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Large form-factor phones were once derided as giving users the appearance of talking into bricks the size of Texas toast, but now the humble “phablet” category is widely regarded as the true flagship class of smartphones. LG is late to the super-sized game, having produced only a handful of ill-fated devices like the G Pro series in the past, but now looks to take the fight directly to Samsung and its breakout success of the Note. Indeed, not even the Note name is safe from the South Korean manufacture’s attack, and the rumored LG G Note won’t be pulling any punches.
Rumors began circulating earlier this month about a possible big brother to the forthcoming LG G4, and those rumors gained steam during the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona when LG’s COO Cho Juno hinted at the launch of a bigger, faster, more powerful handset. Now, FCC filings and trademark applications give us the first look under the hood.
Spec Sheet Rundown:
- 5.79″ display (147 mm)
- 3.12″ x 6.07″ (79.3 mm x 154.1 mm)
- Removable 3000 mAh battery (estimate)
- Single rear camera, centered
- Sprint version with LTE bands 2, 4, 5, 12, 25, 26, and 41
These specs scream phablet, and are strikingly similar to Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 in every respect.
Release is expected in the second half of 2015, following the LG G4 unveiling this quarter.
LG registered the “G Note” trademark at the Korean patent office last month, but has yet to file for a US patent under the same moniker at the time of writing. Currently, the only similar name holder in the United States is KYE Systems Corp., a Taiwanese maker of mice, keyboards, and game controllers, who owns “G-Note” as part of its Genius brand.
If the LG G Note branding holds true (as it should), the name will have instant market recognition as a phablet and direct competitor to the Galaxy Note 4.
The eagle eyes over at SlashGear and PhoneArena have spotted and combed through a recent mystery filing with the FCC, and have gleaned a number of insights about the device. The filing in question is for an LG Electronics slab marked LG-LS770, a number that follows the naming convention for the company’s Sprint handsets. In answering the usual questions set forth by a government regulator, the papers outline battery specs, radio bands, and ID placement, though the complete filing contains a number of extra gems.
Removable Battery: Detractors of the recently announced Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge are keen to point out that Samsung did away with their removable battery in favor of wraparound Gorilla Glass. With overall battery capacity plummeting over time (usually around 20% during the first 500 charge cycles, though specifics vary based on type), many consumers see buying non-removable power packs as counting on a non-negotiable two-year expiration date. Thankfully, the LG G Note will be “marketed without battery installed,” meaning the pack is 1) wrapped in plastic next to the phone and 2) inherently and joyously replaceable.
Battery Capacity: Exact size is not mentioned by the documents, but a rating of 11.6Wh at 3.85 volts roughly equates to 3000 mAh, well in line with expectations.
Rear Buttons: The hallmark rear buttons are not present in the FCC diagram, but this is not unusual given that the document shows the device with its back cover removed; remember that the current LG G3’s removable back also houses its rear buttons. Even recent launches like the G Flex 2 include the now iconic clickers, so it will be a shock if the new slab is any different, especially given the ergonomic benefit of such dimples to wider devices (re: Nexus 6 back dimple).
Physical Dimensions: The rumored G Note is identically sized to Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 (153.5 mm by 78.6 mm), but with a screen diagonal that beats Samsung by a hair. The specifics of display resolution and pixel arrangement are yet to be seen, however, and the recent P-OLED G Flex 2 that caps out at 1080p suggests that full-HD is still within the realm of possibility. That said, the safer bet is still with a QHD display similar to the earlier LG G3, as there is no indication that the bendable P-OLED will be necessary in this case. In the event of QHD, we’re looking at a phone that is the equal of Samsung’s best (thus far) on paper, and a story worth following.
Stylus: Again targeting the Galaxy Note audience, the appearance of a stylus in the filing minutia points to a reprise of last year’s LG G3 Stylus, and the productivity-centered marketing common of phablets.
Sprint Frequencies: LTE bands 2, 4, 5, 12, 25, 26, and 41 are all supported, which further confirming the LG LS770 as a Sprint device.
That’s all we know so far. By all accounts, the as-yet unannounced LG G Note is shaping up to be a beast of a device, and will give the Galaxy Note 4 and 5 a run for their money. More on this story will follow in the coming weeks, including a possible full reveal at the LG event later this quarter, so watch this space!
Are you excited for the LG G Note with its removable battery and stylus? What will it take for LG to sell you on this newcomer phablet? Let us know below!
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