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Friday, May 09, 2014

Microsoft Nokia Lumia 1520 Review. It's not an iPhone, but it's not an iPhone!

Microsoft Nokia was nice enough to invite me to a three day experience in the Boston area to get to know the Lumia 1520, phone as part of Team Lumia. In return for participating, they asked that I share any content created over the three days with the hashtag #TeamLumia.




LUMIA 1520 SCREEN

I've had my 1520 for a while, so I didn't need much guidance, but I enjoyed learning about new to me features when appropriate. Like a suggestion to try a panorama while at Fenway Park. A perfect time and place to try that feature out.


FENWAY PARK PANORAMA

You tap the screen to start the panorama,a nd hold still, then a little circle shows you where to move the camera too to take the next shot. Very slick.

I also used the feature after the event at the Museum of Fine Arts for a concert.



Also, although I did not shoot much video, learning about the (4) microphone came in handy after the event, when I had the opportunity to shoot a video of a live band. Impressive.



So after using it for a few days, here are the Pros and Cons:



PROS

SIZE
I really like the size of the Lumnia 1520. So easy to read and bright.

LIVE TILES
Live tiles is a very cool feature, allowing you to see in real time, updates to the underlying apps, like stock quotes.


LIVE TILES ON HOME SCREEN

PINNING TO THE HOME PAGE
You can pin from inside of an app, so for example, in twitter, I can PIN one of my twitter lists to the home page, and go directly to that section of twitter, instead of having to click around to get there.

BATTERY LIFE
The battery life is MUCH better than the iPhone.

HERE DRIVE APP
The driving directions app is very nice. You've got lots of voices to choose from including a Surfer Dude that was fun, for a while.



CAMERA
The camera is very good. I used the Nokia Camera app in automatic mode and got some great shots. Nokia Camera also has manual mode which lets you control exposure to fix, for example, a bright backlight.

COLOR POP
Built in to Nokia Camera is the Color Pop feature. It turns your color photo black and white, then you touch whatever parts of the image where you want the color to be visible. This is fun.


Perrier

AUTO


MANUAL


INSTAGRAM SELFIES
Instagram selfies are not mirrored when saved. I problem that Instagram refuses to fix on iOS.



CONS

The Cursor
When you put your finger down to insert the cursor, it flies in ABOVE the text. That's not right.

MENUS
In some apps, like Nokia Camera, to get to a feature you have to drill down menu options. One example is switching to a selfie camera. Takes too many steps. It's easily fixed though.

NOKIA CAMERA
After you take a photo, you can't get to edit mode. You have to go to your camera roll to open up another app to edit with, like Nokia Creative Studio.



NOKIA CREATIVE STUDIO
In the BLUR tool, the focus object and radial+tilt shift difference between the object infocus and the background is too severe. There needs to be an adjustable gradient. Instagram had this same problem at first.


Image: focus object and radial+tilt shift

STOP BEFORE:

Image: Stop Sign shot in manual mode

STOP AFTER:

Image: Stop Sign edited with radial+tilt shift. Needs finer gradient.

THE CASE
The case I was using, puts the selfie camera at the bottom left, while the camera control is at the top right. That's not ergonomic.

iPHOTO
In order to import into iPhoto, I have to use the Windows App. iPhoto knows that I connect a phone, but it never recognizes it.

NO YOUTUBE CAPTURE
My favorite shoot, edit, and upload program right now is YouTube Capture. Wish it was here.



I had to answer a few questions after the experience. Here are a couple:

Are you more likely to recommend Nokia Lumia to your friends and family as a result of your exposure to the product?

Yes. I would say that the 1520 is a smartphone that I could recommend. I'm still going to review it vs the iPhone some more, and though it is lacking in some apps, since the event, I've forwarded my iPhone to the 1520 and have been using it exclusively. For someone who is not tied to the APPLE environment, it could be a good choice. Especially for those with poor eyesight. My iPhone seems SO small now.

Based upon your experience with your Nokia Lumia at this event, how likely are you to switch to a Lumia phone?

I've used the iPhone for so long, I've invested in a wealth of apps that I enjoy using. Especially photo apps. the Lumia has some nice alternatives, better in some instances too, but I need to take a closer look at what photo apps I really love.

Also, NOKIA doesn't have a Dunkin Donut Perks Mobile App on Windows phone. That could be a deal breaker! ;-)

When you see 'Available on the APP Store', for iPhone and 'Get it on Google Play', for Android, it makes you wonder how many more apps are not available for Windows Phone.



Nokia Disclosure:

Photos taken with Nokia Lumia 1520. CC BY-NC-SA Thanks @NokiaUS for the review unit.

Affiliate Link.

tech, nokia, lumia1520, microsoft, windows phone, review, teamlumia

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