Windows Phone Revived Nokia Lumia 930 Review

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We believe this is the best Windows Phone yet from Microsoft and Nokia, but there’s still room for improvement

A Nokia Lumia Icon, by any other name, is called the Nokia Lumia 930 here. And it’s nearly identical to the Verizon-exclusive model launched in the US earlier this year.

Powered by the same speedy quad-core processor, huge full HD screen and 20MP camera with its amazing PureView imaging technology, the only real difference is in its updated Windows Phone 8.1. That, and the multiple colour options and a new ‘Sensor’Core’ feature that brings low-power motionsensing for fitness applications.

Description: Nokia Lumia 930

Nokia Lumia 930

A fine fit

Measuring 9.8mm, this isn’t your typical slim phone. Fortunately, it doesn’t feel particularly hefty in your hand or uncomfortable in your jeans pocket. Its metalrimmed body and slightly curved Gorilla Glass 3 screen make for a natural fit. The matte plastic back feels quite nice to touch but draws questionable looks. Spend a few good minutes, and you’ll get used to the placement of the buttons.

In living colours

The 5in full HD LCD screen, which works out to 441 pixels per inch, is exceptionally vivid and bright. Expect gloriously juicy colours and sharp detail, even when you’re outdoors in bright sunlight. Wide viewing angles? It’s got that too. Almost perfect, until we noticed a slightly off-putting smearing while scrolling quickly down web pages. Otherwise, it’s mostly great for everything else.

Description: Nokia Lumia 930 side view

Nokia Lumia 930 side view

Dragon fire 

The beefy quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor on board, along with 2GB of RAM, grunt with absolute power. Not once did we spot any performance-related sluggishness with apps, games or general UI shenanigans. Numberswise, , it scored a decent 25,302. Not exactly near the recent highend smartphone realm, but it’s close enough.

An eye for detail

Its PureView camera boasts a 20MP sensor instead of the excellent 41MP version used on the Lumia 1020. Together with a wide aperture of F2.4, a dual LED flash and Carl Zeiss optics, these components produce clear and sharp images, even in very low light conditions. Video can be captured at 1080p HD quality and either 30, 25 or 24fps, and looks excellent for a phone.

Description: Nokia Lumia 930 back view

Nokia Lumia 930 back view

The Windows Phone caveat

While popular apps like Spotify and WhatsApp have joined Windows Phone, there’s a whole lot more missing. Same goes for Cortana, Microsoft’s intelligent assistant, which isn’t available here. Its tile-based UI, however is a joy to use. It’s as different as night and day compared to other smartphone interfaces but you’ll pick it up pretty fast - a clear sign of good design.

One-day wonder

Intensive video watching and gaming will kick the battery meter down by 10% within an hour. Moderate the usage, and it should give a day’s worth of calls, messages and web surfing. A marathon runner it isn’t, but the Lumia 930 keeps you busy throughout the day, right to the very second you nod off. If all else fails, activate its battery saver mode.

Tech specs

·         Operating system: Windows Phone 8.1

·         Processor: 2.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800

·         RAM: 2GB

·         Screen: 5in LCD at 1920 x 1080 resolution (441 ppi)

·         Camera: 20MP PureView rear (1080p video @ 30fps), 1.2MP front camera

·         Storage: 32GB (plus 7GB free cloud storage)

·         Connectivity: 3G/4G, Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi (a/b/g/n/ac), NFC, USB 2.0

·         Battery: 2420mAh

·         Dimensions: 137 x 71 x 9.8mm

·         Weight: 167g

·         Price: $789


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