LG V10 hands-on and first impressions

by: Lanh NguyenOctober 1, 2015

The LG V10 has finally been announced and you can bet we rushed to get our hands all over it. After spending some quality time with the device, we can tell you we like what we see so far. Is it the phone for you? It could be, but that is a question we would rather leave for the full review. For now we simply want to give you a quick look at the new high-end smartphone and show you a glimpse of this very unique gadget.


Though the phone definitely has an eccentric style to it, it retains the overall look LG has now become famous for. It includes signature elements such as the rear button layout and ultra-thin bezels, as well as the overall shape that characterizes LG handsets.

The most significant differences with the LG V10 are the materials and build quality applied. The latest LG flagship features a resistant metal frame composed of SAE grade 316L stainless steel. In addition, the back cover and other parts of the device are covered in plastic. But this is no regular plastic – it’s Dura Skin, which is soft to the touch, yet durable. Aside from helping with nicks and scratches, Dura Skin aids in handling shocks, allowing the phone to achieve a military standard 810G rating. This is something you can usually only get from those bulky heavy duty cases.

LG V10 Hands On-12

The back also happens to have a very interesting pattern, but some of you may be more excited about the fact that you can pull it off, which grants access to both the removable battery and the microSD card slot. These are both LG staples users will appreciate, as the features are a rare thing in current Android smartphones. It’s kind of an “LG thing” now.

Also different are the rear buttons. They may look similar to those in previous LG handsets, but the manufacturer has added capacitive features to the power button, as well as a fingerprint reader.

And of course, we can’t forget the obvious inclusions to the front of the device, which really set the LG V10 aside from the competition. There is a small secondary screen bar above the main display, as well as a dual front-facing camera setup right next to it. Both new elements make this a rather tall phone, so handling does take some time getting used to.

LG V10 Hands On-5


Let’s talk about that gorgeous screen. The V10 sports a 5.7-inch IPS LCD Quantum Display with a QHD (2560x1440p) resolution. That equates to a pixel density of 513 ppi. In terms of panel quality, Quantum Display was introduced with the LG G4, so we can expect a similar experience with this handset. Colors are not saturated or deep, but this is a good thing for those of you who prefer color accuracy, which is definitely something these LG panels are good at.

But the sensation here is that second screen, isn’t it? It’s actually quite an interesting little addition. The 2.1-inch ticker has a 106×1040 resolution, and for now it’s mostly used for displaying the weather, time, date and battery info while the main display is off. Once you turn that bigger panel on, this ticker area becomes a second screen for your shortcuts and favorite apps. Pretty convenient. We certainly hope more functionality is added with time; there’s plenty of potential here.

LG V10 Hands On-2

Performance & Hardware

We can find a Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 SoC under the hood, as well as an Adreno 418 GPU and 4 GB of RAM. Not much to see here, as this is a processing package we have seen before with the LG G4. Regardless, this is not a bad thing – the LG G4 performs amazingly, and so does the LG V10, which does come with an additional GB of RAM. This should help with multi-tasking, as well as easing a bit of the load that comes with running that secondary display.

Other hardware specs are also important, and the LG V10 comes with enough to keep your needs met. This thing has a whopping 64 GB of internal storage, which should be plenty for most. If that’s not enough, though, you can also expand your memory via microSD by up to 2 TB.

LG V10 Hands On-31

One of the most notable additions to the hardware is the fingerprint reader, which you can find embedded in the power button. Obviously, this sensor can be used to unlock the phone and turn the display on. It is also compatible with Android Pay and other Android-supported biometric processes.

Audiophiles will be satisfied by the addition of 32-bit Hi-Fi DAC by ESS Technology. This new system detects connected devices and provides sound control options. The V10 is also the first to adopt Qualcomm’s QFE2550 closed-loop antenna, allowing for better voice quality and improved network coverage.

On the battery front, we can find the same 3000 mAh battery the LG G4 features. This is no longer something special, but users do appreciate having the ability to carry spare batteries. Those removable batteries change everything.

LG V10 Hands On-13


You won’t be disappointed with the LG V10 camera; the handset sports the same photography technology we found on the LG G4. That 16 MP sensor with an f/1.8 aperture can do marvels, and it just so happens to be among the very best in the industry. Camera enthusiasts will especially like the high level of control the camera app offers. One can manipulate the ISO, shutter speed and more.

Now, one part that is definitely not the same as with any other previous LG smartphones is the front-facing shooter. Yes, there are two cameras in the front – but why? It turns out the dual 5 MP lenses don’t do anything fancy, but the little they do definitely helps. They make shots wider, which is a welcomed addition for those dandy selfies.

LG V10 Hands On-9


Have you used an LG smartphone before? Those who have will feel right at home with the LG V10. It still runs that G UI, on top of Android 5.1.1 Lollipop. The interface continues feeling a little bloated, even if not as much as in the past. What is most important is performance, though, and the level of optimization does make for a smoother, snappier experience.

The second screen is an important factor in the software side of things, and it will definitely change the way you use your phone. This ticker can be set up as “always on” to show the weather, time, date and battery icon when the main display is off. After turning the main screen on, the secondary display will show your shortcuts and favorite apps.

My favorite part about the secondary screen is that it displays any notifications that come through while you are using the phone. This means your videos, games or any other content won’t be interrupted! Pretty sweet.

Wrapping up

LG V10 Hands On-1

So there you have it, guys. This is your first look at the LG V10, and so far it’s looking to be one of the most unique devices of 2015. It is rugged, innovative and very powerful. You can be sure we will be all over it when it’s time to review it, so do keep it tuned to Android Authority for more details. This phone will be a fun one to cover!

But what do you guys think? Are you liking the LG V10? Thinking of buying one, or do you feel its “extras” are more gimmicks than anything? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

  • S3alon

    Looks Great., just like the new G4 with more specs.
    but the price also important.
    What’s the price by the way ?

    • likeion

      797,900 KRW (≒ 676 USD) including tax in South Korea, LG said.
      IMO it will be $599 in US.

  • this design reminds me to SE P910 ..
    nice looking device.

  • Sergio Arroyo

    what happened to the content?

  • Jarl

    where is the speaker located?

    • Stevan Christian Tantra

      On the bottom

  • ichuck7

    This looks pretty stellar. I would love to try it.

  • Kenneth Tømmerby

    Where can I get this back on my G4?

  • VictorMartino

    Does it have an IR blaster like the G4? That would make me VERY interested.

  • yitzy

    Does it have Qi wireless charging ??

  • Karly Johnston

    Where is the speaker?

  • trapchan

    Samsung Continuum anyone?

  • Snoozin

    So do I need to sell the kids… how much? (Ah, need to watch the video)

    • gkeli


  • gkeli

    too biiiiig

  • Ekin

    So that makes 2 choices for me to upgrade. This V10 and the Z5. Long time Samsung user bidding goodbye to those products because of lack of SD card support and removable battery. Great job LG for actually designing a steel phone with these important features. Form and function!

    • $K

      Being a G4 user the upgrade in processing capability seems same,its some software upgrades in camera which can be made available even to G4 owners via software update,its better I will wait for LG G5 for upgrade next year as it will be a beast and better than v10

      • Weneklek

        yup, gonna be hard to justify “upgrading” from a G4 to this one. but lucky for those who were on the fence of getting a G4 as this is a good contender (albeit, depending on the price as well.)

        • Jason

          Luckily I am on the Jump program, so up to 3 times a year. Probably get this one, then if the g5 looks better jump again. :-)

      • ri$e*above

        The changes over the G4 are pretty significant besides just camera software. It’s been upgraded in every category besides the chipset (it does have extra ram)…vastly better build quality and materials, dual screen, hifi DAC, Qualcomm’s QFE2550 (let’s remember this is a phone, better call quality and network coverage seem to be an overlooked feature nowadays), fingerprint reader, etc etc…all while retaining the removable battery and SD Card. I was going to get the Edge Plus…I’ll now be waiting for this.

  • $K

    Being a G4 user the upgrade in processing capability seems same,its some software upgrades in camera which can be made available even to G4 owners via software update,its better I will wait for LG G5 for upgrade next year as it will be a beast and better than v10!!!

  • DNagooyen

    That thing must be so tall with the 5.7 inch display plus the 2.1 inch second display on top.

  • Emmet

    The video quality sucks! Maybe its just me, but I don’t like the new embedded video. I’d rather see a link to YouTube or a stream from there.

  • Alberto Progida

    that skin is the ugliest i’ve ever seen

    • Acaa Aca

      LG’s skin is all square icons now? seems ok though. as long as you can change the theme.

      • Alberto Progida

        i’m not sure you can…

        • Armand Bernard

          If it’s anything like the G3, you can. Although I just installed Nova and used Glim for material icons.

  • Informer

    Another major change is front facing camera use OIS while doing video recording, pretty cool, eh? !!

  • BareThingz

    My christmas gift !

  • Sarosh Patel

    I was waiting for this phone – to compare with the Samsung Note 5 and the Nexus 6P and solely based on the fact that this one has an SD card slot and removable battery plus it is comparable in all aspects with the previous two – I am going to go for LG V10. Bye bye Samsung. Size doesn’t matter to me – I already use Samsung Mega 6.3 with extended battery – so this is actually so small for me – I’m worried it’ll slip through my fingers ;-)

    I’m ordering the LG V10 ASAP.

  • jamesindc

    I love it!

  • Amanda

    I’m considering this device but when will be more cases available for it? all I found are those cases so far http://www.spotga.com/2015/10/lg-v10-best-cases.html

  • Dugsurf

    Protection against moderate drops is a great thing, but is it resistant to water damage? Also does it include an IR blaster?

  • Oddyody Ody

    disappointing I was waiting for real upgrade for performance and camera ,,, still ca not be compared with note 5

  • ri$e*above

    The changes over the G4 are pretty significant. It’s been upgraded in every category besides the chipset, although it does have extra ram…vastly better build quality and materials, hifi DAC, Qualcomm’s QFE2550 (let’s remember this is a phone, better call quality and network coverage seem to be an overlooked feature nowadays), fingerprint reader, etc etc…as well as some inovative touches thrown in like the dual screen and front camera/s…all while retaining the removable battery and SD Card. That hifi DAC is a huge plus for me…i use my phone a lot for listening to music files. I was going to get the Edge Plus…I’ll now be waiting for this.

    • Teresa McGuire

      I have the edge plus but thinking of changing to this,the edge plus is so fragile and this is so durable

      • Nakoa Arnold

        Just get the note 5. Coming from Samsung you will be disappointed with the display and camera.

        • Black on white crime

          And you’re a straight up liar buddy.

  • PMO

    I will be in line to buy it from Verizon the day it comes out.

  • Any comments about Slow-Mo on the V10? I just tried to test out Slow-mo on the G4 and it’s terrible. My Moto X (2014) Pure Edition recorded better slow-mo, and the G4 is supposedly known for it’s camera (though not necessarily for video).

  • and FM Radio?

  • Stephen Wilson

    Thanks for the well-done review. Just a very slight correction: The official LG rep at our local Cell Phone store showed me on his official pamphlet that the V10 will handle memory cards up to 2 Terabytes, which is awesome storage capacity, in my opinion!

  • LCD? Thank you, I will pass.

  • naatia01

    Please make a review soon!! i need to upgrade before the weekend and I would like to know whether the LG V10 is worth it over the turbo 2 or any of the samsung phones like to Note 5

    Keep up the great work!

  • Nakoa Arnold

    Great idea, TERRIBLE execution.
    I have this phone currently and while the build quality and features are great, the overall phone is lackluster. I am very let down as I was super excited to pick this one up. The removable battery and SD expansion are great features that should be standard on all top tier smart phones.
    My biggest grip- The fingerprint sensor does NOT work if you arent touching the steel sides of the phone, which renders the feature USELESS with the phone in a case.
    Seriously LG???

    The display is worse than an iphone 6.. Maybe im spoiled by the super amoled in the samsung note 5 and s6 models, but i can not stand the IPS display. The brightness is a major issue and blacks aren’t very deep and greyish in quality.
    The camera down right sucks for a 16mp camera. Manual mode is almost a must and its still not as vivid, bright or clear as the note 5.
    Video recording is only good with proper lighting.
    Will be returning this phone asap.

    • Black on white crime

      Amoled is nice, but subjective. Also, this IS the BEST camera phone, you need to get your eyes checked or something. And lastly, you can’t compare pictures from 2 different phones on 2 different screens. That’s just plain stupid, maybe I’m on to something here… Actually I think you’re just a strait up liar.

  • B Bert

    I had the G2 and now have the G3 and I will definitely be getting a V10!

  • quick question

    I’ve been looking for this everywhere and havent manged to find anything on it; but when i use my phone in the light the keyboard and the notification bar (the UI i guess) but not nav bar, Anyone have any more official details on what this is and how it works?