A while back we received the LG L70 and the LG G2 Mini from LG in order to take them for a test drive. After a lot of time of testing them and using them as sort of personal phones with regular use we decided to give you a close up view of both of them. In this post we will take a closer look at the LG L70 and in a few days time we will give you the same but for the G2 Mini.
Design and Ergonomics
The LG L70 looks a lot like all the other L Series III devices, being that the major difference between it and it brethren is the screen size. It is available only in black or white and the only thing these two versions have in common in the silver rim around the sides of the device.
On the top side of the L70 you will find the microphone near the 3.5mm earphone jack. On the left side of the device, near the top you will see the volume rocker which stands right on the opposite side of the power/lock button which is located on the right side of the device.
On the bottom side of the device you will find another microphone and the microUSB cable slot that will allow you both to charge and connect your device to a computer.
The back of the L70 is home for the 5MP rear camera with its LED flash, located near the top, and the speaker, on the left side near the bottom. Finally the front of the L70 is the base for the 4.5 inch IPS LCD screen.
When it comes to looks we all know that the L series never surprised anyone, being that they are supposed to be the affordable devices of the brand, but even so the new devices of the L series are good looking devices nonetheless. If you are not looking for a device that has that full premium look the L70 might the a good fit for you.
The L70 has an 4.5 inch display with a resolution 480×800 pixels and 207 ppi density, with Gorilla Glass 2. Just the same as most of the LG device displays the viewing angles of the screen are near 180o allowing you to lay the device flat on the table and still see what is displayed on the screen.
Again, as this is an affordable device there is no luminosity sensor to speak of there is no auto brightness feature available and the only feature available that will possibly help you during night time is available on the Display Settings that will set the brightness to 0% from 12AM to 6AM.
When you set the brightness to max it will be more than enough to keep the contents of the screen visible even if you go outside.
Performance and Software
The L70 is another Android device with Android KitKat (4.4.2) like most we have seen lately. It comes with LG own UI overlay, the LG UI 3.0 which is not that different from the Android stock interface, just a few more utilities here and there that help the new Android users get the hang of this complex system nonetheless.
When it comes to preloaded apps by LG, again there are not too many of them in the L70. Here’s the ones you have besides the stock Android apps:
- Update center
- LG SmartWorld
- ThinkFree Viewer
- Remote call service
- LG backup
So as you can see there a are just a few apps here.
LG Smartworld is like the play store with some applications developed by LG and other partners. The update center allows you to update the software you have installed as well as the applications that came preloaded and that aren’t available on the Play Store.
The remote call service allows you to contact a LG assistant to help you with any issue you might have with your smartphone and they can access your device remotely in order to help you.
LG backup, as the name implies, allows you to backup the info you regard as important and that is in your smartphone.
Last but not least is the ThinkFree Viewer, somewhat a cousin of the known Polaris Office and Office Suite, that allow you to view Word, Excel and such documents. LG usually gives their customers the Polaris Office suit but given that the L70 probably would suffer in performance running Polaris Office, LG decided to just give the L70’s users a viewer instead of a full on version, which is better than nothing.
As is usual in all LG devices you can customize your home screen and have up to 5 screens with your app shortcuts and widgets organized at your own description.
There are also some gestures available for this device. For example you can silence incoming call simply by flipping your phone, you can also flip your phone to snooze your alarm and pause videos. Another addition to these gestures is the ability to double-tap the center of the device’s screen to turn it on. The same can be done to turn the screen of again.
Of course the knock code is also available on the L70, just like it is on every new LG device nowadays.
The L70 only comes with 1.50GBs of storage available to the user being that the Android system occupies the rest of the 4GBs the device comes with. No need to worry too much about that since the L70 has a microSD card slot that will allow you to increase the available storage size up to 32GB, be aware though that some devices won’t allow you to install applications on the SD card if they aren’t rooted, unfortunately we didn’t test that in this device and as such we don’t know if you can install apps on the card without having to modify it. As far as RAM comes you can count on 1GB available to fulfill all of your desires, being that approximately 500MB are always occupied by the Android system and usual processes that need to be running.
LG also introduced a somewhat new concept to this device called the Guest Mode. The guest mode basically allows you to configure your device to be able to lend it to someone else to use. You can choose what applications the guest can view and define a code that will allow you to leave the guest mode when you’re done with the guest.
As usual we ran the benchmarks you expect us to run, Antutu, NenaMark 2, Ice Storm, etc. as well as played some games to test it out.
You can see the benchmark results below and can also see how the L70 fared with the games below on the gameplay performance video.
As far as day to day use goes I noticed some slow downs here and there, especially when clicking on the camera application and after that while browsing the web and navigating through homescreens and menus. I found no issues when performing and receiving phone calls, the microphones and the noise suppressor worked perfectly.
The L70 has a 5MP rear camera and a VGA frontal camera. As far as camera quality goes these are a little below par, especially the frontal camera, I haven’t heard about a VGA camera in a smartphone for a while now. But it still works for video conference calls and such, just don’t expect it to be a selfie camera and you will do fine.
Now regarding the rear camera and its companion flash, first of all I found it hard as hell to focus a single shot with this camera, an issue I never had with recent LG devices and their cameras, even those without LED flash, and this is perfectly viewable in the snapshots I was able to take.
Light capture is not one of its strongest features as well, this is observable in the video below, that was shot with bright daylight outside and it seems that it was shot at nighttime at some points.
All in all not one of the best cameras we’ve seen from LG by far, I even tested some with 5MP that were still better than this one, just to let you guys know that it’s not only the MP that count, and bigger doesn’t always mean best.
Connectivity and Battery Life
The L70 that we received, version D320, has no NFC support, besides that it has Bluetooth 4.0, gps, glonass, wi-if direct, hotspot capabilities and wifi 802.11b/g/n.
You also have a microUSB 2.0 cable slot that will allow you to connect it to your PC.
As far as battery life goes, as we all know this is a fault in almost all Android devices, the L70 has a 2100mAh battery that is said to last up to 6h, talk time with 2G, 8h with 3G, and up to 420h in stand by. What we noticed is that like most devices, with regular use you will need to charge it at 8pm everyday and that’s about it.
The L70 was released in April 2014, and even though it was a budget device to start, the truth is that you can notice this just by looking at it, since it is clearly visible that it is built in plastic all around. The specifications that come with it are also not great, being that it only has a Dual Core processor and 1GB of RAM, thus the slowness we detected during use.
The screen is good, no complaints there, but again the lack of a luminosity sensor is a bother that we would like to not have. Given its price tag at 129€ and the devices available at this price tag that can compete with it I bet you would not find one this good. You have to bear in mind that in order to build a budget device somethings have to go, and in the case of the L70 it was the processor, if it had a quad core processor its performance would have been better, even with only 1GB of RAM.
So, all in all, if you want a device only to make a few call each day and to keep 3G on to receive and read your emails the L70 will fit you as good as many other devices out there you just need to take into account price tags and the quality of the service provided by LG, versus other brands.
Review by: Cátia Sofia Ferreira @ AndroidEmotions