For anyone new to Windows Phone the Lumia 920 will offer quite a change from either their older handset or the experience offered by Android and iOS. In our opinion it is a hugely positive experience and the OS is intuitive and slick. For those who have been using Windows Phone 7.5 the experience is very similar with the small changes to the home screen activity and tile layout being the most obvious change/improvement.
In a way the same can be said of the overall device experience too. For those who have used or own the Lumia 800, as one example, the 920 will feel very familiar. In fact in some ways this initially makes it feel a little underwhelming… but the fact is that Windows Phone 7.5 and the 800 were so good that the move to 8/920 was never going to be a massive change and it didn’t necessarily need to be.
What we get here is a more future proof handset (dual core CPU, more memory and more storage) with a larger higher resolution screen. All key aspects with the button layout remaining identical to make the handset easy to pick up and use and the use of Gorilla Glass 2 is a bonus. We do miss the more soft touch coating of the older Lumia in comparison to the new high shine finish though and it is worth noting that this is a heavy handset, weightier than the likes of the Galaxy S3.
Battery life was also decent for a smartphone. On an average day, which for us involved around three-five 15 minute calls, multiple text messages, 30 minutes of gaming and an hour of surfing with Wi-Fi enabled the overall time on was around 28 hours before a charge was required. That charge with the phone on takes around an hour and a half.
Finally we turn to apps, always something which was an issue with the last generation of Windows Phone whether that be the lack of developed software or decisions like locking down the keyboard so we can’t use alternatives like the excellent Swype. That is still the case here, the keyboard is locked down and there are fewer apps than Android/iOS however we note a huge improvement over the last 12 months and expect this to continue. We also note that a big part of this is down to Nokia and Microsoft pushing through some great apps of their own such as Nokia Maps, Nokia Creative Studio and of course Office.