LG Journey Review: Pros and Cons

LG Journey (L322DL) review uncovers the features this phone offers in-depth. From display to performance, find out if it gives the best value for money.

LG Journey Review

These days it’s getting easier to get a good-quality smartphone that doesn’t break your bank. Among the options for an affordable smartphone is TracFone LG Journey (L322DL).

Released only earlier this year, Journey features some specs that are hard to resist. Included here some highlights such as HD+ display and Snapdragon processor.

In this LG Journey review, we’ll break down each spec into a more detailed explanation. It’s to answer whether this phone is worth its $89.99 price tag (or $79.99 on Best Buy). Let’s take a look.

Design

LG Journey comes in an elegant aurora black color with rounded edges and minimal front-view. This phone is pretty slim, which makes it easy to tuck into your pocket.

As expected, its body comprises plastic. But the shiny touch on its back cover disguises the real price of Journey. It simply looks luxurious.

We also love how the placement of the keys is seamlessly integrated into the design. It results in a very neat look on the phone’s borders, although it’s a bit crowded here.

Aside from the typical Power and Volume keys, there is also the Google Assistant key. Since Journey has a non-removable back, LG also placed the cards slot on the right side of the phone.

On the back cover, there isn’t much clutter here. There are just logos (TracFone’s and LG’s), and the camera plus flash. However, one should take into consideration how the back cover lacks friction. It looks like it’s easy to slip on a sweaty hand. So if you’re flimsy, it’s better to consider a case.

Aside from the appearance overall, Journey doesn’t come with any protection. The phone is not water or at least, splash resistant. At 5.2 ounces, LG Journey also feels light when you hold it. To summarize, build quality is passable. It’s not bad for a phone this price, but not awesome either.

Learn More: TracFone LG Journey User Manual

Display

One of the highlighted features on LG Journey is the display. The sizable screen has a resolution of 720×1440 px. It’s categorized as HD+. Promising a better viewing experience than screens with less resolution, Journey is trying to deliver a bright screen for under $100.

It works in some ways. The phone produces sharp images and colors. Its vividness doesn’t disappoint.

Although color quality is good, we understand that it still can’t compare to an FHD screen and above. But for this price, it makes customers happy enough.

Another thing, viewing angles are also wide. It means when watching a movie together with a group of people, even the furthest person can still view the screen quite clearly.

Also, LG Journey comes with a satisfying 5.45″ display with an 18:9 ratio. There is more rooms for apps and games on this widescreen. Watching videos is also fun and comfortable. LG keeps the bezel thin so you have an almost edge-to-edge display. LG calls this feature FullVision.

Unfortunately, a protection feature isn’t available for the display. There are few phones that come with Gorilla Glass protection at this price range, but LG Journey is not one of them. It means Journey is not scratch resistant and you might need a screen protector later.

However, we’re aware that glass protection is still a luxury, hence here, we consider it as a minor inconvenience.

Camera

The camera setup on LG Journey is less than we had initially expected. It comes with an 8 MP rear camera while, in our opinion, LG could easily strap a 12 MP camera there. The rear camera is capable to take decent photos, although results are not comparable to those of better cameras.

But it does the job most of the time as long as the environment meets the optimal requirements. It means adequate lighting, no constraining light, and turn on the flash on the low-light situation.

Using camera features such as HDR helps enhance the camera result by a lot. LG makes up the lack of megapixels by adding a feature called Fast Catch. It’s a quick shutter speed so users can capture the action with precision. There’s also autofocus and auto exposure to help you work better with lighting.

Moving onto the front-facing camera, here we like the 5 MP camera provided by LG journey. Aside from the high resolution, there’s also a portrait mode to give that background blur on your selfie.

The blur is also adjustable to make the picture looks more natural. If you’re someone who loves taking selfies, this phone would delight you. The portrait mode is software-generated, though. So it might not work as accurate as a DSLR lens.

Storage

LG Journey doesn’t offer a lot when it comes to storage space. Users will have to be satisfied with only 16 GB of internal storage with 8 GB is available for users. After a while, your selfies (and other data) will take up all the space without you even realize.

A 16 GB internal storage is seemingly a standard for a budget phone. We rarely encounter a phone that offers more at this price bracket. So, LG Journey falls into a normal category here.

However, it’s the external storage that’s a bummer. Journey only allows up to 32 GB SD Card. We hope LG could offer more as there are other cheaper phones that could easily offer up to 128 GB.

Performance

On the inside, LG Journey (L322DL) has a 1.4 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 processor with 2 GB of RAM. It’s a quad-core processor. We’ve seen some manufacturers strap the Snapdragon 450 one with 1.8 GHz even on this price range, but it’s just not the case with Journey.

So, LG settles with what we think a moderate performance on a day-to-day basis. The processor delivers a good performance. Flipping through the screen and apps was fast. But not so much with the RAM that’s only 2 GB.

This phone could display some lags when opening too many apps. So, the verdict here for processing power on our LG Journey review is 3 out of five stars.

It’s the software that helps enhance Journey’s performance. Coming with the fresh Android 9.0 Pie, Journey delivers the newest and greatest Android to date.

There are several improvements, such as faster performance, better notification management, and more intuitive interface. Pie also uses less battery with its adaptive battery and adaptive brightness features.

Journey also keeps software customization at a minimum. There is no launcher that would drain performance. LG-specific features that come with Journey is quite useful too.

One of the is QSlide, a multitask window that lets you watch a video while browsing Gallery. There’s also the regular multi-tasking window where users can stack two apps on one another. Other useful features include the custom note-taking app called QuickMemo and a lock screen feature called KnockOn.

As for other miscellaneous things, Journey is equipped with Hearing Aid compatibility (M3/T3 Rating) and standard sensors like Proximity and ambient light. You might not want to miss the Google Assistant features, which helps with tasks such as setting a reminder and performing a Google search.

Connectivity

LG Journey boasts 4G LTE speed for fast and uninterrupted communication. You won’t get much trouble getting a crystal clear phone call. Accessing the internet is also a breeze with LTE. Aside from the regular mobile connection, this phone also has Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and is also Wi-Fi Hotspot capable.

Location service is provided by GPS. We found it perform with not much trouble too. The connection to a computer still rely on USB type-B instead of Type-C, we’re not surprised since this is a budget phone.

There is also no NFC. Again, we’re not surprised here. Overall, Journey provides all the basics when it comes to connectivity.

Battery

A battery with 3000 mAh capacity powers LG Journey. This is an average capacity. Journey’s battery is also non-removable. There isn’t any additional feature like fast charging.

Talk time is up to 15 hours while standby time can reach up to 13 days, according to LG. However, the real-life application depends heavily on how you use the phone.

But thankfully, with the help of the efficient processor and the new Android, the battery life can be stretched until the end of the day with normal use.

Wrap-up

For the final conclusion of this LG Journey review, we rate this phone as “good enough”. There are phones on this price range that offer slightly better features but not many (Eg. Moto E6). We understand that consumers won’t get the best on a budget phone. There are several things we have to make a compromise.

We think TracFone LG Journey (L322DL) is a perfect phone for people who like a big screen, decent processor, and more of a casual user than a heavy one. The Portrait Mode is also a nice feature if you like taking selfies.

If you like your OS to be the most recent version, Android Pie on this phone won’t disappoint you. LG Journey is available on the TracFone website at $89.99 and Best Buy at $79.99.

Pros:

  • Android 9.0 Pie
  • 5 MP front-facing camera with Portrait Mode
  • Large HD+ Display
  • Sleek Design
  • 4G LTE Speed

Cons:

  • Limited internal storage and external storage.
  • Low RAM
  • Low resolution back camera.

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