Just upgraded my iP4 to a Lumia 920; Small Review and Comparison

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by Xikum, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2011
    #1
    So, my phone contract had run out after about 30 months with my iPhone 4. I decided that I would get a new phone instead of taking out another SIM-only deal, so I decided to look around and I got myself the Nokia Lumia 920. Like most iOS->Android/WP converts, it was mostly because I wanted a change and was simply fed up of iOS. So, I got myself a white 920 and I've been using it for about 2 weeks now. I'll write here my thoughts and views on the phone, along with an extract or two about why I picked it over the iP5.

    The phone itself
    The 920 is a really beautiful phone. The glass is slightly curved and touching it feels terrific. The 4.5" gorilla glass screen is also incredibly responsive, being able to be used even when wearing gloves, and is also full 720p with great colours, viewing angles, and can even be used in direct sunlight.
    The body it a single piece of polycarbonate, and it feels really solid (although ever so slightly slippery). It's quite weighty; it has a big of 'clunk' to it, but personally I actually like that; it feels solid, and well built. If I am to drop it, I dont fear that the screen or body is going to end up cracked or scratched. While I was holding the iP5, I actually felt it was a little too light. Im not 100% confident that if it was to accidentally slip out of my hands while I'm taking it out of my pocket that it would end up in the same condition as it was 10 seconds ago. I've also heard that the back panel is very scratch-sensitive, while this 920 certainly doesnt feel this way.

    Windows Phone 8; Basics
    Shortly put, I really like WP8. The live tiles are a really good, innovative GUI which are not only pretty, but useful. There are quite a lot of 3rd party apps that take advantage of the live tile features, and it means that you dont have to open apps/get your information/go back. It takes a bit of getting used to, but it certainly works. WP8 itself is beautiful and heavily based on typography. The OS makes really good use of different font sizes to separate menus into sub-menus, making it easy to navigate around and such.
    The phone has 3 software buttons; back, home, and search. Back does exactly that, but also if you hold in the button you get the multitasking screen. I much prefer this to having to double click the iPhone button; its a lot easier. Also, software buttons (I feel) are definitely the way to go.
    The 'search' button brings up Bing, which you use as a search engine. Its actually more useful than I anticipated, and Bing works really well. You can search for something and it will bring up the search results; swipe left and right will bring up Bing images, videos, local related news, etc. However, what is really good is you can actually make Bing scan text, and it can do all sorts of stuff like recognise the words, and then translate the entire text! My girlfriend is a native French speaker and she assures me that the French it came out with is understandable after test translating a few English pages. It might not help you out every day in life, but it could be useful on a holiday or whatnot. It recognises printed words 100%, although hand writing can be a little iffy.
    Another nice Bing feature is you can tell it to listen to background music, and it will find the song that is playing. I know there are 3rd party apps in iOS that can do this, but its still a good built-in feature.
    My final point about Bing; voice recognition. I'm Scottish, and Siri simply does not understand me. It doesnt understand my brother. It doesnt understand my mum, my dad, my aunt, or anybody. As a general rule, Scottish people dont do voice recognition. But Bing on the other hand figures out my voice perfectly! This might not sound like a big thing to Americans who have been privileged to having voice recognition based upon their accents, but its truly a marvel to behold in Scotland :D.

    Built in Apps
    So, Nokia/Microsoft include a few apps out the box, and also a quite a lot for you to download (if you wish). Theres a full office suite, OneNote, Nokia Maps, Nokia Drive (a sat-nav), 'Nokia City Lense', Nokia Music, and a few other bits and pieces which I wont discuss here.
    Nokia Maps/Drive is decent. OneNote works well as a note taking platform, and syncs across your account. Having full office capabilities built in is nice, but you arent going to do any serious work on a 4.5" phone. Still, its good to be able to read .doc, .ppt, etc all from standard. Nokia City Lense is a really cool augmented reality app that brings up the location of nearby attractions like restaurants and gives you directions to them. It uses the Camera to see the environment you are in (difficult to describe, imagine just opening the camera app), then places the landmarks on the screen so you can follow them. Neat.

    What I will say is a terrific App is Nokia Music. It's an app which streams music for free. The entire song, no adverts, nothing like that. You just open it, select a genre, and it will play random songs. It has a huge amount of genres as well. I like quite heavy metal music and didn't expect the metal section to be very expansive; when I went into it, there is about 12 different sub-genres for me to choose from! The same will be true of all the other main genres, I'm sure. The app also allows you to save the song for offline listening. Overall, its great. There might be Apps on iOS like this, but I never used them; to have it built in and designed specifically for the OS is great.

    About the marketplace. A lot of people are critical of WP 'lack' of Apps. I havent found this to be the case in the sense that there are no apps that I need, and that arent there. However, I am not the the most app-heavy user, so this could still be a stumbling point for some. This is based on your usage. However, WP is growing and I expect even more developers to start supporting WP8.

    There is one negative here, and it is actually quite a big one. There is no built in PDF reader. You have to go the app store and download one which is designed by Microsoft, and let me tell you; its garbage. You can download PDFs and open them, but you cant delete them afterwards. No, seriously, you read that right. You cant delete any PDFs you download. I expect this 'feature' (or should I say, basic function) to be added in the future via an update, but its horrendous that it isnt there now. I mean, it isnt as if WP8 is brand new; its been out for months, and this should have been fixed asap. I use PDFs a lot for University, and I'm already clogging up the PDF library, making it annoying to find the PDF I'm looking for. Also, the App takes an age to open up very large PDFs; I keep one of my text books on my phone, and it will take about 4 minutes to open it up. Admittedly it is over 1,000 pages, but still.

    Syncing Across Devices
    Nowadays this is critical for smartphone users. I use an iMac as my desktop computer, and it was essential that this should sync up with my phone. This is where iOS is great; everything is cross-platform and will be pushed to all your devices. I wasnt sure if WP could do this.

    Overall, it makes a very good job of it. I have my calendars in sync by using Google Calendar (as opposed to 'Calendar' of OS X) and then using this as input source for my phone calendar. The good thing about this is that you can also set the OS X Calendar app to use Google Calendar as its input, so everything still syncs perfectly across, and you can still use the OS X Calendar app.

    Windows have an App available from the OS X App store which allows you to sync music/photos/videos/etc from your iTunes library very easily. You can set it up to do this automatically, or you can do it manually. Equally, it has a function for you to transfer over files from the phone to your computer. The only thing missing compared to iOS->Mac OS X integration is syncing over WiFi, but that certainly isnt a deal breaker for me.


    Anyway, thats about all I'm going to write now. I might come back and add an update if people are interested, or answer any Qs from people. I just thought I'd write a small review incase there are any others thinking about making the iOS->WP switch.
     
  2. macrumors 68040

    Dr McKay

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2010
    Location:
    Kirkland
    #2
    A word of warning, while the body itself will not really scratch, that metal strip with the "Carl Zeiss" logo on it is a scratch magnet.
     
  3. macrumors 68020

    b166er

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    Location:
    Philly
    #3
    I love my 920. So glad I gave WP8 a second chance. January has been a big month for apps becoming available.

    I heard on the radio this morning that Nokia has sold less than one million phones in the Holiday quarter for the US market. According to Nokia, they are reevaluating their US market all together. It's such a shame, Nokia designs are fantastic in my opinion. This is the most comfortable phone I've ever used, and when it comes to smartphones it's the most durable.

    If MS would ease up on a few areas, WP8 could smoke Android. In most ways it's already smoking iOS. At least for my needs. Love my 920!
     
  4. macrumors 68030

    blackhand1001

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2009
    #4
    They have no one to blame but themselves for signing the 920 exclusive to at&t. That was a dumb move, especially considering thats the carrier that is considered the iphone carrier. Its a dumb move to take the short term money they got from the agreement because in the long run it ruined there chances of making it in the US market.

    Quite frankly I am surprised Microsoft let them even sign that agreement.
     
  5. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2012
    #5
    Nice, welcome to the WP8 party! While it needs some improvements and 3rd party loving, its a great platform. I just hope Microsoft stays totally committed to constant improvements. Ow if only they could send out update for their phones like Apple (All at once with no carriers restricting them)
     
  6. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2007
    #6
    I actually use very few apps outside the "default" ones, but one I use fairly often (and the only game I play) is SongPop. Sounds crazy -- and maybe it is -- but the fact that SongPop is not available in the WindowsPhone App store kept me from considering this phone.

    But the better camera is attractive, for sure! :)
     
  7. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    Location:
    Louisiana
    #7
    Don't feel bad, my wife isn't interested in WP, but if she was Song Pop would be a deal breaker for her too.
     
  8. macrumors 68020

    b166er

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    Location:
    Philly
    #8
    I do agree with what you are saying in regards to making the 920 an ATT exclusive. Bad move. But, Nokia sold less than one million units in the US total. That's all models, not just the 920, so while the ATT thing certainly helped no one, Nokia just straight up performed poorly in general with all carriers. I was sad to hear that news, I have always been fond of Nokia. I really can't imagine why they made the 920 an ATT only device. It seems like that move benefited literally no one, not even ATT. ATT is still rocking the iPhone like crazy, they're making plenty of money.

    A new OS like WP8 needs to be accesible to all carriers, and cheaply, in order to thrive. When iOS was the only game in town that exclusive crap worked like a charm, but now we can get iOS and Android on more or less any carrier in the US.
     
  9. macrumors 68030

    blackhand1001

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2009
    #9
    Nokia needed their flagship on all carriers to get brand exposure. No one was getting excited over the 810 or whatever it was called.
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

    #10
    I really do like WinPho but MSFT really needs to work to attract more app developers to ensure that whatever you can do on Android or iOS, you can also do on WinPho. They also need to ensure Google compatibility, especially in the wake of Google's decision to pull ActivSync support.

    That said, if you're not already tied to one set of services, Outlook (aka Hotmail) is fine and you can expect the Nokia to play nice with your corporate Exchange Server.
     
  11. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2011
    #11
    More like a downgrade to me
     
  12. macrumors 68030

    Sedrick

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2010
    #12
    Thanks for the review. W8 920 is on my short list. I've played with it a few times and while it's a complete change from iOS and/or Android, it's the most innovative OS out there and I really like it. And the phone is gorgeous!

    I have no interest in iPhone 5 or 5S and I've got two open lines on my family plan that can be upgraded. I'm in no hurry to get another phone, so I'll wait to see what Apple comes up with this year vis-à-vis an iPhone 6 around October. If it's still the same small 2" wide slab they have now, I'll move on.
     
  13. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2011
    #13
    In what possible way was going from an iP4 to the 920 a downgrade?

    But anyway, I think from my review you can tell that I am really enjoying it, and the change of OS; so it definitely isnt a downgrade to me.
     
  14. macrumors 68020

    b166er

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2010
    Location:
    Philly
    #14
    The W8 app selection reminds me a lot of the Apple and Android apps we saw a few years ago. It is getting better for sure, but I think every platform kind of has to go through that "fart app stage."
     
  15. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    Location:
    Louisiana
    #15
    I'm ok with the app selection WP8 offers for my use, but for the platforms sake I hope some of the big ones like Pandora and Instagram come soon. My biggest issue is the Facebook app is horrible. The WP7 version wasn't very good, but it was better than the WP8 version.
     
  16. macrumors 68000

    roxxette

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2011
    #16
    Skype integration alone is a A++ that windows 8 have.
     
  17. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2012
    #17
    If youre using a 900, yes, it will scratch, but they changed it on the 920 to a ceramic strip so it definitely is far from a scratch magnet.
     
  18. macrumors member

    trvsglr

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2009
    #18

    Thank you very much for your review. I am seriously considering giving up my iPhone 5 for the Lumia 920. Ive used iPhones ever since the 3G so I am very nervous about making that switch. I feel like I'm going to really regret it, but the more I look into this phone the more I like it. How is the battery life? I can get about a full day from my iPhone 5 give or take. Also would I be able to put my iTunes library onto the Lumia 920?
     
  19. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2011
    #19
    I get over a day and a half battery life. So if I charge it up overnight so its ready for Monday morning, it will run out of battery on Tuesday night.

    And yes, you can put your iTunes library on it. The Nokia comes with 32 GB storage as standard (about 28-30GB usable), and there is an app called "Windows Phone" available for OS X which just tranfers you iTunes library onto your phone. Equally, its even easier to sync your iTunes library to it via Windows (if you use it).
     
  20. macrumors member

    trvsglr

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2009
    #20
    Thank you so much for all your info, I made the change and got myself a Lumia 920 and I must say I am VERY pleased with this phone. I use a Windows PC, how can I transfer my iTunes music from my PC to the Lumia 920? I tried downloading the Zune software for my desktop but it will not recognize my phone.
     
  21. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    #21
    It's a beautiful device.
    I'm already bored of iPhone 5 and I'm waiting for the next Lumia to upgrade.

    [​IMG]
     
  22. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2011
    #22
    I'm glad I could be of help. Sadly Im not sure how to sync it with Windows, try googling it? I could be wrong, but I dont think you need Zune. I definitely know you can use the phone as a USB mass storage device (go to my computer) though.

    Microsoft have definitely designed WP8 to interact well with Windows, so I'm sure theres a very easy way!
     
  23. macrumors 6502a

    opinioncircle

    Joined:
    May 17, 2009
    #23
    As a BB user, I am impressed. Thanks for such extensive coverage, two questions though:

    - when upgrading apps, does the phone restart?
    - where to put the SIM card?
    - does Gmail sync nicely in that package ?

    I am not able to pull the trick here, money-wise, but would love to at some point !!
     
  24. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2011
    #24
    1. Nope.
    2. Located on the top of the phone is the tray which you just pop out with the little paper-clip like instrument.
    3. Yep. You can add any mail account to sync with your email inbox.
     
  25. macrumors member

    trvsglr

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2009
    #25
    This is gonna make me look stupid, but I for some reason can not find the email app on my lumia 920. I searched and searched but I have no idea where my email app is. Any thoughts?
     

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