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It’ll feel like Christmas has come early for a lot of folks in the United States today because they’ll be among the first people in the world to get their hands on the Nokia Lumia 1020.

Many other countries won’t have too much longer to wait either, but just to whet your appetite further, here’s what some of the press have made of this premium smartphone.

Unsurprisingly, it’s the Lumia 1020’s imaging performance that comes under the greatest scrutiny in many of the reviews. I think it would be fair to say that it’s had journalists reaching for the superlatives…

Lumia 1020


Engadget’s Brad Molen takes a close look at the innovative camera interface that allows users to manually adjust settings such as ISO, shutter speed and white balance. These are controls you would more commonly find on a DSLR, rather than a smartphone.

The default lens featured on the Lumia 1020 is called the Nokia Pro Cam, and it’s the most comprehensive WP8 imaging app we’ve ever used (and arguably one of the best on any platform). 

With Nokia Pro Camera coming in for lavish praise, Brad also sums up the camera on the Lumia 1020 as a whole:

Nokia has a lengthy history of backing up its boastful imaging claims, and fortunately that reputation continues with the 1020. Simply put, the camera is stunning.

Perhaps if there was one aspect of the camera that Engadget loved the most, it was the zoom. There’s a reason we used the #ZoomReinvented hashtag!

The lossless zoom on the 1020 completely blew us away; we could legibly see signs from a distance of over 100 yards, and we were able to zoom in on faces of people who were barely noticeable in the original image. We were also very impressed by the vast amount of detail in every shot. As you can imagine, there’s a lot to love.

Lumia 1020

The Verge

The Verge’s David Pierce took his Lumia 1020 to a Justin Timberlake and Jay-Z concert in New York!

From the first moment I picked up the Lumia 1020, swiped through the Windows Phone 8 interface and booted up the camera, it felt like the future.

David says the Lumia 1020 takes ‘better pictures than any phone’ he’s ever used and it’s also better than ‘than just about any $299 point-and-shoot camera.’

From the remarkable dynamic range to the astonishing clarity, it’s just a phenomenal camera… I don’t know how Nokia does it, or how no one else has figured out what Nokia is doing, but clearly there’s some kind of magic happening in Finland. 


Jessica Dolcourt reviews the Lumia 1020 for CNET and says it ‘gives mobile photographers a reason to salivate.’

Nokia pushes the smartphone camera envelope with a combination of raw image-capturing prowess and close-cropping capability that makes it one of the most artistically able smartphone cameras we’ve tested.

Jessica admits that she’s a ‘completely casual photographer’ but found that her photos on the Lumia 1020 ‘looked fantastic in terms of color, contrast, and detail – especially fine detail like a visible background cobweb.’

This is clearly a camera phone that helps define a new era of smartphone photography. Its larger sensor, up-front creative controls, and incredible lossless cropping really make it stand out from the crowd.

Lumia 1020


Mario Aguilar is the lucky person at Gizmodo who got to try out the Lumia 1020, which he heralds as an ‘entirely new kind of gadget.’ 

The Nokia 1020 represents something fairly remarkable: the nearly flawless melding of a smartphone and a camera. 

Mario points out that the Lumia’s 1020 industrial design is dominated by the large camera module on the back of the device.

It’s a striking design element that disrupts the other wise elegant shape, although not necessarily in a bad way… In fact, in some ways it’s an advantage; I particularly liked that when the 1020’s sitting on a table or desk, the camera props the phone up so that it’s easier to see what’s on the screen. 

He is not the only reviewer to find that the size and shape of the Lumia 1020 is actually much sleeker, smaller and more comfortable to hold than the protruding camera would have you think.

Back on the imaging performance and that awesome camera, Mario’s conclusion is categorical.

On both image quality and functionality, the Lumia 1020 has the best camera that’s ever been put in a smartphone. Hands Down.

Lumia 1020


USA Today 

Ed Baig reviewed the Lumia 1020 for USA Today and says ‘Nokia’s new phone takes impressively detailed pictures.’

Simply put, the 1020 is the finest camera that I’ve used on a cellphone.

One aspect of the camera that particularly impressed him was recording video.

The quality of the videos was also excellent, even on a moving bus and even when I zoomed in while shooting.

Lumia 1020



Finally, something a little different with ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley offering a ‘non-photographer’s view of the Nokia Lumia 1020.’

It would appear that Mary Jo hasn’t been too enamoured with the industrial design on previous Lumia smartphones (too big and unwieldy for her), but the Lumia 1020 gets the seal of approval. 

With a 4.5-inch AMOLED display, a matte finish, and an only marginally protruding camera (given its size/complexity), the 1020 felt like a phone I wouldn’t hate toting around. 

Keeping in mind that the camera experience is not a personal priority for her, Mary Jo soon stumbled upon one of the Lumia 1020’s great party tricks. 

I figured out after a few initial frustrating moments that you don’t try to set up a perfect shot with the 1020. You shoot first, and crop/zoom and ask questions later.

Camera enthusiast or not, this review demonstrates that the Lumia 1020 is much more than just an amazing camera; it’s an amazing smartphone too.

I have to say my initial impression of the 1020 is positive. The shining star, the camera, aside, this is a nice Windows Phone. And if you are one of the majority to whom a smartphone camera really matters, the 1020 definitely should be on your “check it out” list.