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Lenovo S720 Review: Gloriously Pink

Our full review of the Lenovo S720!
Our full review of the Lenovo S720!

The Lenovo S720 is a stylish and very capable smartphone for Pinoys who want a little more of style and fashion in their devices over function.It’s a beautifully crafted device that will definitely catch the attention of people around you as soon as you whip it out to read your latest text message (especially if you get the one in Pink). Some people might find the price tag a bit on the high side though especially with the surge for affordable local brands. The Lenovo S720 retails for Php9,999. Let’s find out if it’s worth every peso in this full review!

Lenovo Ideaphone S720 Spec Sheet

  • 1GHz Dual-core MediaTek MT6577 CPU
  • 512MB RAM
  • 4GB Internal storage, expandable via microSD
  • 4.5-inch IPS touchscreen with 960×540 resolution (~245 ppi)
  • 8.0-megapixel rear-facing camera
  • 1.0-megapixel front-facing camera with wide angle view
  • Dual SIM, dual standby
  • Dolby Digital Plus Technology
  • Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
  • 2,000mAh Battery

As you can see the specifications are respectable. It has a dual-core processor, expandable storage, decent screen resolution, an 8-megapixel shooter, dual SIM capabilities, and even a 2,000mAh battery. Of course what’s a bit alarming is the 512MB RAM and Android 4.0 ICS (hopefully there’s a JB update in the pipeline). Anyway, let’s move on to the review!

One of the best looking sub-Php10,000 smartphones in the market today

If there’s one solid thing going for the Lenovo S720, it’s how it looks! The pink (or white) chasis is slim (132.3 x 68.3 x 9.9 mm), light (140g), and slightly curved giving it a very attractive form factor. The brushed metal-like band around it also gives it a pleasant contrast. Here are a few photos of the device in different POVs.

100% Sezzy.
100% Sezzy.
What the back looks like!
What the back looks like!
Silver chrome band compliments the Pink body
Silver chrome band compliments the Pink body

Lenovo definitely outdid themselves with the hardware design of the S720. We’re looking forward to them establishing their own signature aesthetic and hopefully they can keep it consistent even with devices following the S720.

Smooth sailing for the most part but lags every now and then

The Lenovo S720 packs a dual-core processor, 512MB RAM, and Android Ice Cream Sandwich. The absence of Google’s Project Butter (no Android Jelly Bean) is truly felt though especially when you start opening multiple apps or switch to a live wallpaper. If you manage your tasks though you shouldn’t encounter any major problems save for the occasional slow down. If you guys can afford it but the Memory Booster app on Google Play. It does wonders in keeping over-all Android user experience smooth.

How is the S720 compared to other devices? According to the Antutu Benchmark score results it’s slightly better than the Amazon Kindle Fire and a notch below the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. The score is probably due to the 512MB RAM and the absence of the optimizations brought about by Jelly Bean. :/

Antutu benchmark results
Antutu benchmark results

These numbers translated to real life usage really depends on how you use your smartphone. If you’re conscious about the memory usage then just make sure you have a good memory booster or task killer app on your phone. If you manage the resources well then you shouldn’t have any major issues.

Browsing, Social, Core Functions

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The Lenovo S720 has no issues when it comes to core functions like telephony, messaging, e-mail, browsing, and social networking. Over-all user experience is quite smooth but note that like what we mentioned earlier it has a tendency of bogging down if you have too many apps running in the background or if you’re on a live wallpaper.

Gaming

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Over-all gaming is a pleasant experience on the S720 mainly due to the form factor lending itself to being a great mobile controller. As for actual performance, it’s more than capable to handle casual and medium-graphics intensive gaming titles (it had problems with Dead Trigger on Ultra High).

Camera is great with natural light

Lenovo’s 8-megapixel camera manages to take pretty good pictures especially if you have decent lighting. There will be slight noise but the quality is more than okay for Facebook uploading. One issue we noticed though: taking pics in low light with flash. During low light environments the photo quality isn’t great even with flash on. It seems as if the subject gets “defocused” because of the flash. Kindly note that I’m not an expert photographer, these are just personal observations.

Here are a few sample shots taken with the Lenovo S720.

Sample Shots

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IMG_20130208_172414

IMG_20130208_173123

IMG_20130208_175756

IMG_20130208_174905

By the way we can’t seem to figure out how to turn off the “clicking” sound when we take a photo using the camera of the S720. If anyone out there has this phone and knows how to do so please do let us know in the comments section below, hehe.

Additional Features: Dolby Digital, Dual SIM

To polish off the S720, Lenovo added Dolby Digital for the audio which results to higher volume output and enhanced bass. They also made the phone dual-SIM, dual standby which is great for Filipinos since a lot of us have multiple SIM cards. As with their previous models, Lenovo has done a very good job with their implementation of dual SIM, dual standby. It’s very intuitive to use and there are settings that you can tinker with to customize the experience.

Surprisingly great battery life

Here’s one feature that’s not being talked about the Lenovo S720 — battery life. The 2,000mAh battery is actually more than enough to power you through a full day with moderate to heavy use. That’s great news considering most devices under Php10,000 seem to have sucky battery ratings (usually below 1700mAh).

Verdict

Like? No Like?
Like? No Like?

The Lenovo S720 is a finely crafted device that a lot of women will come to appreciate and like. It’s designed beautifully and even the user interface was redesigned to be a little softer and funner. Our only big issue with it really is that you have to manage the memory via an app to get optimal performance. That and the Php9,999 price tag puts it on the high end in the line-up of entry-level smartphones.

So do we recommend it? To hardcore techies, no. As a gift to your girlfriends? Yes (unless they’re hardcore techies like you too).

Carlo Ople

Carlo is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Unbox.ph. During daytime he’s the Managing Director and Partner of a Digital Marketing Agency in the Philippines and by nighttime he’s living out his passion as a gadget enthusiast and story teller through Unbox.

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