LG New Chocolate BL20 Review
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This is a global GSM phone. It can be used with AT&T and T-Mobile USA, but without 3G.
Having introduced the new Black Label Series style by previewing the LG New Chocolate BL40, we now have the chance to take a closer look at the heir apparent to the all famous Chocolate. Meet the LG New Chocolate BL20, aimed at eager followers of fashion trends, who spend a lot of time in front of the mirror and would never, and we mean never, confuse a Ferre´s dress with something by Gucci (thanks, Google). Aside from its stylish overall design, you shouldn’t expect surprises from the LG New Chocolate BL20. Still, you´ll be getting a 5-megapixel camera with autofocus and Schneider-Kreuznach optics, microSDHC card slot and HSDPA.
The LG New Chocolate BL20 stays true to the new, trendy style of the Black Label Series and in case you´ve read our preview of the BL40, you already have a pretty good idea about the style of this slider. It is almost immaculately rectangular and we must say its black color goes perfectly with the red numeric keypad, upper and lower body. Alongside of the original Chocolate, the New Chocolate BL20 is taller and wider, but slimmer. It feels solid and comfy to use, even with the slider open and we have to say the phone gets respectably big in this case. The metal framing on either side contributes to a more sophisticated overall look. Our unit runs final software version, but bear in mind the retail device will come with slightly rounded edges.
You can compare the LG New Chocolate BL20 with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.
The TFT screen measures 2.4 inches, has a native resolution of 240x320 pixels and delivers top notch image quality. Our only gripe relates to its love for fingerprints and you will have the phone all covered in them in seconds, which basically means you will have to clean it quite often.
The touch-sensitive buttons typical of Chocolate handsets are below the screen. They feature great touch sensitivity and light up in red, much in harmony with the overall color solution. Generally, the bad thing about this type of keys is you can easily press an adjacent button and activate something you don’t mean, which tends to be annoying. Fortunately, this is not the case with the BL20, since there is enough room in between the buttons. The key that calls up the multitasking menu is in the lower left corner, while the widget button is in the lower right one.
The mechanism of the slider feels really tight and we like that, but it tends to give off an unpleasant sound when being opened. Not that this is much of a problem really, because the more important thing is the numeric keypad is really handy. Dialing numbers on it is a pure joy. Our only gripe regards the uppermost button row, the one where the send, end and delete keys are. They are located close to the edge, so people with thicker fingers may find pressing them a bit uncomfortable. However, keeping in mind these buttons are used less frequently, we can definitely rate the keyboard excellent. But this is not all. When open, its color makes the LG New Chocolate BL20 look really exquisite.
The interesting thing about the new chocolate is that the volume rocker is also touch sensitive. LG, however, has showed ingenuity in making it slightly raised and not completely flat, so you can easily feel where it is. Getting your press registered takes certain effort, but this is good, because otherwise the volume rocker would have been really easy to accidentally touch and therefore - annoying.
The standard microUSB port is on the left hand side, the screen lock on the top and you can relish the beauty of the 5-megapixel Schneider-Kreuznach camera with LED flash if you take look at the back of the handset.
The LG New Chocolate BL20 looks just as stylish as the BL40. With its slider closed, however, it´s far more compact. It stays true to its name and wouldn’t look out of place in the company of handsets with even the fussiest design. We think LG has done a great job in coming up with a proper addition to the series, because the BL20 is a handset with uncomplicated, yet expressive design.
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