Nokia is at an important juncture right now. While they have the Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 targeting two different sets of crowds at different price points, none of them caters to the bottom of the smartphone market, where the majority of the consumers are. To address the sub-Rs. 10k base, Nokia recently launched the Lumia 520 and we took a closer look to see if its worth the price.
Good thing about the Lumia 520’s design is that it looks similar to higher-priced Lumias. Sure, you won’t find the premium-ness of materials found in a higher priced Lumia phone but Lumia 520 is certainly well designed. The phone comes with a replaceable back cover that comes in a variety of colours and sports a 4-inch LCD display with the customary touch-sensitive buttons like the Back, Windows and the Search key. The top and the bottom sides of the phone hosts a 3.5mm headphone jack and microUSB port respectively whereas the right hand side has volume, power and the camera buttons. The back sports the loudspeaker and the 5MP camera.
The Lumia 520 features a 4-inch display supporting a WVGA resolution (800×480 pixels), which is quite good for a phone at this price point. Interestingly, the display on this device is slightly larger but a tad dimmer than the Lumia 620, which is priced a few thousand Rupees more. However, keeping the comparison aside, Lumia 520 has a decent display that gives little to complain about.
Software and Performance:
Lumia 520 runs on Windows Phone 8 OS which means like other Windows Phone 8 devices, there’s little you could do to personalise it. At most, you can change the theme, ringtones and background of the lock screen.
And since, there’s little freedom from Microsoft’s side, Nokia tries to sweeten the pot by offering their suite of apps to enhance the phone’s functionality. You’ll find apps like Nokia Music, HERE Drive, HERE Maps, few photo lenses like Cinemagraph, PhotoBeamer and BIG Flix pre-loaded on the device. PhotoBeamer needs a special mention as it allows all the Lumia 520 images to be ‘beamed’ to another device via a web browser.
Unlike Android, Windows Phone 8 is highly optimised, which is why Lumia 520 works smoothly on the 1GHz dual-core processor and 512MB RAM. The phone also comes with 8GB of internal memory that can be expanded further via the microSD card slot.
As far as multimedia goes, most games work on the Lumia 520, including Asphalt 7 and has a decent support of music and video playback. As I said, Nokia pre-loads the phone with Nokia Music that gives three months of unlimited access to Nokia Music portfolio, Mix Radio and features a three months subscription of BIG Flix for enjoying movies on the move.
Lumia 520 comes with a 5MP camera, which is a hit and a miss. The camera takes some decent shots given the proper lighting conditions but suffers badly in case of low light. The absence of LED flash also worsens it. However, good part about the camera is the support of lenses that are downloadable from the menu itself and help to enhance the camera’s functionalities. The lenses like Cinemagraph, Smar Shoot, Panorama that you’d find on Nokia’s top-end Lumia 920 can also be found here.
Video recording is satisfactory as well and supports 720p HD video recording.
|Nokia Lumia 520 Sample Shots|
The phone comes with a 1430mAh battery and given the moderate usage of always-on data, few hours of music and video, it lasts around a day.
So shoud you get the phone? It’s a definite yes if you’re in the market for an entry-level smartphone. Admittedly, there are many Android devices in the same price range but Android OS on entry-level devices are not that optimised as Windows Phone. Also, if you just want to try out the Windows Phone 8 platform, this is the ideal value for money device since it gives most of the features you’d find in a flagship Windows Phone 8 phone for roughly at 1/4th of the price.
Pros: Performance, Price