LG X Series Boasts Dual Cameras, Second Screens

LG now offers consumers the option of a smartphone with dual rear-facing cameras or a handset with an always-on second screen, which lets users multitask.

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Consumer electronics giant LG decided to get a jump on this year’s Mobile World Congress by announcing the release of the first two models in the X series, the X cam and X screen, which will debut at MWC next week.

The handsets are pitched at consumers who aren’t interested in a fully loaded smartphone but who do want a high-quality display and camera.

The X cam has dual cameras on the rear of the device—a 13-megapixel camera and a 5-megapixel camera, with a 3D Bending Glass curved finish on the front and boasting a profile of only 5.2mm thick.

The device also features a 1.14GHz Octa-Core processor, runs Google’s Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system and boasts a third, front-facing 8-megapixel camera.

The X screen, which also features front and rear cameras as well as a 1.2GHz Quad-Core processor, comes equipped with an Always-on second screen, which until now had only been available on LG’s premium V10.

The second screen sits above the main 4.93-inch HD display and makes multitasking possible on the handset.

With the 1.76-inch second screen, users can access frequently used apps, answer calls without interrupting the current activity, or just play music or games.

The second screen feature also lets users check the time and date, battery status and other notifications without having to turn on the phone.

The X series will make its debut in markets in Asia, Europe and Latin America starting next month, though there’s no word as to whether the handsets will make it to North American stores.

The announcement comes a week before MWC madness kicks off, when LG and rival Samsung plan to announce their new flagship devices on the same day.

Not much is known about the LG G5 except for the name, though a December article from VentureBeat, which quoted an unnamed source briefed on the company’s plans, said the device would be sheathed in an all-metal casing, a step up from the current G4.

Other features rumored to be on the G5 will be the second screen technology found on the X screen, a removable battery, a wide-angle camera and a slightly smaller display—a 5.3-inch screen compared to the G4’s 5.4-inch display.

According to a January report from research firm IDC, robust holiday demand and major gains from upcoming brands such as Huawei pushed worldwide smartphone shipments to record levels in 2015, but Apple and Samsung remained leaders.

Smartphone manufacturers shipped a total of 399.5 million units during the fourth quarter of 2015—good for 5.7 percent growth—compared to the 377.8 million units shipped in the last quarter of 2014.