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Hands On With the Nokia Lumia 1020 227

Posted by samzenpus
from the take-a-look dept.
adeelarshad82 writes "Nokia's new phone, Lumia 1020, feels very similar in the hand to Nokia's Lumia 900 and 920, with one exception: it has a camera bump. The 41-megapixel uber-camera projects out very slightly as a black disc on the back. In terms of functionality, though, the camera provides for smooth zooming only a pinch away. However, it takes a noticeable amount of time to lock focus and save images. At one point during hands-on testing, the camera app crashed so hard that it required a phone reboot, which is hopefully just a pre-release firmware issue. The phone itself carries a brightly colored polycarbonate body that rolls around the edges to cradle a 4.5-inch, 1,280-by-768 screen. Lumia 1020 is powered by a dual-core, 1.5-GHz Qualcomm MSM8960 processor which plows through apps well. Speaking of apps, there's a ton of bloatware on here, as you'd expect from any AT&T device. AT&T adds four apps right at the top of the app list. Nokia Lumia is set to hit AT&T shelves on July 26th for $299."
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Hands On With the Nokia Lumia 1020

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  • bloatware (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    The nice thing about "bloatware" on Windows Phone is that it can be uninstalled completely, cleanly and very easily.

    • by roc97007 (608802)

      ...and then install Android?

  • Meh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tmark (230091) on Thursday July 11, 2013 @09:17PM (#44257291)

    With a camera phone, I'd say that the time it takes "to lock focus and save images" is arguably far more important than the number of megapixels.

    Even with DSLRS, we've long ago reached the point where the average person needs more MP than are available, and none of *them* are at the 41 MP count. They also have far better optics than what is almost certainly in this (Zeiss nametag or not), and it is well understood in that domain that the importance of glass far outweighs the importance of whatever body you happen to be using.

    If the point was just to get better low-light performance by packing on more pixels and then binning them, I wonder why they didn't just design sensors with bigger photosites - at least then, reasonable save times and storage consumption would be a possibility. I know that camera novices get sucked into the MP marketing hype, but does anyone buy a phone for the MP in the camera ?

    • Re:Meh (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Dr Max (1696200) on Thursday July 11, 2013 @09:34PM (#44257397)
      More megapixels means you can take the picture now and zoom in latter, it also allows for much better touching up because you can access pixels that just aren’t there in other phones, as well as good low light performance like you mentioned. Due to the optical image stabilization, time to lock and focus is not as much of a deal breaker because it takes out all the little movements that happen in that time. Images will look noticeably better with this camera, and 6 times optical zoom means you can make photos look even better (for a face you want to stand back and use all your zoom because it minimizes feature, for a car or something you want to get nice a close shot with no zoom, because it accentuates the features) and all kind of manual options for cool exposer shots and what not. If your not in to photography and just want to take self shots of your self with beer in your hand you probably wont care, but if you like your dslr but hate dragging it around this will make a very nice fit.
      • Re:Meh (Score:5, Informative)

        by Rockoon (1252108) on Thursday July 11, 2013 @09:40PM (#44257435)
        Megapixels aren't as important as the optics.. aka lenses..

        I've seen some of the raw pictures that these high mega-pixel cameraphones take.. blurry shit at the pixel level, making them no better than a much lower resolution camera with better glass.
        • by Dr Max (1696200)
          it's got pretty damn good optics from ziess as well it's not optical zoom but it's damn good glass. I've seen plenty of images from the 808 pure view and they kick serious ass (show me a better smartphone cammera if you disagree).
        • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

          Even if the image is blurred all the information is there, it just needs to be extracted to produce an un-blurred image. Photoshop has filters that can do that now. Sounds like the problem might be solvable.

          • by jhol13 (1087781)

            If image is blurred, there is not "all information". Depending on the amount of blurring you'll lose dynamic range, eventually all of it giving exactly zero information.

        • by gl4ss (559668)

          Megapixels aren't as important as the optics.. aka lenses..

          I've seen some of the raw pictures that these high mega-pixel cameraphones take.. blurry shit at the pixel level, making them no better than a much lower resolution camera with better glass.

          I got a nokia 808.
          the megapixels are extremely nice to have, even if you just save at 8mpix. it's a large sensor.. nokias have the best optics too.

          too bad 1020 has a shitty operating system.

        • by thegarbz (1787294)

          Yes true, but take the same blury shit lens on a high megapixel camera and apply basic noise reduction and the results will be a whole world better than that of the low resolution camera when the resulting image is scaled to the same size. By increasing the pixel count the random noise distribution is made finer which makes it far easier to apply noise reduction without losing detail ... because there was no detail to begin with.

      • Yes but the optics point is still critical.
        What is the point of being able to zoom in to 41MP when the optics fall over and blur all the pixels to the same value anyway?

        And no it has zero optical zoom. It has digital cropping zoom rather than digital scaling zoom.
        Flawless zoom quality yes (with MP loss) but no optical elements move. The same picture is seen by the sensor so the zooming is not performed by the optics.

      • by dfghjk (711126)

        Spoken like someone who doesn't know what he's talking about. I wonder if you've ever uses a camera not built into a phone in your life.

      • by m.dillon (147925)

        I think the digital-zoom capability argument falls on its face though. I've looked at the sample images. The camera is clearly designed to oversample. The entire technology is based around oversampling. The instant you start zooming digitally you lose that oversampling and the technology falls on its face.

        The phone is designed to store smaller pictures, there's no point storing 40MP files. I guess a lot of people missed the point... photoshop isn't going to be able to do jack with a full 40MP file from

    • If you're comparing a phone camera with a DSLR then it means it has already won. Anyway, here's more technical details.

      Sample photos from the phone http://www.flickr.com/photos/87544844%40N00/sets/72157634597356196/ [flickr.com]
      Review of the photo tech http://pureviewclub.com/2013/15270 [pureviewclub.com]
      Whitepaper from Nokia on the tech http://i.nokia.com/blob/view/-/2723846/data/1/-/Lumia1020-whitepaper.pdf [nokia.com]
      Sample photos from the predecessor http://www.flickr.com/groups/nokia808/ [flickr.com]
      Nokia presentation showcasing the phone http://www.youtube. [youtube.com]

    • There's that saying that the best camera is the one you've got on you when the moment happens. This is clearly targeting photographers who can't carry a DSLR with them all the time, or people interested in photography but not willing to commit to an expensive camera.

      The 41MP isn't just so you can take gargantuan pictures -- it is intended to replace a zoom lens. The example photos I've seen look comparable to the best point-and-shoots I've seen, and it has exceptional OIS and low-light performance. If they

    • by jrumney (197329)

      Megapixels are more important for a phone camera than a DSLR, because on the phone, you don't have optical zoom, so you want the spare pixels to work with for digital zoom.

    • Not for me. My last phone would take crappy pictures quickly but especially in low light I'd have to fiddle with it and take several to get one that was good enough. My 920 is slower but I spend less time deleting failed attempts. Plus, I'm sure they'll get the speed up a bit by the time it ships.

    • by thegarbz (1787294)

      It's not just plain binning. With higher resolution you spread noise out into a smaller area. By applying noise reduction and THEN binning the picture you end up with an incredibly low-noise image.

      This was noted as well when Nikon released the D800. Everyone cried foul saying the D700 would perform better in low light, and when the pictures were blown up and analysed pixel by pixel on a computer they were right. When the picture was viewed, or noise reduction applied, or any normal form of photo was made w

  • Is it just me... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by MalachiK (1944624)

    or has smartphone technology reached something of a plateau? I mean, I had a iPhone 3GS for years and I held off from upgrading until the 5 was released, thinking that there'd be a step change or paradigm shift of some sort. When the time came I left Apple because looking around it seemed that all of the top of the line handsets are basically the same. I don't exactly push the envelope with my phone useage, and despite what people say I don't know many that do. In terms of the core functionality and int

    • or has smartphone technology reached something of a plateau? I mean, I had a iPhone 3GS for years and I held off from upgrading until the 5 was released, thinking that there'd be a step change or paradigm shift of some sort. When the time came I left Apple because looking around it seemed that all of the top of the line handsets are basically the same. I don't exactly push the envelope with my phone useage, and despite what people say I don't know many that do. In terms of the core functionality and interface experience, I couldn't find much to choose between Apple, HTC, Nokia or Samsung.

      The iPhone was fantastic back in the day. The touchscreen and build quality were a real step forward and set a new standard. But these day smartphones are just another part of the scenery. Any it's not as if they're really moving forwards. The handsets have gotten as small as they can practically be, and then bigger again. Most handsets use the same style screens. Sure, we get more processing power and what not, but seriously how many cores do you need to check e-mail and post to facebook?

      I'm using a Lumia 900 right now. And I'n going to stick with it until the next device comes along that changes the game on the same scale as the iPhone 3G did.

      I thought so too until recently.

      I had ... actually still do have a Samsung Galaxy S1 captivate circa 2010. It is very slow and the browser crashes at least once a day. I bought a galaxy 4S and couldn't believe the difference! It was freaking fast. It had light sensors in both cameras so the screen could auto adjust brightness. It has motion sensors so the pages go up and down based on your retina scanning. It has voice activation commands. If you click 2 of them together it can double as one screen.

      • by gl4ss (559668)

        light sensors: old.
        motion sensor scrolling: old
        sharing network connection to pda's: '90s old.
        data cap listing: as old.

        it is in a plateau. and the "old" means that the features were introduced in phones ten years ago, everything is just slightly better.

    • by pspahn (1175617)

      To put it simply, smart phones are now capable of so much more than being simply a phone that their usefulness as a phone has been greatly diminished in the form of terrible battery life compared to what we used to have.

      New phones that are simply phones would be nice to see. It doesn't need to have a bunch of power hungry radios in it. Just a phone. With great battery life, quality phone-based features, and that's it. Leave the rest of it for tablets and other doodads.

      • by mirix (1649853)


        This is why I have a Nexus 4 for 'mobile computing', and a circa 2008 Nokia for... using as a phone.

        Close to a week of battery life on a single charge is what it's all about, along with legendary call quality, range, etc.

        Whenever we need a phone, my girlfriend's S3 is *always* dead, near dead, or charging. The nokia is ready for action. Shame they don't make them anymore.

        When we go camping for a long weekend, I don't even need to worry about bringing a charger for the Nokia!

        • They still make stupid Nokias. The Nokia 100 retails for $50, on sale for $29 on Amazon now. 35 days of standy time.
      • by Dr Max (1696200)
        This is why i want a little flexible phone i can wrap around my wrist like a watch. I don't want it to have sixteen cores or play bf3. I want it to make phone calls, text, email, maps, music, video, and not have to bother about carrying another thing around in my pocket.
  • Windows Phone (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 11, 2013 @10:02PM (#44257565)

    If you check email, surf the web, do some multimedia, make phone calls - Windows Phone absolutely rocks. If you want apps, not so much. I have Windows Phone and have been tempted by Android, but not enough for me to switch to Android. I prefer WP over Apple and BlackBerry. I would guess half of the negative Windows Phone comments on here are people who probably didn't even pick up a device for 2 minutes. Just fashionable to hate on MS here it seems.

    • by richlv (778496)

      another anonymous coward post, praising windows on phones, and sounding soooo badly hurt about people not liking it. it probably is fashionable to hate ms in phone shops by that logic :)

    • by gorfie (700458)
      To quell the "anonymous cowards are paid by Microsoft" folks, I too own a Windows phone (Lumia 900) and prefer it over my wife's iPhone 5 and my old Samsung Galaxy (the original). It's great for email, Web, phone calls, and music. I only use free apps and the selection for WP7 is acceptable (not as much variety as I saw in Google's marketplace but I'm not aware of any "killer" apps that I cannot have). The OS makes it easy to launch apps and configure the phone (the tile customization really helps). The
    • But for many of us, apps are the phone. I run my life on OmniFocus, and I'm about 99.99% sure there'll never be a Windows Phone port of it. What about 1Password? Simple Bank? I'm sure everyone on an iPhone or Android has a pet app (or dozen) that they don't want to live without.

      And that's my main gripe against Windows Phone. It's a pretty decent system by all accounts, but it just doesn't (and won't) do the stuff I'd need it to do. That's not hating - that's pragmatism.

  • by SuperKendall (25149) on Thursday July 11, 2013 @10:14PM (#44257657)

    I have to think they names it the "1020" just to put technical people on edge. So close...

  • by jrumney (197329) on Thursday July 11, 2013 @10:39PM (#44257821) Homepage

    $299 seems kind of cheap for a flagship product with this feature set. Is it really $299, or is it $299 + a lot more $ in contractual obligation over the next 2 years?

  • An article about a windows phone? Why is this on here? What's Microsoft market share in phones? Doesn't Nintendo sell more phones than them?

    (while I'm kidding about Nintendo there is this image: http://cdn.pocketnow.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/6a00d8341c5c9353ef01156f2acdc3970c-800wi.jpg [pocketnow.com] )

Real programmers don't bring brown-bag lunches. If the vending machine doesn't sell it, they don't eat it. Vending machines don't sell quiche.