Nokia Lumia: Five things to get excited about

The cat is out of the box finally. All the speculations about Nok-Msft partnership and Nokia’s WP7 device have come to an end. Almost 8 months ago, Stephen Elop decided to ditch Symbian in favor of Windows Phone 7. That deal took a physical form today in the form of Nokia Lumia series. Nokia Lumia 800 and 710 are special because they are the first fruits of marriage between Nokia and Microsoft. You might have seen more than a thousand pics of those sexy Lumias and read a dozen posts about Nokia announcing Lumia series, specs, videos, hands-on before stumbling over this post. So I won’t be pestering you with specs and numbers here. I’ll “tell” you some of the points that you may have missed.

The obvious question: Is Lumia Just another Windows Phone windows phone? Specs wise you may say People have a lot of expectations from Nokia. They want Nokia to be special and unique. Nokia was indeed unique in being the only manufacturer making Symbian and MeeGo handsets. With Windows phone7 Nokia joins the league where Samsung, HTC, Dell and other manufacturers are already present. So is Nokia reduced to just a logo on the Lumia? A lot of people were expecting that Nokia would change the core UI of WP7 and make it something unique. I am sorry to say but they must be feeling disappointed today. But there is reason for this. Nokia Lumia would be getting future updates – Tango, Apollo etc. as soon as Microsoft releases them. It won’t face the problem that Android manufacturers are facing today, that is failing to deliver updates on time because of customizations. Apart from that Nokia have put in little tweaks here and there and also provided some very good apps that I’ll be subsequently covering here.

 

1. Nokia Drive and Nokia Maps

Nokia Lumia is endowed with the most awesome navigation service – the Nokia Maps. Nokia maps and Nokia drive will be exclusive to Nokia WP7 only. Nokia drive comes with voice guided navigation, 2D and 3D maps and the best thing… its free!

 

2. Nokia Music and Mix Radio

Lumia comes with another exclusive app called Nokia Music. It does not replace the default Zune app on WP7 but is an addition. Its main feature is the Mix Radio which provides a host of streaming music mixes that can be downloaded on the device. Apart from this Lumia supports flac (lossless) playback. So if you are a real music buff, gear up and get ready to be amazed!

3. ESPN Sports Hub

Another app which is exclusive to Lumia is the ESPN sports hub. It allows you to know the latest scores, match schedules, stats etc. You can pin the app to your homescreen as a live tile that updates automatically.

4. Camera

Lumia 800 has an 8MP camera whereas the 710 has a 5MP camera. Boring? Now comes the interesting part. Both cameras have LED flashes ( dual LED in 800) for low light photography. The aperture size of F/2.2 means more light reaches the sensor which again means a good low light performance. Carl Zeiss optics make sure the images are detailed and crisp. The 28mm wide angle lens has advantages of its own. It captures roughly 20% more area than a normal 35mm lens. The wide angle lens comes in very handy in capturing photos in parties when you can fit in one or two more friends in the view finder without moving away from them. Other features include Autofocus, Touch-to-Focus and Face detection.

 

5. Storage

The Lumia 800 has 16GB of internal storage. Sadly it has got no micro SD card slot. Lumia 710 has an 8GB internal storage and a micoSD card slot that supports up to 16GB cards. I am not very sure if Nokia has already fixed the SD card issue with WP7 already or not. Anyways if this is not enough for you, cheer up. Because you get an additional 25GB of cloud storage absolutely free. Yes. SkyDrive is nicely integrated into WP7. There is a rumor that SkyDrive will eventually lift the 25GB cap for photos and office documents. What does it mean? Yeah you got that right. UNLIMITED STORAGE! Cloud storage also makes it easy to sync docs and pics between multiple devices including your PC. You can back-up your phone data to SkyDrive so that it remains secure even when your device is lost or stolen.