VIDEO & PHOTOS: First look at the Nokia Lumia 820 & 920

VIDEO & PHOTOS: First look at the Nokia Lumia 820 & 920

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Just a few minutes ago in New York, Nokia lifted the curtain on their first Windows Phone 8 devices, the Lumia 820 and Lumia 920. They’re fast, beautiful, and packed with new tech – and I’ve been lucky enough to work and play with them both for the last few days. 

The smaller of the two devices is the 4.3” 820. It’s a very natural evolution of the great design language that Nokia kicked off with the Lumia 800 (rugged but beautiful polycarbonate) and with the Lumia 710 (interchangeable backplates). Inside is an improved 8MP Carl Zeiss camera alongside a dual-core Snapdragon processor and 8GB of storage, and the display uses the same ClearBlack technology as the Lumia 900 and Lumia 800. The interchangeable backplates are what stand out for me with this phone; you can get them in seven colors (white, black, red, yellow, cyan, purple, grey), and there’s an option to add an accessory backplate that adds wireless charging. Just snap it on, drop it on a charging station, and you’re ready to roll. Pretty awesome.

Lumias 1

Lumias 3

Lumias 4

The bigger of the two phones, and the one that I’ve been spending most of my time with is the Lumia 920. It’s a big phone with a 4.5” WXGA (i.e., better than 720p) display that uses Nokia’s new PureMotion HD+ screen tech. It’s twice as responsive (and way, way brighter) than any other phone display on the market, and that makes for zero lag and smooth, fast scrolling. Couple that with the same dual-core Snapdragon processor as the 820, 1GB of onboard RAM, and a whopping 32GB of storage, and you’ve got Nokia’s biggest, baddest, most beautiful smartphone so far. They’re coming in yellow, red, white, black or grey. Oh, and did I mention that the 920 has wireless charging built in?

Lumias 7

Lumias 2

Lumias 5

The single most impressive feature on the 920 is the camera. Nokia’s integrated their incredible PureView technology to deliver a wicked fast 8MP camera that, in my experience, takes the best photos of any phone I’ve ever used. It delivers in low light – a backlit sensor and Nokia’s proprietary software mean you get clear, bright photos, without a flash, even in near-darkness – and Nokia’s unique OIS (optical image stabilization) technology basically eliminates vibration, meaning you can take a clean, crisp photo while walking, running, riding a bike, standing on the train, etc. As a dad of three little ones, I spend most of my time shooting on the run, so I’m REALLY excited to field test (playground test?) this feature.

Lumias 6

I shot a short hands-on video of the Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 so you can get a better feel for how they look side-by-side, and to show how OIS works. Check it out:

All in all, I’m seriously impressed with the new Lumias, both inside and out. Design-wise, they’re a nice evolution of the iconic design that Nokia introduced in the Lumia 800 and Lumia 900 – solid, ergonomic, and comfortable. And inside, they’ve added technology like PureView and PureMotion HD+ that offer up real, tangible benefits like smoother, faster, more responsive navigation and professional grade photos. Combined with the power of Windows Phone 8, they’re really something special.

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  • deityli
    1 Posts

    Looks pretty nice phone. But if I can't disable auto rotate or keep wireless on all the time, I wouldn't buy it! I am wondering if microsoft takes users' opinion at all...

  • desbo16
    2 Posts

    Getting the 920 great looking phone. I like the new HTC window phones but I like the bigger screen and thes specs better. I might have to check out the new samsung ativ s as well.

  • Mantvydas
    15 Posts

    How to migrate all my SMSes from Windows Phone 7 to Windows Phone 8?

  • Now, see, I don't think they bit off more than they could chew.  In fact, the partnership with Nokia has been the ONE thing that has been the spur in Microsoft's rib to get absolutely serious about this---but it's not the silver bullet.  Clearly, Microsoft STILL is trying to figure out exactly how to market their products.  They STILL don't get that the only way this new ecosystem takes off is convincing developers to fully support it.  The iPhone 5 was a disappointment as a comparative update, yet it's already blowing the doors off of everything in terms of sales.  The iSheep will dutifully plunk down their $$ purely because they are insanely devout to The Fruit.  But the apps are a key piece.  I've shared before that my wife really is attracted to the Lumia 920 (as it was presented, anyway) BUT the one app she absolutely must have, the official WeightWatchers app, isn't available on Windows Phone.  And NOW we're jumping off of Windows Phone 7, which is CE-based, to Windows Phone 8, which is RT-based.  Yes, yes, yes, Windows Phone 7.5 apps are supposed to be able to run on WP8, but that's missing the bigger point that if you are giving consumers a new set of hardware options and are pathetic in the area of WP8 apps that take advantage of that new hardware set, this is a fail.  And this is a fail that could completely be avoided by flooding the developer world with the SDK and other support, much as they did with WP7.  But to hold it back because they didn't want to share all the features coming?  HELLO!  iPhone 5 is OUT, we KNOW what that thing has.  What is there to be scared of?  The next Android piece of junk?  Yeah, right.  Android devices come out every week, most of which are plastic toys and only a very few actually are worth a darn.  Microsoft isn't competing against Android.  Microsoft is competing against iPhone and trying to be seen above the sheer flood of devices all the OEMs keep pumping ot that have Crapoid on it.  Well, there's no way they can compete against the glut the OEMs insist on creating because they can pump out Android devices for pennies on the dollar.  So, focus on iPhone.  And it's all about apps.

    I got into a debate with a 12 year old who simply couldn't accept that the iPhone 5 WASN'T an impressive improvement over the 4S, and although I could match his feature list, point by point (reminding him that some of the "new features" in the iPhone 5 were ALREADY ON MY LUMIA 900), and he finally tried to brag about the square Home button!  Seriously.  This is the sort of mindless stupidity that iPhone and Apple seems to engender.  But the one thing I simply cannot battle these fools on is apps.  It's not enough that there are over 100,000 apps now for WP7 (and none for WP8, by the way)...are there the SPECIFIC apps that consumers want?  When I went to the movie theater tonight to see Resident Evil: Retribution, there was this quick ad for a Cinemark app that puts your phone in what they called "CineMode".  Available for iPhone and Android.  Shut the front door!  THIS is the kind of stuff that makes people shy away.  

    Get the developers going, Microsoft.  That's it.  You HAVE to keep the pressure on, camp on their doorstep if need be.

  • @Scuba -- I agree with you and the article.  WP8's silence has been deafening for the last three months especially when you compare  how much we heard from MSFT leading up to WP 7.5.  I can only hope that there is something game changing  brewing like a Surface phone or Siri competitor.  I think it is more than a stretch for a Surface phone, so I'm more feeling like it is a delay, which means my gray (since no Cyan) 920 doesn't hit my hands until after Christmas.   You just get the feeling that MSFT bit off more than they could chew this year and something is going to fall through the cracks.   My only true worry is that they forget the success of Win 7 and WP 7.5 and release the products before they are ready.  Much rather they are late and good than be on time and crash.

  • Evidently I'm not the only saying holding back is a stupid mistake:

  • BTW, I was reading the rationale for Microsoft NOT publicly releasing the WP8 SDK but, instead, chose to have people apply for it.  I completely disagree with their reasoning, which was essentially "we aren't ready to share ALL the features of WP8 yet, so we want to control the message but still get SOME developers actually DOING something for WP8".  That's some really poor reasoning, albeit what I've come to expect now.  Here's the thing: iPhone 5 (your REAL competition) is already fully revealed.  There's nothing Apple can do at this point to pad features onto that device.  And given that the device is going to start flying in just a week or so and WP8 devices won't be rolling until late November, you CANNOT AFFORD to hold some of your guns at bay!  You HAVE unleash a full-on barrage so that consumers can see that it just wouldn't make any sense to choose (or stick with) an iPhone when it's now actually BEHIND the competition..........unless......

    .......perhaps there nothing really left in the arsenal or WP8 really ISN'T anywhere near ready yet.  This might explain why Mary Jo Foley was allowed to hold a Lumia in the palm of her hand but not actually TOUCH anything to make it work.  

    Things that make you go "hmmm".

  • Okay, so by MOST comments in the biz, the iPhone 5 was a nice improvement, but largely a yawner.  Of course, the iSheep will just say, "When you're the best you don't need to make stupendous changes to stay there" and they will go in droves buy this thing.  I saw a comparison chart between the iPhone 5, the Galaxy S III and Lumia 920 and the iPhone was bested by both competitors in all but thickness/weight and the fact that iPhone had Bluetooth 4 instead of 3.  Everything else looked better on the other devices.  I think it is CRITICAL that "Smoked by Windows Phone" be dramatically expanded to show the Lumia 920 can smackdown the iPhone 5.  

    What's disappointing is that reports seem to be leaking that Windows Phone 8 is still not actually complete and that Nokia and the other OEMs won't announce availability and price because they are stuck in limbo.  Meanwhile, the iPhone will be available in just a few days.  My wife, who owns an iPhone 4 and is due for an upgrade, will likely be in line to purchase one.  Sadly, I almost had her convinced to hold out for the 920, but WeightWatchers is one of her "must-have" apps and they refuse to make a Windows Phone version.  Ugh.

  • thats a great news, i hope the upcoming Lumia 920 will maintain its brethrens reputation. in Lumia series my favorite is 900, its an outstanding device. i am not only saying this coz  i own it but also on the basis of users comments and reviews. i have read n numbers of reviews and comments of people who have ever used this tremendous device, and you know what everyone has said its an excellent phone. i am posting a small article of Lumia 900 here <a href="">Nokia Lumia 900</a> so that you guys could also have a glance at its superb quality features and design.  It will also help you all making a decision whether you wana buy this or not , am I right ?? i hope most of you would love it as i do. Thanx

  • egsigma
    2 Posts

    I'm excited about the Samsung ATIV but the camera feature on the 920 might just change my mind... Getting a high-end Win8 phone no matter what, though.  Heck, maybe HTC or some other manufacturer might make one.

  • Has anyone switched over to Outlook Com?  I wanted to get rid of my yahoo account and have a email address account that ends with; however, I don't want to have to reset my phone to do it.

  • @Scuba -- If she loves the WW program, she loves the program.  I think the social aspects for MFP are pretty good since it leverages social media to provide that team atmosphere.  However, if your wife is going to the WW meetings, there is nothing like that. I never was going to the meetings; I was only using the WW web app.  At $16 a month, switching to MFP was a no brainer for me.  I'm willing to chime in on WW site if you want push them for an app.

  • Well, I asked my wife for details and here was her response: "It's got my official weight record, food tracking record, all of my account history, the points calculator, and excerpts from WW magazine. If I miss a meeting, it has all of the information on the meeting topics for the week."

    So, I see her point.  It's got certain features that are truly unique to the app.  She lives and dies by the Points system and actually doesn't like just the calorie-counting apps.

  • @scuba -- You definitely track your daily progess and intake.   You can scan, but I've never really used it.  I like the MFP better because it is not points based like WW.  It is actually calories based.  It also allows you to track goals on things like sodium, fat or sugar intake as well.  You can scan different products.  Unlike the WW (it has been a while since I've used the WW), you can make mulit-add of selections.  Also, like WW you can create your own recipes and/or meals.   Also, it keeps a long list of four frequent used foods for each meal.  On the web, you can post messges to FB.  I won't saying anything bad about WW (except pricey)... I do like MFP better.

  • @bill94in98, thanks for the suggestion, I'll check it out.  The question I have (because SHE will have the question) is does MyFitnessPal have pretty much the same features as the official WeightWatchers app?  I know there's already an official points calculator app for WP, but I think one of the main things that she likes about the WeightWatchers app is you can scan products and it will tell you the points in it and I think it tracks her total points used.

  • @ScubaDog -- Have your wife look at the MyFitinessPal App for Win Phone... As a user of Weight Watchers before WP 7, I was disappointed myself for no app for WP.  However, a nutritionist suggested to me that I use My FitnessPal over the WeightWatchers.  I actually like the web version of MyFitness over WW web version and the WP app is solid and gets improved regularly.  The best part of MyFitness is that it is also free.

  • Without a doubt, the 920 looks very awesome.  What angers me and saddens me is that the iPhone 5 is overshadowing everything.  I know so many people that have the attitude "if it's not an iPhone, it's not a phone worth having".  Now that the iPhone 5 will have LTE and NFC, it brings them back up to date compared to the competition.  I think the one thing that would give Nokia a chance here would be if the camera in the iPhone isn't really improved from the 4S.  I almost had my wife convinced to upgrade from the iPhone 4 to the Lumia 920 until she found out that the WeightWatchers app isn't available on Windows Phone.  That was the deal-breaker for her.  That's disappointing because she takes a lot of photos and she was really impressed with the camera in the Lumia 920.

    Since I've only had my Lumia 900 a few months I won't be looking at a new phone for a couple of years.  Besides, my $$ are being saved for the Surface Pro.

  • Want specs on 920, go to Nokia's  Web -page for them.

  • Day one purchase for me.  But Microsoft, for your big Windows Phone 8 unveil, please make it extraordinary.  Use your best speakers, trash your competitors if necessary.  Let everyone know you did it first (before that fruity company copies it). And make sure everything works first!

  • can't wait for the 920, btw does anyone know if there are any changes to the notifications in wp8? i really want the IOS like one or at least a notifications folder where all notifications are stored

  • @neil36 completely agree about the WP marketplace. If they get the missing popular apps atleast by WP8, it could be a big boost oh and also it wouldn't hurt to have some exclusives ready specially games that could showcase what could be done in WP8.

    The hardware seems like a winner to me even though it's thicker than most smartphones out but Nokia are known for their rugged durable builds so it seems like a fair trade of to me. Plus tons of Android fanboys are trolling on WP8 related posts on Tech sites wishing Nokia had chosen Android instead. Thats a good sign to me seeing them envy phones that look completely different from their sea of clones. :)

  • That looks SOOO good... the 920 will be my next phone for certain!!

  • I hope they come out with a 64GB version of the Lumia 920 atleast to make up for the lack of microSD for those that like to store tons of media on their phones. They have a serious contender here but like others have stated, we need pricing and availabiliy!!!

    How can MSFT/Nokia expect to eat away on a bit of marketshare if they're going to launch the phones almost a month n half AFTER the iPhone 5's release smh

  • daafies
    6 Posts

    is it upgradeable beyond wp8.8?

  • To those that don't know, there was a launch event. WP8 is on track for a November release so do the math. The Lumia 900 launched about 2 months after it was announced so expect these in time for the Holiday season. As for the Camera the PureView Tech blows away anything from Apple. This is a wicked phone and will surely help WP8 gain traction. It wins on looks and features...Siri what is the best phone? The lumia 920 with PureView TECH!.

  • They both look really, really nice!!  I think it's ridiculous that we're still guessing and speculating on wp8 features - things like gapless audio playback... was the first comment here, so obviously I'm not the only one to want it...  it LOOKS so promising, but after being a part of the wp beta test (aka v7.x) for the past couple years, I would really like to know what's being offered up front...

  • yoddha
    1 Posts

    @NerdyWoman: "It doesn't like taps with fingernails"... Seriously, tapping with your fingernails is a dealbreaker??

    That sounds like some typical apple-blinded-fool comment! Sorry don't mean to be mean but, come on!!!

    People, you do know that you can press and touch the phones screen with your fingers. Well ok, I get that you need your nails to hit all those small icons, text, buttons and so on the iPhone and Androids. But good ol' fingers work fiiiiine on the WindowsPhone ;)

  • Bicky
    1 Posts

    Lumia 820 looks impressive. Different design

  • Entegy
    42 Posts

    I know what my next phone is. No doubt about it.

  • KR
    503 Posts

    Damn even Motorola who i think makes the ugliest smartphones and one of the worst Android phone makers did it properly,its unfortunate they have the wrong product

    BTW,the purple screen on my Lumia 900 is driving me crazy crazy as Rogers Canada has decided not to release updates and as Nokia has decided not to release it to unlock phones either(mine is carrier unlocked) ,good thing i got for almost free and not in contract.

  • KR
    503 Posts

    Nokia and Microsoft need to understand one thing

    People don't just wake up in the morning and go buy a new phone,its a planned process.So you when you announce a product and don't list all the features,why would you expect people to plan on buying it?even worse you don't even give information about where and when they will be able to buy it in case they're still thinking on whether to buy it. You can decide not to release the price,but don't mess around with the where and when. When you release the where and when,even if it is not convenient for some potential buyers now, based on the complete feature list,they can start planning to adjust their situation so they'll buy the product on the day it goes on sale.

    as soon as HTC announced its One phone line,all the carriers that were going to carry it had it up on their website without pricing some did not even have a shipping date but a Coming soon sign,at least buyers new what they were going to be buying and where to buy,so they could decide to plan and wait for it.same with the Galaxy S3. But as usual with Microsoft is all about waiting,then when it fails they blame the product and make a new product saying they've learned.

    Microsoft the problem is not your products,its your strategies get over your "folie de grandeur" and learn from your industry.

    Apple will show you how the big boys do it. Watch and learn

  • Dude. What is UP with that camerawork?

  • badly waiting for this in India, Any clue on when this will be available in India???

  • Drew
    19 Posts

    The camera feature on the 920 looks pretty darn good!

  • I was excited to hear what Microsoft/Nokia would announce today. I agree..the 920 is a solid phone but the lack of information will lead me to buy the new iPhone next week.

    1. More than likely I can preorder the iPhone on multiple carriers next week. Why would I want to wait another 2 months guessing which carriers and at what cost will the 920 launch? And it will probably be only on ATT's sh**ty network.

    2. When iOS 6 was announced, so many features will individually list. Even the small ones. What about WP8? I don't even know if I can adjust the ringer volume separately yet! That single feature alone will prevent me from buying into WP8.

    So there goes two potential buyers (my/gf) and possibly more (2 other coworkers about to buy the new iphone also).

    Delayed product launch after announcement = dumb/bad idea

    Delayed product launch + no information about the date/details of launch at the so called announcement = failure at all levels.

  • neil36
    2 Posts

    i love the design, the hardware specs, the camera hardware tech, the wireless charging and screen resolution and so much more but i would like to add that they (MS) should improve their marketplace and add more popular apps like instagram for example and game apps that were found on most iOS and android then i will be sold.

  • @razorguy: ty for the additional info. I wish I had the time to read everything in my inbox and my fb newsfeed! UGH!

    As for CARRIERS: Unless they change the gameplan (my fingers are crossed), only AT&T will get the 920 and the 800/820? Folks, the guy at the Microsoft store told me it's unlocked out of the box. YAY! After doing the math, I'll do a prepaid with the 820. I might have to pay for the phone up front, but it's a lot less spendy over the next 2 years.

  • @Rodney... I have to agree with you.  I want to see the feature set now.  The hardware is nice, but I am going to buy new on the basis of what I will get in WP8 vs. WP7.8.

  • It is thicker than the samsung ATIV S

  • Also,

    So, when is WP8 going to be really laid out for us? I'm still curious about a few features that I have been wishing for..

  • I think that these devices are finally very competitive. So, this gives me much hope for what's to be released next year. I cant wait....

  • ipinsao
    2 Posts

    do you have the option to disable auto rotate?

  • When is going to be available?,who is going to be the carrier?,is possible to change the polycarbon back cover of NOKIA 920?

    Oh yeah i remember;what about the Zune player?

  • It sucks the 920 does not have expandable memory. Will not get the 820. I will hold off until something like the 920 with expandable memory. I do not want to go to Samsung. I just wish Nokia would get it right. They are so close.

  • i nerded all over the place: want!

  • 32Gb is more than enough. And more 7Gb with skydrive. Oh, I have a 25Gb free skydrive account. Even better! Why do I even need a micro sd card slot?

    The best thing about this mobile OS is that it's different from iOS and Android and that, for me, is very appealling.

    Can't wait to have one of this Lumia phones.

  • Before this event, I am almost certain will get Lumia instead of other WP8.  Now I am not so sure. Everything looks good, the camera, nokia apps, the "touch" , wirelsss charge etc..  Then I compare the size/weight , 185 g vs 135 g (Samsung ATIV), and 10.7mm vs 8.7 mm ... ah... tough choice.  My Lumia 900 already feel heavy

  • Charming.

    I hope Nokia will finally work out this time!

  • Joe said he's saving other windows phone 8 features for other date. Well, i really wish windows phone 8 have separate volume control, not just master volume.. Like ring tone control (separated into 2 kinds: for speaker & microphone) & entertainment (music, video, etc (seperated for speaker & mic too).

    it blows my ear when i hear music that apparently has low quality, so i turned the volume rocker higher & suddenly someone called, turns out the ring tone was so loud or when i watch youtube on loudspeaker, i turned the volume down so anyone besides me don't get disturbed, then i forgot to switch the volume higher (again) & left my phone on the table & someone called, i was metres away & didn't hear a thing :'(

  • Yes @ChrisLynch, one of these new Lumia features is the low-light camera ability. Check out the official youtube videos from Nokia for the showcases.

  • @cc3d - This was mainly a Nokia event to showcase their devices who just happens to be Microsoft's partner. Had this been a true Microsoft exhibition then you would get release dates. Ballmer has already told us there is more to come from WP8 in the next month or two so maybe we'll get release dates then. Elop mentioned Q4 availability for the Lumia's and we know Windows 8 launches October 26 and Build 2012 is around that time so at the very latest expect its release or announcement for release at that time.

    @Nerdy Woman - First refer to the above. Second, did you not see the glove demo? The touchscreen is now optimized with Synaptics “Super Sensitive Touch” to register only a fingernail or input through your gloves. How is that for sensitivity?

    Really wish people would pay attention before they post things.....

  • aqueous
    2 Posts

    Which carrier is it coming on? Any chance of Verizon picking it up?

  • Jtr3000
    1 Posts

    wireless charging is nothing more then a gimack at this point, no microSD and ugly color choices. Does Nokia realy think this phone is going to bump WP market shares. It looks like something a 12 year child would want. Major disappointment.

  • fatboy
    1 Posts

    Hopefully the latest phones will last longer that the likes of the Lumia 800 with th Windows 'Not Quite 8'  OS and a lifespan of about 18 months before being ditched for something more shiny. Am I bitter and twisted about having a contract phone with support for about 18 months and a 2 year contract. Just a bit.

  • The amount of innovation in the Lumia920 blows me away! Incredibly amazing! :-) And @cc3d: If the fact that the phone is not available in the minute the first launch presentation takes place makes you not want to wait for it, then I guess you just don't really want it that much after all. Good luck with what ever other phone you choose.. I, for one, have "waited my whole life" for the Lumia920!

  • I have to agree with cc3d. You counter Apple's iPhone 5 launch with a blog post? Where's your marketing savvy? Sad. Unlike cc3d, I won't be looking at Android phones. Google's privacy policy is a deal breaker that doesn't take both brain cells to reject. Availability and pricing would have been nice additions to this low-key announcement.

    I don't know if I'll be buying one of the Lumia phones. I played with a 900 at the Microsoft store and was frustrated with the touchscreen. It doesn't like taps with fingernails and digging around in my purse for a stylus is not going to happen. If I can adjust the touch sensitivity, I could go for the 920's big screen, but if it's locked to an AT&T contract, that's a deal breaker too.

  • Very cool new WP8 devices!! Go Nokia go…!

  • cc3d
    1 Posts

    Why?  Why would you have such a big event without launching the devices?  Have you learned nothing from the BIGGEST tech company in the world?  I am a true MS fan but you are getting the whipping you deserve from Apple because they KNOW HOW TO LAUNCH products!  I was excited about the Lumia 920, but now I know nothing about its availability!!  Next week Apple will be tempting me with the iPhone 5 and I'll still know nothing about the Lumia 920!!  I passed on the Galaxy S3 because I wanted to hear about the Lumia 920 and iPhone 5!!  Now I'll be deciding between the Samsung and the iPhone 5.  It's been nice knowing you Microsoft, history will write that you couldn't learn from the companies that succeeded you.

  • JohnCz
    204 Posts

    Love the updated Lumia line...just need to know when its available.

  • Really impressive.  I hope that Nokia has fixed the low-light issues the Lumia 900 has.  Can anyone help confirm if it is just software, increased lens size, or a BSI sensor?  Also, if the 920 doesn't have a MicroSD slot, I'm sure glad there will be a 32GB version.

  • If the 920 doesn't have a micro sd card slot then it is incredibly disappointing and possibly ruining an awesome phone. Great.

  • does it have gapless music album playback?