Having had an iPhone for a few years I decided to go for a cheaper contract when I was due an upgrade. I got the Nokia lumia in early 2014 and I was very disappointed with it overall. Considering it is a windows phone I was expecting there to be a wide variety of apps available to download and buy but found they were very limited. Lots of apps I searched for that were available on most smart phones (e.g. snap-chat, santander, sky etc) were not available but some knock off alternatives were. I also didn't like the layout of the home screen as each app's block was too big and so you have to scroll down to see all of your favourites (eg messaging, Facebook, email) even if you have as little as 7 'pinned' to your home page. This may be a trivial point but gets very irritating if you use your phone frequently and need to access a variety of applications. Another negative about this phone is that it doesn't show a breakdown of previous calls i.e. if John has phoned you 5 times today it will only show you the time of the last call and also doesn't provide call length. My final grievance with this handset is that Ive had so many problems sending picture messages despite following instructions and phoning vodafone.
One of the few positives of this phone is the camera which is great!
In future I will definitely pay that bit more to have a better handset.
I took out this phone on contract after my Windows 7 phone contract expired, giving me the upgrade to Windows 8. Mainly I wanted a Windows phone as I love playing my Xbox 360 and the combined functionality allows you to earn Gamerscore on your phone, Windows 8 PC as well as on the console itself. A bit sad at 30 I know, but I've had the console since 2005, so I like building up my score in my spare time!!
Key aspects for me
Xbox 360 functionality
4.5 inch screen
8.7 megapixel camera
Connectivity with your home network
There are well over 250 games with Xbox functionality available now on the phone, so you will be able to find something that suits you easily.
How does it look??
I got the bright yellow version and it looks really cool, and as it is so bright it is extremely easy to find!
The layout of the operating system is similar to that of Windows 8 on the home computer, with a series of apps on the first screen which can be moved or removed as you prefer. The second screen provides you with a full list of every app on the phone in an alphabetical index.
Will it break?
When I am out with my girlfriend or friends and they have iPhones they always seem to have cracked screens. What do people do with their phones? Seriously! I have never broken, cracked or lost a phone since getting my first in 2002 and I throw it about all the time. This feels pretty solid and has without quite a bit of abuse when playing Angry Birds!
To remove or add apps to the front screen you simply hold in the app name (on screen 2) or icon (on screen 1) and click the pin button to remove or the "pin to start" option on screen 2.
Connecting to WiFi is done by touching the top of the screen and dragging down, allowing you the option of "WiFi", "Bluetooth", "Flight Mode" or "Rotation Lock". Once you have saved a WiFi connection you have the option for the phone to automatically connect to that source the next time you are within range.
I like that if you have a Windows 8 computer at home, that any photos you take on the phone's 8.7 Mega Pixel camera automatically uploads to the One Drive meaning that the second you get home your photos are instantly accessible on your PC for easy access. It also has the ability to connect to your Xbox account, meaning that you can update your profile and your avatar on the go, as well as sending messages through Xbox to your friends.
A benefit of the hookup between Microsoft and Nokia is that these phones now come with Microsoft Office as standard which is a wonderful thing to have if you are doing work on the go, it's nowhere near as complex as on the computer but very handy if you need to send yourself a work document for on-the-road work.
One drawback of having such a lot of power in a phone is the short time that the battery works for when making calls or using apps. You will be lucky to get two hours if playing games or making a lot of calls, and the phone will get very hot. Luckily it can be charged using a fairly standard USB charger, the same as most phones use these days such as the Blackberry, so you can always borrow someone's charger if needed... unless they have fallen victim to Steve Jobs's blanket advertising campaigns of the mid-00's and bought an inferior Apple product.
I've found that in battery saver mode with WiFi switched off and minimal use I can get about 36 hours at an absolute maximum out of the battery from fully charged.
There has to be a downside to everything doesn't there? Unfortunately, for whatever reason, there are certain apps advertised on television such as the X Factor voting app which are not available on the Windows Phone. I have no idea why, they just aren't. Slightly annoying but no big deal in the grand scheme of things. Also there are certain games which only work on Windows 8 so games and apps purchased on this phone may not be backward compatible so will not work on your Windows 7 phone.
I have also found that the Facebook and Twitter apps on this phone are terrible, but the sites work well through the web browser even though it is (of course) the much maligned Internet Explorer. admittedly there are others downloadable from the Store, but there's no real need to do this IMO.
The apps have an option to go up to 30, however the ringer and in-call volume is set at a maximum of 10 which in a busy environment can be a bit quiet. The location of the speaker and microphone at the ends of the phone are not ideal, perhaps them being front facing would have been more effective.
Even after 18 months, this phone is still costing over £200 to buy new so it seems to have kept its price quite well for a mobile phone.
Overall rating - this is certainly the best phone that I have ever owned and when my upgrade is due this Spring I am probably going to stick with it and just sell the new handset.
A smart, sleek, smartphone. In terms of design quality it holds its own against any other smartphone on the market. With a massive scope for customisation it's possible to play with the main screen tile layout, the lock screen and the colour scheme to your hearts content, to create a wonderfully personalised phone.
In terms of performance, you certainly aren't let down. With no hang-ups in processing speed, it's got a fair amount of power back there, and the reliability thus far has been faultless. This is aided by a smart, user-friendly, interface that proves to be more intuitive than many of the competitors out there. Indeed, with the updates in the operating system with Windows 8.1, many of the features that were frustratingly missing, such as an easily-accessible summary of notifications, have been incorporated into the phone.
However, minor grumbles come in the form of complaints about the longevity of the aesthetics. After a couple of months of jangling about in my pocket (yes, a responsible owner may use a case...) the pretty brushed aluminium edges start to become worn. A purely cosmetic complaint, but it's something that may bother the most style conscious.
Finally, there's the good old issue of the sheer lack of quality apps (or, perhaps more precisely, lack of apps that can by found on Apple/Android platforms). While there are good third party imitations, many people may be put off by the inability to keep up with the lack of social media and productivity apps when they are comparing to the other bit name operating systems.
Nevertheless, this situation is improving, and will only do so as more Windows phones a bought.
Nokia forever is the only thing that should be said. Having been using this model for 6 months already, I can''''t find any real drawbacks. However, limited number of applications for windows makes me nervous sometimes, and even makes it more difficult to work. Honestly, the cam is a little disappointing, but only if you don''''t know how to use it properly. Do believe, the ones who knows will find it great, especially when making photos at night. the good thing is that with Microsoft Office you can create, edit and share documents on the move, which is not possible in some previous models. What I find the most stunning is Mixradio with its diverse, and what''''s more important, free tunes. The talk time is now quite longer and that makes it easies when you are away for a long time. And wireless charging is possible now. These features make this model special, but for Nokia is a kind of smartphone, which is 100 per cent reliable, and I can be sure that it will never let me down. I''''ve always had Nokias, and they never broke. Even if it falls down it never breaks. Don''''t know why - it''''s just very convenient for the ones who are not very careful with their devices. It''''s portable, it''''s stylish. But it has so few accessories in comparison to i-phone. that''''s a real pity some times, especially if you want to decorate and diverse it a little. Anyway, I think that''''s not a problem with all this e-markets)
This phone is exceptional for the price. The phone comes with many great feature already installed on the phone. The camera is the main selling point of the phone, the ordinary camera app that comes with the phone has so many setting however it is the other Nokia apps that really utilise the full potential that the camera hold. You can create simple animations, edit photos to a great standard and the panorama feature actually works unlike with most phones.
People say that the windows phone marketplace is desolate however it really isn't, all the apps that you may ever need are there and most are a very reasonable price if not free. Microsoft also have a deal at the moment where you can get £20 to spend on any apps that you want.
The operating system is really well designed and easy to use. The only downside is the battery life however this is the same with nearly all modern smartphones
I switched from the I Phone 3GS to the Nokia 925 recently mainly due to the specifications on the camera on the 925. The 925 is easy to use with a windows interface and not dissimilar to other smart phone interfaces so was easy to switch from the Iphone over. I like the calendar function on the 925 as it displays your next appointment on the main screen of the phone. The phone itself is a little large and difficult to use with just one hand, I have dropped it a couple of times due to this. There is a lack of apps on the phone as it seems that the phone doesn't support Java, Candy Crush cannot be downloaded onto the phone (much to my dismay) and the BBC news app doesn't support video. The camera on the phone is excellent and there are a number of photo editing apps available, although these are very difficult to navigate and not much different than what is available via instagram.
Whilst I was a long time being converted to the mobile revolution, I finally succumbed and went for a Nokia handset on a Vodafone contract. Since then, I have stayed loyal to both the manufacturer and provider, as I always found my Nokias to be reliable and I had a very cheap contract!
That said, I was wanting to join the smart phone generation but was waiting around for my favourite manufacturer to get into the game. Whist I have nothing particularly against Apple, I had no desire to get an iPhone or even other type. Once Nokia had finished suing other manufacturers for use of proprietary ideas Nokia finally got down to it. The Lumia range was launched and has been steadily growing. For some time I have looked at them and wasn't quite convinced by them. I was determined to hold on until the one I wanted came along.
Then came Windows Phone 8. Nokia have made a decision to harness themselves to the Windows phone platform. Now, whilst I will not argue that Microsoft are the best available they are certainly prolific. Most of the computers I use make use of Microsoft products and I was interested to see how Windows 8 would link in with this. Would they apply their considerable muscle to the platform and make inroads into the market? Only time will tell. I feel I must mainly focus the review at the phone and, to a considerably lesser extent, the platform, as this is what you will get if you buy the phone.
The phone first. This is slimmed down from the Lumia 920 but is still considerably larger than an iPhone. It measures 12.9 cm by 7.1 cm and is almost a centimetre thick. Combined with a weight of 139g, this makes it a pretty hefty piece of kit. However, this was enough smaller than the previous offering to make me consider it. Even after fitting a leather case (too many friends having trashed their smart phones) I can still fit this in my pocket along with other items.
I am not a techie person, so I will try to deliver the specs in a way that I understand. It has Gorilla glass 2, which is supposedly extremely tough. The display itself is a whopping 4.5 inches of Puremotion HD+ and has lots of other complicated things making it sound darn good! What that means in my world is that I have a good sized screen that is very crisp and sharp indeed. It is more than big enough for me to make use of the Kindle app. The touch sensitivity is very good and accurate and even me, with my 5 thumbs on each hand can select exactly what I want. The lock screen works well, with you needing to slide up the screen and can be made more secure by use of a numeric password. This is something I had had a bit of a bugbear with Nokia in the past with Select * not always being secure enough.
One good point about Nokia has always been their cameras and this phone is no-different. It comes with a very good 8.7MP Pureview 4x digital zoom with a Carl Zeiss lens, which makes for extremely good results in my experience so far. Whilst optical zoom is obviously better than digital, my photos have not suffered in zoom mode, unless they were further away than across the room. In addition, with low-light conditions this camera produces excellent results, considerably better than my compact camera. A wide range of lens apps has made the experience even better. My personal favourites are Smartcam and Panorama at the moment. The former because it captures 10 photos quickly for you to chose from and allows you to choose the best, change faces and also have several pictures in one to show movement. It also has enabled me to catch some amazing action shots that would have been just a blur (or blank) on my compact. Panorama does what it says in the name and is easy to create some great left to right images of wide areas. I was so impressed with the results that I opted to leave my camera behind when I went on holiday and used this exclusively.
Now, some important things. This uses a Micro-Sim, so if, like me, you had an original Sim you will have to get your account details transferred over. This was done online with a relatively short wait time but could take up to 24 hours. If you had all of your data saved on your sim then you could get it transferred easily by going to a local phone shop. The phone does not have facility for additional memory chips of any kind, which some people may not like. Most phones on offer come with 16GB of memory, which is a reasonable amount but not massive in this day and age. The reason I stuck with Vodafone this time is that they had exclusive access to the 32GB version and I considered it the best way to ensure I have enough memory available. The operating system does take up around 2GB but I can honestly say I have had no problems with storage. Even with all my holiday snaps still on there I have 19GB remaining after some heavy use, so even the basic version would have been ok.
Now, the battery. As with most smart phones, this is never enough. Just in standby mode the phone has lasted for 2-3 days (maybe more but I never went that long between charging.) The battery power does dip once you start heavily using it, however. As a general rule I tend to charge the phone once a day and this has been no problem at all. Only when I use processor heavy apps do I have to charge this more than once a day. I would also advise having a car charger for long journeys if using the excellent Drive App, as any gps using apps tend to speed up the battery drain. That said, it is not enough of a problem for me to be dissatisfied. The connector is micro-USB, which also charges my Kindle, so great! The box comes with one of the new charging cables that connects the phone to the computer but can also be connected to a USB plug, which is also provided.
Now, the operating system. I feel that I can do this more justice as a separate review, so I will cover mainly my experiences with it so far. The Windows Phone 8 interface is as slick as any of the others out there. It does many of the same things but it does have a few cute tweaks of its own. I like the start screen, which uses "live tiles" that can be configured by yourself. Every tile can be a link to an app or show information and can be adjusted as you like. The size, colour and position can all be tweaked to get your screen showing exactly what you want and as many live tiles as you like can be on the screen, just swiping down if, like me, you have lots there. I have found this to be an easy-to-use system and I have loved playing around with it. The remainder of your apps are found by swiping the screen sideways and are shown there in default alphabetical list. All of the applications have worked quickly and the interface works smoothly. The horizontal/vertical alignment can be a little temperamental but it hasn't been a major problem.
As Windows is, so far, only a small player in the phone market its app selection is slightly more limited than the big two but I certainly have not noticed the lack. There are only so many you can use anyway. Despite the reported lack of a YouTube app, I still have an app that connects to YouTube and does everything it does anyway! What I do like about the Windows system is that it syncs so well with all of the things I use on my own computer. It linked to my computer, set up contacts from Facebook and other places for me once I selected those options. I was also able to add all my iTunes bought music onto the phone, which had been a concern.
Overall, I rate the phone as excellent and would give it 5/5 stars. It is a very well put together device that does absolutely everything I want and does it very well. I had long been waiting for a good Nokia smartphone and this has been it. Technically, and also in my opinion way better than the current iPhone. The Windows Phone 8 system is getting better all the time but isn't quite perfected yet, which does let the phone down slightly. The phone can do more than the Windows system allows, so I am looking forwards to the software catching up to the phone. Having said that, I really have found the Win 8 interface to be absolutely fine for me and have noticed no problems at all. I would give it a 4/5 but only because I know it isn't quite the polished deal yet. That gives the device a 4.5/5, so I will round up to stay mathematically consistent.
I have recommended this to many people already and even any of my iPhone friends admit that this is a better phone than theirs even if they would not switch due to their money commitments to Apple products. However, to a user of Microsoft products on the home PC or any first time smart phone buyer, like me, this could be the choice for you.
4,5'' Display TrueColor AMOLED Touch Display (1280 x 768 Pixel) / 1,5 GHz Dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Processor / Metall-Unibody European Electronic Dance Music / 8,7 MP PureView Camera with Xenon Meat and BestShot, ActionsShot & Motionfocus / 16 GB Internal Hard Drive / 1 GB Hard Drive / 7 GB Cloud Hard Drive kostenfrei / W-LAN 802.11 a/b/g/n / LTE / NFC / Bluetooth 3.0 / PureMotion HD+ / ClearBlack / Orientierungssensor / UmgebungsLight Sensor / Corning Gorilla Glass 2