LG might be sitting MWC 2018 in terms of announcing its 2018 flagship, but that doesn’t mean it will be coming to Barcelona empty-handed. Yes, it will be presenting a “refreshed” LG V30 called, not the V30s but the 2018 LG V30. And, yes, it will be featuring some AI functionality. Don’t worry, though, because LG happily hasn’t gone overboard the way its rival has. But the new smartphone AI features will be adding to the 2018 V30 and other phones will easily be compared to what Samsung’s Bixby has been promising to offer.
LG has always had a rather curious approach to new technologies. On the one hand, it introduces its own features, like its SmartThinQ platform, now under its larger ThinQ AI brand. On the other hand, it doesn’t completely strike out on its own the way Samsung loves to do. Instead, LG always finds a way to play nice and reuse what others, especially Google, already has.
That is true for LG’s new and unbranded smartphone AI. It has no specific name probably because it isn’t one single product or assistant. Instead, LG is presenting it as a suite of AI technologies that integrated with other existing features. Voice AI, for example, taps into Google Assistant in order provide 32 commands exclusive to LG phones. These commands are used to start the camera in a specific mode instantly. 23 of these were already introduced in 2017, with 9 more coming this year, including:
• Panoramic Photo
• Food Photo
• Time-lapse Photo (Video)
• Slow-motion Video
• Low-light Photo
• AI Cam Photo
• Image Search
• Code Scanning
• Shopping Search
Perhaps more interesting is what LG calls Vision AI, which is also the feature that will be compared the most with Bixby Vision. But more than just image recognition for search and shopping, LG’s Vision AI is going to be utilized to be your photography assistant. Leveraging a machine learning model trained from 100 million images, Vision AI will analyze objects and recommend the best camera settings among 8 pre-defined modes. Rather than simply taking into consideration the amount of available light, Vision AI will analyze the angle, color, and even reflections to make the best recommendation.
Perhaps the best news about LG’s smartphone AI is that it isn’t dependent on some hardware that’s exclusive to just one or a few phone models. While it will indeed debut on the 2018 LG V30, LG plans on making parts of that smartphone AI available even to older models. Provided they have the hardware to support some features, of course.