Nokia recently launched its latest flagship device, the Lumia 920. To put it in short and simple terms, it is a slightly improved and better version of the previous flagship Lumia 900. Even though we loved the construction and the size of the Lumia 900, it was let down by what was a fairly incompetent Windows Phone 7.5 OS as compared to what it was competing against. After not so much success with Lumia 800 and 900, this is Nokia’s third attempt to try and gauge the high end market for it’s smart phone, has it succeeded in doing so? Find out in our full review of the Nokia Lumia 900.
Construction: The uni body poly-carbonate construction of the Lumia 920 really gives the device a premium feel. Even though it weighs a pretty high 185 Grams, when holding the device you feel you are holding a well designed smart phone. The subtle curves on the device and neat corners and finishing give you a good feeling that Nokia has spent lot of time getting the design right. The gorilla class on top of the device curves and blends in beautifully with the body and makes scrolling on the phone a pure joy. The glass is slightly raised up and blends in with the body very similar to the Lumia 800 or the 900, we loved this concept then and we love it just as much now on the 920. The phone is about 10.7 mm thick, so if you are coming from a super thin devices such as the iPhone 5 or the HTC One X, this may take some time getting used to. But eventually we started appreciating the extra weight of the device as it meant, there were fewer accidental slipping. The device looks robust and apart from few scratches on the metal strip which housed the camera with branding, it stayed true to its construction. We used the black Lumia 920 for our review purpose, however, there have been reports that the glossy finish on the red and white Lumia 920 ‘s can be a magnet for scratches and fingerprints. So choose the color of your device very carefully.
Display: The display on the Lumia 920 is IPS and like Nokia showed off when the device was released, it works with even gloves on. Having tried that, it was hit and miss, you certainly felt a little lag when using thick woolen gloves, however with thin gloves the device worked perfectly. The resolution of 768×1280 with a PPI of 332 makes the screen on Lumia 920 one of the very best we have used. Some might argue the fact that this is not true HD like the HTC Butterfly or even the Xperia Z but you really need to touch and see to believe how good the display is on this device. The way Windows Phone 8 is built, it is extremely pixel friendly so even if the resolution is slightly lower you will not notice a major difference. We found using this device with one hand a little difficult, at 4.5 inches, we had to use both the hands to get around the phone, but that is pretty much a standard these days and we did not have any issue with it.
Battery Backup: The Lumia 920 ships with a non removable 2000 mAH battery. The battery was very adequate for medium to heavy usage daily. However, we did face an issue that if we allowed the battery to deep drain, it took good 15 minutes for the phone to charge up again. One way to speed up this process was to connect the wireless charger and the normal micro USB charger at the same time. Apart from that, there is plenty of juice in the device, and you should be able to make it through the day unless you play games for hours on end or browse the web the whole time or watch multimedia.
Multimedia Playback: The playback on the Lumia 920 was terrific. We loved the speakers. They were loud and clear and the gorgeous 4.5 inch display meant watching videos in HD was a complete joy. With headphones on, you can definitely enjoy a music experience as good as any we have experienced so far.
Performance: The performance of the Nokia Lumia 920 was stutter free. The Live tiles updated pretty much hassle free and apart from a couple of freezes especially when we received a phone call while playing a video the experience was smooth. The call quality of the device was very good and there were no dropped calls or signal drops. We loved how the Lumia 920 handled the multi tasking. Unlike the Windows 7.5 devices where the app in the back ground would become non functional and would start all over again if selected while multi-tasking, the Lumia 920 gives us true multi tasking. This means the apps in the background kept running and when you switched to them, you could start right off where you left instead of having to do it all over again. The device handled just about everything we threw at it pretty remarkably and showed little to no slowing down even when we had about 6/7 apps running simultaneously. The Windows 8 animations are very similar to the Windows 7.5 ones and they continue to look elegant. Though one thing which did bother us and it was same with Windows 7.5 devices is the fact that the status bar at the top of the device kept disappearing after about 5 seconds, so if you want to constantly monitor your signal or wi-fi icon, that was not possible. We do hope sometime in future Nokia would give the users an option to make it permanent. Having said that the dual core 1.5 GHz Snapdragon processor does its job brilliantly and hence we never really felt the device lagged anywhere. We also liked the customization that are possible now with the lock screen as we could set images or even Bing Wallpaper there and get the notifications for calls and messages on it.
Camera: Camera is one of the best features of the Lumia 920. We fell in love with how well the camera worked in low light conditions. Yes, it does require some experimenting and playing around initially but the eventual results were worth the time. The 8 MP camera on board is of the PureView branding as found on the 808 and it definitely lived up to the standards set by 808. The floating technology in the camera of the Lumia 920 meant that the images were stable and little shake of the hands while taking pictures did not really reduce the quality of the image. This was also very clearly visible as we recorded some videos from the device. The videos were good quality, had a very decent audio to them and above all there were little jerks as our hands moved around to capture the crowded market. We were left thoroughly impressed with the camera on board of the Lumia 920. However, if you are not an expert with cameras, you might find the going a little tough here.
Keyboard: The text entry on the Lumia 920 was another terrific experience. The large screen meant a better spaced out keyboard and it was one of the best typing experience we had on a touch screen device. COming from using a BlackBerry Bold 9900 for everyday quick typing, the Lumia 920 stood up very well and I did not mind composing long mails or messages on the device.
Wireless Charging: One of the features of the Lumia 920 that Nokia is pushing through is the Wireless charging. We got the Qi charger free with the device and liked the concept. Yes, you can rest the device on top of it and continue to play around, but we feel this is very much the start of something new, a lot more can be improved and gotten out of wireless charging yet. The charging time was pretty much the same if you used the micro USB charger so that was never a issue.
Conclusion: So overall, we really enjoyed our stay with the Lumia 920 and felt a little bad when it was time to return the device. It works great for the people who are ready to step into the Microsoft Ecosystem. We found checking out some Power Point ppts and Word Documents very easy with Office on board out of the box and the camera compelled us to take pictures in situations where we would have normally just let it pass. We also loved the Nokia drive on the device and certainly it is the best navigation app out there, dare I say even better than Google Nav at least for India.The construction of the device left us drooling and every time we took the device out in public, it did invite some curious stares and we like that. Over all, if you are planning to picking a Lumia 920 and have tried the Windows Phone OS before and like it, it is the device to get. If you are going to put it against some of the higher end Android devices or the iPhone 5 though, it becomes a slightly yet a very competitive call.
You can also check out our unboxing of the Lumia 920 here:
Here is the video of our very first impressions of the Lumia 920:
Do let us know what are your views on the Lumia 920 by writing in the section below. You can also tweet in your view to us at @Blogtechnika or @Techverarp.