LG Electronics said it aims to make its smartphones “a hub for artificial intelligence” (AI), as it unveiled its LG V30S ThinQ – which integrates AI features into the device’s camera and provides enhanced voice capabilities.
In truth, the LG V30S represents a very slight upgrade to the company’s V30, with the design of the new smartphone and many of the specs exactly the same as the device unveiled six months ago. Interestingly, the company also suggested the AI features could also be accessible on the LG V30 through a software upgrade, bringing it closer in capabilities to the new model.
But, in an event held on the eve of Mobile World Congress 2018, LG explained it was keen to launch a new device at this year’s show which “integrated AI technology into the most commonly used features that are aligned to the needs and usage behaviour of consumers today”.
Dubbed Vision AI, the LG V30S introduces three new camera features; AI Cam, QLens and Bright Mode, all designed to automate and enhance the smartphone image capture experience.
LG said the AI Cam feature analyses subjects in the camera’s frame and recommends the shooting mode required based on eight categories: portrait, food, pet, landscape, city, flower, sunrise and sunset. Each mode is able to enhance the characteristics of the subject, taking into account factors such as the viewing angle, colour, reflections, lighting and saturation level.
The company revealed at the event that the feature has been licensed from EyeEm, a company that provides visual enhancing services, and its machine learning system has been trained based on 100 million images. LG added, however, that its partnership with EyeEm was not exclusive, so rivals could also be free to use the platform.
QLens provides the users the ability to scan QR codes, access information on a certain product captured by the camera, and perform image searches to see, for example, matching images of food or landmarks.
Finally, low light photography “gets a huge boost” with Bright Mode. Through AI, the device is able to use algorithms to brighten images.
In addition, the voice AI features on LG V30S enable users to run apps and change settings through voice commands, which has been enabled in partnership with Google Assistant.
Aside from the AI features, the only other new features in the V30S when compared to the V30 are an upgrade in RAM, from 4GB to 6GB, and an increase in storage. Customers have a choice of 128GB and 256GB devices, and colour options of grey and blue.
The device will first launch in LG’s home market of South Korea before being rolled out to other countries. A US launch was not confirmed.