Nokia Lumia 920 And 820 wp8 launched

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  1. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    Nokia Lumia 920 hands-on: the dual-core, HD Windows Phone 8 flagship to take on the beasts

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    It's official. Nokia's just taken the wraps off its worst-kept Windows Phone 8 secret: the Lumia 920. The device, announced at the manufacturer's event in New York City today, is a spiritual successor to the 900 that first broke onto American shores and can largely be seen as a response to critics of that former device. With a dual-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 CPU (the same one that drives the current US supremos, the HTC One X and Galaxy S III), a "better than HD" 1,280 x 768 LCD display, PureView imaging (albeit with only eight megapixels), NFC capabilities, 2,000mAh battery with wireless charging and a next-gen Redmond-baked OS, this handset's a big-break proposition for the flailing Finnish company; an attempt to up the ante and compete on even ground. From the outside, it may appear as though not much has changed in this generational hardware leap, but rest assured that what Espoo's packed inside should take the mobile outfit to the next level. So, follow on after the break as we dive into our first impressions of this curiously hued smartphone splash.
    If you've fondled a Lumia 900 before, you'll know what to expect here. The 920 retains much the same form factor as its predecessor, with an all-polycarbonate chassis (in this case, a sunny, near-neon yellow) replete with rounded side edges and a familiar button placement. The finish of the body has changed slightly, with the 2.5D glass now blending gently into its polycarbonate border -- a nod to the "sinuous tapering" of the original, awesomely built Lumia 800. But, on the downside, what once was matte and grippy is now a polished, glossy affair. It's a design decision that we wish Nokia hadn't made, since it lends a cheapness to the handset that belies its hearty internals. Obviously, that last bit is a matter of personal taste and it's entirely possible the company went with this less premium exterior to keep costs down, but we miss that matte refinement. That said, the Lumia 920 is surprisingly light to hold, though we fear owners with slippery fingers might have a hard time keeping a tight grip.
    In the cramped constraints we operate under during these official launch events, it's not always possible to test out a phone's imaging capabilities. We weren't able to put the dumbed-down 8-megapixel PureView module to the test, nor any of the various lenses that Nokia's pre-loaded. A company rep assured us that much of that software was still a work-in-progress, so we had to make do with a demo of Cinemagraph. And we're pleased to report the simple-to-use interface, which allows for an isolated area of motion, worked like a charm and even brought a smile to our face. When it ships, expect the 920 to pack at least three of these new lenses: SmartShot, Cinemagraph and Panorama.

    What should be apparent from that 920's 8-megapixel PureView camera, and the device's smooth back, is that this Lumia won't deliver the same awe-inspiring optic performance of the 808. Perhaps Nokia's saving that ace for another smartphone reveal, but in the meantime, users will have to suffice with the optics the company's cooked up; a sensor that can capture "between five and 10 times" the light of any other smartphone. Then there's also "floating lens" image stabilization, which Nokia insists can even beat the optical stabilization of DSLR cameras. Even at our most open-minded, we can hardly absorb marketing claims like that until we've had a chance to test the Lumia 920's photo-taking performance for ourselves -- which hopefully won't be far off.

    So, you know how it looks, how it feels and even what's inside, but let's not forget the most important piece of this smartphone pie: how it works. By now, you should be well aware that this is a Windows Phone 8 device. It's infused with the mobile OS Microsoft crafted from the bottom up and one that shares a kernel with its desktop sibling. Fans of WP will feel right at home when they power on the handset, as that start screen -- now expanded to fill up the entire 4.5-inch real estate --pops with an array of live tiles and a balanced vibrancy of color, even without the contrasty AMOLED technology of the Lumia 800. There's definitely a floating effect at play here, as the tiles seem to hover up right to the screen's surface. As for the display itself, it's subject to a bit of glare, but take heed we were also under the bright lights of this event space. Viewing angles held up remarkably and the glass itself felt soft to the touch, allowing our finger to glide over the many live tiles unperturbed.

    Despite the availability of apps crowding the homescreen, Nokia's decided to keep a tight lock over the actual software performance of Windows Phone 8. Because of the decision, our interactions with the OS and even app list were extremely limited. From what we did experience, we can tell you that the dual-core S4 powering the 920 makes for smooth scrolling and navigation. There are, however, minute delays when switching between screens and even launching apps. Chalk that up to Windows Phone's signature animations, obviously included to add that element of fluidity, but we would've preferred to see a bit brisker performance.

    If all the above has you hankering for the Lumia 920's release, we'd advise you to take a few deep breaths and dial back your expectations. As Stephen Elop repeatedly stressed at the end of today's event, the company's not ready to share pricing or release details. You'll have to sit tight for Q4 to hear more on that. Still, this is an excellent first taste of Nokia's US sophomore effort. Fingers crossed these cheery-colored handsets actual deliver beyond that superficial sheen.

    Dana Wollman contributed to this report.

    Nokia Lumia 920 hands-on: the dual-core, HD Windows Phone 8 flagship to take on the beasts -- Engadget
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2012
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    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    Nokia Lumia 820 hands-on

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    Nokia's Lumia 820 is here, after countless leaks, and the budget-friendly handset is exactly what we expected. We'll admit we're sad to see the rather singular design of its spiritual forebear, the Lumia 800, fall by the wayside, but we can't complain about the build quality here. The usual attention to detail and materials we've come to appreciate from the Finnish phone maker is on full display. The flat glass panel on the front may lack the mystique of the curved display on the 920 and 800, but it's hardly something that should factor into your decision to buy this handset or another. The ceramic volume rocker and lock button on the right side have a pleasant and satisfying click, though we're sad to report that the camera button still leaves us wanting. Sure, any dedicated camera key is better than none, but its squishy response to our press was hardly encouraging. At least Nokia had the good grace to upgrade to a dual-stage solution. We were also a bit put off by the shine of the body. The Lumia series stole our hearts with its matte finish when it first debuted; now the glossy exterior is more likely to throw some glare and attract fingerprints. The new plastic also feels quite a bit lighter in the hand, which makes the 820 feel more like the midrange device it is and less like the premium handset it's succeeding.

    What's under the hood certainly makes up for some of those shortcomings. The 1.5 GHz dual-core processor with 1GB RAM simply chewed through the lightweight Windows Phone 8, leaving us to wonder if Apple and Google can truly keep up. All of the UI animations were smooth and fluid, and apps launched with nary a hiccup. And, can we just say that Windows Phone 8 is an absolute pleasure to use. At the risk of angering quite a few people -- there's simply no mid-range Android phone or iOS device that's as quick and satisfying to use as the Lumia 820, and much of that is thanks to the highly optimized Microsoft OS. It's a pleasure to see that new features like the customizable home screen and background multitasking haven't weighed down Redmond's phone platform. And things will likely only get better as the final wrinkles are ironed out and bugs are squashed. But, as we all know, speed and smooth animations alone don't make a device -- Microsoft will have to convince developers to support its still fledgling platform.
    Our one major gripe about the 820 is its screen. Sure, it's not the worst panel on the planet, but we've come to expect better from Nokia. The WVGA resolution puts it a full generation behind its competitors and there's no fancy tech at work here -- like Super AMOLED or IPS -- to help smooth its rough edges. Sure, the straight lines and flat colors of Windows Phone make it easier to hide the displays shortcomings. But, when placed next to its big brother, the Lumia 920, they become immediately apparent. Thankfully contrast and brightness are slightly above par for a budget handset.

    We're also a little sad to see that Nokia's PureView branding hasn't been carried over to the 820. While we're sure the 8-megapixel Carl Zeiss-equipped shooter won't be a huge disappointment, it won't pack the wow factor of the 920 either. Alas, Nokia wasn't willing to show off the 820's camera because the software isn't quite hands-on ready.

    Ultimately, the 820 feels and looks exactly like what it is -- a midrange handset. There's no shame in that and the software flies already. Still, it's hard to dismiss the somewhat lackluster specs and the unfortunate new design direction. Then again, maybe you'll be able to pick up this little bugger for free on contract, and that would make it one of the best deals on the market.

    Daniel Cooper and Ben Gilbert contributed to this post.

    Nokia Lumia 820 hands-on (update: now with video) -- Engadget
     
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    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    [​IMG]

    There has been some images taken with Lumia 920 and iPhone 4S and it's all pretty mindblowing really.
     
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