LG G5 Will Have an Always On Display, LG Confirms

By on February 10, 2016 | 2:26 pm
February 10, 2016 | 2:26 pm
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LG G5 always on screen confirmed
February 10, 2016 | 2:26 pm

In just over a week, the annual Mobile World Congress event takes place in Barcelona. Featuring the biggest and the most well-known brands in the mobile market, we are expecting huge announcements and product reveals from the likes of Samsung, Sony, and Huawei.

Another company that will surely be making a splash at the event is South Korean electronics company LG. During its February 21 MWC press conference (which intriguingly has the theme of ‘play’ this year) LG will show off its LG G5 flagship smartphone. However, it seems that the company just cannot contain its excitement having confirmed one key feature of the phone ahead of the official unveiling.

According to a Facebook post from the company, the LG G5 will have an ‘always on’ screen. A brief message posted by LG reads “Never go asleep while others do. LG G5 Always ON” along with a GIF of other handsets’ screens dimming before the LG G5 shows up to illuminate the darkened image.

At this stage, it’s unclear just how ‘on’ the handset’s screen will ‘always’ be. Other smartphones that have promoted their always on touchscreens haven’t really had screens that never switch off. Instead, these phones just light up with notifications when the phone is asleep – so it’s not really switched on all of the time, it just lights up when necessary. On the other hand, LG may have made a truly always on screens that just never turns off, which would explain why the company is so keen to promote the feature here.

If the LG G5’s always on display is the real deal and is fully customizable rather than visible occasionally/requiring a gesture, then battery life is a serious concern. Smartphone users are already worried about their phones going dead in the middle of the day, and it’s why phones like the Samsung Galaxy S7 (which is rumored to offer 17 hours of video playback at full brightness) are garnering so much hype. Unless LG can somehow avoid this thorny power issue and soothe would-be buyers’ concerns, then the always on feature may be more of a hindrance than a system seller.

And speaking of the Samsung Galaxy S7, that leads us to another potential roadbump for LG’s always on plans. Earlier this week it was revealed that Samsung has now trademarked the term ‘Always on Display’ for the Samsung Galaxy S7 ahead of its February 21 unveiling. There are two problematic forks here, the first of which being that LG may find it difficult to promote the G5’s always on display if the Samsung trademark prohibits it from using the term in any marketing materials.

The other issue is that if both the Samsung Galaxy S7 and the LG G5 have the feature and both phones are being announced on the very same day, the G5’s reveal could be overshadowed. Either that or it completely steals Samsung’s thunder; but that’s a risk that LG has to be willing to take.

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