Seeing another Lumia phone from Nokia always excite me as the WP7 platform is clearly gaining more limelight along with Android and iOS. Previously, we had a chance to talk about the Lumia 610 and the Lumia 800 which both have impressed us so far. Now the Nokia Lumia 900 paid us a visit for a review so let’s see how it fares up with the previous Lumia models.
As with all Lumias, it also comes in more than 2 colors such as the usual black and white, with the addition of magenta and cyan. The form factor is reminiscent of the Lumia 800 and still has that premium feel to it. The weight is a bit on the heavier side at 160g although I find it good since it contributes to the solid feel of the phone.
What’s new with the Lumia 900 is the addition of a 1 MP VGA front-facing cam sitting on top of a 4.3″ AMOLED screen. The screen is made from Corning Gorilla Glass material so your screen is guaranteed to be scratch-resistant although I would still opt to put a screen protector for added protection, but that’s just me.
The left side of the phone is completely bare so you’ll only be fiddling with the right side where the buttons are. From left to right, we have the camera button, the power/lock button and lastly, the volume rocker.
At the top you’ll find the microSIM slot, the micro-USB port, the secondary mic for noise cancelling and the 3.5mm audio jack.
Under the phone you’ll only find the loudspeaker and nothing else.
At the back of the phone is where the 8MP Carl Zeiss lens with dual LED flash is located. The back of the phone is slightly curved to which the camera is somehow exposed at the center so if you put the phone on a surface, there is a risk of scratching the lens and the silver portion around it. We don’t want that do we? Better outfit this phone with a case then.
The Lumia 900 packs the same hardware specs as the Lumia 800, only on a bigger body. It’s not much faster although, the WP7 doesn’t require much processing power so you can still be assured that the OS will run smoothly without lags.
One bit of a drawback though, is that the Lumia 900 inherited the screen resolution of the Lumia 800 which is at 480 x 800 pixels. The Lumia 800 has a 3.7″ screen so having the same resolution on a bigger 4.3″ screen will mean that the UI objects will look a bit magnified and the graphics seem to be less sharper. A downer but not something that could break a deal. I only noticed it right away since I had an experience with the Lumia 800.
When Nokia announced that the Lumia 900 will no longer be receiving the Windows Phone 8 update, a lot of Lumia 900 users were saddened and much more frustrated for those who’ve just bought the phone a few weeks before the announcement. However, for those who bought the Lumia 900 won’t be stuck for long on stock Mango (7.5) firmware but will get to feel the WP8 love with the release of the WP7.8.
Here’s a quick preview on the Lumia 900 running the WP7.8 firmware:
Not bad right? So you do get to have the WP8 experience as the visuals and animations are there. The catch here is that you don’t get some of WP8’s offerings such IE10 with better support for JS and HTML5, synchronization of all data into cloud (currently WP7.8 is only able to sync photos and office docs), OTA automatic updates and some apps that are integrated in WP8 but can be downloaded separately like Skype, DataSmart and RCS-E. These are the highlighted features of the WP8 but we may see some more features for the WP7.8 when it gets released early next year.
Camera and Image Quality
One of the features that I like with Windows phones is the camera shutter button wherein you can half-press to focus just like a digital camera. You can also tap to focus and the phone automatically takes the picture for you. The tap-to-focus feature is rather convenient but not for somebody like me who wants to focus first rather than taking the picture right away.
For the image quality, I have to say I’m quite disappointed with the colors being all too saturated and dark so for those pictures of sunny days, I tend to get a bit of gloomy shots even on auto settings. There’s some good dynamic range with sharpness being very acceptable although I’m still irked by the saturation and the overall brightness. Also, taking pictures of lights tend to get really annoying with the lights getting “œstarry”. See sample shots below.[nggallery id=49]
From my experience with Windows Phones, they all seem to have poor battery life and the Lumia 900 is one of them. You could only last a day with occasional calls, text messaging and browsing the internet. Better have your charger with you always.
From my experience with the Lumia 900, I have to say I’m leaning towards the Lumia 800 than this one. This is mainly because the hardware specs are the same with the Lumia 800’s resolution looking better on a 3.7″ screen. Although, if the front facing cam and the bigger display suits you best then the Lumia 900 is for you. The Lumia 900 now retails for Php20,000 although it is priced much lower at Widget City.
If you are willing to hold your Christmas bonus for a while longer, you may want to wait for the Lumia 920 which will be released sometime early next year. It will be packing some impressive specs like the WP8 OS, dual core processor and a bigger 4.5″ screen.
|Nokia Lumia 900 Specs:|
|4.3-inch AMOLED display @ 480×800 pixels, 217ppi|
|Nokia ClearBlack display|
|Corning Gorilla Glass|
|Qualcomm APQ8055 Snapdragon S2 Scorpion 1.4GHz CPU|
|Adreno 205 Graphics|
|512MB ROM, 512MB RAM, 16GB internal storage|
|HSPA+ 14.4Mbps, HSUPA 5.76Mbps|
|WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, DLNA|
|Bluetooth 2.1, A2DP, EDR|
|8MP autofocus camera, Carl Zeiss optics and dual-LED flash|
|720p video recording|
|1MP front-facing camera, VGA recording|
|GPS w/ aGPS support, GLONASS|
|FM radio tuner|
|Li-Ion battery 1830mAh|
|Windows Phone 7.5 Mango (upgradeable to 7.8)|
|127.8 x 68.5 x 11.5mm|