Nokia Lumia 900 – Software and Battery Life Review

The highlight of Nokia devices is their exclusive apps. Are they enough to make the Lumia 900 worth it compared to the other Windows Phones?

In terms of exclusive apps, Nokia Drive is by far the main highlight. Nokia Drive is a 100% free turn-by-turn navigation app, and it works perfectly! It is nearly as accurate as a standalone GPS unit, which is incredible. Watch our hands-on with the older version of Nokia Drive if you don’t believe me. Instructions are crisp, turning prompts are well placed, and the app now supports full offline mode!

In addition, Nokia also gives you Nokia Maps (great if you’re not in the United States, because Bing Maps is apparently terrible in other countries), and Nokia Transit (a public transportation app that only works for certain cities).

Windows Phone is also an excellent operating system for most smartphone users. It’s easy to learn and does a good job of linking all your social accounts into one. If you’re new to smartphones, you should either buy a Windows Phone or an iPhone (Android would be far too complicated in my opinion). Windows Phone provides a seamlessly smooth experience without many glitches or issues.

However, not everything about Windows Phone is perfect. (Edit) Don’t get me wrong, I love WP7, but nothing is perfect! Notifications are magically gone if you don’t respond to them within a few seconds, leaving you completely in the dark never knowing what you missed. Live Tiles can be hit-and-miss, due to some of the developer restrictions (Tiles can only be updated every 30 minutes for example, so the weather won’t actually be “live”). And finally, Windows Phone is missing a number of major applications which some users may find a disappointment.

You can’t play Draw Something with your friends, despite the fact that everyone else is playing it. You can’t do transactions via Wells Fargo since they don’t have an app on WP7. And you have to actually call Dominos instead of using an app to order your pizza (an app would be easier since you can actually see everything on their menu compared to a phone call where you can’t).

Microsoft could also help to improve third-party apps, since many apps are slow to load. This could be partially due to Sliverlight (managed code) vs native code on the iPhone, but even Android apps (Java, managed) load faster! Something needs to be fixed here so that WP7 apps aren’t at a disadvantaged.

Also, the scrolling on the touchscreen is oddly slower than what it should be. is sort of clunky. While scrolling through the homescreen, your scroll flicks don’t register correctly and the movements feel slower than normal. The Lumia 800, 710, HTC Radar, Titan, and Samsung Focus S don’t have these issues, so I’m not sure what went wrong with the Lumia 900. It’s not as bad as the Samsung Focus Flash (that one’s scrolling was so terrible it was unusable), but the scrolling makes the Lumia 900 feel less fluid and responsive. Reader Mab664 confirmed that “the scrolling is at least 2x as slow” as his Focus.


Battery Life
It’s great! For a large phone with LTE support, the battery can last you through the day.

Overall, Nokia did a great job (minus the touchscreen) on the Lumia 900 with the excellent navigation app they created. Microsoft definitely could improve WP7, but the Lumia 900 is still a great device for most smartphone users!

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