Making The Switch: A Week On Windows Phone
Like many people of our tech-driven society, I am a creature of habit. I like what I like, and I am rarely influenced to change my preference at the suggestion of a peer.
I currently have an iPhone 4s, and I’m very accustomed to it. It does what I want, exactly when I want it to, assuming I have a cell signal at the time.
So why would I change?
The hard-working people on the Windows Phone team approached me with a challenge. They wanted me to try out one of their mobile devices to see how the Windows Phone OS stood up to iOS, or even my past experience with Android platform phones. I agreed, and now I’m going to tell you about my experience with the Nokia Lumia 920—recently crowned the world’s most popular mobile device on the market—and how I felt about making the switch.
As the Lumia 920 was unboxed, the first thing I noticed immediately was the size of the thing. It’s a big phone, but it’s big for a reason. I’ll get to that later. The width and length of the phone took some getting used to, but eventually I was swiping and tapping app windows with the best of ‘em.
I’m not immediately attached to my phone, in fact I’d consider myself a very light user. I mostly use my phone when I’m away from my computer, to read email, communicate with friends, browse reddit, and on the rare occasion, games.
My test-drive of the phone had me lost at first – I was trying harder than I should have at first to use the phone, which stressed me out a little bit as I tried to find apps and other utilities on the phone that I normally wouldn’t have if I had outright bought the phone for myself, to use as I normally would.
I eventually got over that stage and began to be a little more at ease.
My commutes had me streaming music, and for fun I tested out the navigation. Both situations that would come naturally to me regardless of the device. It didn’t feel that much different to my iPhone, except that instead of using Rdio, I was streaming through Spotify.
I was given a phone with an active number for the purpose of trying it out and giving my two-cents, but I only texted a few times—texts to my iPhone to see how it was doing without me—and firing off the odd email. I’m not a fan of the layout of the mail application on the Windows device, it felt too large and glossy right out of the box, but maybe I’m biased because of my familiarity with the iPhone’s various email apps.
So, why is the Nokia Lumia 920 so large? The easy answer – this is a phone that houses some very powerful hardware that makes technology from the early 2000′s look about as useful as a nightlight. With such a high-powered device, you’re going to have some problems fitting all those gizmos and doodads into something smaller. For those curious, here is a list of hardware specs for the 920.
What I Liked About the Nokia Lumia 920:
- The operating system itself is well designed. Simple without being completely boring.
- The screen real estate made for watching videos, and using GPS/Navigation apps a great experience.
- The battery life is great. I found that after casual use, it still had plenty of juice.
- The PureView camera is hands down the best mobile phone camera on the market.
- The wireless charging has to be one of the coolest features (not included with the phone.) There is also a standard wired charger included.
- I liked these specific apps:
- Spotify – A great music app, with a clean interface.
- Nokia City Lens (limited to certain Nokia devices)
- BaconIt – The unofficial reddit app.
- Xbox Live – Staying connected to your Xbox Live account, keeping track of friends / achievements, updating avatars, etc.
- Windows SkyDrive
What I Disliked About the Nokia Lumia 920:
- The size and weight – It’s a bit too big to feel totally comfortable with using one-handed.
- The current lack of apps, but the catalog will expand over time.
- The organization of their app store is a bit disorganized and not as easy to navigate.
- The color scheme got stale at times, and there are only a handful of colors you can select.
- The email app didn’t suit my preference.
I would recommend this phone to you if:
- You’re addicted to status updates – The Windows Phone integrates your social life from all angles. Twitter, Facebook, and all the rest.
- You can’t stop taking pictures – Best camera phone on the market, with tons of photo apps to accomodate.
- You like to stream stuff – Youtube, movies, Television shows look great on this device, thanks to the massive screen resolution.
Got a question about my Nokia Lumia 920 review? Feel free to ask in the comments!