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Nokia 820: A pretty house with dirty Windows
Nokia Lumia 820
Member Name: ryanando
Nokia Lumia 820
Date: 19/11/12, updated on 19/11/12 (810 review reads)
Advantages: Glare resistant screen, Fast Internet, Google account comaptible
Disadvantages: Heavy phone, not incredibly customisable, messy operating system, poor music quality
For years and years I was quite content with a little brick of a phone that could text and make calls. The internet was something I wasn't going to be interested in via a phone until it was giving useable results instead of poorly thrown together mobile sites that were impossible to navigate on a tiny screen. In the last few years, however, I was dragged, kicking, screaming and downing a few strong margaritas into the Smartphone revolution. Since then I've played with an Xperia x10 and a Samsung S3 to varied results (x10 was pants, S3 wasn't) and came to the realisation that, actually, I quite like my Smartphones now. I still insist that I could live without it if I really had to, but at least I'm not still dragging a club around with me to beat the ground with if I want to send a message to someone. Progress!
===How I met the Nokia 820===
Being that I'm skint and trying to save up for Christmas, I decided to review both of my phones. Someone up at Ciao Towers noticed this and, long story short, I was contacted to do a user review on the new Nokia 820. I nearly wet my pants when I got the final email to confirm I was being sent one. After the initial email, I'd seen a couple of things about the phone and it only served to get me more excited about test driving one of them. The two things I was most excited about were the Camera (which looked to be taking amazing photos) and the new "wireless" way of charging the phone. The bright coloured cases were, in my mind, swaying somewhere on the border between ridiculously cool and naff as hell. Would the phone live up to the hype or would my knickers stay decidedly dry once I bumped up against it? Armed with a direct comparison to my own Samsung Galaxy S3, I counted down the days till I received it so I could find out.
===In the box===
Nokia have managed to get this down to an art. Not only is the box well packed and neat with plenty of room, its easy to put everything back in. My S3 box was a bit like a jack-in-the-box and soon as I took stuff out it refused to go back in. In this box you will find a charger and wire, headphones, the phone and a small user manual that gives you the basics for getting your phone on the go. It's mostly packed in cardboard so it's pretty much completely recyclable too!
===Fat bottomed girls===
The Nokia 820 I received is white (not the colour I would have chosen and falls a little on the naff side of the fence) but they are available in a few different colours. The box alone features red (I'd have went with this one), yellow, black, blue, purple and grey phones. From behind it looks alright, but from the front it looks a little too square for my liking. According to the advertising the phone is perfectly symmetrical from every angle. I assume they mean if you don't take the buttons into consideration.
There are three buttons down the left hand side that are full-on push buttons and three along the bottom that are touch-screen buttons. There's a front and back camera emblazoned with Carl Zeiss. It's not terrible but it does feel and look a little bit chunky and not very delicate.
Talking of being chunky the weight of this phone was the first thing I noticed when I took it out of the box. In fact, it's the first thing everyone I've handed the phone to has commented on without any prompting The Nokia 820 is roughly the weight of a brick. Ok, well, maybe not a brick but it's noticeably heavier than a lot of models out there Literally two minutes before typing this I handed it to my friend who I haven't said anything to about it and she jokingly hit the floor due to the weight. It feels like it's almost double the weight of my sleek S3. What do the scales say? The Nokia 820 comes in at 176 grams. Compare that to my S3 with its rubber cover on (153 grams) and you'll find it's a whole 23 grams heavier. Take the rubber cover off the S3 (132 grams) and its 44 grams heavier. So not quite double the weight but a significant amount.
According to Nokia, the phone is 100% recoverable, which I assume is the same thing as recyclable. At least all that weight can be neatly disposed of!
===Sea shells at the sea shore===
Getting into the shell of the Nokia was quite difficult at first. You'll need to take the shell off to put your sim card and micro SD card if you have one. It does support a micro SD card but for some reason has trouble reading my one (my normal phone has no issue). To take the shell off basically prise off the top corner with your finger and then do the same to the other one. I was having to use quite a lot of force to start with, but it seems to have become a bit more flexible after a few cover removals and comes off a little easier now. It was, however, a total struggle the first time. I also need to give you a small warning that the battery does NOT stay in place once the cover is removed so be careful or the battery may fall out when you take the case off.
A good point of this shell is that it is durable. Possibly due to the fact that it's white. The case on my Samsung was scuffed and mauled within about 5 hours of having it. This one seems to be withstanding the scuffing on being sent sliding across my desk on its back. Well done.
The three push-buttons on the right hand side have a fixed purpose. The top button is the volume which will bring up a small section on the screen. The button changes the volume number up and down; it goes from 0 to 30 with a warning showing up at the higher volumes about using headphones at high volumes. Also in this section there is an on screen button that you can use to pick how you want the phone to ring (the options being "Vibrate" and "Ring and Vibrate") though there is no option here to turn the vibrate off though you can do this by accessing the "Settings" menu and going into "Ringtones".
Next down (the middle button) is the on/off button which you will use to turn the phone off and on and reactivate the phone when it goes to sleep or turns the screen off. The last button at the bottom left is the camera button used for taking pictures. Simple!
The three touch screen buttons along the bottom are fairly standard. The one on the left of the phone is the back button which is pretty self explanatory. The middle button with the windows icon takes you back to your main home screen with all your tiles. The button on the right has a little magnifying glass to signify it's a search button. If you push this it automatically takes you to a Bing search screen. Personally I can't abide Bing at the best of times so I guess it's up to you how useful you'll find that. If you are using it, you may want to take a look at the settings as there are a few tick boxes that are automatically ticked which allow Microsoft free reign over the information you are searching on. If I was going to be using it I'd really want these buttons to be un-ticked first.
One of the other tick boxes is an "allow search button from lock screen" button which I assumed would mean you could access Bing without having to open your lock screen. If that's what was intended it doesn't seem to work on the phone I have (both with and without the security features enabled).
Now, screen wise I am spoiled already at least Size wise. My Samsung with its 4.8 inch HD screen made from the finest Gorilla Glass 2.0 already beats anything the Nokia offers while not teetering over the edge into "almost-a-tablet" territory. The screen on the Nokia 820 is 4.3 inches which is a whole 0.5 of an inch smaller than what I am used to. It doesn't use Gorilla glass instead opting for their own "scratch resistant" glass. Does the size cause a problem? Not really. In fact it's barely noticeable. My typos have increased very slightly probably due to minutely smaller keys but nothing that I wouldn't get used to given time. As for scratch resistant it seems to be holding up. Kudos.
Display wise I do have to concede that the Nokia beats the socks off of my S3. Side by side they look fine when you are inside. Go outside on a bright day and your S3 instantly becomes pretty much impossible to see while the Nokia display is shining brightly showing you everything in its full glory.
This is due to Nokia's ClearBlack technology. They basically put a layer between the glass of the screen and the display that catches all the glare in a little box, puts that box in a shredder and empties the shredder into the bin. At least that's how I imagine it in my head. While this tech seems to be specific to Nokia, the results aren't. The X10 (that horrid little phone) was also perfectly readable in the sunlight though I think that was down to the incredibly bright screen rather than an anti-glare layer. Either way, the ClearBlack is great and means that if you are chilling out on the grass in the half day of summer we get in Britain, you'll be able to successfully ignore your surroundings and stare at your phone. The screen is perfectly visible at all times which is brilliant. My S3 is a bit more vampirism and runs away crying when it sees the sun leaving me unable to catch up with the latest stuff on my phone.
There are, however, a few downsides; the first being that the 820 display is NOT HD. The next downside is that the screen doesn't seem to be quite as responsive as the S3. It's by no means bad... it's just not as good. There have already been a couple of instances where I was trying to push what I thought was a button/ link only to be utterly convinced that it wasn't a button/ link . Finding no other reasonable way to access what I was trying to access I tried again and found out that it WAS a button and that it just hadn't responded the first few times I had tried to push it. It looks like that was an extreme instance though and overall it seems to have a decent response to my fingers.
The phone has been marketed as "super-sensitive" stating that you can use it with gloves and nails (I assume finger nails) so I was surprised that it doesn't seem as responsive as the S3. I put my gloves on to test this out. To my surprise it does but only if I push fairly hard. I do have leather gloves though. I was certain my S3 doesn't work with my gloves so I tried that and apparently it does if I push as hard. I wouldn't recommend using it with your gloves on however as all that pushing will be bad for your fingers and you'll probably end up dropping it!
===Wireless charging? Hmm===
All the adverts go on about wireless charging. "Wireless" charging sounds quite cool. But what does it really mean? Well, first of all it's not really wireless. You plug in your charger which is a little oval disc on a wire ... AHEM... and it looks a bit like a coaster. In theory you simply place your phone face up on the charging disk and the phone absorbs the energy through its special shell. When you open your phone up (which by the way is quite difficult to do; I have full use of my fingers and I'm 26. I struggled to get the back off) you'll see the charging pad kind of stuck to the inside of the case. I assume it absorbs the energy from the charging disk and uses the little pins to transfer it to the battery.
A bit of a nasty surprise awaits you if you DO want to charge wirelessly though. If you want to charge wirelessly you have to buy the wireless charger separately for £45 - £50. In the box you will find your normal bog standard wire charger that you have to plug in to the phone. Not a big deal, but a little disappointing. It does, however mean that the phone is compatible with any other Smartphone charger out there at the moment which is always a good thing. I'd also imagine sitting your phone face up to charge could cause issues with notification lights during the night if you are like me who has the room pitch black. My current phone sits face down wrapped in a t-shirt over night to stop any light escaping.
As for charging, the phone comes with around 40-50% battery already in it. This lasted me around four and a half hours of playing around with the camera, surfing the internet and generally giving the phone a good test drive. Sounds about similar to my S3 for usage then. I took the advice given to me for my old phone and let this run out completely before charging it again. At which point the phone crashed. "Goodbye" was left on screen for at least five minutes before I gave up and removed the battery. When I plugged it in to my USB cable via my work computer to charge, the screen displayed a large battery icon to indicate it was charging and wouldn't let me turn the phone on any further than this screen. Five minutes later it turned back on but didn't give any indication that it was charging. I played around some more and it turned off again.
It seemed like it wouldn't allow me to charge and play at the same time but I later realised that the phone wouldn't charge via the computer at work because the computer at work wouldn't let it link up to it as an information device. The computer doesn't let my S3 link up with it either due to data security. It does, however, still let it charge. It leaves me wondering why Nokia would require to access the computers information to have the phone charge via USB. It also means that, if I had bought this phone I'd have quickly been very annoyed that I couldn't charge it at work. If I had a plug socket available then it may not be an issue, but my work use all the sockets. Unless I want my colleagues' computer to go off, I can't use them.
So, having met these issues with charging, how did it fare when plugged directly into the mains? Thankfully there were no issues with mains charging. It wouldn't allow me to turn the phone on for about a minute while it regained charge but from that point onwards I was able to fully access the phone while it charged. The plug socket is quite funky too in that you have to slide the top pin up to use it. This means that travelling with your charger in your bag will be easier as it slides back down and is more compact when it's not in use.
One other plus side about the charger is the length of the wire. It is slightly longer than the S3's charger wire which means lying in bed at night with the phone plugged in is less of a struggle. Fantastic!
===Setting it up===
One of my big worries about switching to this phone was the fact that it was not an android phone. I envisioned hours of transferring all my contact information from Google to another server so that my windows phone could do the job. I had prayed there was some sort compatibility between a windows phone and the services I already had with Android. Thankfully I was not disappointed! The 820 allows you to use both your Google and your Hotmail/Microsoft accounts to sync your information. The only small downside is that it won't allow you to remove your hotmail/Microsoft accounts once you've given them the information. Your hotmail account information stores any contact info from MSN messenger in it which I haven't used in years. This meant that a load of old contacts resurfaced including pictures, email addresses and old phone numbers. Once that had happened I couldn't remove them without factory resetting OR going through them one by one. As such three photos of different ex-boyfriends have been circulating on the start menu of the phone.
As for setting the phone up, it's fairly easy. The phone will walk you through anything that you need to do. There is even an option to sync contacts with your old phone via Bluetooth so I made sure I did this. One thing I didn't like was that I had to set up an x-box account to use the app store. It only told me this in the middle of downloading a new app though and made it look like it was optional. I clicked no; it told me I can't download my app. I try again, it says the same. I give in, it gives me the app. I sob gently into my crotch and call Microsoft some bad words.
As for turning it on it does take a little while for it to load up. I turned both phones off and set them side by side. Turning them both on at the exact same time it takes about 30 seconds longer than the S3 to be ready to use from the off position. Not overly impressive but then it's also not quite something to worry about. How many times do you really turn your phone off and on?
===When I'm cleaning Windows (8)===
This Smartphone operates on windows 8 which is very different from the Android operating system I was on firm ground with. I had only one experience of windows 8 prior to having this phone gently placed into my hands. It was not a good one. My partner (a medium-level tech-wizard) had installed it onto the main computer which we use to watch DVD's on. It lasted no less than half an hour before we got so frustrated with it that we wiped it and re-installed windows 7. Personally I lasted five minutes with it before I threw my hands up. My partner wanted to give it a chance so he took over. 25 minutes later he gave up. Oh dear. I had said at the time it may have been a better system for a phone, but not for a "clicky-mouse and screen" computer (you know, a desktop).
So, is it any better on the phone? Yes and no. Navigating on a phone is much, much easier than it is on a computer. Rather than having symbols for your apps, it's got a fairly uniform system where you have a scrollable start screen with square tiles. Swipe to the left and you'll see an even more basic list (straight up and down) of your apps. You can move tiles to the main screen and change the size and colour of them. You can't have any background photos. You can either choose to have a black or a white background. The colour you choose for your tiles will set the theme for your whole phone. While the tiles are an Ok idea, I find they ultimately end up looking a bit messy. So, yes, it's a better operating system on the phone....but, No, it's not as good as it should be.
So, it's clear that me and the new OS don't quite see eye to eye on what is pretty. That, however, isn't everything. How does the Nokia 820 perform with the basic functions such as phone calls, texting? What about the slightly less basic but ever more important internet browsing? Let's have a look!
Starting with a tiny gripe, unlike every other phone I've ever had, the bars to show if you have signal aren't a permanent feature on the phone. They are there on the main screen. Open any screens or apps and the information along the top about signals goes away unless you prompt it. That can mean a bit of work to find out your signal strength before you make a call. It is, however, a tiny moan. The clarity of phone calls is perfect and the sound on the phone is plenty loud to hear even for those without impeccable hearing.
Ringtones are very loud when the sound is up which is rather handy, the vibrate function is also very strong. If you do want to use music as a ringtone you will have to make sure the files are under 30mb (which is quite small) so you'll need to either edit the music before you transfer or download an app to help out.
The internet is fast. Faster than my S3 too! The browser provided isn't my favourite (internet explorer) but if you really have a grudge about it, you can download a browser to suit you.... that is if you live in a fantasy world where Microsoft let you choose for yourself. In actuality you are firmly locked to internet explorer. There are no other safe / well known browsers that you can download from the store function. Upsetting.
You may notice the text looks a bit strange on the browser. On my S3's basic android browser the text appears as it would on a computer. On the Nokia 820's browser (IE) for some reason the text is a bit weird. It seems like it's bigger than it should be and bolder than it should be. It reminds me of the early days of internet on phones where nothing looked like it was supposed to. As well as this the text seems to be a little difficult to read when you are zoomed out from the page you are looking at. When browsing the internet it's almost like you are reading a visually impaired version of everything. There might be a way to change this but I'm not the most tech-minded person and I simply can't find a way to do it. So, while it's faster, it's a bit awkward to look at. It is not, however, like this on every page I view. My partner Allan had a quick browse through the sites he usually visits and everything seemed to be fine. Very odd indeed.
The bookmarks function is decent and unlike my S3 you can remove the pre-installed bookmarks (or favourites as the phone calls them). Hit the menu button on screen (three little dots to the right of the browser bar) and then favourites and you'll be given a list in alphabetical order of the favourites. It's a simple black and white text list with no fancy pictures or anything which again feels a bit messy and also a bit over simplified. I'd give the internet 4 stars out of 5.
===Texts and layouts===
Text messaging seems a little bit over complicated on this device. The tile that deals with it has a small speech bubble which then takes you to a message screen that seems to deal with more than just your text messages. It's titled "threads" and the screen next to it is titled "Online" which says something about seeing your chat status. I'm not quite sure what chat it is referring to though. Very confusing.
While the keyboard is responsive and has a decent predictive function, again, the message functions downfall is that it looks messy. While I'm sure it's just trying to be helpful, it's making it a lot more complicated than it needs to be. Adding to this, when you are typing you don't seem to be able to move your cursor to the middle of words so as to correct your spelling manually. If you touch the word it highlights the whole thing. This means if you do miss a letter and it doesn't suggest something you'll have to delete the whole word and start again rather than just adding a letter. This is another thing you don't seem to be able to turn off.
I would say that this messiness is my main gripe about the operating system as a whole. The operating system also seems to impose its incredibly basic look on the apps you download too so your Facebook on a windows phone will look completely different to your Facebook on an android phone. Personally I find the windows version to be very messy.
The same is true with the messaging app I usually use called Whatsapp. On android it's a very pretty app. On windows it's almost like you are operating on an old DOS computer (which, by the way, is the look of a lot of the menus throughout the phone). Black and white. Boring. Facebook looks like screeds of text with no real way of separating posts. Even Hotmail, Microsoft's OWN email system looks terrible with stuff jumping all over the screen.
The menus within the phone have small parts of the next menu to the right showing on the right hand of the screen, encroaching on the space you are currently looking at. Some of the menu's have the titles cut off as if the operating system was built to be used with the phone sideways even though if you hold it sideways the start menu and some of the apps like Nokia Music don't rotate with the phone. It all just seems very ill thought out.
Now, I had gotten terribly excited by the information I had seen about the camera before I had even got the phone. The 820 came with an 8 megapixels camera which is the same as my current phone but less than the 920 model. Nokia make a big deal out of the fact that both the 820 and the 920 models come with a Carl Zeus lens but I didn't have a clue what importance this name dropping held. After a quick Google I found out that Carl Zeiss was born on the 11th of November 1816 and was a dab hand with cameras. His company is (apparently) quite well known for making high quality lenses not only for cameras but for microscopes, telescopes and all kinds of other things. In short a Carl Zeiss lens is a good thing. The 920, however, also comes with Nokia's magical "Pureview" technology which promises blur free photos in any light. The 820 doesn't come with this which I was a little sad about.
To activate the camera, simply push the camera button. This can be done even if the phone is locked which to me is a little bit of an issue. I don't want one-million photos of the lint in my pocket thank you. I can't find any way to turn this feature off but hopefully the fact that you have to hold the button for a couple of seconds will stop a plethora of pocket pictures.
As "pureview" isn't included in the 820 I was left wondering if the camera would be any better than my current S3 one which doesn't claim to have a fancy lens. The answer is complicated. In well lit areas it looks much the same as the photos I take on my S3. That means that occasionally it can look a bit washed out if you take a photo with the light coming from the wrong angle. Low light photos, however, turn out a lot nicer than they do than on my S3. The flash on the S3 tends to bounce off of whatever is in the foreground and blacks out anything in the background. After a few test shots with the flashes on both cameras it became clear that the light balance was much better on the Nokia 820. The background and foreground were as vivid as each other making the photos look a lot more natural and well lit. I have noticed, however, that the pictures seem a little blurry. While the S3 has the lighting all wrong, it at least makes the subject of your photo sharply in focus. The Nokia gets the lighting right but doesn't give you a fantastically sharp image.
Taking the photos is a bit easier with the Nokia due to the fact the camera button is a physical button. I find with my S3 I can't always take a steady shot as the button is on the screen. The button on the Nokia 820 is roughly the same place it would be on a camera giving it a much better grip. Pushing the button half way down prompts the camera to focus, push it all the way down and the picture is taken. It's fairly quick and dumps your photos into your gallery though it is a little slower at this than my current phone but only by a smidge. Overall an acceptable phone camera but not quite what I'd expect after the fuss made over the lens.
The front facing camera is, to be frank, abysmal compared to the S3. The front facing camera shoots with a meagre 0.3 megapixels which falls drastically short of the 1.9 megapixels offered by the front facing camera on the S3. There are lines and interference on the photos at the best of times and the colours are occasionally completely out of whack. Video calls would be a bit shoddy from this.
As with most other smart phones you can also take videos with the camera. The quality of the videos taken on the Nokia 820 is alright. Not any better or worse than what you will get on most other phones. It picks the sound up very well (and in fact it picks the sound up better than my actual camera does)
Despite not having the "Pureview" that I so lusted after, it does come with a Smart Shoot app which basically takes 5 of the same shots and then allows you to pick the best elements and mash them all together. Sounds great in theory but does it work in practice? The five photos are taken one after another and take around 5 seconds. This works best on group shots. Basically the app lets you pick the best picture but if you thought someone's face looked better in a different photo you can tell the system to superimpose that face onto the better picture. It also allows you to remove certain things though the only objects it's ever let me change was a wrinkle in my sofa and my shoulder which my jumper fabric was sitting funny. If you've got the time to sit and look at the photo for five minutes afterwards it's decent. If, however you would prefer to just take the picture and then get on with the social situation it's maybe not the best app. Still an interesting addition.
===Safe and secure===
When your phone goes to sleep it automatically goes to the lock screen which you have to swipe upwards to unlock. If you don't want just anyone accessing your phone you can put extra security onto it in the form of a "password". I use inverted commas as the "password" entry screen is simply a number pad so it's more like a pin. This is the ONLY security option available. If you don't like pins then tough. I don't mind it myself, however, there is an outstanding lack of personalised approaches available. The all hallowed S3 has about 5 different security options that would suit everyone. Not a huge issue but one to consider if you'd prefer a larger range of security features. Given that you can use this phone to pay for things via NFC (Near Field Communication, which is that funky thing where you tap your phone against a pay point and it pays for stuff. Never used it, never will, but cool that it can do it!) and store all of your card information, I'd probably prefer a bit more security on the phone if I was going to use this feature.
===Life through a lens===
The Nokia 820 comes with a couple of apps installed already that Nokia have made a big deal about in their advertising. City Lens is the biggest one and is a very interesting little app. You need to allow Microsoft to have your location to use it. Turn it on and turn your phone sideways (the app is set this way so can't be viewed any other way) and you will be greeted with some options on tiles similar to your start menu. These options are as follows: nearby, food, hotels, shopping, famous, fun, sights and transport. Select one of these and your camera will flicker into action. Use the phone as a sort of view finder and scan around your location. If you have selected "food" then as you scan round small tags will appear on your screen indicating restaurants and eateries in the direction you are looking. It's similar to Google Skymap except it's for stuff that's much closer than the nearest pit in the moon.
I found the compass to be slightly out from a distance but the closer you are to stuff the more accurate it becomes. I'd probably use this in conjunction with a map but I can see this coming in handy if you don't know the area all too well and need to find something. It'll give you a general direction to head in. A fun little app to help you explore your surroundings.
===Dance to the beat of my drum===
Nokia Music is the other big selling point. This app basically allows you to browse, download and stream music to your phone all for free. It's got a radio function too. I tend not to use my phones for music but I know a lot of people do so this would be a fantastic little tool if you like your tunes. As the phone comes with headphones you can also not be a horrible anti-social person on the bus while you listen to your tunes! Huzzah! Fantastic... at least it would be, if the sound quality of the speakers was up to scratch. If you aren't listening through the headphones the sound levels on the phones speakers are completely out of whack. I used a couple of songs to test this listening to them first on the S3. Most sounded a little muffled and noticeably tinnier than on the S3. One in particular was noticeably bad quality. The song in particular was this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xdmv_xHadgw (We started this O'pra S**t from Repo the Genetic Opera) There is a part near the start of the song where there is a crowd in the background shouting responses to the singer. Both Allan and I know the song incredibly well so we were really shocked when the crowds responses were completely in-audible at any volume.
In this song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4I8pneJkxBY (No Good Deed from Wicked) the orchestra was quite noticeably over the top of Idina Menzel and her fantastic vocals were coming out incredibly muffled. I was not impressed. While the ringtones are all perfectly audible, you cannot expect decent sounding music from this phones speakers while I'd happily play music from the S3.
Battery power used to be the bane of my existence. The battery power seems pretty standard for what you get on a smart phone. It lasts me a whole day while I've been browsing, texting and calling people lightly. Similar to my S3 if I'm sitting constantly on the internet all day (it occasionally happens) then I'll find myself running low on battery after about 9 hours. This isn't much of a problem if you are able to jack into a plug point but it can start to be an issue if the only source you have to charge from is a secure computer USB that doesn't allow information transfer. So overall, battery power is meeting the current standard nicely.
===Other annoying things===
Over the course of the last few days I have been bumping up against one other glaring problem with this phone. About five times now I have wanted to access a tile and the phone has looked like it was going to open it and then just flipped back to the start screen. This has happened on more than one tile and once it starts happening it seems the only way to fix it is to turn the phone off and on again. When you do turn it off, a few times it has frozen on the "goodbye screen" to the point I've had to remove the battery to get it to go off. As I type, it's stuck on this screen. Not overly impressive.
Obviously I got mine for free but having had a quick Google you can purchase this handset for £33 a month for 24 months from Vodafone. This gets you unlimited calls and texts with 1gb internet (which is practically unlimited) There are other cheaper deals out there starting from around £25 a month but you'll get less minutes, texts and internet allowance. Obviously deals will change daily so you'd be best to do your own little bit of shopping around. You can buy the handset for between £350 and £433 if you wanted to put your own Sim into it. Contract wise that's similar to what I'm paying for my S3 so not bad at all.
So here's a very quick run down of the pros and cons of this device as I see it:
Glare resistant screen
Easy to transfer contacts from old phone
Easy to transfer contacts from your Google Account
Compact charger plug
Comes with headphones
Good light balance in photos taken in low light
Free access to Nokia Music
USB charging issues
Security options limited
Contactless charging not included
Not very customisable
0.3megapixel front facing camera
Internet explorer is the only browser available
Poor music quality on phone speakers
Photos not incredibly sharp
Issues with opening tiles/ freezing when turning off.
So, after having used it for a while now, I think I can safely say that I'd much rather be using something else. I fully admit, however, that had this been my first foray into the world of Smart phones I probably wouldn't mind it that much. It does the basics fairly well. As it stands though, I've tried a few different phones now and this one, compared to what I have already, feels like a bit of a step backwards. While it mostly all works, I just don't like the operating system; it's not as smooth and tidy as Android. Throw in that the apps available for windows 8 are a bit more limited (which may change with a bit more time) and downright ugly and it doesn't seem as high flying as it's made out to be. I think if I had a Nokia 820 phone with an android system on board, it would be a great little phone, if not a touch heavy. I'm unsure if the freezing issues are the phone or the operating system.
They have some fantastic ideas here that just haven't had the edges smoothed. The camera is alright but not as sharp as I'd like, the speed is brilliant but the look of the operating system really drags it down. It really is a decent try from Nokia but I feel they were let down by Windows 8's messy system, the weight of the device and Microsoft's information hungry charger. I'll be giving it three stars out of five stars, losing one star for the weight and one star for the folder opening and freezing issues. I was sorely tempted to take a star off for the Windows 8 system but I know some people won't mind the look as much as I do. While not a terrible phone, I simply don't feel like it's as good as it could be.
Summary: A phone that is really let down by it's operating system.
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