Here at The iOS Post we review all sorts of stuff related to iOS devices, accessories, Macs, etc. But we also like to review things like Android devices and apps to stay updated with what's out there.
In this case, thanks to Microsoft, Nokia, Claro Puerto Rico and Tecnético, with whom I collaborate, I got to review the latest Windows Phone 7 device, the Nokia Lumia 800.
Here are some of my impressions regarding the device and the OS as a first timer.
The Lumia 800 has a very appealing design, not your particular cheap built that most phones are offering right now. It has a 3.7” ClearBlack AMOLED display, made of Corning’s Gorilla Glass with an approximate resolution of 252 pixels per inch.
From left to right: Camera button, power/lock button, volume buttons
The screen looks good, the colors are displayed very well and it is responsive to touch like it is intended.
The Lumia 800 has few buttons on the exterior (volume, lock/power, camera button), a speaker on the bottom, headphone jack at the top and the corresponding slot for the sim card and to plug the micro USB cable.
Speaker of the Nokia Lumia 800
The camera button is particularly useful. Just press and hold it takes you to the camera app and snap a picture very quickly. No second taps, not much waiting.
The device feels very good in your hands, not heavy and carrying it around on the pocket feels good.
Top part of the Lumia 800 (marked 1 is where you plug in the micro USB cable, marked 2 is the Sim card slot)
Trying out this device was something I was looking forward, not because of the device itself, but mainly because it runs Windows Phone 7, something that would be a first for me. The OS runs smoothly on the device and this tells me something very important.
The Lumia 800 carries a Snapdragon 1.4 GHz processor, which is not dual-core, and runs much better than dual-core Android phones out there. This is because the OS is optimized enough to make this possible.
The Nokia Lumia 800 surprised me. I do think the OS has what it takes, but in some points, like push notifications, although they exist, developers haven’t adopted them widely. And this is key for people like me that need to be kept updated.
I’m not a fan of the metro UI, but I think is what differentiates this OS from others on how it displays objects on the screen.
Battery wasn't an issue. I could go from morning (9am) until 5pm without charging the device. The carrier (Claro Puerto Rico) performed better than on previous test devices than ran on the same network. Can't say whether is the device or the network getting better.
The camera is one of the strongest features on this phone. At 8 megapixels, the Carl Zeiss lens took some great shots, especially in low light situations. On my tests it beat my iPhone 4 shots with ease. The camera app allows you to select scenes, tweak white balance, exposure, ISO, effects and many more options. It also records video at 720p 30fps.
A feature I found useful and that it worked well is the integration philosophy. The Nokia Maps are useful and the app is very well design. The same goes to the Bing, which is integrated into the maps, but can also be accessed through the dedicated “search” button on the bottom of the screen. You can search the web, search location, tag music, and use the camera for barcodes, QR codes, books, cds, DVDs and even search by voice.
Integration is key on Windows Phone as not only Bing is integrated, but you can also tap in Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Windows Live account and update all your social networks in an instant; no need for a separate app.
The Nokia Lumia 800 is very well a device that most people could use. The upcoming versions of Windows Phone will up the ante against the likes of Android.
The device has a solid performance, OS runs smoothly, it has a great camera and has 16GB of internal storage, which you can combine with Microsoft’s SkyDrive cloud storage.
Some of the things I would definitely love even more on this device is a bigger screen, as I'm getting tired of the tiny screen of the iPhone and is the only feature I like from most Android phones. EEven with a small screen, I could type on the keyboard pretty fast; it is snapy and just the right size for me.
Also, there is no front-facing camera and no way to share Internet connection (tethering), although I heard that's coming on an update.
The Lumia 800 at its price point it is a good choice for those looking for an easy to use device with great performance, battery life and camera. If you are worried about apps do your search, I could find a number of apps I use on my iPhone, not all of them, but there are apps out there. Most developers are starting to see the platform as a decent option to the Android and iOS world. I must say that most apps like Foursquare and Spotify look amazing on Windows Phone.
Unless you don't need a front facing camera or tethering, then this is a very good option that I recommend. Of course, if you by any means don't want an iPhone.