Call quality on the LG L1 II is hard to fault without ever standing out from the crowd. Signal strength is strong where you would expect it to be, and during our time with it we experienced no dropped calls.
While calls are clear and the audio range broad enough so as not to leave us straining to hear, there is a very slight static hiss on calls. It’s only a minor irritant, though.
With the phone’s call speaker acting as it’s only inbuilt speaker, audio when viewing video content leaves a lot to be desired. Hitting higher volumes causes serious amounts of distortion, with the recessed speaker needing to be cranked up pretty high to become properly audible.
Given the phone's small, low resolution screen and modest specs, the LG L1 II is relatively kind on its battery. Whereas some more costly phones still struggle to last a whole day, we still had just under 50 per cent left after a full day’s use. Sadly, recharge times are not the speediest. Adding 10 per cent to the phone’s battery takes close to 15 minutes.
Priced at less than £50 on a SIM-free basis, the LG L1 II is almost a throwaway smartphone that can be taken to a festival or weekend away without the worry about the condition in which it returns. Although the phone is lacking in certain areas, it does the basics well, with call quality and battery life enough to see the phone appeal to certain needs.
For a truly budget price point the LG L1 II manages to squeeze most things in. As an emergency phone for your kids, it is hard to fault.
If, however, your needs are a little more demanding that the basics, the Vodafone Smart Mini might be a better choice. The LG L1 II’s screen might keep the price down, but it’s very bad indeed.
The LG L1 II is one of the sturdiest entry-level smartphones we’ve seen, but that doesn’t stop it suffering from the same issues as many budget phones. Its screen is dire and the 2-megapixel camera is as good as having no camera at all. The L1 II’s sub £50 price tag is hard to argue with, but at this price you are still better to opt for the Vodafone Smart Mini.