REVIEWS

Saeco Minuto

Martian Notifier watch

Runtastic Orbit fitness tracking wearable

iPhone 6 Plus

iPhone 6

Moto 360

Moto X (2014)

Mazda CX-5 2015

MacPhun Software's Lost Photos

Parrot Zik Yellow Gold bluetooth headphones

Henge Docks Vertical Docking Station for MacBook Pro

Toshiba Canvio AeroMobile Wireless SSD

Sodastream's Home Carbonation System

TomTom Go 500 GPS

Nio Tag

LG G3

Jabra ROX Wireless in-ear headphones

SEIDIO's Innocell adds battery life for iPhone5/5S

Parrot Asteroid SMART

Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4

Apple 13-inch MacBook Air (2014)

ASUS PB287 4K monitor

Hyundai Santa Fe XL 2014

Tech Armor SlimProtect Case for iPhone 5/5s

Roku Streaming Stick

Belkin QODE "Thin Type" keyboard case for the iPad Air

RFID fraud-proof HuMn wallet

Motorola Moto E

Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet

Sony Xperia Z2

Sony SRS-X9 ultra premium personal speaker

Shiny Soap frees up space on Macs with one click

Hyundai Veloster Turbo 2014

Arts Your Case StrongFit Silicon case for iPhone 5/5S

Fugoo Style Bluetooth Speakers

LG G Flex on Rogers

Red Clock app for iPhone weather and alarm

ASUS ZenBook UX310

Dyson DC62 Hand-Held Vacuum

Pelican ProGear CE1150 Protector Series case for iPhone 5/5s

Philips AirFryer

Samsung Galaxy TabPRO 8.4

ASUS VivoPC

Alcatel OneTouch Idol X

Nomad ChargeKey for iPhone

Apple Mac Pro (2013)

Kensington Comercio soft folio case for iPad Air

Olympus OM-D E-M1 Micro Four Thirds camera

Jawbone UP24 Fitness Tracker

Dell Venue 8 Pro's wireless keyboard and case

ASUS MeMO Pad 8

Logitech Ultrathin Bluetooth keyboard for Apple's iPad Air

2013 GMC Terrain

Honeywell HFD320 AirGenius 5 Air Cleaner & Odor Reducer

Dell Venue 8 Pro Tablet

TomTom US & Canada App for Android

Withings Pulse fitness tracker

Sonos PLAY:1 wireless streaming speaker

Martian Passport series smartwatch

Nextivity Cel-Fi RS2 Signal Strength booster

HTC Desire (2013)

Motorola Moto G

iPad mini with Retina Display

Nexus 5

Microsoft Surface 2

Tenqa Fit Bluetooth Earbuds for Sports

HTC One mini

Apple iPad Air

Sony Xperia Z1

BlackBerry Z30

TYLT VU Wireless Charging Stand

Keizus Quadropod + Clamp

Sphero 2.0

Chromecast

Griffin Technology WoodTone Headphones

Samsung Galaxy Note 3

Philips Saeco Poemia Espresso Machine

Nokia Lumia 1020

Huawei Ascend Mate

LG G2

Samsung Galaxy Mega

Apple 5c Case

Apple 5s Case

Apple iPhone 5s

Apple iPhone 5c

Apple Airport Extreme (2013)

Nexus 7 (2013)

Ultimate Ears Boom Bluetooth speaker and handsfree

2013 Inifiniti FX37 Crossover

Moto X

Sony Xperia Z

Huawei Ascend Y300 on Bell and Virgin

TIMEX Intelligent Quartz Linear Indicator Chronograph watch

BlackBerry Q5

MIO Alpha Heart Rate Monitor

Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8-inch Android Tablet

Apple MacBook Air 13-inch (2013)

Chevrolet Sonic RS Turbo

Sensu Brush

Huawei Ascend Y210 

Apple 27-inch iMac

Dyson DC46 Turbinehead Canister Vacuum

BlackBerry Q10

« Video: RIM's PlayBook Mini Keyboard Case | Main | BlackBerry PlayBook Mini Keyboard with Trackpad coming March 23rd »
Monday
Mar122012

Review: Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phone  

Text and photos by Gadjo Cardenas Sevilla

The Nokia Lumia 800 is one of this year's important handset releases. It is the first result of the collaboration between Microsoft and Nokia and it is also the first major release to run on the latest version of Windows Phone 7.5 codenamed Mango. 

The Lumia 800, exclusive to Telus for $24 on a three year plan,  is a flagship device that showcases Nokia's vast experience in making compelling smartphones and also shows off a more mature Windows Phone OS.

I believe that the genesis of the Lumia 800 began with the Nokia N8, a superb ode to the mobile phone which, while mired by an ageing Symbian OS, was a precision-crafted smartphone with some stunning specs and features for its time including a sensational 12 megapixel camera, full HDMI out and a fresh new unibody design.

A slightly modified variant of that design,  sans HDMI and 12MP camera, made it to the N9 which many think is identical to the Lumia 800 except it the N9 less RAM and sports the Anna variant of the Symbian OS. Check out the video about the design of the Lumia 800 below.

Out of the box, the Lumia 800 is a wonder to behold and touch.

This is a premium smartphone that just makes some of shiny plastic smartphones in the market today feel cheap and inferior.

The Lumia 800 feels light but with a nicely balanced feel. It has no sharp edges or aggressive angles, the texture is smooth like a polished rock and the matte finish doesn't attract fingerprints as much as a shiny plastic case would

The care, throughtfulness and precision that went into the making of the Lumia 800 speaks volumes, it is just so rare to see this level of craftsmanship in a mass produced mobile device today.

The chalky matte surface is made from the same type of hard polymer used on hockey helmets (tougher than the aluminum used on the N8) and the screen is a glorious slab of Gorilla Glass coated with  3.7-inch 800×480 pixel ClearBlack AMOLED display that keeps blacks black, boosts saturation yet enhances outdoor viewing. The screen looks like it was poured on to the surface of the phone.

Most AMOLED displays seem extremely saturated to me, Nokia's however looks vivid without feeling artificial. The result is an easy to read screen thanks in part to the 252ppi (pixels per inch) pixel density.

The Lumia 800 is also snappy thanks to Windows Phone being inherently zippy but also because it is powered by a 1.4Ghz single-core processor of the Snapdragon variety and backed by 512MB or RAM. I found that it handled multitasking admirably and loaded applications, even more complex games, quite quickly.

The 3.7 inch screen size may be small by today's excessive standards but it is just fine for one handed operation. I did find the Lumia 800 to be on the slippery side and found that because of its design, it is a bit hard to hold. I was delighted to discover that Nokia includes a body coloured rubber case which gives the Lumia 800 ample grip and protection without addind much bulk.

A free case! I mean who does that these days?

 


Phone call quality on the Lumia 800 is superb even if the volume is relatively low. But thanks to a dual microphone setup, voices sound human and not like congested cylons. The handsfree speaker  could be louder but is sufficiently clear and not at all tinny. 

The 1450mAh internal battery is designed to churn out 7 or more hours and we experienced a good 6.5 hours with heavy use with the screen brightness turned down. An upcoming update is supposed to improve this further so its good to know that is on its way.

In terms of storage, users get 16GB and that's it. This should be sufficient, although I wonder why no concession was made for a microSD expansion card. Perhaps this is more of a Microsoft thing than a Nokia thing.

The Lumia 800 seems targeted to attract iPhone 4S users, the two phones share very similar dimensions even if their shapes are quite different.

Both are solidly constructed quality devices with sealed batteries sporting screens that are almost the same size (the iPhone 4S is smaller at 3.5 inches and it sports that luscious Retina Display.

I was quite pleased to find out that the Lumia 800 uses a MicroSIM, which allowed me to pop in my iPhone 4S SIM card for the duration of the testing period. We were ablet to cruise HSDPA speeds on Telus's networks. LTE would have been nice but the beauty of Windows Phone is that you don't really feel anything is taking too much time to load.

The only other ports on the Lumia 800 are a well concealed microUSB port for charging and connecting to a PC and the headphone port.

The navigation buttons for Windows Phone are soft-touch buttons that light up only when the phone is woken from sleep. The volume keys, the power and wake button as well as the dedicated camera button (yes!).

Camera performance is fast and easily accessible anytime through the dedicated camera button on the lower right side.

While not as impressive as the 12 megapixel camera on the N8 which had a larger sensor to begin with, the Lumia 800 can take decent photos in well lit conditions and thanks to the way Windows Phone is designed getting to the camera is fairly fast.

The Lumia 800 features a Carl Zeiss Tessar 28mm lens with a f/2.2 aperture. I read somewhere that it had a 5 element lens.

I found the camera to be quick to deploy and picture to picture performance was fast which is what you want for a snapshot camera.

Image quality was generally good although some tweaking of the settings was required to get the right saturation. 

Thankfully, Windows Phone offers a good range of control with its camera settings so the options are there.

The 720p HD video is above average (see below) and surprisingly crisp. We did find that it took a while to get focused but that could very well be a user-end issue on my part.

Definitely usable for YouTube or even for playback on an HDTV. There is no front facing camera on this smartphone which is fine for most users but those with a huge desire to video chat might want to wait for the larger Lumia 900 coming in a month or so.

The Lumia 800's camera is one of the better cameras in a smartphone that we've tested this year and beats our previous Windows Phone favourite from last year - Samsung's Focus in terms of quality and overall performance.

I was happy to find out that Nokia also curates its own apps within the Windows Marketplace called the Nokia Collection. Some of the gems found here include Nokia Drive (navigation with turn by turn voice). Nokia Maps, TuneIn Radio, Contacts Transfer, Network Setup are all useful and free.


Some of the notable apps that came with the Lumia 800 include Local Scout which is similar to Yelp as a navigation based tool to discover nearby events, restaurants and destinations which should be useful for tourists and people who are clueless about the goings on in their own backyard.

All-in-all, the Nokia Lumia 800 is the best option for a Windows Phone handset in the market today. No point looking at anything else in Canada right now.

The Lumia 800 is just so well put together and it is very capable, it will  satisfy most smartphone user's needs and in the most delightful manner. 

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

References (4)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.
  • Response
    Review: Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phone - Canadian Reviewer - News, Reviews and Opinion with a Canadian Perspective
  • Response
    Review: Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phone   - Canadian Reviewer - News, Reviews and Opinion with a Canadian Perspective
  • Response
    Response: crystal chandelier
    Review: Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phone - Canadian Reviewer - News, Reviews and Opinion with a Canadian Perspective
  • Response
    Response: dumpsters
    Review: Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phone - Canadian Reviewer - News, Reviews and Opinion with a Canadian Perspective

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>