LG chose to unveil its new flagship away from other major events and the LG V10 is certainly strong enough to carry the show by itself (that's not to say we didn't enjoy meeting the Urbane 2nd edition). With this move the G series takes a step back, but other Androids also need to watch their back.
The build quality is inspiring - LG used 316L stainless steel for the frame (also used in the Vertu Bellperre Touch) and DuraSkin for the removable back cover, a high-quality, grippy silicon.
And you need great grip - while the phone is reasonably thick at 8.6mm it weighs a hefty 192g. The phone passes the MIL-STD requirements for shock resistance, but lacks waterproofing.
You must have heard about the second screen on the LG V10. Well, it turns out that's not quite true - it's a single Quantum Display, but LG cut out a portion of it to make room for the two selfie cameras.
The upper 2.1" 160 x 1,040px display is wired separately from the rest of screen though and it has its own backlight. This allows the "second" screen to be very efficient, even though it's always on. It costs you just 5% of battery charge per day.
This display can show info (time, weather, appointments, in-app controls), recent apps and app shortcuts, quick tools or simply your signature.
The main portion of the screen is equivalent to a 5.7" screen with 1,440 x 2,560px resolution (515ppi). This puts it on par with the Samsung Galaxy Note5 and S6 edge+. LG used "dual-layer" Gorilla Glass 4, which should improve the screen's resistance to hits.
The LG V10 has two selfie cameras, both with 5MP sensors. This isn't for HTC-like camera effects, it's for the different fields of view. One camera has an 80° lens, fairly narrow and perfect for snapping your pretty self alone. The other is much wider at 120° and lets you invite friends to join the shot. This eliminates the need for selfie sticks or software tricks like Samsung's Wide selfie.
The main camera borrows the hardware from the LG G4 - the 16MP sensor, f/1.8 lens and optical stabilization, but brings new software.
You get manual controls for video recording, including advanced audio controls - you can adjust the volume, enable Wind Noise Filter and adjust the directivity. This means you can tune the LG V10's microphones to capture mainly your narration or focus them at the scene.
Another cool feature can automatically trim your videos to 15 second clips, perfect for the short attention span generation. Perhaps 6 seconds would have been more practical for posting on Vine. By the way, G4 owners should get some of those features (hardware permitting) as an update.
The silicone cover on the back is removable, giving you access to the battery (3,000mAh) and SIM and microSD card slots.
Also here is LG's usual button setup, but with a new feature - the Power button now houses a fingerprint reader. We found the positioning quite convenient and the sensor works pretty quickly.
The LG V10 features what LG has dubbed "The Ultimate Hi-Fi Solution." A dedicated 32-bit DAC can be powered on to feed high-impedance headphones. The phone's software can upsample audio, going from a standard MP3 16bit/44.1kHz to 32bit/384kHz (though this is likely more of a placebo thing). You also get very fine-grained volume control - 75 steps, compared to 15 or so on most other phones.
Here's a quick walkthrough all the new cool features of the LG V10:
The LG V10 climbs above the G4 in the company's product range. The pricing hasn't been finalized yet, but you can expect it to be on the level of iPhone 6s Plus and Android flagships.
The phone is powered by the same Snapdragon 808 chipset as the LG G4, but it packs 4GB of RAM, which should improve performance. Still, S808 is a bit uninspiring for the new new flagship. The OS currently sits on 5.1.1 Lollipop, but LG plans to update to Android 6.0 Marshmallow by the end of the year or early 2016.