October 31, 2012

Nokia Lumia 920 & Windows Phone 8 First Look

I am attending BUILD this week and trying to do my best to get blog posts out all week to help share information a bit faster than I might normally do.  One of the big things if you followed the event on Twitter or any other medium today and that is that attendees were given a few great goodies!  100Gb of SkyDrive Storage, a Surface RT, and a Lumia 920 phone!  Pretty great haul!  Tonight as soon as I got back to my hotel I jumped right in to the phone!

A bit of Back Story

Before I jump into the the individual items on this topic I thought I would first give a little back story on my phone use, and my history with devices.  At this point I think I have used about every device that is available under the sun.  iPhone, Android, Windows Phone, and even BlackBerry, I've tried them all.  Earlier this year I dropped my iPhone for good and went with my Lumia 900.  I've been very happy with the phone for the most part, but I knew there could be more.

Regardless of which phone I would be evaluating I have decided that the Windows Phone Platform better suits my needs and going back to an iPhone isn't really an option as I wouldn't want to miss out on the functionality that I get with Windows Phone.  I think it is very important for me to start out with that.  (If there is enough interest I might blog about this topic specifically in the future.)

Nokia 920 Physical Overview

Box Welcome

The phones that were distributed to BUILD attendees from what I gather are special edition phones, unlocked and "For Developer" per the notes on the box and the few magic settings that I found when poking around. As soon as I opened the box and pulled out the phone I was greeted by the message you see to the left, which I thought was pretty funny! It was also amazingly accurate as within just a few minutes I was tweeting about the device.

Comparing the 920 to the 900 you will find that the 920 appears to be just a small fraction larger than the 900 but the phone feels really solid in your hand and I find it a bit less "Slippery" than my 900. Turning on the device I found the brilliant screen that I have come to expect from the Nokia devices with truly vivid colors.

Using the Phone

Moving forward from the fancy box and nice looking hardware and on to the most important thing, performance! How does it compare to the 900? Well, honestly I don't have words to express this at the moment. The time to launch apps, switch between apps, take pictures, etc is so much less than what it was on the old device that really in a side-by-side comparison there isn't a comparison. The performance is truly amazing, and what one was always hoping for with a Windows Phone device.

OS Changes


I will try to dive into specific changes in future posts, but I wanted to take a moment to post about one of my favorite Windows Phone 8 changes and those were the changes around how you can manage and customize the start page. I love the live tile concept, but I always hated the fact that some of the live tiles took up so much space and that had so much scrolling to do. The image to the left was taken from my 920 this evening. What you are seeing is almost all of the applications that I used to have pinned to the start, arranged in a way that I like and all available without any scrolling. To get these same items on the start screen on my Nokia Lumia 900 it takes over 3 full screens! This ease of access combined with the increased performance are by far my first two favorite things about Windows Phone 8!

What's Next

There is so much going on here at BUILD and so many things that I want to be blogging about so I don't know when I will get the next installment out. But I can tell you I can't wait to get my hand on a wireless charger and to get some more time in on my Lumia 920 for a follow up review. If there is anything specific you would like to discuss please feel free to post below.

tags: Windows Phone
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