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Nokia Lumia 1020 Preview

Posted: , by John V.

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Interface and Functionality:

We won’t be getting into too much detail here, seeing that this is the same old Windows Phone 8 experience we’ve been exposed to. Being a Lumia branded device and all, it benefits over some other Windows Phone 8 devices from its rival, seeing that it’s home to all of Nokia’s branded apps – such as Nokia Music, Nokia Drive, Nokia Maps, and much more. Overall, the look and functionality of the platform is intact, as the Start screen is home to all of its dynamic looking live tiles.

Upon looking through the listing of preloaded apps, there are a couple of new ones that we haven’t necessarily seen before. Rather than using the standard Windows Phone 8 camera app, this is stuffed with its own “Nokia Pro Camera” app, which as its name implies, provides us with an extensive set of camera controls that would appease even some professional photogs. Besides that, this doesn’t deviate from the Windows Phone 8 formula, which isn’t a bad thing, but when it’s a new year and a new device, we’re aching to see some changes naturally.

Under the hood, the Nokia Lumia 1020 is running a processor that some people would argue as being aged when compared to today’s quad-core. Even more shocking, it’s the same one that’s powering the Lumia 920, 928, and 925 – a dual-core 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Plus MSM8960 processor. As much as some are going to be dismayed by this reality, this is again another perfect example in how hardware doesn’t matter, mainly because the phone runs smoothly with all of its processes and tasks. Something different, though, is the fact that it’s now packing double the RAM from before – 2GB instead of the previous 1GB.

On-screen Keyboard:

Well, this is hardly a surprise, especially when this is packing the same display and operating system as the Lumia 920. Yet again, the spacious display combined with its responsive performance helps to keep our fingers moving fluidly while typing things up with its on-screen keyboard. And if that’s not enough, we can always use its voice typing service to do all of our dirty work, which is pretty accurate.

Internet and Connectivity:

Combining its modest display and processor, with the help of good old 4G LTE connectivity, the Lumia 1020 doesn’t disappoint with the web browsing experience. From the swift page loads to its excellent navigation controls, the Lumia 1020 does well to provide us with all of the web browsing comforts we’d expect to find on any high-end smartphone.

From what its specs sheet tells us, the Nokia Lumia 1020 is coming to AT&T with 4G LTE connectivity. Now if you’re on another carrier, there’s no need to fret just yet because Elop left the door open with the possibility of it coming to other carriers once its exclusivity period with AT&T expires. Obviously, it’s outfitted with all the connectivity features that are commonplace nowadays – like aGPS, Bluetooth 3.0, 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, and NFC. Unfortunately, wireless charging has been omitted with this one, and is only achieved through the aid of its optional Camera Grip accessory.

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posted on 11 Jul 2013, 19:07 20

1. FlushGordon (unregistered)

''but it’ll be up to consumers in the end to figure out if $300 is really worth the money. Heck, you can get some pretty decent point and shoots at around the $100 mark''

But...but...this iS a cutting edge phone, and megapixels are everything, you can't get 41 megapixels for $300 these days

Nokia will sell plenty of these because of the camera...kids and older people alike, the camera is the first priority, bar none....heck even my 14 year old niece, wants a smartphone with an excellent camera (and he's a die hard gamer!)

Shame on you author, you can't bash NOKIA like that

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 19:14 13

2. Atrixboyyy (Posts: 444; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)

im a gamer myself and the camera is literally the 1st thing i look at. then processor speed.

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 19:17 3

4. FlushGordon (unregistered)

EXACTLY...camera is everything, ditto megapixels
I can live with a 420p resolution and a 3 year old cpu/gpu for as long as it has a great camera with ginormous megapixels

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 21:34 3

21. AppleHateBoy (unregistered)

The article needs to be corrected. The phone has a 1/1.5" BSI sensor.


posted on 11 Jul 2013, 23:56

29. MachidoDen (banned) (Posts: 202; Member since: 30 May 2013)

And according to nokia white papers too

posted on 14 Jul 2013, 20:43

76. KFear (Posts: 147; Member since: 06 Feb 2012)

i'd look into sensors also and the actual software used to "fix" the photos. It's important to actually qualify yourself in the best camera/smartphone. Do you take a lot of night shots? Fast motion? Landscapes? Food/Macro? S4 is awesome for outdoor shots with great sunlight and macro shots. I'll take the HTC one for fast motion and low light.

posted on 16 Jul 2013, 09:02 2

79. saffant (Posts: 274; Member since: 04 Jul 2011)

Uh no. Contrary to what you might think, but most users of high end smartphones look for the display/resolution as a bigger and more practical priority than any sort of inclination to indulge in a megapixel hunt-fest.

You'll be staring at your smartphone's screen most of the time—thus a display res matters. As well as the performance. However, the camera can't ever be used as much, unless of course you capture footage with your phone 24/7.

posted on 17 Jul 2013, 07:51

86. Atrixboyyy (Posts: 444; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)

the reason i didnt name the reso. was because the chances for a "high end" device coming out without at least a 720p screen are slim. that being said performance and camera tech are first and foremost .

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 21:35 11

22. g2a5b0e (Posts: 3823; Member since: 08 Jun 2012)

Your niece is a he?! Awkward.

posted on 12 Jul 2013, 00:05 6

32. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 4328; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)

No no...his nephew is a she.

posted on 12 Jul 2013, 00:01 3

31. EXkurogane (Posts: 863; Member since: 07 Mar 2013)

Camera is always the first thing i look at in a phone, because i use it a lot, but maybe i will wait for the successor of this phone. I mean, the sensor is 1/1.5, i wished it is the same as the 808. Not a big difference, but i'd like a bump up in specs, no point replacing my 920 with this one. 2Gb of RAM is nice though.

posted on 12 Jul 2013, 18:25

55. Atrixboyyy (Posts: 444; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)

i was going to get this instead of the Gs4 just to try it out. but after thinking im gonna do the same i know the Snapdragon s4 isnt the best they can do and maybe an even bigger sensor then that of the 808? as a manufacturer wouldnt it just want to improve past the original ?

posted on 19 Jul 2013, 16:54

88. Stoli89 (Posts: 333; Member since: 28 Jun 2010)

The larger sensor on the 808 would've required a thicker profile on the Lumia...which was a no go given the physical parameters set forth in the original design objectives. It's a smaller 1/1.5 BSI vs the 808's 1/1.2...but it's still enormous for a smartphone and benefitting from BSI...which is not present on the 808 sensor. The overall sensor size, coupled with large aperature, latest gen optics, and second gen Nokia 3 axis OIS will make this the best low light shooter on the market, by far.

posted on 12 Jul 2013, 00:05 1

33. mobilefuture (Posts: 221; Member since: 12 Nov 2011)

Your niece is a he? I know it's a typo but that got me confused :/

posted on 12 Jul 2013, 02:23 4

37. jackhammeR (Posts: 1548; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

shut the hole samsung troll. You have nothing interesting to say what for coming here?

posted on 12 Jul 2013, 05:24 1

43. Paradox (Posts: 124; Member since: 08 Aug 2012)

This phone ain't cutting edge, it's from last year. This is what the lumia 920 should have been, and what people expected to be. If they pulled this out last year, then it would have been very good for them. Camera isn't everything, because look how many 808s have been sold.

Also, your niece who is a he wants a smartphone with an excellent camera?

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 19:18 2

6. fo0ling (Posts: 19; Member since: 07 Jul 2013)

Well, i hope they have an android version for this :) i have hope you nokia! :)

posted on 12 Jul 2013, 16:47 2

52. Dastrix (unregistered)

hmm.. one word: No

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 19:22 8

7. rawbow (Posts: 428; Member since: 30 Mar 2012)

I have not been a fan of the Lumia series neither do i believe that camera makes or breaks the deal with smartphones but thats just me. I marvel and admire Nokia's engineering with the Lumia 1020. To say that point and shoot are worth more than this is a pretty lame thought considering that one doesn't carry their point n shoots in their pockets everyday.

Photography is about moments and portable alongwith power of the Lumia 1020 gets a biiiiiiig thumbs up from me.

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 19:41 3

11. FlushGordon (unregistered)

''neither do i believe that camera makes or breaks the deal with smartphones but thats just me''

it isn't just you, it's the present trend..I'll say this again and again, NOKIA used to get away with almost everything during the early 2000's, great cameraphones were their main selling point, they sold millions and and rightfully so

But I don't think that's the case nowadays, whether these fanboys would want to admit it or not. If I want to spend my hard earned $300, I'd make sure that i can get the BEST, WELL-BALANCED smartphone at the moment (great specs, Good software support, prolly a good camera to boot)

Having just a great cam with an outdated internals is not enough, would i buy it if it's $350 unlocked? heck I would, in a heartbeat, the thing is, after taxes, this thing would prolly cost north of $700, WHICH IS SOOO NOT WORTH IT!!!!!and let us not forget, it is a Windows phone! (which many carriers refuse to sell)

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 19:58 1

13. -box- (Posts: 3991; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)

"many carriers refuse to sell". Name one. Please. And inclusde a validated and confirmable source for the REFUSAL (which is not the same as just not doing it)

posted on 16 Jul 2013, 10:18

84. jromy (Posts: 114; Member since: 26 Feb 2013)

Why? and simply look at prepaid like virgin or boost. and what refusal do you need besides there being no windows phone on their line up?

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 21:47 2

23. UrbanPhantom (Posts: 949; Member since: 30 Oct 2012)

Dear FlushBordom, the Lumia 1020 doesn't offer just a great cam: it offers the very best camera unit that is currently available in a single smartphone device. It also offers quality dual HAAC microphones for recording audio, and stereo speakers for playback. The internals are certainly not "outdated", and while higher resolution displays do exist for some Android devices, the lack of 1080P or a Snapdragon 800 CPU is certainly not a deal breaker in my opinion. It has 2GB of system RAM, and ships with either 32GB or 64GB internal storage memory. It runs on WP8 OS, which some people hate, but which is generally quite fast and secure, and the platform now has a growing number of apps and games that make it more accomodating than before. The device weighs about the same or less than the Galaxy Note II, and comes in a Polycarbonate shell that ships with black, white, or yellow for coloring.

Is this device going to replace a DSLR camera? No! However, for those who want to discard a point and shoot compact camera, the Lumia 1020 offers good enough performance to avoid making any major compromises when it comes to basic photography. No other smartphone devices that currently exist on the market can offer the same option without making significant sacrifices in picture and/or video quality, which is why the Lumia 1020 is worth it's selling price. If you don't care about the quality of your photos/video/audio, then stick with something else, okay?

posted on 16 Jul 2013, 09:11 1

83. saffant (Posts: 274; Member since: 04 Jul 2011)

You just massively contradicted yourself.

Earlier u said "EXACTLY...camera is everything, ditto megapixels
I can live with a 420p resolution and a 3 year old cpu/gpu for as long as it has a great camera with ginormous megapixels"

and now u say something completely different.

What does that say about your credibility?

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 19:29

8. Edmund (Posts: 656; Member since: 13 Jul 2012)

here we go... and so the negative spin begins, right from day one. Pathetic

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 19:30 6

9. fanboy1974 (Posts: 1345; Member since: 12 Nov 2011)


1. It has the best camera in a smartphone

1. It's basically a Nokia 920 (no improvement if you use it as a smartphone)
2. Carrier exclusivity (Doesn't matter if it's released a few months later on other carriers; it's old out the gate)
3. $300 price on contract (Your paying $200 to $300 to say you have the best smartphone camera (I've seen the Nokia 920 free on contract)
4. $80 camera accessory. (It's just a spare battery case with button.) Why not just buy a dedicated camera if you want to lug an accessory around? Mind boggling!!!

posted on 11 Jul 2013, 20:52 8

15. papss (unregistered)

My god... I've never seen so much trolling...
Use a WP8 device and tell me about specs... It's a great device that feels organic.. This is nothing like the robotic feel of your my space ran frisbees... I can't see myself ever going back to android.

posted on 12 Jul 2013, 05:23 2

42. juandante (banned) (Posts: 679; Member since: 23 Apr 2013)

Why you call trolling people who don't like this limited OS ? It's not accidentally everyone don't like this old OS, I read reviews, I have tried it, and I know how limited this software is. It's not to people to stop bashing this old OS, we don't have nothing to do with that, it's Microsoft to make an effort for this old OS to be better and loved and Nokia to make good choice and listen to customers for their phone to sell. It's not at all people's fault. You will not force people to like something they don't like even calling them trolls. We are in real life.

posted on 12 Jul 2013, 17:20 1

53. the_best (Posts: 139; Member since: 14 Oct 2012)

If you dont like the os why even bother with checking out this phone?
This many reactions from fandroids can only mean ýou see something you want but cant have.
If you want good pics im sure the gs4 zoom will take good pics for you, but dont come Crying here when it lags to hell on android who btw is way older than wp8.

posted on 12 Jul 2013, 17:32

54. juandante (banned) (Posts: 679; Member since: 23 Apr 2013)

D!ckhead, here it's a hands on, so people must and have all their right to come and see what journalist thinks about the phone before they get their own impression of it. So, it's all legitimate to, after reading the review and the comments, to give my own advice about this hardware and watch the article, and for bad people like you to stop advising incorrectly the ignorant ones. Are you a Nokia marketer ? NO ! So stop saying sh!t and be realist now.

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