LG Optimus L7 Review By 3G.co.uk

 

LG Optimus L7
LG Optimus L7
LG Optimus L7

Feature set summary for LG Optimus L7 review

The snapper doesn’t have the same great features found on the HTC One series of handsets, nonetheless it produces decent everyday pictures. Quickly change your profile using the Tag+ sticker and NFC facility.

 

Style and handling summary for LG Optimus L7 review

It’s easy to see that LG has concentrated on the handset’s design. The chassis is slim and solid, and feels classy thanks to that front covered in glass. It also resists scuff well.

 

Battery power summary for LG Optimus L7 review

The battery doesn’t last that long – even light use will knock it out in 24 hours, even if you use the power-saving mode. If you plan to listen to tunes, stream video or mess around with apps, be prepared to carry your charger with you.

 

 Performance summary for LG Optimus L7 review

The single-core chip is not always up to the task of running Ice Cream Sandwich, or surfing the net – and it can’t compete with the futureproofing provided by a dual-core processor.

 

 User friendliness summary for LG Optimus L7 review

Android Ice Cream Sandwich is delightful in use – and offers lots of opportunities for customisation. LG has added some nice touches such as including power controls within the notifications bar. The 4.3in display is roomy and bright, although not that sharp.


LG Optimus L7 Review Scoring Summary

Style & Handling
User Friendliness
Feature Set
Performance
Battery Power
Overall Score 3G.co.uk grey star

 

 

 Pros :
Bright, colourful display; nice design, user friendly operating system with plenty of options for personalisation

 

Cons :
Single-core processor, disappointing battery life, fewer features than close competitors

 

Verdict:

The LG Optimus L7 is a very usable, nicely designed handset but doesn’t quite live up to the expectations from some of its close competitors.

Full Review and Specification for the LG Optimus L7

LG is making much effort to work on the design of its smartphones of late – first there was the very sexy Prada Phone 3.0, and then the stylish L series of handsets. Then there was the Optimus L3, which despite being a budget-price phone, boasted a very attractive chassis. The big brother of the L-series is the latest Optimus L7, which has more power, a larger display and yet is a slender and good-looking phone to boot.

 

Big screen star


As we said, this is the biggest handset in the L series, with a TFT screen measuring 4.3 inches. It’s not that bright, so it can be hard to see if the sun is shining, but the viewing angles are very impressive, which is handy if you’re watching a film with a mate, or trying to surf the net together. Photos and video looked good too. 

 

It has WVGA resolution – so it’s like that on the HTC One – so expect HD video to look sharp, but don’t expect the crisp quality of the screens on the Sony Xperia S and HTC One X. Nonetheless it’s perfectly usable if you want to watch a full-length film.

 

In the hand it feels reasonably weighty and solid – this is reinforced by the presence of metallic edges – and it feels like it can stand up to a bit of rough treatment (although we wouldn’t fancy dropping it screen-first onto the pavement). The front is glass covered, and the rear is made of textured plastic. We reviewed a white version and it managed to resist scuffs and scratches well.

 

It looks good too – the sharper corners on the handset look neat against the rounded contours. There aren’t many hard keys – under the display sits a rectangular Home key, and there are touch-sensitive areas on each side that are for Menu and Back – prod them and they light up. The volume controls sit along the side, while the top edge is home to the 3.5mm audio jack and power button.

 

 In the picture

 

The snapper is a five-megapixel model, which produces decent, colourful and sharp snaps in bright light. The auto focus is a tad temperamental and we sometimes found our subjects a tad soft or faded. Some snaps emerged with an odd green haze around the subject matter.

 

In low light the snapper performed well for a smartphone snapper. There is an LED flash that manages to avoid overexposing your subject – without it we saw a lot of grain on our low-light images.

 

Creamy OS


There are plenty of tablets and phones running on Google’s fabulous Ice Cream Sandwich operating system, and the Optimus L7 is just the latest of them. There are five desktops, which you can choose to customise as you wish – it’s simple to add apps, bookmarks, widgets and so on – just hold your finger down on an empty space and a menu will pop up that holds all your choices. There’s plenty of widgets to choose from including ones that let you check social media feeds and email inboxes without opening your apps first.

 

The lock screen doesn’t boast the same level of customisation as that of the HTC One X, so don’t expect to see your latest Twitter updates or headlines unless you unlock the handset. It does, however, allow you instant access to a quartet of your choice of apps – and you can set up a PIN lock or pattern to ensure your handset is secure. There are shortcut buttons that can be placed at the base of each desktop.

 

Check out the notification bar, where you’ll find you can get updates for calls, emails, texts and tweets, plus quick access to Bluetooth, GPS, Wi-Fi and vibrating mode. It is possible to customise the shortcuts bar to add options such as Airplane mode and NFC, which is a nifty addition from LG. The notifications bar is big enough to hold everything comfortable too.

 

Battery life is disappointing compared with that on similar Android phones. Even with light use (a bit of emailing, texting and a short bit of net surfing) we only just managed to get 24 hours out of a fully charged battery. If you’re planning to stream YouTube clips, make calls, use NFC and Bluetooth and mess around with apps, make sure you’re close to a charger.

 

The main culprit for this drain on the battery’s power seems to be the screen – we found that with the display turned on at a reasonable brightness level, within half an hour the screen had sucked up 10% of the battery’s juice, There is a Power saving mode, which turns on automatically once battery life reaches 50% and less. This switches off Blutetooth and Wi-Fi and changes the screen’s settings.

 

Average performance


Under the hood sits a single-core 1GHz chip, which mostly copes well with Android Ice Cream Sandwich, although it did hesitate when we were loading an app, inputting a text or running through settings. Most games and apps ran okay but it’s unlikely to handle many of the games that will come out later this year for the phones running dual and quad-core processors.

 

If you’re a big fan of playing games on our mobile, it’s probably worth hanging on for the release of the LG Optimus 4X, or buying an HTC One S, which boasts a dual-core chip and has the same price on most contracts.

 

Playing Tag+


Most smartphones have NFC built in nowadays and the Optimus L7 is no exception. LG has enabled users to make instant use of the technology (which will eventually be used to make contactless payments) by including its Tag+ sticker, which is the same as Sony’s Xperia SmartTags. Each sticker has a profile assigned to it – Wi-Fi on or off and so on – tap the back of the phone against the sticker and the settings fire up. It is also possible to choose a single application to fire up automatically – this facility isn’t quite as flexible as Sony’s offering though.

 

Getting online


If you’re a busy net surfer, who always runs five or sex web pages at the same time, the Optimus L7 will please you. On the address bar of the browser there is a neat icon that shows you how many windows are open. Tap on it and a scrollable screen appears, which will show all your open windows. At the bottom of the display is a tab – flick this and you can bookmark your window or open a new one. The screen is sharp so that you can read text clearly if you zoom right in.

 

Our conclusion


The LG Optimus L7 is nicely designed but doesn’t quite have the allure of its major competitors. The display is colourful but doesn’t have the detail shown by the One X and Xperia S screens, while the five-megapixel snapper offers decent performance but doesn’t have the wonderful features of those on the HTC. The single-core4 chip manages Ice Cream sandwich okay – there is the odd stutter – but it doesn’t offer any futureproofing. Last but not least, battery life is disappointing. While we like the Optimus L7 you can find better smartphones at the same price.

 

LG Optimus L7 Specification

GENERAL

Type of device

Smartphone

Operating System

Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich

Dimensions

125.5x67x8.7mm

Weight

122g

Form factor

Candy bar

Input

Touch Screen

Processor speed

1GHz

CPU

1 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor

Graphic chipset

 

Status

Available

DISPLAY

Screen size

4.3 inches

Screen type

IPS

Resolution

480x800

Display type

16 million colours

Memory

RAM

512MB RAM

Internal storage

4GB internal

Memory card slot

 

Camera

Camera

VGA

Secondary camera

5 megapixels

Special camera features

Auto-focus, LED flash

Sound

3.5mm Jack

 

Music player

Yes

Audio recording

 

Radio

 

FM Radio description

No

Video

Video recording

 

Video player

 

Video calling

 

Video streaming

 

Additional Features

Browser

Android

Games

Yes

Voice control

 

Voice dialing

 

Other

 

Messaging

SMS

 

MMS

 

Email

 

IM

 

Connectivity

Band

N/A

Wi-Fi

 

Bluetooth

 

USB

 

NFC

 

GPS

A-GPS

Network

EDGE

 

GPRS

 

HSDPA

 

4G/LTE

 

Other

Colours (Standard)

Black

Handsfree speaker phone

 

Customisable ringtones

 

What's in the box

Charger

Website

http://www.lg.com/uk

Battery

Standby

TBC

Talktime

TBC

Battery life multimedia

TBC

 


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By Simon Thomas on 20th May, 2012


Tags: Android Ice Cream SandwichLGLG Optimus L73G


 
 
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