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Thursday, April 23, 2015
Nokia Lumia 820 Review
The Nokia Lumia 820 isn't meant as the Finnish firm's flagship handset - that accolade belongs to the Nokia Lumia 920 - but this colourful Windows Phone 8smartphone is impressive nonetheless.
The Nokia Lumia 820 carries plenty of unique features and costs less than the Lumia 920, making it a tempting offer for anyone considering making the move to Microsoft's OS.
It's now part of a quintet, with the Nokia Lumia 520, 620 and 720 also joining the Windows Phone 8 party at Casa del Nokia.
It goes without saying Nokia is pinning a lot of hope on this phone. Apple's iPhone 5 and Samsung's Galaxy S3 are kicking up dust both in terms of sales and as standard bearers for their respective operating systems - plus both have big updates coming soon.
In the UK, you can now pick the Lumia 820 up free from £17 per month on Tesco, albeit with only 300 minutes and 500MBof data, on a 24 month contract. Alternatively the SIM-free version of the phone has now dropped to a very palatable £280, making this a much more attractive phone indeed.
Australians can enjoy the phone for AUD$649 outright, or for $0 up front on a $50 plan over 24 months. Optus customers - who get the benefit of 4G - can grab the handset for $0 up front on a $35 plan.
There's a reasonable amount of power on offer at that price thanks to the dual core 1.5Ghz Snapdragon processor and Adreno 225 GPU. Windows OS is a typically smooth operating system the Lumia 820 runs off 1GB of RAM which keeps things nice and slick.
Outwardly though, this is a different-looking phone from the Lumia 920. The unibody is gone, replaced with a removable plastic back that lets you change the colour of the handset. Our review model came with a bright yellow rear cover, although red, black, magenta, blue, white and grey are also available.
Hopefully over time third-party designs will become available allowing you to customise your handset just like the Nokia's of old.
Unfortunately, the back cover is also where we run into our first problem with the Lumia 820. Basically you'll need fingernails like Wolverine to claw the cover back from the body of the phone. It took the TechRadar team several amusing minutes trying to remove the casing in order to insert our SIM to begin using the phone.
Once you're happy with the casing, and you've spent the required ten minutes struggling to get your Micro SIM installed, you'll be able to sit back and notice that at 160g, the Lumia 820 isn't as heavy as its bigger brother.
It's also got slightly smaller dimensions - but at 124 x 69 x 10mm with a 4.3-inch AMOLED screen we wouldn't go so far as to call it tiny.
Compare it to the rest of the new Lumia range, and you can see that the Lumia 820 might struggle to stand out.
It's a chunkier beast than the rest in the range, and only really deserves its place as 'best of the non-920 bunch) by way of the dual-core Krait Qualcomm processor and OLED ClearBlack display compared to the standard dual core and LCD screen of the 720.
The curved sides and rounded corners of the handset make the 820 comfortable to hold and certainly give it a friendly appearance. We could easily wrap our hand around the Lumia 820 and access the physical buttons, which are all located along the right hand side of the phone.
You get a volume rocker at the top, followed by the power on/off button in the centre and then a physical camera shutter button - something we're always happy to see on a smartphone. All the buttons can be easily flicked with either the thumb of your right hand or the fingers of your left, depending on which you use to hold the phone.
One point though, the plastic backing on the Lumia 820 is completely smooth which looks nice but doesn't offer any great amount of grip.