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Customer Review

22 of 34 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Where Are The Basic Features Of Smartphones!, 10 April 2013
This review is from: Nokia Lumia 920 Sim Free Windows Smartphone - Black (Electronics)
Update 2014 after review below from 2013(Please note I originally rated this phone 3 Stars, now have given it 4 Stars).

After being a disappointed with the phone previously coming from SG3, I have now fallen in love with Lumia 920 after a years use, the improvements and discoveries as follows:

*Folders are now available on Lumia.
*Voice assistance is actually quiet good once remembered commands for various apps - though full voice control is apparently coming with 8.1 update.
*Camera is much better now and apps/options are easy to access (recommend Nokia Camera app)
*Maps while not as informative as Google; Nokia maps do accuracy very well, with a very simple clean interface. A third party Google Maps/Street View apps also available that work very well too.
*Calendars recommended Cal/Simple Calendar/Chronos Calendar are brilliant and with informative Tiles. Also much more apps are now available & still arriving that work really well with the Windows UI.
*Interface is well integrated bringing apps/info such as music/contacts/social all together in one place.
*Tiles can be very useful and with folders now available it can look pretty slick too. Recommend 'Groupy' app to add spacing and can be lettered.
*Great and informative lockscreen plus Nokia Glance very useful and helpful in a simple way. Recommended app: Lockmix for extra lockscreen add-ons (eg: appointments, calendars, revolving photos, battery info, weather..etc)
*UI is slick and fast and very smooth - love it!
*Xbox Video is now available with movie/tv rentals or purchase.
*UC Browser is excellent on W8P for downloading and storing web videos/music on phone.
*8.1 update will further improve W8 phones later this year with intergrated Notifications page plus other functions & improvements(2014).
*Kids Corner is very handy for those who the phone/children safe when letting them use it.

Hi, I really starting to love the 920 now! Here's a few apps that really work well with W8P esp Nokia Lumia's:
*Nokia App Folder - great for creating folders for apps.
*Car Dash - excellent for when driving.
*Chronos Calendar(more customization) or Cal (calendar) - Both quality useful and simple calendars with informative tiles.
*Lockmix - Informative custom information you can use on lock screen.
*627.AM - Excellent alarm, reminder note, tomorrows weather all in one tile.
*Connectivity - Best quick toggle access settings, battery info, plus more.
*Nokia Storyteller - Date timeline/places/folders/favs of all photos. Can also tap photo to add info.
*Music - Excellent free music streaming
*Groupy - I use this to create space between above and below tiles by using a Black small tile sitting in between the above and below tile(s). 1 can used to separate a whole row. This also allows me to use white lettering on the black tile(s), or what colours you wish, allowing me to create tags with appropriate apps/tiles sitting under tags, eg: M_E_D_I_A / N_O_T_E_S / N_E_W_S..etc (you have to fiddle around with space spreading letters on each tile used).
*Skinery Themes - Great custom tiling that can have continuous revolving tiles with reminders, notes, photos, icons, blank/coloured tiles attached to any one app, open a chosen webpage, all or single contact, settings, or no tasks - just use it as decoration or informative/reminder or all 3 as a tile.
*Bing: News, Sports, Health, Weather, Travel
*EasyNotes - Quality notepad with many options.
*Oyster Buddy
*MyTube - Better then any official YouTube app on any phone.

Oh! If you go into Speech and turn tick Play Audio Conformation, then Always On below - this will read your SMS messages to you. Just wait for the bleep at the end and respond. Very handy at times...You can also change text size for certain areas eg: Contacts, People, email, messaging and lock screen - just go to Settings, Ease of Access and switch On.

I got his after giving my Samsung Galaxy S3 to my partner. I liked the look and feel with W8 OS, plus the OS seemed exciting and fresh. At first I really loved the fluidity with its handling of W8 and Nokia phone - it felt slick and smooth/responsive, plus can be operated with your gloves on! BUT!!! now 3 weeks inn, I see many Basic features missing from W8 OS, esp after coming from SG3 plus Iphone background:

1)NO REAL VOICE ASSISTANCE: You can't ask it to set-up Reminders, Alarms, Timer, Calendar Events/Tasks or simply ask various questions like: 'How many countries in the EU', 'What was the football results last night', 'What is the fastest car in the world'..etc! You be amazed how this function can be useful and now an expected feature in modern Smartphones. The only voice assistance on W8 is fairly limited and quiet basic: Web-Search, Call'name', Note'...' that's about it on W8! With no voice option when typing with the only exception for Txt/Emailing, unlike the Iphone or SG3 which both have speech available in most apps/areas, and is esp good when you can't spell certain words which don't show-up in word prediction(which W8 is not as good as SG3/Jellybean/Google!). On SG/Iphone simply say the word eg:'Considerable'; and 'Considerable' will be spelled and inserted for you if/when needed! Lumia W8 surprisingly been really stupid not to include this level of Voice Assistance! It has and does come in useful at certain times esp with hands free operation.

2)While Bing/Nokia Maps are good! Bing maps lack detail/ reviews of places, and are very photos-less compared to the well up-to-date OS implemented Google Maps on both Android phones and Iphone. W8 often lacks the various information on areas/places with no proper Streetview integration - you do have a separate app for this, but even then it does not operate with the fluidity and ease of Android/iPhones all-in-one Google StreetView/Places/Latitude/Maps. W8 Maps both sadly can't find real-time alternative routes to avoid tailbacks, traffic, accidents - Google's can!

3)While Nokia does a excellent job of photos, its sad that not much that you can do with them! Again separate apps have to be bought to do the most basic things that come with Android/iPhone. This does become a problem as you have to go into a separate app which is not integrated with the main camera, so you going to have to remember each Icon for each Tile to remember the function of the app - Not very good if want to take quick shots! To do a simple function such as Photo-Albums on W8 requires patience and multitasking: You need to be connected to SkyDrive app stored on both Phone and PC, upload photos to SkyDrive, this costing you data and battery power, then make Photo Folder in SkyDrive, then send Photos into Folder, then wait(depending on the net connection - but can take upto 30+mins)for Photos to be put into folders created on Sky Drive. THIS IS JUST SLOW AND CUMBERSOME AND STUPID!!!! There is no photo slideshow ability as its all manual. No screen touch side-bar on video/music/photos to wizz too, or pass quickly, to certain images or sections of a pacific part of video or song you may wish to see/hear: You can only Forward or Back skip at 30 second intervals on both video/music. The camera lacks any real image photo editing features(i'm not talking about gimmick editing), with also a very useless photo Map Location option. No face detection that can recognize faces in your contact list, which you can then optionally use to view all photos of that person, or send Msg's/Call/Email that person when looking at photos of that person in you contacts - which SG3 can all do! Though Nokia does an excellent job with the camera, its MS again holding Nokia back!

4)CLUTTERED CONFUSING TILES: While the tiles are nice on W8 and even informative(not very though!); They certainly can get confusing. If kept at the smallest size to fit a decent amount on screen, which will happen if you want to keep a good amount of apps for quicker access - and because of this the smallest Tiles will not be labelled! This forcing you to recognize the app by Icon identification, while requiring you to have a very good memory to remember what that Icon app is ? Most tiles even at there medium & larger size, that usually flip between two images, only provide minimal information - esp. when compared to the Widgets on Android which carry more info, eg: Sky News Headlines, Agenda Calendar , Flipboard, Pulse, Emails, Txts, Weather Clock (Widgets also allow you open other apps by linking it to Widgets!)..etc. Andorid's screens are alive with updates and information and more informative, interactive then W8 tiles!

FOLDERS: Sadly you can't create folders on W8, so its impossible to group and categorize apps together neatly for quicker, easier access, which also doesn't force you to filling the homescreen with app icons, widgets, tiles which can become confusing and slow to navigate or find that particular app - W8 can become confusing!

5)DOWNLOAD VIDEO! You can't download video into you phone as with Android(SG/Android gives you an option everytime), or iPhone, which now has an app allowing you to do that. So if you ever want to download a certain video and watch it later, at any time and place from your phone - you can't!!! Lumia W8 does not store the any net-video in the phone memory. This leaves you with no-option but to download and watch it using Wi-Fi/Net there and then! This means if you want to watch something from Youtube later, you can't, it has to be watched while its downloading, even after its downloaded, your unable to keep it for later to watch!!! This is just dumb of W8 and Lumia.

6)THERE IS NO NOTIFACTION BAR - you have to go into your email, msg, miss calls! No notification bar is just plain stupid not to be included. You can't have notification updates from things like: Weather, Traffic, News, Footballs Scores, Ebay, Sports, Local events, Emails, Txts, Tweets, Facebook...etc: Unlike Android/Iphone where you can see and access all various info at anytime and in any app just by simply pulling down slidebar from the top. There is no way to view all-in-one information in one go on W8! People's Hub on Lumia is very restricted and just formainly msg social grouping - that's all.

7)App's while growing, simply don't offer much! There is also the habit if overcharging for apps that should have been naturally integrated into W8 phone OS. Also there is NO hiring/buying/watching movie, no magazines, no books on W8. Only Netflix. This is again so stupid on MS and W8 phones. Google and Apple certainly has beaten W8 in this area, as well as others. Even the apps that have reached W8 phones, lack many features compared to Andorid and iPhones equivalents!

W8 has many simple basic expected features missing. Yet! sadly offering nothing that can equal Photos, Maps, Voice Assistance, Notification, Apps when compared to Android/SG3 and Iphone! A good but badly stripped of features phone and OS, which MS also seems to slow to bring up-to-date!
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 29 Apr 2013 21:31:11 BDT
Last edited by the author on 29 Apr 2013 21:32:00 BDT
bunnyDrug says:
Really appreciate the time you took to write this review. Been umming and ahhing about getting one after a 24hour experience with the HTC titan (swiftly returned to amazon (epic service)). It's a shame to see that not much has changed with WP8 vs WP7.5

Either sticking with IOS or moving to Android :/

Posted on 6 May 2013 03:30:41 BDT
Just a few things you should consider:

1) Fair enough, though take into account that app developers can add their own voice commands. Still no match for Siri, obviously.

2) I haven't had any problems with Nokia Maps, but if you like Google Maps or need street view on your phone, just download the app called "gMaps".

3) There is not much integration of the OS with third party photo apps, but there are plenty of free photo-editing apps to choose from, like Fhotoroom, Lomogram, Creative Studio, etc., and I don't think I am missing any features that I normally used with my iPhone. As for photo albums, you can create them on SkyDrive, and your albums will automatically appear on the "albums" tab right below the camera roll, though you will need Wi-Fi or a 3G connection to see them. I agree it would be nice if you could create the albums without having to use SkyDrive, though. I had never thought of this because I have an unlimited data plan. There are also plenty of apps to do slide shows. I agree that it is a shame that we can't forward to specific parts of a song or video, unless you are watching it through MetroTube or other similar apps.

4) I'll pick WP8 live tiles over the boring Android widgets any day. They may not be as informative, but they convey just the right amount of information I need without giving me a headache. Minimalism is part of WP8's appeal.

5) You certainly can download YouTube videos. Just download the "YouTube Downloader" app, it's free and it works. There's also a wonderful app called "FlashVideo + TubeMusic" that allows you to watch and download Flash videos from hosts like gorillavid, novamov, putlocker, sockshare, etc. (it even allows you to view pirate sports live streams, if you're into that kind of thing).

6) There's a new free app called "Unification", though it doesn't (yet) have compatibility with many important apps like Facebook. It is going to take some time until more app developers decide to make their apps compatible. The WP8 live tiles have done the trick for me, but I guess many users will miss the Android/iOS notification bar until the Unification app improves.

7) I agree it was quite stupid of Microsoft to not allow playback of Xbox Video purchases and rentals (at least for now), but having Netflix and FlashVideo + TubeMusic (the latter of which allows you to save for offline use) I don't really miss it. I don't know what kind of person reads books on his phone, but if you want to you can just download the book to your PC and upload it to SkyDrive or sync it to your phone. Easy as that.

Overall, I'm quite happy with my purchase, and found the OS a lot more stable and user-friendly than iOS or Android.

Posted on 9 Sep 2013 16:42:01 BDT
Alison Carey says:
Sounds perfect - that's all the stuff I never use :)
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