Sprint and LG team up on a 5G smartphone set for release in first half of 2019

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Sprint and LG are teaming up to bring customers what would be the first 5G smartphone in the U.S. in the first half of 2019.

The 5G smartphone is claimed to be capable of providing Sprint customers with a faster and more reliable experience. The press release specifically points out that the shift from 4G to 5G will be apparent — users will have the ability to download full-length HD movies in only seconds or play Internet-connected, graphics-intensive video games without any disruptions.

In an interview with PCMag, John Tudhope, Sprint’s director of product marketing, said the device isn’t a prototype or an idea. In fact, the 5G smartphone has already moved into the testing phase.

“We have a final hardware design that we’re pretty excited about … It is 100 percent a truly integrated smartphone that we think will be the first of its kind. It is a really elegant, high-end premium-look-and-feel phone … not much thicker than a normal high-end premium smartphone, and will have the appropriate battery to account for the power needs,” Tudhope told PCMag.

Tudhope also mentioned to PCMag that “it will be a lot less clunky than Motorola’s 5G mod approach.” Motorola launched its 5G mod in conjunction with its latest flagship, the Moto Z3, in the beginning of August.

Available in early 2019 exclusively through Verizon, users will be able to snap the 5G Moto Mod onto the Moto Z3 ,which will be capable of delivering up to 5Gbps download speeds. If there’s no 5G service in the area, users will receive 2Gbps speeds on 4G LTE.

As for Sprint’s 5G smartphone with LG, PCMag notes that since the device has already been built, it most likely won’t have Qualcomm’s upcoming 4G/5G Snapdragon 855 chipset, which is expected to be announced in December. It’s also rumored to be included in Samsung’s Galaxy S10.

The report goes on to suggest that the LG phone might feature a Snapdragon 845, along with an add-on Qualcomm X50 5G modem — the same modem built into the Motorola’s 5G Moto Mod.

The carrier didn’t provide additional information in terms of the smartphone’s design or specifications, but says more details, including an exact release date, will be announced later on.

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