Nokia has officially unveiled its new flagship smartphone, the Lumia 920 and a mid-range phone, the Lumia 820. We have the full story of all the announcements: from the PureView camera to wireless charging, and more. Will they be enough for Nokia to finally make a dent in the smartphone market?
Oct 4, 2012Read Article >
The Nokia Lumia 920 will be available on AT&T exclusively according to the carrier, with Red, Black and White colors, and through online orders in Yellow and Cyan. The confirmation of a Cyan color follows hints from Nokia that it would offer the iconic color. Nokia's Lumia 820 will be available in black only, but AT&T will stock additional colored shells. There's no word on pricing or exact availability for both models, but AT&T says they'll be available in November.
Sep 11, 2012
The Nokia Lumia 920, it has just been announced, will arrive in the UK with LTE on board and will be exclusive to local operator EE. The company behind the Orange and T-Mobile brands in the UK has today detailed its plans for rolling out the UK's first 4G LTE network, which will be graced by Nokia's Windows Phone 8 flagship in the near future. An EE spokesperson tells us that the company will have "a period of exclusivity at launch" for the Lumia 920.Read Article >
Nokia's Lumia 820 is also on board for the LTE launch in the UK on EE, alongside the Samsung Galaxy S III, HTC One XL, Huawei Ascend P1 LTE, and two Huawei mobile 4G products. Announced at a special event in New York last week, Nokia's Lumia 920 does not have a formal launch date or pricing. We understand that AT&T is aiming to launch the device on November 2nd, and that it should be rolling out across European carriers in November. EE has not yet provided launch dates or pricing for the Lumia 920 or Lumia 820.
Sep 7, 2012Read Article >
This week, Nokia grandly unveiled its latest Windows Phone 8 flagship, the Lumia 920. It was an effort to reintroduce Nokia once again to the smartphone buying public and make the case that its technological prowess was second to none. The most important part of that argument is undoubtedly the Lumia 920's "PureView" camera. That case was utterly undermined by Nokia itself six hours after the unveiling, when we discovered that the promotional video that appeared to feature the new camera technology was faked. Nokia officially apologized for the deception and then was later forced to apologize again when still photos pulled from the same video were also revealed to be fakes.
The apologies were needed, but the damage was done. The headline feature for Nokia's headline phone has been flagged by controversy, putting a cloud over the launch and casting doubt on the very thing that was supposed to have been Nokia's biggest strength.
Sep 7, 2012Read Article >
One of the biggest disappointments of Nokia's Lumia 920 and 820 announcement earlier this week was the lack of information around both pricing and availability. While we still don't know how much the Lumia 920 will cost, we're starting to get some idea of when it'll be in consumers' hands — Reuters is reporting that two European carriers have claimed they will begin selling Nokia's new flagship device in the second half of November. One of the sources also claimed that "larger countries" would receive the phone earlier in the month. It sounds like the company has planned a month-long rollout across Europe, though we won't know for sure until Nokia or its European carrier partners makes it official. There's still no word on the launch timeframe for the Lumia 820, nor have we heard any info on when both handsets would make their way to the US — but we're hoping to hear all the info sooner than later.
Sep 6, 2012
Nokia's already apologized for faking a video demonstration of the PureView OIS (optical image stabilization) technology in its new Lumia 920 smartphone, but that apology may not go far enough. In the second half of that same video, Nokia showed off sample still images allegedly taken using PureView, and it appears that those were faked as well. See the picture above? Photographer Johannes Grönvall took that shot in downtown Helsinki, Finland, and it appears to depict the very same model in the same clothing, only this time there's professional lighting, a tripod and what appears to be a large camera lens in the shot.Read Article >
That wouldn't be damning by itself: because Nokia's video demonstration includes some footage of a young man taking photos of that model with his Lumia phone, there obviously had to be someone filming that young man as well. Sure, the model seems to be facing that camera lens, but perhaps that was a fluke, and perhaps later they pulled out a real Lumia 920 to take the photographs we saw. However, Youssef Sarhan, who claims to be a former resident of Helsinki, alleges that the powerful way the model is lit in these photographs would have been impossible with the pre-existing lights in that town. What's more, the way the street lights diffract (see those pointy stars?) requires something to be in the way — something like the blades of a DSLR lens at a tiny aperture, not a Lumia 920 at f/2.0. Here's where this picture was shot, in case you're interested in checking out the city's light fixtures for yourself:
Sep 5, 2012
Nokia introduced its latest "PureView" branding on its Lumia 920 earlier today, and alongside the announcement the company released some promotional materials to demonstrate the functionality. We spotted a slight issue with the ads though: Nokia faked them. The opening segment of one particular ad showed a young man and woman riding bikes, designed to show off the capabilities of Nokia's optical image stabilization (OIS). However, we noticed a reflection that revealed the footage wasn't shot on a Lumia 920, but a regular camera inside a white van.Read Article >
Nokia admitted the slip up to us earlier, but the company has now published a full public apology. In a blog post entitled "an apology is due," Nokia spokesperson Heidi Lemmetyinen admits that the company "produced a video that simulates what we will be able to deliver with OIS." Responding to criticism that the company should have identified its representation of OIS, Lemmetyinen reveals that the video "was not shot with a Lumia 920," confirming our original suspicions. "We apologize for the confusion we created."
Sep 5, 2012
Ever heard of a paper launch? Well, today you witnessed one in full flight. Nokia and Microsoft, two former mobile giants seeking to rekindle smartphone buyers' passions, came out with the Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 Windows Phone 8 devices. They are beautiful to look at, sumptuous to touch ... and entirely unavailable to buy. Their entire release schedule, such as it is, is obfuscated into the mists of "the fourth quarter of this year." In other words, you'll be able to buy a Lumia Windows Phone 8 handset before the end of 2012, but exactly when, for how much, and with which carrier, nobody outside Espoo yet knows.Read Article >
Nokia has been talking about the future for so long that today should have been about the present. Today needed to be about delivery instead of more promissory notes. Instead Nokia did what it usually does: excite fans with an array of sweet new features, mostly on the hardware side, but fail them by offering no firm release details. One of CEO Stephen Elop's tentpole goals when he took charge of the company was to cut the time between product announcement and retail release. The dictum I've heard repeated at today's event is instead that Nokia will have more to say over the coming weeks.
The new PureView camera might be amazing, but a bizarre easter egg has revealed that the company's advertisements don't give an honest view of its technology. Amid Nokia's flurry of press today — if you haven't heard, it released a new flagship phone along with some other gear — one video advertisement in particular caught our eye. In the ad, Nokia shows off the PureView's image stabilization technology. The opening segment (which, importantly, isn't qualified by a "screen images simulated" notice), shows a young man and woman cheerily riding bikes along a scenic river. As he films her breezily laughing, the ad shows side-by-side video — obviously intended to represent the phone's video capabilities. On the left, Nokia shows the non-stabilized version, which, predictably, looks terrible, and on the right the ad shows the perfectly smooth capture, purportedly enabled by Nokia's optical image stabilization technology. The only problem is that the video is faked.Read Article >
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Today was a big day for both Motorola and Nokia. Motorola introduced the RAZR HD, HD Maxx, and RAZR M, while Nokia announced two Windows Phone 8 devices, the Lumia 920 and Lumia 820. If you missed our live coverage of the announcements, you can get a taste of all the excitement, bad promotional videos, and questionable bands by watching the events in their entirety. Motorola's show is now up on YouTube, while Nokia's event is available for viewing on its Webcast page. Enjoy!
Sep 5, 2012
Apple v. Samsung aside, it's extraordinarily difficult to visually differentiate a new full-screen smartphone from the dozens of others on the market in a meaningful way that people will notice. When a customer walks into a carrier's store, they effectively see row of anonymous black slabs and, more than likely, an iPhone kiosk — it's not practical to expect them to be able to distinguish a Samsung from an LG from an HTC when they're standing more than a couple feet away (many of us could, but we don't represent the broad base that OEMs need to target to achieve commercial success). That's a big problem for brand recognition.Read Article >
That's not to say that cyan has left Nokia's stable entirely. The Lumia 820 — also announced today — can be equipped with an interchangeable cyan backplate, and the JBL Power Up speaker comes in cyan, too (which was awkwardly demonstrated on stage with a very clashing yellow 920). But leaving the flagship model out of the ecosystem is, to me, a pretty powerful statement. A statement of what, though, I'm not exactly sure: is Espoo trying to distance itself from a color that's so strongly associated with an especially tough period in the company's history? Will a cyan 920 be announced later as a carrier exclusive? Was the notion of adding red and yellow to the palette too enticing, and it didn't want to gum up the production line (bear in mind that the 920 is a unibody phone that doesn't have interchangeable plates like the 820) with yet another color? Was Stephen Elop just getting tired of looking at bright blue?
Sep 5, 2012
As Nokia launches its Lumia 920, it's also hoping to make its platform more attractive by working with major developers. The company announced deals with Bloomberg, Rovio, and others, offering new Windows Phone 8 versions of apps on other platforms or exclusive content for the Lumia line. Most prominently, Rovio and Nokia will release "Angry Birds Roost," a companion app to the Angry Birds series with live tiles, walkthroughs, and other supplemental material. It's exclusive to the Lumia line for the next three months, though we don't imagine it will be one of the phone's bigger selling points.Read Article >
Several other apps take advantage of the Lumia's NFC or offer exclusivity for a few months. A Windows Phone app for Bloomberg will be exclusive to Lumia phones for the first three months, while fashion app StyleSaint will remain Lumia-only for six months. File sharing app YouSendIt will add NFC that's only on Lumia for three months, similar to the Michelin restaurant guide, which announced a similar deal with Nokia in March. Earlier today, the company also announced that it would partner with FourSquare to build a Batman-themed app, and that games like Where's My Water? were coming to Windows Phone as well. This isn't a new strategy, but it's one that could help convince potential buyers that even if Windows Phone doesn't match up with Android and iOS in sheer app quantity, they won't be hurting for options.
As you might have heard this morning, Nokia's new Windows Phone 8 devices have a rather intriguing new feature built right into their screens: you can use the Lumia 820 and Lumia 920 with gloves on, or even with your fingernails. The "Super Sensitive Touch" technology isn't wholly a Nokia design, though — it's a feature that Synaptics has added to its ClearPad Series 3 touchscreen digitizer, which means it's quite likely to appear on other devices in the future. Presently, capacitive image touchscreens "see" your fingers by bouncing a signal off them, then measuring disturbances in the waveform. Here, the company basically increases the sensitivity of its sensors on the fly to detect gestures even if they're merely in the same vicinity. Synaptics actually showed off the feature back at the Mobile World Congress show in February of last year, detecting touches through a stack of business cards, but we're pretty sure the new Lumia smartphones are the first to actually use the idea. As much as we like the notion, though, we've got a few reservations. Our handsets are rather sensitive already, if last night's pocket dials were any indication.Read Article >
Speaking of Synaptics, the company is also working on a number of other interesting things as of late, like thinner, touch-detecting laptop keyboards, force-sensitive mousepads, and touchscreen panels for laptops with up to 17-inch screens.
Sep 5, 2012
I had an opportunity to sit down with Nokia's CEO, Stephen Elop, to discuss the company's announcements of its latest smartphones and accessories. The polished and professional Elop was visibly excited about the newest crop of hardware and software headed out of the Finnish phone-maker's doors, and he was eager to share that excitement. Most of our conversation stayed on-message with what was discussed at the event today — the Lumia 920 and 820, City Lens, and those colorful docks — but Elop also fielded questions on exactly what Nokia's PureView camera branding means, as well as just what the company is saying to buyers of the recently-released Lumia 900.Read Article >
Take a look at the full video below, and be sure to check out all of our event coverage in our StoryStream right here.
Sep 5, 2012
Nokia's just announced its latest run of Windows Phone handsets, including the new Lumia 820. We've had a chance to spend some time with the device, and while it's not quite as impressive as the new Lumia 920, it's a nice upgrade from the last-generation 800.Read Article >
The Lumia 820 feels much more like a normal smartphone than the 920, with rounded edges that don't feel quite as severe in your hand. The 4.3-inch display is every bit as attractive as its larger cousin's, but since the phone is a bit smaller it's more usable in one hand. The 800 x 480 screen is also a big letdown after the gorgeous display on the 920 — that seems to be the biggest tradeoff with the lower-end device. The build otherwise looks very much like the 920, from the ceramic buttons to the unibody-like chassis. It feels a bit more plasticky, but the tradeoff is that the 820 has swappable backs and a bunch of additional color options (the backs can also add NFC capabilities).
Sep 5, 2012
Vlad Savov, David Pierce and 1 more
Nokia's new top-of-the-line phone has been unveiled. The company announced the Windows Phone 8-powered Lumia 920 this morning at an event in New York City, and we've had a chance to play with the new device ahead of its release. In large part, the 920 feels like everything the Lumia 900 could have been without the shackles of the Windows Phone 7 requirements: it has a gorgeous 4.5-inch display, a fast dual-core processor, and a number of improvements in the software and hardware across the board.Read Article >
The Lumia 920 feels every bit like a flagship phone. As if the Lumia 900 were dipped in enamel, the glossier bodies feel no less sturdy, and the harsh lines and sharp corners make the device unmistakably a Lumia. Thanks to the sharper edges the phone feels enormous in your hand (even bigger than the 900), but it's incredibly handsome. The polycarbonate body Nokia added new colors to the 920's range, including a stark bright yellow (Nokia's nothing if not bold in its designs) and a more subtle matte gray. We liked both, particularly the gray, and Nokia's design chief Marko Ahtisaari agreed with us, saying "it's a very controversial color, but I know it's beautiful." We loved the design of the Lumia 800 and 900 — the 920 actually borrows more from the 800, right down to the camera section — and the 920 is a worthy successor.
As expected, Nokia has just announced the Lumia 820, a mid-range Windows Phone 8 smartphone. The 820 is powered by the same 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 and 1GB of RAM as the flagship Lumia 920, but will arrive with a smaller 4.3-inch WVGA OLED display, only 8GB of internal storage, and an eight-megapixel rear camera. The 8GB internal storage can be expanded via Windows Phone 8's extended microSD functionality.Read Article >
Both the Lumia 820 and the flagship 920 include Syanptics technology called Super Sensitive Touch that enables them to detect touch through gloves or fingernails in additional to traditional capacitive input. Nokia is introducing exchangeable covers for the Lumia 820, available in a range of hues, including yellow, cyan, purple, red, grey, white, and black. It'll also sell covers that enable NFC, as well as wireless charging through its new range of charging accessories or any Qi-compatible hardware. As the covers are removable, so is the 820's 1650mAh battery.
Sep 5, 2012Read Article >
We already knew about a pair of audio accessories Nokia will be rolling out alongside its new Lumia line: Monster's Purity Pro headphones and the JBL-branded PlayUp wireless speakers were both announced prior to today's event. But it seems that wasn't all: Nokia just announced another wireless speaker from JBL, dubbed the Power Up. Like the other products, this one features NFC and Bluetooth to make pairing with the latest Lumia handsets a simpler affair. Better still, the Power Up takes advantage of the built-in wireless charging found in the new Lumia hardware providing juice to any handset placed on its top. The new speaker more closely resembles a traditional audio dock — Nokia goes so far as to call it "retro styling" — compared to the design of the PlayUp, but the company is promising top notch sound quality from the unit.
Microsoft provided us with a good look at Windows Phone 8 earlier this year, but today the company is showing off some new features coming to the platform during Nokia's big Lumia 920 announcement. One of the new features is the ability to capture screenshots, something us device reviewers have been wanting in the Windows Phone platform for some time. It had been rumored earlier this year that screenshot capabilities were coming with Windows Phone 8, but this is the first official mention of the feature by Microsoft.Read Article >
Additionally, Microsoft showed off a revamped camera app with new pinch-to-zoom features, "lens applications" for instant effects, and a built-in panoramic setting using Microsoft's PhotoSynth technology. The camera app also features a burst mode that will lt users choose the best picture from a series of snaps. We can be sure that Nokia will take full advantage of these new camera features in the Lumia 920 and its PureView camera technology.
Sep 5, 2012
With Windows Phone 8, Nokia finally has had its hands untied when it comes to pushing out modern specs on its hardware. The result is the Nokia Lumia 920, with a dual-core 1.5GHz processor, 32GB of device storage, and a 4.5-inch display. The Lumia 920 also includes wireless charging and "PureView" technology on its 8-megapixel camera. Add in some bright color options and you're looking at the main differentiators on the hardware side.Read Article >
How does that stack up? The Galaxy S III, HTC One X each have options with LTE and the Qualcomm S4 Snapdragon dual-core processor, though they feature larger screens. They also come in a variety of different spec configurations, including quad-core processor options. Against those Android phones, the Lumia 920 essentially matches the top-tier of what's available on Android in all the important specs, unless you absolutely must have a super-sized screen, although Nokia is boasting that its 1280 x 768 PureMotion HD+ screen offers better quality. It beats them on battery life, thanks to both the 2,000mAh battery and the ability to quickly top off with wireless charging. Nokia is also claiming the image stabilization and other "PureView" improvements on the camera add up to a big differentiator.
Sep 5, 2012
As expected, Nokia has confirmed that its new Lumia 920 and 820 Windows Phone 8 handsets will support wireless charging. The company will make its own charging accessories available, including a standard plate, a JBL speaker dock, and a Fatboy-branded pillow-style unit. As well as charging the 920, the JBL speaker dock will use NFC to automatically start playing music from the phone once it's placed on top. This NFC functionality also features in the previously leaked Monster Purity Pro headphones.Read Article >
The phones are compatible with the Qi standard, meaning that there may well be more public places to charge in future, as well as a wide range of available mats. Unlike many Qi-compatible handsets from Verizon, the 920 won't require a special battery cover, with the technology built right into the handset. The 820, however, will need to have both wireless charging and NFC functionality added via its exchangeable covers. Nokia will also be installing Qi charging pads in a Virgin Atlantic lounge in London's Heathrow Airport (and later New York's JFK), as well as at Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf cafes in "select major metropolitan cities".
Nokia's recently announced Lumia 920 is one of the most advanced smartphones the company has ever produced, and it packs a laundry list of specs that impress. One of those specs is its new camera, which is said to be a marked improvement over the camera found in the Lumia 800 and Lumia 900. An 8-megapixel unit with a Carl Zeiss lens, the camera bears Nokia's PureView branding, much like the 808 PureView Symbian smartphone released earlier this year. However, though both smartphones are branded as PureView devices, they are significantly different on a technical level, leading us to wonder what PureView really means.Read Article >
The 808 PureView's claim to fame was its tremendous 41-megapixel camera with a sensor that quite literally dwarfed those found in other smartphones. This allowed users much greater control over their images, with the ability to "losslessly zoom" without any loss of detail. Nokia utilized pixel binning technology on the 808 to produce 5 and 8-megapixel images with a much better low-light sensitivity and greater dynamic range than we had ever seen from a smartphone before. Though the 808 PureView was an overall disappointment as a smartphone, its PureView camera was nothing short of jaw dropping, and made us wonder what a Nokia Windows Phone device would be like with such an imager.
Nokia Lumia 920 announced with Windows Phone 8, 4.5-inch display, wireless charging, and 'PureView' camera
Nokia has officially unveiled its new flagship smartphone, the Lumia 920. As expected, Nokia's new Lumia has received a bump in specs over the previous iteration, with a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual core processor, a slightly larger 4.5-inch curved glass display with a 768 x 1280 resolution, a 2,000mAh battery, and the new Windows Phone 8 operating system. Nokia is calling its new display the "PureMotion HD+," and says that it's the "best smartphone display innovation" the company has ever made, with "better than HD resolution" and fast refresh rates — Nokia says it's the "brightest smartphone HD display ever," and also the "fastest LCD display ever shipped on a smartphone." Nokia is also touting the PureMotion HD+'s daylight viewing capabilities, and says that the phone's color tone and brightness automatically responds to sunlight. You can see our impressions and hands-on photos of the Lumia 920 right here.Read Article >
Nokia says the new Lumia will come in "vibrant colors" (the yellow, red, white, grey, and black pictured above), and features a one-piece polycarbonate body. As expected, Nokia is also pulling a couple of tricks out of its sleeve: it's adding wireless charging for the Lumia 920, built on the Qi wireless power standard. Nokia is also incorporating its "PureView" camera technology, but just don't get too excited: we're looking at an 8.7 megapixel sensor in the 920, not the 41 megapixels in the PureView 808. Nokia says the 920 features a "floating lens" optical image stabilization system that allows for sharper photographs in low-light situations, a better app and camera interface, and 1080p video recording.