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on May 12, 2012
I have a 10 year old unlocked Nokia cell phone that I have taken with me around the world. It just works everywhere, finding signal where others can't and producing crisp, loud sounds at my end and transmitting the same quality to my fellow caller. It is also sturdy and holds a charge for what seems to be weeks. My experience with this little Nokia is why I was so happy to hear they were returning to the US market with the Windows Phone OS. I purchased a Samsung Focus when Windows Phone was released and have really come to admire the OS. Based on my previous experience, I was prepared to ditch the Focus when the Lumia 900 was available, but I wanted to hold it for myself first and see if that legendary build quality and design was still something Nokia could pull off.

Before I go further, I like the Windows Phone OS. It is clever, intuitive, and fun to use. I think this OS is second to none. As much as I like Windows Phone, lots of other people have written lots of other words about the OS. This review is about the Lumia 900, the phone.

After using the Lumia 900 since it launched, I can safely say that Nokia still knows how to build phones. This is an outstanding device. I live in an area where AT&T has yet to provide LTE service, but I have no complaints at all about the pseudo 4G service I do receive. I've used the phone throughout the local AT&T coverage area and I routinely have great signal strength. I've had two dropped calls with this phone, but in each case, both me and the other party were in moving vehicles when that happened. I can't tell which of us may have been responsible for losing the call. Receiving volume on the phone is very good. I've heard no echo or delay effects and had none reported to me. The volume on the ringer is easily heard even in noisy settings. It is also a pleasure to listen to calls on the speakerphone. Again, there is ample volume and nothing raspy or harsh about the sounds the speaker produces. I've read criticism of the vibration generator in the Lumia 900. Some people say it feels harsh, even mechanical. What I've noticed about it is that this is a vibration you will notice when you have to have the ringer turned off. In a shirt pocket, even a jacket pocket, you will notice the vibrator. And that is the whole point isn't it?

The unibody design of the phone creates a feel that is a real pleasure. It is not slick or slippery at all. It is certainly heavier than the Focus S or other Samsung models, but I've discovered this added weight, combined with the matte finish, assists with gripping ability. The phone feels solid and real. There is nothing ephemeral about it. The great sound quality I mentioned above and the robust volume fit perfectly with the heft and feel of the device.

Years ago, Nokia was known for putting the power button of its phones on the top of the device, while most other devices used a long press of the call end button to power down the phone. Nokia has evolved away from that standard, but has come up with a new approach that appears all its own. All of the buttons on the Lumia 900 are on the right side. This is certainly different than the approach taken by many manufacturers. You may not like this but I think this approach works very well. Just grabbing the phone out of a pocket, you can easily tell its orientation without looking because all of the buttons should be on the right. The dedicated camera button requires a much firmer push than either the power or volume rocker. This helps prevent accidental shots inside your pocket or purse.

Nokia provides an ample collection of nice apps with the phone. Nokia Drive is an outstanding on and off line turn by turn navigator. This program is head and shoulders above anything available on Apple or Android devices. Other Windows Phone device makers customize their devices with apps as well, but compare Nokia's offerings with say, the HTC Hub or Samsung's NOW. There is no contest. If you aren't interested in a navigation program, there is a transit app, a photo studio app, and lots more.

I am very glad that Nokia figured out what it does best is design and market phones and has left the OS work to someone else. In the pre-smartphone era, they were my manufacturer of choice of my cell phones. There are good products out there from other manufacturers, but having Nokia back in the game in the US means good looking, well built, solid, and high performance devices are finally available to smart phone buyers.
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on April 15, 2012
Coming from using iPhones (3GS, 4S) and Droids (HTC Inspire), I can't gush enough about how superior this phone is. I've owned this phone for close to a week now, and I have to admit that initially it took a little getting used to, the good news is that like an iPhone it's pretty intuitive to learn the features. For me the real power of the phone is in its ability to aggregate data from multiple places and present it all in the one place with the minimal number of touches to access it.

I have a number of accounts with various services; facebook, linked in, hotmail, gmail, outlook exchange for work etc. Adding each of these accounts to my phone was incredibly simple. Once added the OS does an amazing job of organizing things in a intuitive way. Want to find a photo? Just go to 'pictures' and voila, I get a list of photo albums with sample photos from all of my different accounts in one place. It doesn't matter where the photos reside...on my phone, from facebook etc. You can do the same with notifications, someone commented on a facebook post, I have a new text, I only need to look at my phone even when its locked to know what's going on.

A week later and I feel like it's features like this that put me in control of my information and make life so much easier. I'm not stuck in my phone digging around open and closing applications, a quick glance and I'm up to date.

I feel like this is a game changer from Microsoft, Nokia and AT&T. Here are my top reasons for loving this phone:

1. The windows phone 7.5 OS is really well designed, for instance when you go to photos, it aggregates your photos from the phone, facebook, gmail, hotmail, linked-in and any other accounts you might have all in to one easy to navigate list of albums. All features on the phone just make stuff super easy, I feel like I'm finally in control.

2. Setting up accounts is a snap

3. Live tiles show you updates without having to launch apps

4. The battery lasts about 36 hours under heavy use (my droid lasted less than 8)

5. The photos, video and screen are higher quality than an iPhone 4S

6. It's effectively free until April 21st!

7. It's blazingly fast(4G LTE) and incredibly smooth.

I will admit that the phone is a little bulky (especially with a case) and that there aren't as many apps as iPhones or Droids (there's more than I expected all the same). Netflix rocks, the only app I really miss is Mint (finances), but I'm sure that's in the works.

Buy one, you won't be disappointed.
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on April 10, 2012
If calls is what you miss most in your iPhone then this is the phone you need to have.
Remember the presentation Jobs gave about how all smart phones loose signals when held at certain position, well Nokia has done something which the biggest company in world couldn't do. Apart from everything which a smartphone does, this is a great phone too. This phone doesn't need diapers (phone cases) for it to work as a phone.
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on April 27, 2012
My wife has an iphone and my Lumia 900 is soooo much faster. I'm not kidding. You should check it out at a nearby store if you don't believe me. I also like the size of the screen. When I use the iphone, everything seems so much smaller. Another plus is the battery life. It lasts in average a day and half on average. I am getting a lot of "Which phone is that?" because of the sleek design (maybe b/c of the blue color).
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on May 11, 2012
Finally a company that undertands that a smartphone is still a phone. The speaker on this phone is loud, so loud at high I can hear people talking without having the phone next to my ear! Didn't take too long to get used to the OS over my iPhone, love the look of the OS, makes iphone look like something out of the 80's. Windows Phone is not like the old OS, I hated that so buggy, this Windows Phone 7 has yet to crash on me! Super fast and stable. There are still things that I think need work in the OS, features I think are missing but overall the extra things it does over other smart phones is awesome.

My favorite feature is when I have the Lumia 900 paired to my car and driving I hear

Phone: Text message from Name do you want to read it or ignore it
Me; read it
Phone: Blah blah blah
Phone: Do you want to reply or ignore
Me: Reply
Phone: Say your message
Me; Blah blah blah
Phone: Blah blah blah, do you want to retry or send
me: Send

All without every putting a hand on my phone! Just one thing, like most smartphones, I don't think you would enjoy this phone without a data plan, it is very active to online, syncs contacts, facebook, linked in and provides real time updates which is awesome but you need a dataplan. Speaking of data OMG the phone is fast!
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on April 13, 2012
I've bought the cyan and black. The battery life is amazingly great even with LTE. The app selection is sufficent. Most everything I do every day is already built in the OS. I found myself using less going into the battery sucking apps to do simple tasks. Also the Facebook app beautiful on this phone. This app is updated more often than the phone OS out there.
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on April 14, 2012
This phone is a work of art. The hardware is slick and the functionality is excellent. I waited to can my Blackberry for this phone to come out & I'm glad I did. Since we run a Microsoft Exchange shop at work the Lumia 900 becomes our #1 supported corporate phone very soon.
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on May 9, 2012
Gave up my Iphone 3gs. My wife has the Iphone 4. This phone intrigued me because of all the positive reviews from total Apple/Android fanboys. If THEY could love it...geez, okay, let's give it a try.
I get it. It's an amazing phone with fantastic build quality. The price is silly compared to everything else. MS/Nokia NEED this phone to succeed, so grab it while they're giving 'em away. The only other phone that caught my eye was the Galaxy Note, but that was $230 more up front. My phone was essentially free. And the Note is huge. Just this side of parody huge. Yes, the note has a larger screen and more powerful processor but... Keep in mind that phones with faster processors, bigger screens, etc. Suck more power and thus run down sooner. Besides, processor power is all relative to the OS. There is no lag or issues with this phone. Using the Zune software to load everything you need was soooo much easier than using Itunes. Nokia has a bluetooth contact migration app (free) that moved all 300 of my contacts from my Iphone to my Lumia 900 in about five minutes. Painless. If you're looking for a new phone and have an early adopters love of the unknown? Try it, you'll like it.
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on May 8, 2012
I'm the owner of Lumia 800, which already would get 4.5 stars from me but then I had chance to use this phone 1 week and I can tell that this is the best mobile phone I have ever used or even tried.
Outlook is awesome, design is marvellous. Phone is working very fast and I like WP OP system.
So this phone is definitely worth a buy.
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on April 16, 2012
I have no doubt this phone will last until it's time to upgrade and then some. It feels solid and looks good. I came from using webOS which I still love; iOS and Android weren't my thing, but WP7 makes me happy. If you aren't tied to Google or Apple yet, or if you're unhappy with what you have, I strongly recommend getting this phone.
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