Nokia 808 PureView Hands-on Review
What do we mean here? Well, first of all, the Nokia 808 PureView comes to succeed the N8 – the smartphone that kind of set the new benchmark for camera phones when it came out. Well, interestingly, the still largest handset manufacturer by volume seems to be aiming even higher this time by introducing a handset with a camera which has not 12, not 16... but an enormous 41 megapixels! Sounds pretty wicked, we know.
First of all, we should note that the handset looks like a typical Nokia, which isn't a bad thing, of course. It has a large 4" screen on the front, however, it still has Symbian's usual nHD resolution, which is 360x640 pixels. The display uses the AMOLED technology, and overall it looks cool, despite the relatively low resolution. Touch sensitivity is also pretty good.
Do not expect wonders from this device on the build quality front. Is's actually quite light, and doesn't feel as premium as the N8. Still, it's not bad either.
As we said, this is one of the last Symbian smartphones, and the exact version running on it is Belle. To tell you the truth, we feel that Nokia has made some pretty good advancements in the way of the UI with these latest Symbian iterations, so it's kind of sad to know that its lifetime is coming to an end. Overall, the software runs great, it's very fluid, although we can't really say that it's as streamlined as it should be yet.
Since this is mainly a camera-centric handset, Nokia has put some effort into improving the camera application. Indeed, we were fascinated to find how simple to use it was. All of the options are easily accessible on the left side of the screen, without unnecessary taking too much space.
The Nokia 808 PureView's 41MP camera can actually shoot still at a maximum of 38MP resolution. The aperture is set at f/2.4, while a Xenon flash is there to assist you while shooting in low-light conditions. In addition, there's an LED light to help the handset focus better. Probably the coolest thing about this high-resolution sensor, is that when you shoot in a standard 8MP or 5MP mode, you can actually zoom in without loosing much quality. And for those worrying about the size of these giant pics- the guys from Nokia said that the 808 PureView is doing a lot to compress the pics so a giant 38MP image, for example, shouldn't take more than 12MB, which does sound like a lot of compression. Here's for hoping this won't be at the expense of the quality.
As far as video recording is concerned, you can shoot with a maximum of 1080p resolution, 30fps. Again, thanks to the giant sensor, this new Nokia allows you to zoom in up to 4 times without loosing quality. Sounds great to us!
Obviously, we have a new king on the camera phone scene on its way. When is it going to arrive? The Nokia 808 PureView should become available in May for about $600 (EUR 450), before carrier subsidies.