Just got back from Nokia Australia’s “Lumia Lounge”. It is what they have been calling the last few Lumia device launches. It was the first time I got to see the stunning WP8 hardware, and they did not disappoint. Also on show were Purity Pro Wireless Headphones, JBL Play Up and Power Up speakers, as well the Fatboy Pillows and Wireless Charging plates.
First up is the Lumia 820, Nokia’s latest higher mid-range device. This 4.3″ phone sports an 8 megapixel Carl Zeiss rear camera, capable of capturing 1080p video at 30 fps. It has dual LED to help light up some dark environments. Sadly, it doesn’t have the amazing low-light camera as its big brother, but still decent for its target market.
The interchangeable case on the Lumia 820 is quite awesome. I didn’t expect it to feel so premium. It is easy enough to change them, but not in a way that they will come off on their own. The colour choice for the cases is a nice feature in itself, boasting Red, White, Cyan, Purple, White, Black and Yellow. The rugged cases will be coming in (at least) Yellow and Green, with the wireless cases definitely available in Red, Cyan and Yellow.
Just because it isn’t the Lumia 920, didn’t mean the Lumia 820 wasn’t privileged to reap many benefits of Windows Phone 8. Cinemagraph has to be hands down my favourite Lens. You simply shoot a moving scene, and select the component you wish to have movement. Cannot wait to try this out in an everyday situation. (Just tested with people waving, and saw a demo of a beach where the flags and waves moved).
The Lumia 820 has a RRP of AUD$649, and will be coming to Australia on Optus and Vodafone next week. (Excited to be able to get my hands on one when I upgrade my Vodafone contract )
The Lumia 920 is Nokia’s flagship. As such, you expect a top of the range experience, and it is exactly what you get. It has a great 4.5″ screen, which is super clear, and has no noticeable screen blur when scrolling, thanks to its PureMotion HD+ screen. I didn’t get to test the Super Sensitive feature unfortunately.
The latest evolution of the Fabula design, with its curved back, fits comfortably in hand. It is a more solid device but it is in NO WAY a “heavy” device. Sure compared to some it is heavier. In saying that, most people with lighter devices have a case because it is fragile, which makes it heavier than the Lumia 920 anyway.
The PureView Phase 2 camera is definitely a show stopper. Compared to a DSLR, the Lumia 920 definitely shined. Sadly, I didn’t get the chance to email myself the samples I took, hopefully when a review unit comes, I will have some great comparisons. No flash was used at all, but yet, you can see in the image above, the Power Up speaker is practically lit up, and appears dark (well doesn’t really seem visible to be honest) from the DSLR. Such a drastic difference.
I got a chance to use the camera outside, admittedly it was dusk, so not quite sure how it is in full daylight, but the images that came out were stunning. The Lumia 920 definitely held its own compared to the DSLR. Like the Lumia 820, cinemagraph was a talking point at the event. Wireless charging definitely feels natural with the Lumia 920, especially with the bold coloured charging pads, Fatboy Pillows and Power Up speaker. Check out our “Ferrari Red” overload pic below.
The Lumia 920 comes in Yellow, Red, White, Black and Grey (Retail only) in Australia. Telstra and Harvey Norman will have stock from the 27th, with an RRP of AUD$829.
In the retail package of both devices, you get the Wall Charger, USB/Charging cable, Heaphones (matching the colour of the device), the device itself, and product information.
Along with the two phones, the Purity Pros, JBL Play Up and Power Up Speakers, and wireless charging pads (along with the Fatboy Pillows) were on display. I really took a liking to the colours of everything, made it so much more fun to look at. Sadly no word on pricing, with availability mentioned as being late 2012/early 2013.
The NFC-enabled JBL Play Up (Play 360 2.0) look a lot better in person than their predecessor, yet they lack the ability to pair with another speaker, to give stereo sound. A feature that I loved with the Play 360. Something cool about these speakers, is located on the underside of the device. Not only does it house the battery, but it also contains a 3.5mm audio cable, that winds around the base, so you can connect your non NFC (or non compatible NFC) device.
Next up is the JBL Power Up, another NFC-enabled speaker, which sports the ability to wirelessly charge your new Lumia. It has some funky lights on the top that tell you where to place your device, as well as touch buttons for Play/Pause, FF, Rewind etc. Again, a funky looking accessory Nokia is offering.
I’ve been a fan of the Purity Over Ear headphones since launch. Sadly I never got my hands on a pair. The latest version touts wireless listening of your music (or wired if you have no battery or prefer a cable). Like the previous accessories, it is NFC-enabled, which disconnects from your device when you close in the ear pieces.
Lastly in the most innovative part of the new Lumias, the wireless charging pads and Fatboy pillows. The pillows simply go over the charging pads, and protect your phone from being scratched by the charger. We tested out the range of the charging pads, and I was pretty impressed. At the distance we managed to test (holding it above the pad about a finger spacing, then also with relatively thick napkins) the Lumia 920 was still indicating it was being charged. I don’t see reason to believe that anyone who uses a case will need to remove it to charge their phone.
All in all it was a really fun night, and a great chance to get some experience with the devices and network with Nokia staff and other bloggers. Really excited for next week.
Take a look at the gallery of images from the event below.
Shout out to
@mjjagpal for his amazing photography throughout the event, and to the PR team for inviting me along!