on April 8, 2012
Seriously, you cannot buy a better smartphone at this price. I purchased mine at my local corporate AT&T store for $99 during the pre-sale. I received the phone on Friday the 6th and as someone who has had Blackberry's, Windows Mobile (old versions), several Android devices and even tried an iPhone for a while, this is the best phone I have ever used.
The phone itself is solid, well built and has a great feel to it. It is heavier than some other phones, but that is actually a good thing. No plastic feel here. The screen is a nice 4.3" inches which to me is the sweet spot. Not too big yet not too small. I think the iPhone's screen is a bit too small and some of those 4.7 inch screens just are a tad too big. My previous phone is a HTC Inspire which also has a 4.3 inch screen. It is also is easy to read and see the screen in the outdoor sunlight. Something my Inspire struggled with.
This is actually my first Windows Phone 7, so I am new to the whole OS.
Setup - A breeze!!! No need for instructions or looking online, this was very intuitive. Email setup with my Corporate Exchange server was as simple as putting in my email address and password. Magically, everything started syncing, contacts, email, calendar, task, etc. I also setup my Gmail and Hotmail accounts within seconds. I saved all of my photos from my old phone to a MS SkyDrive account. Log in to your Windows Live account on your phone and everything is there. No hassle, no mess, no worry.
Apps - Yes, the reports are true, there are less apps in the Windows Marketplace then on Google's or Apple's. Before deciding on giving this phone a chance I checked the Windows marketplace to see what apps I would miss if I did move. There are some, but nothing that was a deal breaker for me. Your mileage may vary, and I recommend you do this as well before jumping into a Windows device. Most of the major apps are there for me and in fact, some are so much better on the Windows phone. They take nice advantage of not only the Live Tiles on the home screen but the apps seem more integrated into the OS. Check ESPN, Fourquare, CNN, and some other major apps. You will be pleasantly surprised.
OS - I was absolutely surprised on how much I like this OS. It is just better than Android and favorably compares to iOS. It is fluid, fast and very responsive. Gone for me is the constant lag of Android and the same old bunch of screens with icons. It may not be for everyone, but if you give it a fair shake, I think most will like it. The integration with Office and the ease of email setup is fantastic. The onscreen keyboard beats any keyboard I have used in Android and the iPhone.
Phone - Obviously, this is a phone so that functionality is important. I actually really liked my Inspire and I am a fan of HTC phones, but I found myself constantly dropping calls and lately it seemed to get worse. I also was doing hard resets on the phone every couple days (turning off, battery out) just to get things working again. With the Lumia 900, areas where I knew the calls would drop because they always have, did not. The call quality is great. People on the other end of the line say I sound much better than I did with the HTC. I also had a maximum of 2 bars of signal in my home with the HTC, on the Nokia I get at least three and sometimes 4. I also have yet to drop or miss a call on the Nokia, something I was so used to happening on the HTC daily. Speakerphone is loud, louder than the HTC which is great when driving. BlueTooth setup took seconds in my car and I was able to play Zune through BT onto the car audio system easily. I am new to Zune as well, but they seem to have a great selection and I could only find one band not on Zune that was on iTunes. Obviously iTunes has the edge here, but Zune is no slacker.
Battery - Inspire - max 5 hours before it has to be charged, and this is typical of most android devices. This phone has gone on for over 13 hours without a charge and still has juice in it. This week during work will be more telling of the actually battery performance, but it is much better than the any Android device I have used.
All in all, this is a great phone and one I can recommend to just about anyone. Would I recommend moving from iPhone to WP7, maybe, maybe not. Depends on how much you like the iPhone. The iPhone is a great phone, no denying that but for me, I prefer a larger screen, and until the iPhone 5 comes out with a larger screen, its just not for me. Would I recommend moving from an Android device to WP7 -- absolutely. Give it a try and you might like it better. Android has its strengths, but WP7 is more polished and faster and just works better.
This may be the phone that gives Microsoft and Nokia the push they need to become a contender.
4/10/2012 Edit: Took the phone off the charger around noon today and have used it moderately today (couple calls, facebook, twitter, streaming about 1hrs worth of music off Pandora, very few SMS messages, about 200 email messages and about 40 replies, WiFi radio on all day, but no connection so cell only). It is now 12:23 am and I have 62% remaining on my battery. SO 12 hours and more than 50% of my battery remaining. On my HTC the same usage would drain the battery down to 60% in about 2-3 hours or less. No more tied to a charger constantly during the day.
on April 8, 2012
Let me preface this by saying that I received my Lumia 900 from AT&T two days ago, and what a phone it is! First off, I received the phone for free with an AT&T service plan. That is hard to beat. But even for the price of the new iPhone, which I understand is a couple of hundred dollars, I think this phone is worth it.
The connectivity and ease of use are so apparent that within five minutes of turning on the phone, I was on Facebook, chatting with friends, had downloaded all my contacts online, setup my email, and was calling my best friend to test the call quality. I didn't pull anything over from my previous phone, just let Windows Mobile do its thing. It's difficult for me to imagine that other operating systems can compete with the ease and breadth of use this system offers. Every single piece of software seems integrated. One can easily jump from Facebook, to Twitter, to email, to a phone call, etc. In fact, the phone notified me when people so much as "liked" a comment of mine on Facebook, and mind you I wasn't in Facebook when this was happening. That brings me to my second point, the phone is fast. I downloaded ten or so free applications in less than ten minutes. Even via WiFi, I was impressed with the phone's response time, as I was able to download maps for the entire United States on Nokia Drive (~2 GB) in ~15 minutes. Third, with all the complaints I've read about applications, I feel that it's important to touch on this aspect of the experience. Like I was hinting at before, the phone comes loaded with a bunch of applications so that right off the bat, you are texting, calling, pulling up Facebook, etc. On top of that, there are a ton of free applications for many of the sites I use most: Yelp, IMDB, Ebay, Amazon, YouTube, Evernote the list goes on... With Nokia, you also get a ton of free applications including ESPN (which is really awesome if you like sports), USA Today, Nokia Drive, Nokia Maps, Nokia Radio, etc. In fact, I would argue that most of the important apps are there. That said, there are some applications that you won't find including Pandora. Finally, one thing that I always hated about my iPhone was it seemed like I had to sign in for every darn little thing. With this phone, I downloaded everything, including paid applications, without signing in. That's right, I signed into my hotmail account when I first turned on the phone, and after that...nada.
Simply put, the hardware is stunning! The phone has quickly become one of the proudest items I own. I have the cyan blue version and it catches my attention every time I look at it. It really is something that you have to see to appreciate. Additionally, the single cut, polycarbonate body feels amazing in the hand. Be forewarned that the polycarbonate isn't metal and will scratch if it contacts a rough surface, but the body does achieve a sturdiness that is welcome in a device susceptible to dropping. Moreover, the display while fingerprint prone is stunning. Even with what I understand to be lower graphics than the new iPhone, the brightness, size, and definition are quite impressive. Turning to the camera, while I didn't compare the quality to other phones myself, I have seen some comparisons online that show mixed reviews depending on lighting, focus, etc. This probably isn't the phone to buy if the camera is the most important feature for you, but for the average user it will be more than enough. Separately, the storage space cannot be upgraded, so bear that in mind if you intend on downloading a lot of content. Turning to battery life, I used the phone pretty much non-stop for the first couple of days and it lasted about 7-8 hours - decent given that I was streaming videos as well as surfing the web. I recently spoke with a representative who indicated that an update is imminent and will likely contain power saving features. Given that I've heard some good things about the Lumia 800's update as it relates to extending battery life, I'm hoping the same applies here. Lastly, the phone has excellent call quality. I've long wondered how other phones with poor call quality receive so much praise. Isn't a phone (even a "smart" one) centered around the ability to make calls? Well, for me, call quality is clutch. And Nokia delivers in 1990's fashion, which is to say the call quality lives up to Nokia's past reputation. I found that the sound was crisp, the volume range was impressive, and the signal didn't fade a bit.
In short, Nokia and Microsoft have teamed up to create a user experience that really blows me away. At $100 or less with a service plan, it would be hard to compete with the Lumia 900. Good work Nokia & Microsoft and looking forward to future devices!
on April 9, 2012
Update: I really like the phone and I still think it's great. However, if you want to get a phone that runs Windows Phone 8, you will need to wait to buy the newer phones when they come out. Windows Phone 8 supports background tasks (so more multitasking capabilities than just freezing the state of an app. This allows you to, for example, receive Skype calls without having the app open), higher resolution screens, NFC support, multi-core processors, more customizable start screen, and native code support. This phone will be updated to 7.8, which will have the newer customizable screen, but other additional features are unknown at this point. For me personally, since I'm a minimalist, the only thing I would really miss if they don't offer it in 7.8 is the background task feature since I want tighter Skype integration. However, counting Skype is owned by Microsoft, I'm still keeping my hopes up. That said, if you want the best of the best and high quality 3D games (havok physics supported!), wait until Windows Phone 8 comes out in Fall of 2012. That said, given the support Nokia has shown to this phone (2 updates already in 3 months. It may be a placebo effect, but I feel like low light shots look much better now) and given their new PureView technology, a Nokia branded Windows 8 phone will probably be a pretty safe bet.
I got this phone by preordering it through AT&T, and so far it's been great.
This youtube video is great if you want a feel for the phone: [...]
You can also find it by searching for "Nokia Lumia 900 AT&T hands-on", created by "gsmarena07", on youtube.
Physical Layout: The phone looks very slick and has a very smooth feel in the hands. The sim card, micro usb port, and headphone ports are all at the top of the phone. The speakers are on the bottom and all the buttons are on the right side. The power button is actually in between the volume buttons and the camera button, so it did take a bit to get used to. I was a bit worried about the bezel that I heard was around the screen. However, it's barely 1mm high, so it's barely noticeable.
Screen: The screen is a gorgeous 800x480 pixel ClearBlack AMOLED display. When they say black, they mean black. The contrast is extremely nice and the colors are very vibrant (very noticeable when comparing it to a HTC Trophy or an iPhone). Using the phone while outside is much better than with other phones since the colors don't get as washed out. If there is any complaint, it will have low resolution. Personally, this doesn't affect me too much. The text on the iPhone display is definitely more crisp, but I only really notice the low resolution if I look really closely (I mean my desktop computer screen has a lower DPI, but the screen is farther away so it's not noticeable). So while using the phone on a regular basis, the low resolution doesn't really bother me. If you have used a retina display though, the lower resolution may be much more noticeable. That said, this is an RGB display, so it looks clearer than all the 1280x720 Pentile displays I've seen.
Main Camera: I would say that the cameras are slightly above average. With lots of light, the pictures are great, but in low light, the pictures are riddled with noise. The flash doesn't help much either since it causes red eye and faces becomes too bright. On the bright side, the flash is decently bright (my friend kept on complaining about being blinded). Update: I played around with the camera some more. For low light situations, it's best if you use manual settings. Go into the camera settings, set "Scenes" to night, "Exposure" to 1 to 2 (I usually use 1), and "ISO" to 200(if you have a VERY steady hand and nothing in the picture is moving. This results in better pictures if you can pull this off, but it is kind of hard) to 800 (I usually use 400). Leave the rest of the settings unchanged. Take the picture and use the auto fix feature. This will result in a much better low light picture than if you just used the automatic settings.
Front Camera: The quality on the front camera is great. It's better to use this for video chat since the main camera is 8MP vs the front one which is 1MP. The quality is decent.
Speakers: The speakers are decently loud but the sound does get distorted at higher volumes. I would say that it is decent for a phone speaker.
Call Quality: The call quality is really good. Hearing other people is very clear and my friends say they can hear me very clearly. Using speakers while using the phone works great as well. So far I haven't had a dropped call yet, so using plastic for the case seems to have been a smart design choice. I also have all my contacts set up through my Live account, so it automatically synced the contacts. If you didn't do that, Nokia does have a contact importer app that may work for you. You can find it in the marketplace > Nokia apps.
Case: The case has a very solid feel to it and does not feel flimsy at all. The only complaint I have is the silver colored band that goes around the main camera. That band scratches extremely easily. Other than that, it feels great.
Battery Life: I would say the battery life is about average. With light to moderate use, it will last about a day, and with heavy use, it will last about 6-8 hours. If you stream videos over the AT&T network, that battery life will probably be a lot lower. Using the free offline GPS (Nokia Drive mentioned later), you can get about 4+ hours from a full charge before the phone dies, so it is best to keep it plugged in if using the GPS navigation. You can view the exact percentage of battery life remaining by going to settings > battery saver (at the bottom). I have battery saver enabled just in case.
Internet Explorer: I think the latest versions of IE are some of the most underrated browsers (That said, I still prefer using Chrome / Firefox on my desktop computers). I am pleasantly surprised how fast IE feels. It may be slow in benchmarks, but while on Wifi or 3G/HSPA+ (no LTE in my area right now), sites load very fast. Being able to choose between desktop mode / mobile view mode in settings is very useful. Neat tip: If you hold the .COM button on the keyboard, a menu will appear with all the other most commonly used endings, such as .org, etc
People Hub: A place to go where you can easily text, call, and keep up with status updates of friends. Neat tip: If you click on a letter header (usually the letter "a" since that's all you can see at first), a window with all the letters of the alphabet pops up. You can then click on any letter to easily navigate there. Great for quickly getting to a friend in a long list.
Messaging: So far, there is Texting, Windows Live, Facebook, and Twitter integration, so messaging friends on any of those networks can all be done in one place. This makes keeping track of your thread extremely easy. I did hear that google chat will be integrated when Tango comes out, but for right now, I use IM+ which works pretty well (it also supports a lot of other IM networks).
Bing: Bing can be accessed by pressing the magnifying class icon on the phone in the lower right. This brings up a lot of features. In the new window, you can use bing to search the web and it usually breaks up the main page with news / web. There's a link to view more web / news links under each category. Otherwise, it also has images and local as the two other side windows.
When you press the search icon on your phone, it also brings up a menu with four new options. The left one is local scout and it helps you find local attractions and restaurants. Neat tip: Under each header, you will see some small words, such as "distance" under "eat+drink". If you tap on that, you can change the filters, so for eat and drink, one of them is to select "cuisine" instead of distance, which is the default. This was hard to figure out, so hopefully just tapping the header will bring up the filters in the future.
The second icon from the left is a music search. If you are listening to music and you want to know the song's name, just click on this and it will automatically listen and search for the song's name.
The third icon is bing vision. You can use this to scan QR codes and bar codes, etc. It also has a function where it can translate English text to another language. This last feature is a bit iffy though.
The fourth one is a voice search. You can say what you want to find. You can also bring this up by holding down the Home / Windows button for a few seconds.
E-mail: Linked inboxes are great. I have it set up so my personal e-mail and my work e-mails are all set up. Then all I have to do is click on my inbox to view my messages from any inbox (this does need to be set up and isn't default). If I want to separate it and view only one e-mail account, I can do that as well.
Multitasking: Hold the back button. If you want to close an app, you will need to click on the app and then press the back button. This is a bit annoying and hopefully can be improved in the future. Generally though, these apps don't run in the background and are just frozen states. To see the actual running background programs, go to settings > swipe right to the applications tab > background tasks.
Zune: This is a great music app and pretty easy to use. The only complaint I have is I can't seem to be able to see all the songs I have in a playlist at once. I can only see 3 at a time. (Update: Apparently if you tap on any of those three songs below the song's image, you will get to see the entire playlist. Thanks Nico for the tip!) You can also view the full playlist by clicking on the name of the playlist / album. Radio only works if you have headphones plugged in, which is pretty standard since the wire is then used as the antennae as a secondary function.
Xbox Live: Great app. Only thing is that the windows live account you use to set up the phone is also the e-mail for the xbox live account. I use a different one, so this was a bit annoying since you can't change the login e-mail for the xbox app. My friends did mess up my K/D ratio in my previous xbox live account, so I decided to just start from scratch. I did contact XBOX live support though, and if you did not create an XBOX live account for your windows phone live account, you should be able to merge the two.
Office: Decent office app.
Nokia Drive (Free in marketplace > Nokia collection): Since AT&T has their own navigator, they removed this from the phone by default. However, you can easily go into the marketplace, click on Nokia apps and install this. This is the FIRST thing you should do. You can download the US map (which is only 1.8GB, which is a lot less than I expected) and go to settings and switch network to off. This way, you literally have a Garmin on your phone. In fact, when I tested it, it found a better route than Garmin did and I got to my friends house a lot faster. Another nice feature is that you can set up warnings for when you go above the speed limit. The setting for going below 50MPH and above 50MPH is independent, so I have mine warn me when I am 8MPH above the speed limit on local roads and 12MPH on the high way.
Nokia Maps (Free in marketplace > Nokia collection): This is decently useful. It's like another local scout.
Nokia Transit (Free in marketplace > Nokia collection): This app isn't that great right now. It just came out though, so hopefully there's more improvements. It's supposed to help you find public transportation to get from one place to another.
AT&T apps: The MYAT&T app (forgot the name) that comes default with the phone is old and does not work. You aren't able to sign into it. However, if you go to the marketplace, click on AT&T, you will see that there is a new app (with a different name which is why there's no "Update"). If you install that, the app works fine. This seems to be a bad oversight and hopefully will be fixed in future releases. Otherwise, I uninstalled all the rest of the AT&T apps.
Other great apps / Apps in general:
It is true that there are some really popular apps on Android / iOS that aren't available on the Windows Phone. However, I've found alternatives for many of them and with the marketplace growing at a fast rate, I am hoping that the more popular apps will all be migrated over as well. Some of the apps that I find useful:
MetroRadio: If you use Pandora
MyStocks Portfolio: If you follow the stock market
Grapher Calculator: A graphing calculator
Flashlight - X: A no nonsense flash light.
Amazon Kindle: Kindle reader for the Windows Phone
Netflix: For watching videos
Skydrive: Integrates well with your Live account and gives you 25GB of cloud storage. View it as a dropbox. Sync functions are available if you install Windows Live Mesh (for the desktop) (Update: Microsoft added a new feature making Skydrive act exactly like dropbox. You have a folder on your computer and you can drag and drop files into it. This greatly increases usability. Downside is that the free account size is reduced to 7GB for new users. Old users can reactivate the 25GB account for free.)
Weather Channel: For the weather
on April 12, 2012
Well, this was not expected. I purchased this phone for the wife but wasn't sure if she'd like it as she's not into technology. As of last week, she didn't want to get on the smartphone wagon as she deemed them too complicated to use. As some reviewers have stated, the OS is so simple that she doesn't seem to be able to stop playing with it. The biggest benefit for her is that, and I quote:"I don't have to do anything to see what everyone is doing!, I can just look at the home screen". Well, good for her. Also, I guess the read-text feature is also a plus as she's not one to use a blue-tooth device while driving-hence why she never picks up the phone or answer calls until she's able.
So, since she's not likely to post any reviews I figure I'd do it for her to provide good feedback for both future/prospective consumers and manufacture alike:
1)Phone seems to work great (I guess we received one of the units not affected by current network issues)
2)Screen resolution looks great. I'm not sweating 1080P or HDMI connectivity here. I'll reserve those expectations for my TV
3)From what I can gathered from her, reception is better at her work. Full bars compared to her co-workers' 2 bars (IPhone 4s/Droide phones)at the same location. "Keep in mind she didn't mentioned what carriers her friends were using, so for all we know she works close to an AT&T tower".
4)Taking a picture seems to be easier for her, although I can confirm the the auto feature works best while being in the outside environment vs. indoors. I'm not sure if an update can fix that so I supposed I'd wait.
5) Local scout seems to be a winner for her as well.
6) Volume level seems to be good.
7) She's not into Apps so I guess that from her point of view she's fine as all she needs is her banking App.
Bottom line is that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so I can't say that it is better looking than my IPhone, although it does feel more rigid so dropping it by accident should not be cause of alarm. My IPhone on the other hand...
She's loving it, so I'm loving it. And With the pending $100.00 credit I'm loving it even more as it turned out to be free. Although there is no sense in letting her know that. ;)
Although I'm pretty sure the build quality and OS functionality will not disappoint anyone, features and overall existing ecosystem might be an issue. Please review carefully for what "matters to you" as an individual so you can "educationally" vote on the pros/cons before committing to a purchase/contract.
I really hate to see negative reviews about things that based on spec sheets where not available to begin with.
Let's remember to keep the reviews objective and not follow any Manufactures blindly. Make them about "YOUR" experiences.
Bottom line is that to any company, being MS, Apple or Android, we're just consumers and all they're after is our money. That's why they're called "BUSINESSES". Let's return the favor and hold them accountable for promised features to keep the market fresh with new innovations and better customer service going forward. Competition is key!
on May 7, 2012
I am a long time Android user and have had at least five Android phones including original Galaxy S, G2X and Galaxy S2. I would consider myself a power user having tried many custom roms including CyanogenMod, software mods, Voodoo Sound, and themes on my Android phones. Android is the best for those that love customizing their phones. You can customize pretty much anything on Android. My last phone was an iPhone 4S. I jailbroke it as soon as it was available to get themes, some quick settings, and third party apps from Cydia. The iPhone 4S is the most fluid phone I know. The camera on it, is probably the best 8MP camera in smartphones currently (12MP Nokia N8 and 41MP PureView 808 will beat it though). The integration within iOS is very good and UI is mostly consistent throughout. iOS has the most apps (600,000+ apps) and way more high quality apps than Android. Additionally, the Apple's App Store has the most music, videos, books, and podcasts as far as I know. After a while I just couldn't stand the 3.5" screen of the iPhone after having used to the 4.3" screen on Galaxy S2 before. The 3.5in LCD screen strains my eyes 10x faster than the 4.3 SAMOLED screen. I decided to get another screen with same size or bigger, but didn't want another Android because I was kind of tired of how unreliable and glitchy Android can be.
I took a chance on the beautiful looking cyan Lumia 900 since it has the same 4.3 screen. I was new to Windows Phone, wanted to try out the new OS and didn't expect much from it other than that I heard it's very fluid and stable. Now I am amazed by both the Lumia 900 and Windows Phone OS. Windows Phone OS is very easy to use and in my opinion, it gives you better user experience than both iOS and Android.
Like any OS, Windows Phone has some features that I would like to see. Three features missing from my Galaxy S2 are native divx/xvid support, Adobe Flash plug-in (1080p Flash works fine on SGS2 with Exynos chip) and a file manager. Built-in dictionary that works everywhere in the OS, like on iPhone with iOS 5, would be nice and Emoji for fun.
Setup is very easy on Windows Phone. A computer is not needed at all. Login or create your Windows Live account with the current email account you are using from another email provider. Use the Nokia's "Contacts Transfer" app from the Marketplace to transfer your contacts from another phone with bluetooth to the Lumia 900.
LTE 4G is super fast (4-5 bars = ~17-19Mpbs, even with 2 bars = ~4-8Mpbs, ping is 70-80ms with 3 bars in Dallas)
Superior call quality (Very clear audio and loud; 5/10 volume is enough for me in most situations)
Very good signal reception (Better than any smartphone I have used. I get two bars LTE while streaming video in places where everyone else can only text or get no signal)
Beautiful design with great build quality. Lumia 900 received gold award in the 2012 International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA)
Small cuts and dents are harder to spot on this one piece polycarbonate body. Whatever color you see on the outside of this polycarbonate is the same color inside.
Feels good on your hands. I guess because it's round on the sides.
8MP camera is decent. It will be better with manual camera settings and some 3rd party camera apps. Be sure to install the Camera Extras app from Nokia to get more functionality out of the camera.
(iPhone 4S>Galaxy S2>Lumia 900)
There are two ways to take pictures.
1. Press the camera button half way and hold it to focus, then press it all the way in to take a picture.
2. Touch on the screen for auto focus and capture.
Update: Nokia released the firmware update on Zune. Camera is much better at low light now.
Front facing camera is top notch in quality with wide angle. You have to see it to believe.
Very good RGB (None Pentile) AMOLED screen with Nokia's ClearBlack technology rated as the best screen for outdoor viewing by DisplayMate labs and Pocket Lint.
4.3" in screen on this phone could be close to perfect size for now. No one hardly complains about it's being too big or too small after using the Lumia 900.
Loud speaker and good sound quality through headphones. The background noise from the headphone jack is very high to me. I am so used to the Cowon J3 with no background noise at all. Of course this will be depend on your headset also.
Built-in FM radio. It's inside the Music+Videos hub -> Radio.
Battery life is alright for me. It's not good nor bad. It's up to you sometimes. More live tiles and apps with background tasks will give you less battery. AMOLED screens save battery on black, however it will eat up battery very fast on white, which is something you should consider. I guess you could say Windows Phone OS is made for AMOLED and iOS is made for LCD. There is a Battery Saver option in the Settings that could give more battery life.
Windows OS is crazy fast, easy to use and reliable! No freezes or reboots that I have seen like on Android.
Visual Voicemail included for free! : Much faster and easier to use than traditional voicemail. It displays the caller and their voicemail messages in the Phone/Dialer hub in its own Voicemail section. To play voicemail message, you just tap on the caller's name. You'll never have to dial the voicemail number again.
Bing Search (Access it with the hardware search button):
- Local Scout: List all your nearby restaurants, shops, attractions and events. Very useful.
- Bing Vision: Search with the camera for things like albums, books, movies, CDs, DVDs, barcodes, ect...and translate texts with the camera to many different languages.
- Bing Music: It listens to music and gives the name of the song/artist currently playing.
- Voice Search: With Microsoft TellMe
People Hub: Combine all your social networks into one place (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Windows Live)
Facebook Intergration in WP: After you logged in Facebook, Windows Phone will grab your FB friends and put them in the People Hub together with their profile pictures, phone numbers, e-mails, and birthdays. Their birthdays will show up in the Calendar app too for easy peak and reminder of the upcoming birthdays. Since Facebook Chat is built into the Messaging app, you won't need a Facebook app to do live chat 24/7.
Me Hub: Let you check in to Facebook Places, post messages, set your Facebook online status, see your notifications, and replies from other people about on your posts. Type once and post everywhere to all your social networks at the same time.
Email (with Conversation Views): Support for Exchange, Office 365, LinkedIn, Yahoo Mail, Gmail, Windows Live (Hotmail, Xbox LIVE, messenger), AT&T address book, and other providers with manual POP and IMAP settings.
Pin (Create Shortcut) to homescreen with just about anything: albums, songs, books, pictures, groups, contacts, Facebook contacts, navigation locations, any radio station in 3rd party apps (TuneIn Radio, iHeartRadio, Metro Radio), movie theaters, movies, websites, places, restaurants, shops, attractions, etc...
Windows Phone OS can read incoming text messages with the name of the sender through Bluetooth. It'll allow you to reply back with voice-to-text. All hands-free experience while driving.
Real-time or Live Lyrics: You need apps like realLyrics and Lyrics Show. They work great with Zune Pass and mp3 files. It works like closed captions on TV.
Microsoft Office: Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and OneNote. Access to Office 365, Sharepoint and Skydrive.
Xbox Live: Windows Phone games with Xbox Live enabled have achievements just like on the Xbox 360 and points will be added to your Gamertag. You'll be able to send messages to your Xbox friends, edit your Avatar (Xbox LIVE Extras app), buy Avatar gears, view and compare game achievements with friends, receive Xbox Live game request, and control your Xbox all with your phone (Xbox Companion app).
Onscreen keyboard is pretty good. Predictions are accurate. I haven't missed Swiftkey and Swype from Android. It allows you change the word by tapping on the word to highlight it and it'll give you the suggestion words to overwrite it or type in new letters to replace the original word completely.
Find my Phone feature: You can make your mobile ring, lock, erase, and find your phone.
Internet Tethering\Sharing: Available for use with a 5GB data plan from AT&T
You can Automatically put a Call on Speaker using Voice Command: Press and hold the Home button to access Voice Command, and say something like "Call John on speaker".
Nokia Collection apps (in the Marketplace):
- Nokia Drive: Many people could buy Lumia phones for this app alone. It's a free turn-by-turn GPS navigation. You could download any map you want anywhere in the world to use for offline and data-free. It includes more than 50 different voice languages.
- The Dark knight Rises: Get exclusive trailers, wallpapers and ringtones. Play the location-based challenge "Claim Gothan City" choose a side - Batman or Ban- and check in using Foursquare at nearby locations to get points and unlock rewards.
- Nokia Trailers: Watch movie trailers by streaming or downloading for later use.
- Contacts Transfer: Transfers contacts from other devices to the Lumia using bluetooth.
- Nokia Transit: Details for local public transport with realtime routes that include departure and arrival times.
- Nokia Maps: Alternative for Bing Maps
- App Highlights: Helps you find latest and hottest WP apps.
- Creative Studio: Supports for panorama and many other special effects.
- 100th Day of School: Sesame Street Elmo interactive read-aloud experience.
- ESPN: Follow the latest match results, breaking news, commentary, and videos from your favorite sports.
- CNN: Get your latest headlines and top videos. Receive breaking news alert. View, record and submit video and photo to iReports in real time.
- Univision: Entertainment, news and sports coverage.
- Caddie +: Golf app with many features like augmented reality of other golfers, live scoring, tournament scoring, aerial map views, detailed score and stat tracking, GPS rangefinder and more.
- ACC Sports: Atlantic Coast Conference sports
More Nokia Exclusive apps: Nokia Music, Nokia Reading, Nokia SmartStart, Nokia Camera Extra, Nokia City Lens, Nokia Play To(DLNA), Nokia Data Counter, Words with Friends, Draw Something, Goal.com 2012 Finals, Six Flags, The Dark Knight Rises, AOL Entertainment Hub, Time Magazine, Newsweek, Box, Groupon, Tripods, Paypal, Angry Birds Space, FIFA, Madden NFL, NBA Jam, Tiger Woods PGA TOUR®, Mirror's Edge, Yahtzee, and Viber with HD voice calling.
100,000+ Apps: Apps aren't a problem for me. WP has most of the main apps. It's the fastest growing app store as both Microsoft and Nokia are constantly adding more apps to the platform. Uninstall them is easy like on iOS, simply press and hold on the app you want to uninstall for two seconds, you should see a popup menu with the word "Uninstall". The same way you would easily remove any AT&T's "bloatware" on your Windows Phone. You don't need "root" at all for this.
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, foursquare, Flickr, Netflix, Slacker Radio, TuneIn Radio, Spotify, iHeartRadio, Last.fm, Soundtracker, Newegg, WhatsApp, Ebay, Amazon Mobile, Amazon Kindle, Audible, OverDrive Media Console, Flixster, iMDB, Fandango, Adobe Reader, Shazam, Soundhound, WolframAlpha, ESPN, CNN, USA Today, Scoremobile, Bank of America, ShopSavvy, Tango Video Calls, Groupon, Evernote, Vevo, WeatherBug, The Weather Channel, Yelp, Pindora Radio is for the Pandora lovers.
FlashVideo For WP app is a must for Adobe Flash videos.
-AppFlow App Discovery: It helps you find great apps for Windows Phone.
-Windows Phone News: Does what it says. Try Weave app for other news from the same developer.
-Dictionary.com: Offline dictionary with voice.
-UC Brower and User Agent Switcher: Internet Browsers.
-Translator: Use your camera to translate printed text, voice recognition to translate spoken text, or keyboard to enter text that you want to translate.
-Bing2Wall/Papercut: Grab wallpapers from Bing search.
-Connection Tiles/Toggle: Quickly turn on/off settings like Wifi, Airplane, and Bluetooth.
-Flashlight XT: Simple and no ads.
-TouchDevelop: Write fun programs straight from your phone.
For those that want USB storage on your Windows Phone. You can install a program called "USB Storage Enabler". It's available on XDA forum. Your phone will show up as a USB drive on your computer.
How to get selectable EDGE/3G/4G/LTE on the Lumia 900.
1. Dial ##3282# to get to field test application
2. Press on the three dots ... on the bottom right screen and pick settings.
3. Choose the opposite of what selected "2G only" or "3G only" in Network type.
4. Press the hardware Back button to get back to the long list of texts. Scroll all the way down and select ToggleENS(REBOOT) then wait couple seconds for your phone to reboot.
5. Go to Settings -> Cellular. There should be the E/3G/4G in the list of "Highest connection speed".
Currently Skype doesn't run in the background, fortunately the Tango Video Calls app does work in the background.
Lumia 900 costs around $209 for the materials vs $188 of the 16GB iPhone 4S.
-Apple Co-founder Steve Wozniak prefers Windows Phone over Android phones. He said Windows Phone is more beautiful and intuitive than both iPhones and Android. "I'm kind of shocked on every screen -- much more beautiful than the same apps on Android and iPhone."
-Siri said the Lumia 900 is the best when asked "What is the best smartphone ever". Apple fixed it after couple hours (Samsung Galaxy S III' S-Voice did the same mistake)
I would recommend this phone to anyone. You don't have to take my words for it. Consumer Reports recommended this phone. It won the best cellphone of CNET's CES 2012 Award, Popular Mechanics editor's choice award and Popular Science "Product of the Future". Don't just look at the specs. There are many features that aren't listed on the spec sheet. Go to a store, play with the phone, and see for yourself.
Update July 23: I am giving this 3 stars for now since I have an issue with capacitive buttons not responding well during an audio playing through the speakers. I sent the phone to repair. Nokia said they couldn't duplicate the issue and sent my phone back unfixed. Many people are having this issue from the comments I see in Nokia forum. The link is in the comments section below. Still waiting for Nokia to response.
Unfortunately, all the current Windows Phone 7.5 won't get Windows Phone 8 but will get the Windows Phone 7.8. I'd say wait the high end Lumia 920.
Here are the features announced for current Lumia users.
* A new Start screen look and feel, familiar from Windows Phone 8, giving you a whole new look the moment you unlock your phone
* Ringtone maker app to selected markets to create a personal ringtone
* Contact share app updated to support sharing over Bluetooth in addition to SMS and email
* Bluetooth file transfer to send media files via Bluetooth from your Lumia device to any other phone
* Cinemagraph and updates to Smart Group Shot (They are lenses for camera app)
on April 8, 2012
I am loving this phone way too much to give a completely objective review. But I can tell you something.
The black of the screen is so dark that you almost cannot distinguish it from the bezel! Its awesome! On a more technical term, the black part of the screen literally does not consume any power, and as windows phone has more black than any other color in its UI, the battery life gets a significant boost from it.
LTE is awesome. My LTE speed is almost as much as I get in my home by WiFi! YouTube in HQ!
The front-facing camera is amazing. If video chat has any preference at all, this is the phone to get. I am comparing to HTC Titan.
The build quality! If anyone is not familiar with Nokia's build quality, they can buy this phone eyes closed. Easily the best built phone in market. It lives up to Nokia's standard easily.
The phone feels really superior to hold. The side of the phone is rounded, not boxy or edgy, so its really easy to hold. And the texture of the poly-carbonate body makes thing even sweeter.
Fantastic call quality. Nokia held up to their reputation in call quality. The positioning of the external speaker allows you to listen to music or talk on speakerphone regardless of which side of the phone is facing up.
If you are buying this under contract, I challenge anyone to find a better deal than this phone at under $100/$50. This is not a flawless phone, but if you look at the price, it blows all other phones out of the water.
BUY THIS PHONE.
on April 11, 2012
And this is not meant to be a criticism of Iphone. Lumia 900 is that good. Having been an IPhone fanatic for the past 2.5 years, I am finally out of its magic spell. Hallelujah.
This phone is devoid of the million apps you never use but hope to use one day. It has only the precious cores that you use over and over at FASTEST ACCESS points. Talking of speed, comparing this phone's 4G LTE with Iphone's 3G is like comparing an F16 to an F4 Phantom. Until Iphone comes up with 4G LTE capability, they really cannot be compared in terms of speed. ("Iphone 4" or "Iphone 4S" may be deceptive since it is only a 3G phone, all the more confusing since its previous versions, 3G and 3GS, were named after network standards.) This phone makes web surfing eminently enjoyable. Video streaming speed is phenomenal -- no buffering issue whatsoever! I watched the baseball and news clips without a pause while walking on the street, which is something that does not happen always even with my slow home wifi! These were unthinkable feats with my previous Iphone 4S.
Plus I can painlessly transfer all my Windows office files and view them while commuting. I have a long commute, which makes me comment on this phone's amazing battery capacity. It just goes on and on. You can actually leave home without taking a charger to your office, use it full day (including browsing and streaming) without worrying about the juice running out. How comforting and refreshing. Plus, needless to say, there is no need for encoding all your movies to be compatible with Apple regime. And this phone is a beauty to behold -- design-wise, I even think it fits Steve's vision better than the current Iphone. Last but most importantly, this phone's voice quality is stunning (ie no hauling, no echoing, but just crystal clear voice) -- unfortunately the same could not be said of my Iphone 4S.
To be sure, I miss a few nice games and apps that were on my Iphone. (Yes, Steve was a genius.) But I have my Ipad and Ipod for those. I do not need to carry them all on my phone at the same time and it's not like saying good-bye to the Apple ecosystem with all my purchased contents. To my surprise, I found parting with my Iphone was no heart-breaking event. The priorities simply could not be ignored: best possible phone first, fastest possible browser second and other nice things third. It just took a bit of courage to try something new and I am so glad I did just that. Buying a phone is not like marrying someone.
All in all, I am one happy consumer with a big smile on my face every time I use my phone. Every morning I wake up and open my eyes, I reach for my phone next to my pillow. Lumia 900 finally nailed everything I wanted in a phone. I have not been this passionate about a product since... well my first Iphone, Iphone 3GS. Buy this and you will not regret, at this price or at any other offered by the competition.
(UPDATE) I just read on the news that because of some software glitch (which I am not even aware of by the way), I am offered a $100 AUTOMATIC reduction on my phone bill (with no need to send coupons etc) with either free exchange or free fix. Unbelievable. When was the last time I received this level of customer care from ANY company? Not even Apple -- I only remember Steve's offering a free lesson on how to hold an Iphone correctly when customers complained of its antenna problem. Now, this is a preemptive customer care at its best, full of good will. Thank you, Nokia, and I hope all other phone companies follow your practice.
(UPDATE2) I just downloaded and installed the software update offered by Nokia. I have not noticed any difference since I had not found any symptom in the first place but I did it anyway and will take the $100 credit. Nokia did this a few days sooner than the date it promised to do by (April 16). I think it set the bar a notch higher for all other companies, especially Apple with its cash to spare, in times when customers are in sore need of bargains and discounts. When Apple launches its Iphone 5, it is bound to have some glitches and I would be truly interested in seeing how Apple handles the situation. For now, Nokia has won my heart.
on April 8, 2012
I received my lumia 900 immediately before a drive to NYC and learned how to use it while coping with the stresses of being a tourist and I loved it. The entire is is seamlessly integrated and beautiful. The location services and walking directions came in very handy and LTE was incredible. It makes my home wireless look bad. One thing that threw me at first was the power button on the side but after using it there is no other place it should be. It always sits at your thumb so you don't have to fumble around when you pull it out of your pocket or the screen times out. The camera button also came in handy, much more useful than a software button. I read reviews that said the screen had a low resolution but I'm not sure how anyone would notice it without a microscope. The screen is beautiful and the colors are amazing. The only part of the phone I haven't tested thoroughly is the app store because I don't feel like i'm lacking anything. After two days I still can't come up with anything negative to write about the lumia 900.
on April 8, 2012
I am in love with the phone on day 1 seriously. When was the last time I loved something on day 1 (besides my girl:)).
The only thing that I find that needs to be improved now that I am transitioning from the Iphone4 is the App market. I used a lot of financial tools llike Yahoo Finance, CNBC, Chase Bank, Discover Bank, scottrade, fidelity and 21st century apart from the avaiblable Bank Of America. I also used United Airlines, Pandora, di Radio, Opera, Starbucks, the tomtom nav (was really good cause of the integration with the phone), Zynga games, instagram, ADP.
The other part that I would have liked them to have is a better quality camera. But I am not complaining too much there but still.
In the end, I love the lumia 900. Am sure the App Market will get better. Not sure if Phone can get better though.
on April 13, 2012
As a long time IT professional, gadget junkie and smartphone user since the beginning, most people assume I love Android devices. While some are great, the last thing I want to do at this point of my life is fiddle with my phone after working with technology daily. I want my stuff to work without a lot of time invested. Add to that my last Android, a supposed dual core powerhouse, was the slowest smartphone I have used to date. With that said if this was my younger days I would probably welcome and enjoy all that Android has to offer, even now I can certainly appreciate it.
I used blackberry for years. Not a very entertaining device but as a communication device it was one of the best. Great reception, great battery life, great email, great phone calls and speaker, and very durable too. In business those are the "must have" requirements for a communication device.
I used iphones for a while and my wife has since the first one. While they are certainly a wonderful device with great build quality they just have/had too many issues with those "must have" requirements. It seemed to me that communication was an afterthought. I also never cared for Apple's approach to customer service. I know many people claim great experiences but that is not the case for me. And that includes for the iphone and other Apples products. I am also a certified Apple technician and had the great displeasure of configuring, administrating and intergrating Apple systems into networks back in the "appletalk" days. What a nightmare!!! Add to that their proprietary nonsense, case requirements and being forced to live the "Apple" lifestyle and they are just not for me. Plus the way the handles the antenna issue just erked me. Once again, that being said I can understand their popularity. With a great industrial design, typical Apple build quality and ease of use, many people find them a pleasure to own. It's a shame really that they require a case that covers up that beautiful design. Antenna issues aside they still need a case due to fragility. What is the sense?
When the new windows phone came out I was not even aware of it. As an old Microsoft beta tester I was asked to try it. I used a windows 6.? phone once and hated it! While it was functional is was huge, slow, had the worst battery life of any phone I ever tried and was just plain boring.
I recieved a Samsung Focus with the first software version. The hardware was typical Samsung, the look and feel of cheap plastic made the build quality seem poor. I powered it up and within 30 minutes of use was rather impressed. Even my wife, a graphic artist and life-long Apple devotee, was impressed with the functionality of the OS. It seemed to have even greater simplicity than the mighty iphone. OK, lets see how it does day to day. I synced up my contacts and put down the Android device I had been using at the time. After a week I was even more impressed. It certainly held up to the claims. I found it quicker to accomplish daily tasks and stay organized. It was fluid, intuitive and a real pleasure. There were only 5,000 apps available and the OS was missing some simple functions that were really requirements, but I saw the possibilities! With the release of 7.5 (naturally I got the update long before the public) I was using the phone as my daily device. The Samsung phone proved to be extremely durable as I am very tough on phones and never, ever use a case. It is actually still going strong as my 6 year old daughter uses it as a gaming/music device now. Last I picked it up it was covered with dings and jelly, or something sticky and nasty. Still working fine though.
So this brings me to the Nokia. I was around for the very beginning of the cell phone days, actually the pager days. Nokia was the king back then. When you wanted great hardware, great reception and the best battery life you looked no further. Most businesses, including the large corporation I worked for, used Nokia hardware for their communication needs. When I saw this coming out I signed up for the pre-order. The first device I ever pre-ordered. While I love gadgets I am a patient man and never had the urge to pre-order anything, forget about waiting on long lines.
I recieved the device on Friday, April 6th like most pre-order's. As soon as I removed it from the box I knew it was a keeper. I was already enjoying the OS, the design and build quality was what had been missing. This is a beautiful phone! My wife, the Apple devotee, pulled it from my hands and said, "ooh nice let me check it out".
After her approval I set the phone up, which was a breeze. I must say I am extremely impressed with the design and build. I do have large hands so the size is great for me.
I am not an app nut so I am fine with what there is now. Sure I will play with new apps that come out and possibly purchase some but the phone itself does all I require it to do without apps. I only have some productivity apps and games for passing the time.
Zune has been my choice for a few years now so that is easy.
My initial requirements for a device is for it to work as what it is, a communication device! Besides the great email and messaging features of the OS, this phone has great reception and call quality, actually the best I have experienced since my last blackberry.
The battery is good, not great but it gets me through a day without a cord. I have high expectations and do not think any modern smartphones provide enough battery life.
I have seen complaints about the buttons but I love the layout. I never cared for the power/sleep button on the top of a phone as it required me to use a second hand to easily press it. It only took me a couple of days to become comfortable with the button locations. I have also seen complaints about the metal bezel around the camera lense scratching (petty). Well it is metal and the iphone 4's design scratches readily but you would never know that due to the case requirements. Besides, a little rubbing with a jewelers cloth will make it look pretty agaiin if that's important to you. While I like a good looking design it is still a tool to me, so function over form is always a priority.
Other complaints I've heard:
Wifi goes off under lock screen: Why should it be on wasting battery under a locked screen. I actually like that feature though I guess it would be good to be user selected.
The camera is not great: Why I did expect it to be a little better I can't say I am unhappy with it compared to other phone cameras. The iphone does certainly take better shots in default auto mode, as does my buddies HTC. The Nokia can actually take good shots if you adjust some settings, which I believe is where the problem is. Most people, including myself, want good shots on full auto and the default settings on auto are lacking. I still do not believe there are any phone cameras that are great for photo's. I think a dedicated camera is still a requirement, at least until I can get an optical zoom.
In the end, while I am not married to any system as a whole, the Windows OS just fits my lifestyle and personality for many reasons. It ties in great with the business products I use daily. I am a big fan of the K.I.S.S. philosophy and this OS is so simple and quick to use in daily life. It just works! It is fast, has low hardware requirements, it is buttery smooth and takes little thought or input to get things done. Plus I always disliked icons. I was never a person to have my pc desktop full of silly icon shortcuts like I see so often. It is messy to me and one of my biggest issues with iphones.
Add to that it the great Nokia hardware, which looks and functions great, and for me this is a keeper. Also my middle school age daughter is getting her first phone for her birthday next month. She has a choice of any phone she wants and we were positive she would choose and iphone as she has been using my wifes for years. Well she picked a Windows phone, first the new Samsung Focus 2. But now she wants the Nokia!!!