Nokia Lumia 920 - Fantastic Screen, Decent Camera

12/30/2012 8:57:26 AM

Leading the charge for Nokia’s attempted comeback is the Lumia 920 Windows Phone 8 handset. The design is so similar to its Lumia 900 predecessor that you’d be forgiven for confusing the two. The 900 was once the biggest Windows Phone we’d seen; now it’s been trumped by the even bigger 920.

The screen sits in Galaxy S III- and HTC One X territory at 4.5in, while the handset itself is 12mm thick and weighs a brick-like 185g.

The white chassis of our sample perfectly framed the screen, with black buttons and a silver camera completing the look. The 920 is also available in black, red and yellow; each has a slippery gloss finish.

Nokia Lumia 920

Nokia Lumia 920

The handset feels well-made - strong, albeit plastic to the touch, with a Gorilla Glass touchscreen lying flush to the polycarbonate shell. A one-piece construction renders the battery inaccessible.

Inside is a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor and 1GB of memory. This handset has a conspicuously lower specification than recent quad-core Androids, but it’s sufficient to run Microsoft’s leaner mobile platform.


Windows Phone 8 has little support from app developers, and the benchmarking software we use for Android and iOS devices isn’t available on this platform. We were able to run our usual SunSpider JavaScript test, which vindicated Microsoft’s claim that Internet Explorer 10.0 is fast. We recorded an average of 922ms, which is almost as quick as the iPhone 5’s 903ms.

Windows Phone 8 feels as slick as version 7.5. Navigation is effortless, although menus and lists can judder when scrolling slowly. A few apps - Nokia Maps and Cinemagraph took longer to load.

Windows Phone 8 feels as slick as version 7.5.

Windows Phone 8 feels as slick as version 7.5.

Windows Phone 8 now supports microSD, yet Nokia hasn’t followed suit. Fortunately, 32GB of storage Is built-in, and Microsoft offers 7GB of cloud storage via SkyDrive (more is available to rent). A useful feature is automatic upload of content, rather like Apple’s iCloud.

It may be smaller than the biggest Android competition, but we were impressed with the Lumia’s display. Windows Phone 8 supports a maximum resolution of 768x1280 pixels; exploited here by Nokia, this returns an impressive pixel density of 332ppi - higher than the iPhone’s 326ppi.

The Lumia’s excellent contrast and eye-popping colours are complemented by a touchscreen that’s very responsive - often even when wearing regular gloves.

A headphone jack and micro-USB port are the phone’s only connectors, while the Lumia 920 also supports 802.11n Wi-Fi and last season’s Bluetooth 3.0. NFC will be joined by Qi wireless charging in a scheduled update, and the Nokia also supports 4G LTE in the UK.


Windows Phone 8 features the same brightly coloured tile-based interface as Windows 8, but lacks its Charms bar and app-switching gestures. Live tiles can be one of three sizes, depending on how much information you wish to display. You can also rearrange the tiles on the Start Screen.

A swipe from the Start Screen reveals a vertical list of installed apps. Beautiful animations escort you around the OS, but it’s not an intuitive system to navigate. It can be easy to get lost, and the Back button and recent apps menu don’t always take you where you expect.

SmartGlass is a useful app for those who also own an Xbox. You can control the console from the handset and interact with some games.

 Nokia Lumia 920 Xbox SmartGlass

 Nokia Lumia 920 Xbox SmartGlass

Within the People Hub Is a feature called Rooms. In this app you can share private content such as messages, calendars and photos with whomever you choose, including non-Windows users via a somewhat complicated process.

The Kid’s Corner feature may prove a boon for parents, enabling you to engage a walled-off mode in which children can interact with only the apps you allow.

Nokia adds some exclusive apps and features. Nokia Music is a free streaming service that offers 20-million-plus tracks and offers offline caching. Nokia City Lens adds an augmented reality view to the camera, while Nokia Drive provides turn by turn navigation.

The apps on offer in the Windows Store are sub-par to the App Store and Google Play Store. Big-name apps currently missing include Spotify, BBC iPlayer, Instagram and games Bad Piggies and Temple Run. Adobe Flash isn’t supported either, so you can’t view Flash-based video in Internet Explorer 10.0.

We found still photos from the 8.7Mp rear camera and its Carl Zeiss lens to be very good. Colour balance, saturation and exposure are all of a good standard, but some of our test shots weren’t as sharp as we’d hoped. We also noticed how noise reduction robbed detail.

Optical image stabilisation is the standout feature, making full-HD video extremely smooth. Whereas most phones struggle in low light, we managed to get usable, but not remarkable, results.

The Lumia 920’s 7.4Wh battery had 25 percent charge remaining at the end of a full day’s use.


·         Price: $666 inc VAT

·         Contact:


·         1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core

·         Windows Phone 8

·         1GB RAM

·         32GB flash storage

·         Adreno 225 graphics

·         4.5in (768x1280) 332ppi IPS display

·         802.11a/b/g/n

·         Bluetooth 3.0

·         GSM 850/900/1,800/1,900MHz

·         WCDMA 850/900/1,900/2,100MHz

·         LTE 800/900/ 1,800/2,100/2,600MHz

·         Micro-SIM slot

·         A-GPS/ Glonass

·         8.7Mp rear camera with LED flash

·         1.2Mp front camera

·         1920x1080 video capture with optical stabilization

·         3.5mm headset jack

·         Micro-USB

·         NFC

·         Qi wireless charging

·         7.4Wh, non-removable lithium battery

·         71x130x12mm

·         185g


·         We love the Nokia Lumia 920’s fantastic screen, decent camera and jam-packed feature set. The down sides are a chunky design, spartan app store and an uncertain future for the platform.

·         Build: 4/5

·         Features: 4.5/5

·         Performance: 3.5/5

·         Value: 3/5

·         Overall: 3.5/5


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