A couple of weeks ago I was invited to join Nokia’s Amazing Collective– a select group of social media enthusiasts and bloggers- and receive a brand new Nokia Lumia 800 mobile phone. I was very much looking forward to trialling the new Nokia phone with the Microsoft Windows operating system- as you may have read previously, I’ve always been a fan of Nokia mobile phones and their very intuitive interface, easy of use…and I do love my gadgets and technology!
The Nokia Lumia 800 is a very pretty piece of kit- sleek and shiny and feels very solid. Unfortunately, because of traffic hold ups I didn’t have time to enjoy any of the presentations on what the phone can actually do. We popped the SIM card in, transferred my contacts from my much-loved HTC Desire (a process that was unbelievably simple and straightforward) and I headed home to do the rest of the set up on my own.
I put the phone straight to the test, as I had to navigate back through West London traffic, driving. I had the choice of Nokia Drive or Maps, both preinstalled. I chose Maps, because I’ve become used using Google Maps on the Android. It worked beautifully! I got to my destination quickly, hopefully using the most efficient route. (There were no options to set preferences in the app, hence I say I hope it choose the most efficient route.)
The Lumia 800 comes with a black silicon sleeve included in the packaging. Great! There are 4 buttons on the right side: volume control up and down, standby switch and a dedicated photo button, which brings up the camera very quickly. It’s a great feature to have the photo app that handy, especially with the kids and their silly moments!
The Nokia’s hardware certainly lives up to the well-established reputation. The touch screen is beautifully crisp and bright, the type pad is very precise.
The spell checker, on the other hand, is not as good as that of the Android. The one built into the Windows OS just doesn’t look at as wide a possibilities for mistyping. Saying that, it still does pretty well.
Getting the basic set up sorted
My next challenge, getting home, was customising my new Lumia 800 phone- adding in all my email accounts and social media accounts. These were relatively straightforward once I figured out all my passwords. With everything added, the Microsoft Windows OS pulls together all your profile activities from your numerous networks into a “Me” app- a single location where you can update your status across multiple your platforms and see other’s messages to you in one single location. It’s pretty cool, though slightly confusing if you add in a twitter account, which then picks up people’s names instead of their twitter handles.
I fiddled around with a couple of settings, getting my Gmail onto the main screen, my calendar (which again synchronises with your different calendars- Google, Microsoft, etc.) updated and onto the Home screen.
The “People” section, or as Nokia refer to it the People Hub, I played with some more. As it pulls in your contacts from all the added accounts, (Linked in, Facebook, MS Outlook, etc.) you end up with multiple listing of people (like you do on Android mobiles) and then you are able to link all the details of a person together into a single record. I found this bit easy and intuitive…except for the diffuculties caused by Android’s use of non standard characters for accentuated letters. These therefore transfer as very different, often multiple characters, gobbledygook. I will gradually go in to correct these as I come across them. (This flaw of the my Android phone was already obvious, when I tried to add certain characters like á to a text message the character allowance for a single message would reduce by upto 70 characters… one learnt to work around it).
How does it do on the basics?
Afterall, what is the main reason for a mobile phone? Making and recieving phonecalls and texting.
The Nokia’s phone calls are crisp and clear. The loudspeaker function puts the HTC’s loudspeaker to shame, it is just so crisp. Again the hardware shows it’s heritage. Absolutely beautiful!
On the other hand, making a phone call- finding a number or saving a contact on the Nokia Lumia takes on average two more clicks than on the Android. This really surprised me, as it was one of the reasons I used to love my Nokias of past- they were so easy and intuitive to use for the simple task of phone calls and creating and storing contact details. One does get the hang of it though after a couple of tries, it’s just not as logical. (I suspect this is where Android looked at the old Nokia OS and improved it for smartphones, whereas Windows has tried to amalgamate Outlook, iPhone and other smartphone features and ended up with something not as sleek)
I will continue to review the phone and if you like the idea of owning one of these sleek shiney new mobile phones keep an eye on this blog, I may have a surprise in store for you. 😉
In the meantime check out the full specifications of the Nokia Lumia 800 over on Nokia’s own website.