#MeetLumiaDUS November 2013: Lumia 1520, 1320 and 2520

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Just like in February Nokia invited many bloggers from all around Germany to take a look at newest products and have a nice day out. This time the focus – of course – is on Nokia’s new announced devices: The Lumia 1520, 1320 and 2520. We were able to take a detailed look at these devices without the rush on Nokia World and here are my impressions.

Lumia 1520

With the Nokia Lumia 1520 the company has put everything which is possible into a slim smartphone: Beginning with a 20MPX PureView Zeiss Optics camera, over a 6” FullHD super bright super sensitive IPS screen to quad band LTE and wireless charging. The Lumia 1520 has everything a smartphone can have. The super big device is very thin and – for its size – very light and therefore it feels great in the hand. For my small hands it is too big (I would have preferred 5.5”) but many others will love the size. And getting used to using such big devices is very easy: Although the 1520 is too big for me, after ten minutes with it my Lumia 920 felt very small.

The screen is simply amazing. There is not a single pixel visible, movements are crisply clear (even better than on the Lumia 920), and it is bright as the sun. And even on the brightest level the black of the screen is still very good. Colors shine, the contrast is very high. I immediately felt in love.

In terms of performance the device is a step forward. However, it is not always faster and it never is MUCH faster. Still, the people hub opened almost double as quick as on my Lumia 920.

Together with the Lumia 1520 comes a nice accessory: A flip case which also works as a stand for the device. The front is a three divided rubber which feels very nice but is a little bit inflexible (which I  was told to be because it is a prototype – the final version will probably be better). When folded to the back the phone does not feel much thicker. I really like this accessory. Also nice, but too expensive in my opinion, is the Portable Wireless Charging Pad. The idea is great: You put your phone in your pocket and the charger to it and your phone will charge whenever you are on the way. The charger is handy and light as well as nice looking but with an RRP of €99- too expensive.

As you can see, everything is very nice. I won’t tell about the camera here as the camera software wasn’t final but design, screen, performance and features are great.

However, there are two things which really bug me:

  • 1st, many elements on the screen are not optimized for the huge screen. I am not talking about clarity of icons: Even live tiles not optimized for 1080p were very sharp so what I am talking about is the size. Fonts, especially in the settings, are simply stretched. It would have been nice to have smaller fonts (maybe almost the size as on the Lumia 920) but then more on the screen.
  • 2nd, there is no stylus support. I think on such huge screen phones a stylus is a great addition: Simply taking notes or drawing a picture with a stylus which works like a real pen works so great on 6”.

The Lumia 1520 was called “a new communicator”: Smart, knows everything, can do everything and is big! Everything is the best you can find on the market today, except the camera, which is the 2nd best. €799 is a high price; whether it is worth it only the future will show.

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Lumia 1320

The Lumia 1320 is very similar to the Lumia 1520: Similar hardware, same size, but a lower price. The lower price point is clearly visible. The device does not feel cheap, but the changeable covers do not have the same great feeling as the Lumia 1520 has. It still feels nice in the hand and, especially because of the rounded corners, is easier to hold than other big screen phones. The Lumia 1320 only sports a Snapdragon 400 instead of a 800 which is noticeable. Still, the S400 was faster than the Lumia 920. Unlike the Lumia 1520 which features quad band cat 4 LTE the Lumia 1320 “only” features normal tri band LTE which is also due to the lower price.

The screen is both impressing and disappointing at once: While colors and brightness are very nice the pixels huge. 720p is simply not enough for 6”. I am not saying the device should have FullHD as it is an affordable phone but this is something you will notice!

Unfortunately I was not able to check out Nokia Story Teller as it was not installed fully on both the devices I had.

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Lumia 2520

The Nokia Lumia 2520 is Nokia’s first tablet ever and while it is not a hardware monster it is a great performing device with many features. Windows RT was chosen because it is said to be future-proof, it is the result of the multi platform strategy, it is the bridge between Windows Phone and the desktop version and Office is preinstalled.

We were demonstrated one feature which is simple yet a great idea. When your Lumia is connected to the tablet via Bluetooth you can use the telecommunication features of it on your Lumia tablet: You can pick up calls or even text people. In situations where your Lumia is charging a few meters away from you on the charging plate this feature may come in very handy.

The tablet is great performing. Everything opens very fast – mostly more than twice faster than on my first gen Windows RT tablet. It runs buttery smooth and multitasking is no problem. I was not able to run more than two apps at once but this is probably because it is still a prototype. The screen is – same as on the Lumia 1520 – very beautiful. Pixels are barely visible (but visible) but everything is very crisply clear. I also think it has the same screen as the Lumia 1520 only in bigger as colors, brightness and contrast are identical.

Of course with a Nokia device HERE Maps needs to be on board. HERE Maps on Windows RT is much better than Bing’s solution. The UI is intuitive and easy to use and also functional. Next to displaying all places nearby there, of course, also is the synchronization between all Nokia devices with the same Nokia account. I was told the cloud is getting more important every day and there will be a time when almost nothing is stored on devices themselves so improving the cloud and trying to use all its capacities is an important part of Nokia’s and Microsoft’s cooperation.

David Akinjise also said the tablet was designed to feel simply great in the hand. And yes, this target was implanted very well. The device is a real hand flatterer. It is thicker than my Asus Vivotab RT but much better in the hand, really.

A nice addition to the already great tablet could have been the keyboard case but I thought it to be implemented badly. The Surface’s keyboard is better. On the Lumia you first need to pull up the first flap on the top and then you can set free the keyboard and start typing. The flap on the top contains a full featured touchpad but always stands away and does not lay flat on the table. I really hope this is due the prototype status. However, the idea of adding a battery and multiple USB ports to the keyboard is nice and closes the gap between tablets and notebooks very nicely.

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What I can say: Nokia’s three new Lumia devices are a perfect addition to the actual portfolio. I would have whished Nokia to continue and to release the next portfolio (X30) especially now as it goes forward for the Finnish company, but that is a different topic. The three devices seem to do what they are made for very well and I am looking forward to seeing the development of the sales and the feedback.

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