.

The iPhone X is running on iOS 11 at launch so it will come with all of the awesome perks the operating system brings.

71f76490c7da1e03f06ca371a41154d8Face ID works very well.

The Home button is now gone, instead it is replaced by a tiny on screen tab at the bottom of the phone which you must swipe up to go home, tap and swipe to the center to go to your multitasking cards and also swipe left and right on that little tab to switch between apps. This seems a bit strange to us and though the process is smooth enough it will be a bit of a transition for people who are used to the famous iPhone button. If that traditional button placement is still preferred we recommend you check out the iPhone 8 or the iPhone 8 Plus instead. To unlock your phone with Face ID will require you to pick up your phone, look directly at it to see that white lock icon switch to the Unlocked position, then you must slide up to get rid of the lock screen. It sort of feels like the android lock screen with all that swiping and sliding.


To get to your Commands just swipe down from the top right corner of the phone and to get to your notifications you will need to swipe down from the left side of the iPhone.

The iPhone X has been certified with an IP67 water/dust resistant rating. This is perfect for the time where you accidentally spill water and you have no need to worry about dust.


iPhone X: The Camera & Augmented Reality:

Main Camera:

The iPhone X comes with a Dual Camera configuration both of the lens’ will be 12 MP in sensor size. True to the leaks, rumors and the dummy units the iPhone X’s dual camera layout is vertical (up and down) compared to the horizontal placement we see on the iPhone 7 Plus and the iPhone 8 Plus. Between the two len’s sits the Quad-LED True Tone Flash which illuminates subjects 50% farther and brighter. The Dual 12 MP sensors have larger pixels that are deeper and have new color filters. The iPhone X will be the second flagship phone to have Dual-OIS (optical image stabilization) in both lens’ (the first being the Galaxy Note 8). Optical Image Stabilization will provide clearer and sharper images even in low light situations. Especially during video recording OIS will come in handy as it stabilizes your video shots a great deal compared to devices that do not have OIS.


A new feature that was announced was Portrait Lighting. This feature uses the advanced cameras, the new A11 Bionic processor with it’s new ISP, Depth Sensing Cameras and complicated software to create artificial lighting on your subject’s face as if there were studio lights in place all around you. We have yet to test this and see how well this works. Just like the portrait mode that came with the iPhone 7 Plus this could be a hit or a miss. The different Portrait Lighting modes include: Natural Light, Studio Light, Contour Light, Stage Light, and Stage Light MONO (black and white).

The 2X optical zoom is found on the telephoto lens with that f/2.4 aperture opening. Sure, the f/2.4 is narrower and lets in less light compared to the f/1.8 faster lens on the wide angle lens but generally portraiture is best used in good lighting. When you tap and hold the 2x ZOOM button in the camera app you have the option to slide it around on a small circle to quickly zoom up to 10x zoom. 6x zoom is highest for video zooms.


Apple says that because the A11 Bionic chip has advanced machine learning this would help a great deal in taking better photo’s. It seems that the photography system will be able to see more, comprehend the scenes more and execute methods. There are 6 elements (lens’) in the f/1.8 wide angle camera. The company also managed to include OIS in the telephoto len’s via what they call a “state-of-the-art seven-magnet solution”.

Apple also stated that the Portrait Mode is improved so that you can achieve even sharper images and the background blur should be improved even in low light usage.

The iPhone X now supports 4K video up to 60 fps and slo-mo videos up to 1080p up to 240 fps.

Augmented Reality


AR, Augmented Reality was a big feature presented during Apple’s keynote. The primary dual camera’s on the iPhone X is more than capable. Apple paired up with some well known game development companies to demo a game based entirely on AR. The game was smooth, immersive, and sound and visuals respond to your camera. During the Apple Keynote they showed some pretty cool AR usages. For example, when watch a game at the basketball match or baseball you can use various apps to point your iPhone at the players on the court. The app will use your iPhone’s AR capabilities to pin a name and face and stats on each living player before you.

Another cool AR implementation is using the star apps. Point your iPhone towards the sky above you and the app will apply the starry map with its lines, dots, and names upon the literal sky. No software gimmicks. It uses the advanced AR enabled software and the advanced iPhone camera inside.

The Cool side of the new Selfie Camera: Face ID and the TrueDepth Camera


The 7 MP True Depth Camera has an aperture of f/2.2. Impressively, Apple integrated Portrait mode and Portrait Lighting mode into this camera. We expect to see some pretty awesome portrait selfies to start popping up online.  The Selfie camera also works with the new security feature Apple calls “Face ID”. Face ID is basically an advanced form of the face recognition unlocks found on other devices. The greatest difference between the two is that Apple’s implementation provides a fast, and an actual secure solution to use your face to unlock your iPhone and also use Apple Pay.

The set up is quick and involves you looking at the screen and rotating your head in a circular motion. This is achieved by the TrueDepth camera, the infrared sensor, ambient light sensor, proximity sensor, flood illuminator, dot projector and the A11 Bionic chip with the Neural Engine inside. So your information need not sync with some cloud system far away but directly with the engine integrated inside your iPhone X. The TrueDepth camera projects 30,o00 invisible dots that creates a precise 3D depth map of your face. During the keynote Apple has explained that you no longer can use a simple photo of your face nor can you sculpt a perfect replica of your face and use that to unlock. It needs YOUR face. Additionally, even if you were to grow a beard, your hair, wear a scarf or change your earrings thanks to the adaptive Face ID feature the function changes with you and still recognizes you.

The TrueDepth camera is also able to analyze more than 50 different muscle movements that is then mimic’d by your chosen emoji. It worked fantastically and was super fun to play with. You can send this over Apple iMessages as a sticker or an animated emoji with your voice recording. It is accurate, fun and worked darn well.


iPhone X Joins the Wireless Charging Front:


The build of the iPhone comprises of glass and surgical-grade stainless steel. Thanks to the glass back Apple is able to finally incorporate wireless charging. During the keynote various reps introduced their partnerships with various companies who will be providing Qi Certified wireless charging products and service in and around stores, cafes, libraries, and charging pads. They already announced an elegant looking Apple AirPower which is a take on previously presented charging power mats but somehow through this mat the iPhone will be able to show the battery percentages of all of your other Apple products such as the new Apple Watch Series 3, and the optional AirPod Wireless Charging Case.

Conclusion & Thoughts:

The phone comes in either a 64 GB configuration for 999$ or a 256 GB variant which is priced higher. On the Canadian website the pricing is set at $1319.00 and $1529.00 respectively.  So the price is going to be heavy and most may be deterred from this awesome iPhone due to that point alone. Considering that the smartphone market prices are on the rise we should not be entirely surprised with the pricing. If you do end up pouring in your savings into this device outright or on contract remember that you are investing in a fantastic new smartphone with high end specs, new features that look really cool (though we are unsure how the customers will respond into the future). If the price is too high and if you miss the home button we still recommend other high end smartphones such as the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, Samsung Galaxy S8, S8 Plus, the LG V30 and others.

The pricing seems to be competing with that of the Galaxy Note 8 which is similarly priced at a high premium.

The iPhone X is undoubtedly a big contender in the flagship premium smartphone arena. It needs to face off with the likes of the LG V30, the Note 8, the S8 Plus, and a few others. Apple, however, seems to have the upper hand in marketing as their commercials and adverts appeal to most people. The Apple brand is also a premium icon statement that have heads turning without much effort. We would not be surprised to see many still go for the iPhone X one way or another as it is indeed the most beautiful and refreshing design change that Apple has brought in a long time. One of the major pitfalls of releasing a new smartphone every year is the challenge of designing a revolutionary device. The iPhone X’s design did not seem unique in itself as it resembled a cross breed of the S8, the Essential phone and the LG V30. I do not believe that design alone is the main reason to buy the iPhone X. The reason is in the Apple brand, the new and awesome features that Apple laid out on us which includes the newly announced; AR, amazing TrueDepth camera with it’s array of advanced senors, and the new FaceID. The Animoji is also a cute and fun addition that breathed life into Apple’s new product.

During the Apple Keynote Tim Cook and his associates did not make any mentions about the 3.5mm head phone jack at all. In Apple’s eyes, it is truly a thing of the past. However, we still see many people and users desire for a flagship premium phone to have all functions available including the 3.5mm headphone jack. How long will the 3.5mm jack last?

Overall the iPhone X is a serious flagship phone with serious specs and exciting new features some of which unseen yet in another smartphone.  Just be prepared to shell out an arm and a leg for it’s premium price.

Preorders for the iPhone X begins on October 27 while the smartphones will begin shipment on November 3.





Top 10 Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Cases

Top 10 Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Cases


The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 is shaping up to be the best premium phablet flagship device this year. While we wait for the iPhone 8 to arrive we already know that the Note 8 is a big phone with a huge near-bezel-less display and advanced specs. Powered by the newest Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor and being the first Samsung device featuring a dual 12-MP camera system this is no ordinary phone.

Of course the Note cannot be a Note without mentioning the S-pen and its suite of features. With the tip being only 0.7mm thin combined with 4096 levels of pressure on the display you get a fantastic pen-paper writing experience on the go.

The only downside to the Note 8 is it’s current price tag of 930$ or 1299 CAD in the north. So it would make sense to invest in a case and screen protector to really safeguard your expensive investment. Most youtuber’s and phone enthusiasts all agree that having a screen protector and phone case will greatly improve your chances of preventing scratches, cracks, and other damages that would otherwise easily happen in your pocket, bag, or during an unfortunate drop.

Here we list our top 10 choice of cases for the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, be sure to follow our other article about our Top 10 Screen Protectors for the Galaxy Note 8.



1. Spigen Rugged Armor

spigen 1

Spigen is a well known brand by now and they create some of the best screen protectors and cases. Here we present the Spigen Rugged Armor case for the Galaxy Note 8. It is mostly minimalistic save for the top and bottom section which present a carbon fiber finish. The matte black color is gorgeous and it uses flexible TPU layers to protect your Note 8. The case comes with raised edges to protect your phone when placed on table tops and it adds only 0.1 inches to the thickness of the phone. We highly recommend checking out this case

Check them out here.


2. Tech21 Note 8 Case


This case by Tech21 comes with a pretty cool design on the back, it is thin, light weight, and is advertised to protect your Note 8 from a 3m / 10 ft drop thanks to their “Three-layer drop protection” which they call FlexShock. The materials used give it a tactile feeling so it should be a lot better to grasp in hand. Of course you are given access to all of the phones buttons and ports.

Check them out here.


3. Spigen Slim Armor CS w/ Slim Dual Layer Wallet Design

spigen slim armor

If carrying a card inside your case is important to you check out the Spigen Slim Armor CS for the Note 8. The dual-layered shock-absorbing TPU material provides rigid protection and durability. The case is surprisingly slim and light which keeps the phone pretty thin still. There is a compartment at the back of the case where you can slide in up to two cards and some cash for the road. The case received military grade certification and they also use air-cushion tech in the four corners of the case.

Check them out here.


4. Trianium Clear Hybrid Case

Trianium case

If you are looking to protect your Note 8 but still show off it’s sleek colors and design check out the Trianium Clear Hybrid Case. The case will fit your Note 8 like a glove with proper cutouts for the Spen, ports and buttons. It uses flexible TPU for the sides and a hard PC back for the back cover. The case is very slim so it shouldn’t add much to the bulk of the device. The back is raised a little bit as to protect the camera of your phone as well.

Check them out here.


5. OtterBox Defender


For those looking for ultimate protection need not look further than OtterBox. As a long time manufacturer of heavy-duty cases they have proven time and time again that phones have the greatest chance for survival with their cases. We introduce the OtterBox Defender. It comes with a lifetime warranty and is a well known manufacturer. Works with wireless charging and has a multi-layer build for maximum protection. There are also port covers that protect them from additional dust.

Check them out here.


6. Samsung S-View Flip Cover

S view cover

For those who prefer OEM cases directly from Samsung we recommend the Samsung S-View Flip Cover. This is easily one of the more prettier cases available as it compliments the color of your Note 8 and also doubles as a kick stand when showing videos to friends or viewing it yourself. Even when the screen cover is closed the case shows all sorts of important information including: missed calls, new messages, emails, alarms, and more. You can even accept and reject calls without having to open up the cover!

Check them out here.


7. Samsung Galaxy LED Cover


Another Samsung OEM case is the SAMSUNG LED View Wallet Case. The LED case has been released along side every flagship Samsung phone since the Note 4. Presenting a cool pixel lighting format it tells time, shows missed calls and messages, you can accept and reject calls and it also shows various animations that you can configure to mean different things. Music controls are also shown on it. This is a perfect case to protect the front and back of your phone while still seeing a cool 8 bit pixel LED lighting version of critical information right on the cover.

Check them out here.

8. Spigen Liquid Air Armor for the Note 8

Spigen Air

Spigen’s other design is called the Liquid Air Armor and it looks sleek and good. Using a flexible and slim TPU material the case is lightweight and looks fantastic. It fits the Note 8 perfectly giving it a slim feeling. There is a geometric pattern going on in the back and because it is matte it should be pretty good against fingerprints. Air cushion technology and military grade certification all goes to help protect your Note 8.

Check them out here.

9. Samsung Galaxy Note 8 ATGOIN Crystal Clear Flexible TPU case

atgoin clear flex tpu

For those who love simple and basic clear TPU cases we would like to recommend ATGOIN’s Crystal Clear Slim Fit Flexible TPU. Being a clear case it still shows off that beautiful Note 8 in its entirety but also protects it from scratches, finger prints and most drops. Using a flexible material it easily covers the sides and the corners of the Note 8 combined with a raised lip on the front and a bit on the back protects the phone from the surface of a table you may set it on. The material is definitely light and you wont feel it in the weight but due to the grippy feeling of the material it should make it a lot harder to accidentally have it slip out of your hands.

Check them out here.

10. Caseology Vault Series Slim Protective TPU Case

Caseology vault

Caseology has been manufacturing many cases as well. The Vault series is what we recommend in protecting your brand new Galaxy Note 8. The case is thin and utilizes a protective TPU based case to absorb shock from drops. Using a 3D texture cover provides additional grip along with additional shock absorption. The case is light and still enables the Note 8 to be pocket friendly and has cutouts for your buttons, the SPen and ports. The case is compatible with Samsung’s Original Wireless charging pads as well with most 3rd party wireless chargers.

Check them out here.

Asus ZenFone 3 Review and Some Thoughts

Asus ZenFone 3 Review and Some Thoughts





  • Beautiful design
  • Good Battery Life
  • Excellent performance
  • Selfie/Main Camera modules work well


  • Slippery build + Magnet to Fingerprints
  • Price is higher then similar competition
  • Huge levels of bloatware

Technical Specifications:

  • MODEL: Asus Zenfone 3 ZE552KL
  • Physical Specs:
    • Dimensions: 152.6 x 77.4 x 7.7 mm (6.01 x 3.05 x 0.30 in)
    • Weight: 155g
    • Corning Gorilla Glass back (unspecified type)
    • Dual SIM slot
    • 3.5mm headphone jack w/ 24-bit/192kHz audio
    • USB-Type C 1.0
    • Fingerprint sensor on back
  • Display Specs:
    • Super IPS+ 5.5 inch 1080p Display (~401 ppi pixel density)
    • Corning Gorilla Glass 3 front panel
  • Platform Specs:
    • CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 (Octa-Core 2.0 GHz Cortex-A53)
    • GPU: Adreno 506
    • OS: Android 6.0.1 (Marshmellow) + Asus ZenUI 3.0
    • RAM: 3 GB / 4 GB
    • Storage: 32 GB internal/64 GB interal
    • Storage 2: microSD slot available with support up to 256 GB (used in SIM slot 2)
    • Battery: non-removable Li-Ion 2650 mAh / 3,000 mAh capacity
  • Camera:
    • Main: 16 MP PixelMaster 3.0 (f/2.0 aperture) OIS sensor
    • Selfie: 8 MP f/2.0 aperture
  • Networking Specs:
    • Wifi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
    • Bluetooth 4.2 w/ A2DP, EDR, LE


What is the Asus Zenfone 3?

ASUS created the ZenFone 3 as a means to begin moving away from the budget smartphone segment of the market and instead begin taking a stab at the premium phone market. The company is now competing with the likes of the OnePlus 3 and the Honor 8 as an example.

The ZenFone 3 comes in two types: a 5.2 inch display (3GB RAM/32 GB storage) type and the other being a 5.5 inch display with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of internal storage. The ZenFone 3 still contains many mid-range specs internally, however, but within a new glass chassis build giving off a premium feel along with a higher price tag.

Design Comments


The ZenFone 3 is quite pleasing to look at and is a nice break away from the usual boring design language ASUS used in their past smartphones. Now the ZenFone 3 utilizes a 2.5D curved glass front and rear with metal bezel frames wrapping around the device. It looks great.

The phone is also quite small being only 7.69mm in terms of thickness combined with rounded edges make this phone pleasing to hold for a long period of time. The ZenFone 3 pays tribute to the days where flagship smartphones used to be quite small, compact and still high end. The phone is light as well weighing in at only 145 grams! Sure this does not make the ZenFone 3 the lightest in existence but it certain is very light while still providing that needed heft in hand that is not uncomfortable by any means.

The Fingerprint sensor is found on the back of the phone which is also found in a convenient spot right on the back. It is certainly reachable with the finger in a comfortable manner and the sensor itself is quite speedy in unlocking your phone.

Some issues with the ZenFone 3 include an all-glass design upon which finger prints will stick on and show up within seconds of picking up the phone. We do recommend utilizing cases or skins if this causes you any stress. The phone is also quite slippery in hand and we can imagine users dropping the phone not on purpose but because the phone slipped easily out of loose hands.

Also the navigational keys at the bottom portion of the phone do not light up so you would need to memorize their location and use muscle memory when using the phone in pitch darkness at night (before bed or else where). It is quite surprising to see a smartphone in this day and age to have touch keys that are not back lit. We would call this a design flaw.

The rear camera also protrudes out of the body but this is a mixed personal taste as some do not care while others truly dislikes those types of design’s. We at did not care much for this design point as it does not hurt the overall aesthetic appeal.


Despite the few caveats we had with the ZenFone 3 which are mostly aesthetics based we found the 5.2 inch or 5.5 inch display variants to be both super high res, sharp and colorful. The Full-HD IPS+ displays may not have the same color schema that OLED panels do but it still gets the job done being a bit cooler yet colorful. Vibrant, rich colors are offered here and is a treat to look at while watching HD videos and when playing games. Thanks to modern hardware components such as the Snapdragon 625 and the included Adreno 504 graphical unit the performance of the phone is snappy. We would be hard pressed to find mid-range smartphones that still lag and perform like old phone’s did in the past.

The brightness level is quite impressive as it can reach up to 600 nits which is great even in direct sunlight. The viewing angles are found to be good and the display also supports glove usage which is a bonus.

ASUS includes a display calibration app which they call “SPLENDID” and enables users to choose between preset configurations from Balance, Bluelight Filter, Vivid, and other custom color settings. The Blue Light Filter mode is particularly useful during night time before sleeping or even in general usage to prevent eye strain caused by blue light. Protect thy eyes.

Performance Comments

As mentioned the 64-bit octa-core Snapdragon 625 powers the ZenFone 3. Even though the 625 processor is labelled as a mid-range processor we found this to be more than adequate in getting your daily tasks done easily. The included 3 GB of RAM also helps multitasking a breeze. Please note that the 5.5 inch variant includes 4 GB’s of RAM instead. The CPU is clocked at 2GHz and the GPU is the Adreno 504. Phone’s like these have raised questions whether or not people should invest in high end flagships over adequate phone’s such as the ASUS ZenFone 3. The 5.2 inch model includes 32 GB of storage while the 5.5 inch model uses 64 GB of storage. In the 32 GB model we found that 23.5 GB was usable straight out of the box but thanks to microSD support users shouldn’t have any issues with storage.

The ZenFone 3 comes with a hybrid SIM slot tray which can take either two SIM cards side by side or one SIM and one microSD card. You can fit both a microSIM  or a nano SIM. The important thing to remember is that only one slot can gain access to the phone’s data capability (3G/4G data). While travelling 32 GB may not be enough for you so in those cases we recommend considering the 64 GB model instead.



ASUS has been trying to sell the camera feature for the ZenFone 3. The optics certainly is there, but the software; PixelMaster 3.0 is sorely lacking. The camera consists of a decently fast f/2.0 aperture and a 16 megapixel sensor. The camera utilizes a 6P Largan lens and has super fast autofocus. ASUS claims that the auto-focus tech combines all three features including laser, phase detection, and continuous autofocus which together pulls focus within about 0.03 seconds. OIS (optical image stabilization) and EIS (eletronic image stabilization) are also included which enables steady hand held shots and videography.

In normal outdoor lighting with plenty of light most camera’s should perform well and the ZenFone 3 does not fail here either. It produced good photos with vibrant colors and retaining a good amount of detail and focus. Where the camera begin’s to fall short is within low-light conditions. Depending on the lighting sometimes you can get away with certain images but on the most part we found that a ton of noise is introduced into the images and thus much information is lost as well. Despite lighting conditions we were able to get some blur-free shots thanks to the OIS included.

The 8 MP selfie camera was actually quite well built and offered sharp and detailed results as well despite the conditions.

The camera app includes many options and modes to choose from. There is even a low-light mode which increases light sensitivity to try and create a clearer, brighter shot in low light situations. The Super Resolution mode enables the camera to take images with resolutions up to 4X larger. GIF animation mode is arguably the most fun filled component here where you can create fun little GIF’s from what ever you captured.

Overall, the ZenFone 3 has a good camera but needs to work on the camera app to enable a faster process.

The ZenUI 3.0


The UI found on the ZenFone 3 is called the ZenUI 3.0.  It is built on top of Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow. Compared to previous versions of ZenUI’s this version has the least amount of bloatware which is great. The UI is clean with subtle animations and all the icons have been revamped. However, there are still a ton of ASUS branded apps that no one ever really uses. Most of these apps are system apps which means you cannot uninstall them. You can only disable them but they will still sit there using up your internal storage data.

ZenUI 3.0 retains the traditional app drawer but als oincludes a built-in search function. You can swipe down and have access to your phone apps and web searches and all the frequently used apps. A newly revamped theme store enables users to gain access to paid themes, icon packs, wall papers, and sound files for ring tones and others.

A cool feature in ZenUI 3.0 is called ZenMotion which enables users to set up custom touch motion gesture commands. You can configure things like “double tapping your display” to wake up or to ignore an unwanted call. This feature would minimize the need to use the phone with both hands.

Gamers rejoice, ASUS includes the Game Genie app which enables you to record your gameplay, share them and also live stream your gameplay’s to Youtube or Twitch. You can also search for tips through this app which launches along side your current game loaded.

We found ZenUI 3.0 to be fast, fluid, and good as it aims to retain the stock Android experience while adding to the core experience. However, we wish ASUS did not force their own bloatware apps on the users.


The ASUS Zenfone 3 is not an entirely cheap phone but is still on the low cost compared to today’s comparable smartphones. The price is similarly priced along side the OnePlus 3, however, which makes us gravitate towards the OnePlus instead.Despite this ASUS has provided a new phone that has the capability to propel the company into the more premium side of the smartphone market.

Regardless of which model you go for (the smaller 5.2 inch or the bigger 5.5 inch) we know you will not be disappointed. The phones are fast, zippy and have the fire power to handle what ever tasks you throw at it.

The ASUS ZenFone 3 is not officially sold in the US but can be found on sites such as Ebay, Amazon and even sold as 2nd hand devices on online marketplaces.



Introducing our New Product: The Cellunlocker SIM!

Introducing our New Product: The Cellunlocker SIM! ©


Are you looking to travel or switch carriers? Unlocking your iPhone becoming too complicated and your iPhone Re-locking? Looking to save money on cheaper/better phone plans but your iPhone won’t work with a different sim card?

If any of the questions above applies to you we have a solution!

Introducing the Cellunlocker SIMⒸ! The fastest and easiest method of getting your iPhone to work with any carrier you need. Skip the hassle of dealing with expensive roaming fees while traveling and also skip the unfair policies that carriers impose on their customers preventing them from using their phone’s on any network they wish.

Check out the video below to see a 52 second explanation of how it works


Get your Cellunlocker SIM today! Click Here!

LG V30 & LG V30 Plus News, Rumors and When is it coming out?

LG V30 & LG V30 Plus News, Rumors and When is it coming out?


The Launch date is fast approaching for the LG V30 and much has already been covered. The LG V series is comparable to the LG G series as the Galaxy Note is to the Galaxy S. The V30 has been rumored to be LG’s most powerful premium flagship smartphone to date.

The V30 will be announced soon this year in 2017 (rumors have suggested an unveiling date on August 31).

The current V phone which is the LG V20 received a positive reception for being a sleek and compact metal smartphone with a large display and a heft in its body that people appreciated. It also had a military standard water and dust proofing which made it rugged. The unique feature of the LG V20 from last year was its mini display above the main display on the front screen panel. This mini panel show cases various information, time, date, and app icons which you can launch from. This would be LG’s “Always On Display” feature but in the form of a separate physical display panel above the main one. LG actually confirmed that this secondary display will become a virtual panel that can appear at the top of the FullVision display.


During the Google I/O 2017 developer conference it was actually confirmed that LG would be releasing a second flagship smartphone before the end of 2017 (the first being the LG G6 earlier this year). It was also announced that the new flagship from LG will be compatible with Google’s Daydream VR (virtual reality). The unveiling date of August 31 (tomorrow) has been provided via a teaser poster. The announcement will be held at the Consumer Electronics show IFA this year. The rumored LG V30 Plus will also be unveiled. The poster was then followed up by LG with another poster showing the words “By Invitation Only” and “Lights, Camera, Action”. The LG V30 name was also written on the invitational image. The event will begin at 09:00 Berlin time while being live-streamed to Facebook. The poster also shows how the texts and the design on the silhouette of the screen hits the absolute edge of the front display which could suggest that the V30 and V30 Plus will indeed have near-bezel-less display panels.


After the unveiling takes place reports have previously suggested that the V30 should go on sale soon after in August but it is more realistic to see the new smartphone hit retail stores sometime later in September. Pre-orders are expected to begin on Sept 17 while the units will be shipped on Sept 28. This is regarding both the LG V30 and V30 Plus.

What will the Design be like?

The LG G6 was a huge change compared to its predecessors due to its new unique curved corner (near-bezeless) display panel and joining the sleek modern world of how other premium flagships are built. In light of this we know that the V series (LG V20 and the V30’s) act as the realm where LG can perfect their design ideas and execute them quite nicely.

The V30 is expected to become the brainchild of the LG G6 and the previous LG V20. This would mean that the standardized Military STD 810G water/dust/shock resistance rating will be built in (but most likely will be the IP68 water and dust proof rating instead). The body will be built out of high premium glass and metal while offering an almost all-screen display. The fingerprint sensor is expected to be mounted at the back as most LG flagships have come with and we expect to see an improved dual-rear camera set up with dual OIS (Optical Image Stabilization in both lenses).

On the V20 we saw a secondary display above the main display at the front. This acted as an information, news feed or space that provided a way for users to launch apps. However, LG has confirmed that the LG V30 will no longer have this implementation but rather have the secondary display appear virtually on the new FullVision display panel.

Here are some quick Tech Spec points:

  • Internal Specs:
    • CPU: Snapdragon 835 Octa-Core processor
      • GPU: Adreno 540
    • RAM: 4 GB
    • Storage: 64 GB / 128 GB + microSD support up to 2 TB
    • Ultra High Quality Quad DAC (high quality sound) (ESS HyperStream 2 or 3)
      • High quality adaptive Mic
    • 3,200 mAh non-removable battery
  • Display Specs:
    • FullVision 2880 x 1440 6-inch OLED (near bezel-less) Front Display
    • 18:9 Aspect Ratio for an all-screen front (confirmed)
    • Secondary Display will be a “floating display” (confirmed)
    • HDR 10
    • Dolby Vision Ready
  • Hardware Specs:
    • USB Type-C 3.1
    • Quick Charge enabled

LG V30 Specs and Hardware

The 3,200 mAh battery should suffice but we will need to have one in our hands to do further testings. We hope to see how the new FullVision OLED display and the efficiency of the Snapdragon 835 will perform for the LG V30. We expect the LG V30 to last you the day at least but that is usually enough for most as the Quick Charge feature should get you back up to speed within less than an hour.

The processing chip will most likely be the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835. We are talking about the most high end processing chip available on the market today. The Snapdragon 835 is an Octa-core processor that is based on a 10nm chip which yields an increase in performance and efficiency compared to the Snapdragon 821 of last year. The Snapdragon 835 will provide noticeably faster and more efficient performance in the LG V30 thanks to the multi core’s and high efficiency cycles.

Qualcomm includes many features into the LG V30 including the newly upgraded CAT.16 LTE speeds and Qualcomm sounds that is built beside the Quad DAC which yields superior sound quality for music playback. VR performance and gaming will also be very smooth thanks to the new Adreno 540 graphical unit. To further performance the 4 GB RAM will be more than enough to open many apps and still have a smooth UI experience in games and other apps.

The LG V30 is expected to have a 64 GB internal storage (128 GB models are usually manufactured for certain markets) that is also boosted by a microSD slot that enables you to insert your own microSD and never have to worry about storage or being unable to access your cloud data in various places around the world while travelling.

The LG V30 will certainly come with a USB Type-C at the bottom with Qualcomm Quickcharge enabled for fast charging.

OLED Display Panel


LG as a manufacturer have been creating various OLED display panels of high quality standards but they have been mainly used for their TV line ups. However, after all this time we are finally seeing LG implement an OLED display into their flagship smartphones and it may begin with the LG V30. With an OLED display panel expect to see vivid colors, deep blacks and high brightness display panels. Everything will be crisp, colorful, and warmer compared to IPS display panels.

The LG V30 is expected to have a 6 inch FullVision OLED display that will cover most of the front. Dolby Vision and HDR 10 compliance is now becoming the standard feature in all flagship phones so expect to see it happen on the LG V30 as well. LG has confirmed that the resolution will be 2880 x 1440 with a pixel density (ppi) of 537. It is said that the P-OLED display panel will be mounted on a plastic base which will enable the curving over the display easier. LG has boasted that the LG V30 display panel will be able to reproduce a whopping 148 percent of the sRGB colour space and due to the high resolution / ppi count this smartphone will be great for high performance Virtual Reality.

LG V30 Camera

Dual camera’s will be a mandatory feature as LG has been banking on it for quite some time. The LG G6 dual camera has been great and fun to play with so the LG V30 will also exhibit some upgraded version of the dual camera. It is confirmed by LG that the V30 will have an f/1.6 aperture lens and the covering material for the lenses will be crystal glass as opposed to plastic. The sensor resolutions have not yet been confirmed. Laser detect autofocus, optical image stabilization and electronic image stabilization will all be included in the V30 camera suite.

If the V30 follows in the footsteps of the LG G6 then the camera sensors are expected to be dual 13 MP sensors (one standard, one ultra wide). The f/1.6 aperture lens on the LG V30 will provide a lot more light in low light situations and keep grain lower than what other smartphones can achieve. The Galaxy S8 has a main camera with an aperture of f/1.7 which is known for taking great photos during the night. The LG V30 should have no issues following in this respect and have little to no issues in low light conditions.

The selfie camera on the LG V30 is expected to be a 5 MP sensor (though the resolution is actually expected to be increased in the LG V30) that will come with face-detect autofocus that operates even with the FullVision display is turned off.

As mentioned in the poster above showing “Lights, Camera, Action”, we only expect that LG has worked on some new feature or upgraded existing videography functions on the LG V30. We expect that video capture will be a whole category on it’s own during the press release.

Nougat and LG UX 6.0+


LG has been working on a new LG UX which is called LG UX 6.0+ which will be laid on top of Android. This will include several new features and software engineered to take advantage of the new 18:9 aspect ratio FullVision OLED display. A new feature called Graphy is one such feature found in the camera app. While in manual mode (or pro mode) in your camera you can choose from various preset photo modes that have been fine tuned and created by professional photographers. The photo modes affect the exposure triangle of photography (ISO, Shutter Speed, and Aperture) to bring you various “looks” that you may want for your photo shoot.

LG has also created new security measure and have added facial recognition which means that the LG V30 is joining the modern security world alongside Samsung and Apple. Simply look at the LG V30 to unlock it quickly even when the display is turned off. You wont even need to press the power button to turn it on first! The V30 can also recognize your voice to unlock via a set phrase that you must configure beforehand.

In terms of customization LG has included options to adjust haptic feedback levels to cater to your individual tastes while navigating around the smartphone.

The LG V30 will be running on Nougat 7.1.1.

141889-phones-news-lg-v30-ux-revealed-ahead-of-launch-second-screen-confirmed-image1-lchurpbokt (1)


A lot has been confirmed already and much has already been revealed. It certainly does not seem like LG is scared that people will find out. Rather the company seems pretty enthusiastic in sharing a lot of the information especially now that we are approaching the day of its unveiling. August 31 is the official unveiling date and we will expect to see much from LG because the LG V30 will be going up against the likes of the iPhone 8, the Galaxy Note 8 and others. The V30, nonetheless, is an exciting flagship smartphone from LG that will have a near bezel-less display front, wide and fast aperture lens on the back and powerful modern specs included inside. We hope that you will be as excited as we are as we look forward to what LG will bring.

Keep checking this article to see if there will be any more updates and check out our coverage of the LG V30 tomorrow!


Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Summary! Here are the Specs and What you need to know

Samsung Galaxy Note 8 Summary! Here are the Specs and What you need to know

note 8

Today morning, Samsung finally unveiled the New Samsung Galaxy Note 8 in New York at their Unboxed event. Following their slogan: “Do Bigger Things” they proceeded to present brand new features and functions that is now included in the Note 8. Here is a quick run down of the Official specifications of the Samsung Galax Note 8. The Note 8 goes on sale on sept. 15.

Official Specifications:

  • Display:
    • 6.3 inch Super AMOLED Infinity Display
    • 2960 x 1440 (~521 ppi pixel density) resolution
    • Corning Gorilla Glass 5
    • 18.5:9 Aspect Ratio
  • System:
    • CPU: Exynos 8895 Octa core (International) OR Snapdragon 835 Octa core (North America)
      • Cpu specs:
        • Exynos 8895 Octa Core: (4 cores running @ 2.3 GHz + 4 cores running at 1.7 GHz)
          • GPU: Mali-G71 MP20
        • Snapdragon 835 Octa Core: (4 cores running @ 2.35 GHz Kryo + 4 cores running at 1.9 GHz Kryo)
          • GPU: Adreno 540
    • Memory:
      • 6 GB RAM
      • 64 GB internal storage + microSD support for up to 256 GB
    • Battery:
      • 3,300 mAh battery
  • Camera:
    • Primary: DUAL camera:
      • 1 x 12 MP (f/1.7) 26mm wide angle lens with Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) and Phase Detect AF
      • 1 x 12 MP (f/2.4) 52mm telephoto lens with Optical Image Stabilization (OIS)
    • Secondary (Selfie) Camera:
      • 8 MP (f/1.7) Autofocus lens
        • Can record video (1440p QHD @30 fps)
    • Video:
  • Sound/Music:
    • High end AKG headphones included in box
    • 3.5mm Headphone Jack integrated
    • 32-bit/384kHz audio
  • Networking:
    • Bluetooth 5.0, A2DP, EDR, LE
    • USB: Type-C 1.0 Reversible Connector
  • Available Features:
    • Iris scanner, fingerprint (rear-mounted), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer, heart rate, SpO2
    • Available Colors: Midnight Black, Maple Gold, Orchid Grey, Deep Sea Blue
  • S PEN specs:
    • 4096 pressure levels
    • Fine tip (0.7mm)

What is so special about the Note 8? (1)

Samsung opened up their presentation with that gorgeous 6.3 inch Infinity Display. It is vibrant as ever and has a cinematic view with HDR support. It is rather cool to see that the Note 8 can retain a 6.3 inch (6.2 inch with curved edges) yet keep a small and slender body that fits comfortably in the hand (compared to the bulkier iPhone 7 Plus). The Note 8 also has an aspect ratio of 18.5:9 which means that it is on the “tall” side with a near bezel-less display. Samsung pitched this big feature as an opportunity for users to “more space to do bigger and greater things”.

Just like last years Note 7 and this years S8 and S8 Plus the Note 8 features a body design that has perfect symmetry. This simply means that the phone curves forward and backwards in such a seem-less fashion that it just feels right in your hands. However, for the Note 8 they made the edges more flatter giving it a different feel from the S8 and S8+ which just keeps rolling around all the way to the other side. Especially after continuous usage you should feel less hand fatigue. The Note series have always been designed with the S Pen in mind. It was the first to create a “phablet” category many years ago and now, following tradition, we are given a beautiful device that is the embodiment of this concept. With more screen real-estate you should find drawing your art, writing down notes and writing a journal entry on the go to be a joy.

The S Pen and Features Improved (2)

The S Pen is also water proof / dust proof this year so no worries in getting it accidentally wet or cleaning it with a wet cloth on occasion. This year with the Note 8, Samsung has improved upon and included new and useful features for the S pen suite. For example, users can now do more with the “screen-off memo” where you can just immediately write on the screen (even if it is off) when you pull out your S Pen. They’ve changed this so that you can actually keep on writing your ideas, your eureka moment or that address or information on and on (up to 100 pages) without turning on your phone! You can also pin your idea, to-do list, or what ever you’ve jot down onto the AOD (Always On Display) screen.

They’ve also included animated GIF functionality with the S Pen suite. Here, you can use the S Pen to write a message, draw a little doodle on an image or white canvas and send it to your friends via messaging apps to any phone around the world! An important note to make is that some social media and messaging apps may not support certain GIF size / lengths. This is a nice touch by Samsung which enables handwritten messages on photos, custom drawn emoji’s and animated GIF’s to express your feeling in the moment to your friends. A hand drawn and animated “Thank You” looks and feels a lot more better than a boring old typed out “thank you”.

Creating your own GIF’s is also back! Here you can use the S Pen and capture a an area of a video that is currently playing on your screen or what ever you see. This will then save a snippet of that area you’ve just captured and it will save it as a GIF. Pretty cool and we found it super useful and fun to play with back on the Galaxy Note 7. This was particularly useful in situations where websites did not allow for the downloading of their GIF’s or Videos but we really wanted to share it with our friends and family. You modify the size of the shapes when capturing the GIF.

The S Pen has always been used by us in different ways. Some use it to journal in the mornings while sipping on their coffee, some use it to jot down tons of notes around the clock, while others actually create some impressive art pieces with their S Pen’s. It looks like Samsung has included a wide range of brushes, pens, and various coloring tools to help you on this journey. A pretty nifty feature that Samsung has added via “PEN UP” (the companies Galaxy Note S Pen Artists Hub kind of like flickr or deviant art) are coloring pages. These are images designed by artists which you can download and just color in. (This is for you folks who love coloring books no matter the age).

Other features of the S Pen include the ability to hover your pen over text that is in a different language to have it automatically translated for you into English. The feature was further updated so that it can also automatically convert various units and currency into the USD or CAD (however you set it up).

Of course, the S Pen makes it super easy for us to save entire articles from the web for us to use for research or reading material later on. Screen writing, S Pen Glance and Magnify features are also available but these have been available since the Note 4 and 5 days.

The S Pen also has that clicky tip which really feels great when in our fidgety moments.

Some Awesome Note 8 Functions and Design (4)

The Display is huge, yet the body is somehow so small and sexy. This enables you to view more content on screen which prevents the need to constantly scroll around and zoom around as you would need to on smaller screened (similar sized body) smartphones out there. The Infinity Display also has HDR 10 compliance which provides more details in the shadows and creates a beautiful image in your videos that support this feature. By now, many popular shows should support this such as shows on Netflix.

Samsung also added a cool new way of launching your apps. It is done by linking two apps together and adding it to your home screen. Now whenever you tap that icon the phone launches both apps in multi-window mode (one on top and one on bottom). This is really useful for situations such as when you start driving you can tap it to launch both your Google Maps and your music app simultaneously. Pretty cool. Let us know how you plan to use this feature in the comments below.

The Phone weighs 195 g (or 6.88 oz) and has a physical dimension of 162.5 x 74.8 x 8.6 mm (6.40 x 2.94 x 0.34 in. The back panel is also made of Corning Gorilla Glass 5 and the whole phone (including the S Pen) has an IP68 certification for an awesome dust/water proofing of over 1.5 meters deep and up to 30 minutes long.

This year, the Note 8 uses a smaller battery compared to the Note 7 which is rated at 3,300 mAh capacity. Combined with Samsung’s 8-point battery safety check and their experiences from the past we are rest assured that we will not see another fiery fall of the Note. Thanks to the 10nm processor (Exynos for internationl and Snapdragon for NA) the power efficiency should be high enough to give us a full day of usage, but battery life will need to be further tested when we have our own unit in hand. What was not announced was the fact that Samsung included some new chemistry that enables the battery within the Note 8 to retain 95% of its life even after a years worth of usage. Comparably, all other smartphones out there only retain about 80% battery life after a typical years worth of usage.

The New Dual Camera

The Note 8 is the first Galaxy phone to come with a dual camera but what differentiates Samsung from other companies is the fact that each sensor contains OIS (optical image stabilization) while other manufacturers could add OIS only to the wide angle lens. This translates to smoother, more stabilized video footage and sharper photos even when using that telephoto optical zoom. Samsung stood on stage and showed a side by side comparison of the Note 8 and the iPhone 7 Plus’ video recording and they did present a rather shaky footage from the iPhone 7 Plus while the Note 8 had a reasonably stable footage. We aren’t sure as to how reliable this comparison is but we should certainly see that the OIS will work for the 52mm telephoto lens.

The cool new feature is that Samsung also included a 2x optical zoom which eliminates the need to digitally zoom in on subjects which destroys quality and you lose so much information. With actual moving lens’ we should see some pretty cool images coming out of the Note 8.

Samsung also created a new function called “Dual Capture” which enables users to take one photo which saves as two different photos: one telephoto and one wide angle. This opens up some pretty cool options such as saving both or if you change your mind and what more of the story in your photos you have this option.

Portrait mode has also been implemented into the Galaxy Note 8 which enables you to blur the background of your subjects in post. This is called “Live Focus” and you can apply this effect via a slider after you take the photo. They presented this pretty well on stage but we will have to test this our selves and compare it to the iPhone 7 Plus.

Both sensors have a 12 MP platform but only the wide angle lens has a wide aperture of f1.7. The telephoto lens has an aperture of f2.4. So in the dark of night it would be wiser to use the wide angle lens to take those amazing photos as we have seen on the likes of the S8 and S7 Edge. The Dual Pixel sensor is also available only on the wide angle sensor which enables smooth and fast focus transitions.

Of course, the Note 8 comes with a suite of modes such as “Food Mode”, “Pro Mode”, “Panorama”, “Time lapse” and “slo mo”.

The Selfie Camera seems to remain unchanged

Not that this is a bad thing because the selfie camera on the S8 was pretty great. This is a 8MP f/1.7 bright selfie lens with the new smart auto focus function included. This is one advanced selfie camera. The selfie camera should serve you well even in low lighting and give you that crisp selfies you need.

Expandable storage and 3.5mm headphone jack is back!


Not that it went away, but we are happy to see that Samsung is listening to the voice of the people and keeping that 3.5mm headphone jack as well as expandable storage that supports microSD cards for up to 256 GB. Samsung is including their AKG headphones in box so Note 8 users can enjoy some pretty sweet beats with their new smartphone.

Performance Speculation


The Note 8 is expected to be super fast and smooth thanks to the already tested and well known Exynos 8895 or the Snapdragon 835. The 6 GB RAM should also really bring added improvement to multitasking as well, about time Samsung caught up to other manufacturers in this front. With the Vulkan API also leading the charge and combined with the advanced Graphics enabled in the Note 8 via the MALI-G71 MP20 or the Adreno 540 we are in for some pretty sweet benchmarking alongside faster performance and networking speeds.

The Vulkan API enables console-quality gaming experiences which is leading the charge for developers to create some Triple A quality games for the smartphone arena. Expect to see some graphic-intensive games run very smoothly on your Note 8.

Gigabit LTE support and Gigabit Wi-Fi support is also included (but this really depends on where you live) so you can enjoy streaming, downloading, and just surfing online at up to 1 gigabit per second. Thats insanely fast and probably only available in certain countries such as South Korea and Japan.

Biometric Security and Samsung Knox


Samsung includes all of their advanced security measures and features for you to utilize. This includes all the functions we know and heard and love such as: the Iris scanner which has already been shown to work lightning fast and is pretty reliable. The Face recognition feature also works well but may be on the lower end of security. Patterns, Pins and passwords are certainly available and of course the finger print sensor.

The fingerprint sensor is found on the same place at the back as we saw on the S8 and S8 Plus. This may cause some disturbance yet again with people but we have seen people adapt to the situation and begin to really use and love their premium smartphones. We aren’t too worried.

All of Samsung’s security measures operate within the secure containers of Samsung Knox which is a military grade security system that is nearly fool proof. Consider your data kept safe.

Samsung Bixby


Samsung Bixby received some pretty cool updates which should also arrive on the S8 and S8 Plus. Now you can program Bixby to understand key phrases or words and Bixby will perform complicated tasks based on the circumstance you need it. For example, they showed us how you can simply state “Good Night” to Bixby which then proceeded to open the Alarm app, set the alarm to 6 AM, then turn on the Blue light filter. Furthermore, saying “Food Picture” prompted Bixby to open the camera app, change the camera to Foodie Mode, take the photo, open the gallery app, and move the picture of the food to the “Foodie folder”. Now that’s pretty awesome.

It seems like Bixby is growing everyday and being improved upon. We wonder how efficient and powerful Bixby can become into the future.

How Much Will it Be and When is it Out?

The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 will be quite expensive. In Canada it is 1299.99 CAD while in the US it is around 950USD. Expect to pay a big premium for a premium smartphone. The company announced that the Note 8 will go on sale beginning September 15 2017. This is good news as usually Samsung takes months for it to get the devices out.

Your local carrier should be providing a cheaper alternative up front with a 2 year contract term or other.

Will you be buying the Galaxy Note 8? Let us know in the comments below!




The New LG G7: The Rumor Wheel Begins… (Constantly Updated)

The New LG G7: The Rumor Wheel Begins… (Constantly Updated)


The LG G7 is expected to succeed the latest LG flagship phone: LG G6, but this happening in early 2018. We are only in August 2017 as of this article being written but people have already begun churning the LG G7 rumor wheel. Follow this thread to keep yourself up to date with the LG G7 rumor’s. Not only do we wish to update you on actual leaks but we hope to provide some of our opinions to help get your imagination rolling as well.

Whats happening in 2018?

It is obvious that all major players in the smartphone arena have the tendency to pump out a new flagship and a bunch of smaller budget/medium performance smartphones. So it is not hard to believe that LG will be pushing out the new and improved LG G7 as their next flagship phone. So don’t expect the G7 to launch any time in 2017.

Important Points and Specs:

Expected Specs:

  • CPU: High-End Snapdragon 845 PRO Octa-core Processor
  • GPU: Adreno 550
  • RAM: 6 GB
  • 64 GB / 128 GB internal storage + microSD support
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Dual Camera system with a faster lens (aperture of f/1.7)
  • 6.2 inch OLED Display

When is it coming out?:

Judging on the trend that LG is following, we expect the LG G7 to come out sometime in Spring 2018.

G7 News and Rumors

lg g7 concept images

As of this moment there aren’t too many rumors to go by, however, there has been reports that LG will begin to implement OLED display panels into their flagship phones. So we expect the LG G7 to also receive an OLED display. We are guessing that due to a bezel-less panel route we are expecting the phone to receive a 6.2 inch OLED display panel as well. Just like the S8 Plus that still manages to be thin and small with an incredibly bezel-less 6.2 inch display. We are certain that LG will try to compete with such a rival. Apple seems to also be taking on a similar route.

The LG G7 is expected to be unveiled during the Mobile World Congress 2018. This is expected to happen sometime late February to March. Look out for MWC 2018. However, like any manufacturer, timings are never perfect. LG can be late to the show (as the company was previously) and have varied greatly beginning with the LG G.

LG G7 Specs

5G Enabled Inside

There is a strange rumor going around, that which we are unsure about, but the G7 is expected to have a 5G connectivity available. This would mean that super high-speed data transfer speeds are possible with the next LG flagship via 5G modems.

5G is the next generation but a work in progress so we are unsure if the technology will be available by the time the G7 is available. 5G is not available in North America yet so we shouldn’t get our expectations up high just yet. The rumor comes from Business Korea who purported that the 5G connectivity will be one of the major selling points for the LG G7. Other phone’s expected to receive this will include the Galaxy S9. The 5G technology was first introduced by Qualcomm Technologies which boasts telecommunication speeds that are five times faster than the current wireless data networks available.

If this follows through then the LG G7 will come with Qualcommm’s Snapdragon X50 5G modem.

Snapdragon 845 PRO and 6 GB of RAM

We are still quite a ways off to be hearing any substantial leaks and rumors directly about the LG G7, but we can certainly get by using information we already know. Qualcomm is already in the works based on a legal dispute between Qualcomm and Apple. The Snapdragon 845 chipset was listed among Qualcomm’s patent list which has not yet been announced. Although the 845 is expected to be unveiled in 2018 with a 7-nanometer process (which provides an increase of 30% in it’s power efficiency and power gain) compared to the already tiny 10-nanometer Snapdragon 835 we have today.

LG G7 AMOLED Display and a Redesign

The AMOLED display is more of a speculation and wish based on some news information we have been seeing. With OLED panels we may be seeing some interesting design language changes with the LG G series. The G7 may come with a bezelless design that rivals that of the S8/Note 8 and the upcoming iPhone 8.

Under the display fingerprint scanning technology does exist, it’s just that it is quite hard to implement with our current available technology. However, things may change in 2018 with the G7 perhaps being the first flagship phone to boast such a feature. This would mean that LG can get rid of the finger print circle from the back found on the G6 and just keep it under the display. This could mean that the G7 could receive a pressure sensitive home button like the Samsung Galaxy S8.

It is safe to assume that the LG G7 will have an all glass front. Still we hope to see that a reshaped display front could happen instead of the strange display shape on the LG G6. LG, however, did begin the trend of bezel-less displays and unique looking phones. Apple is expected to jump on the band wagon finally.

Expected Pricing

The cost for a premium flagship phone is always on the rise. The demands are always there and manufacturers manage to introduce new and more expensive features.

It is expected that the LG G7 will have a USD price tag of 750 and about 900 CAD. While in the UK it is expected to receive a price tag of about £610.

Stay Tuned!

We will keep our post updated for any more LG G7 news as soon as they come available

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