Nokia Lumia 820 running Windows Phone 8
After Samsung introduced the first Windows Phone 8 device, known as the Ativ S, Nokia quickly followed up with two of its own Windows 8 phones during its event in New York. The more robust of the pair is the Lumia 920, but fear not: the smaller Lumia 820 still packs enough punch on its own.
On October 3, AT&T announced that it would begin selling the Lumia 820 in the November time frame.
Design and screen
At 4.87 inches tall, 2.69 inches wide, and 0.39 inch thick, the Lumia 820 is the smaller of the two devices. It weighs a hefty 5.64 ounces, and though the body keeps the same polycarbonate build as past Lumia devices, the 820 sports rounder corners and softer lines.
The device is powered by a 1,650mAh battery and a 1.5GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor. It has a 4.3-inch AMOLED screen that has the same Super Sensitive Touch capabilities as in the 920, which allows you to swipe through the touch scree,n even when using gloves. In addition, the screen has a 15:9 aspect ratio capable of displaying 16.7 million colors, and its ClearBack display makes it easily viewable outdoors and in sunlight.
Unlike the 920, the 820 has a removable back shell that can pop out. Underneath it, you can access the microSD slot that's expandable up to 32GB. Nokia has created several back plate shell colors in red, yellow, purple, gray (or Seductive Grey as it is known), black, and white. Another back shell also provides wireless charging capabilities through the use of a charging pad.
Camera The Nokia Lumia 820 has an 8-megapixel camera that's equipped with a Carl Zeiss Tessar lens. Its has a maximum aperture of F/2.2, a 4x digital zoom, an LED flash, geotagging capabilities, touch focus, and four white-balance modes.
Several new camera features that Nokia touted during its presentation include pinch zooming; Smart Shoot, which can crop out unwanted objects or people from a single image; and a cinemagraph maker that can incorporate slight GIF-like movements into a still photo.
Third-party apps, like FX Suite, can also access the camera easily. By integrating themselves with the viewfinder, these apps can effortlessly add digital effects in real time.
Windows Phone 8 and other software goodies
The Lumia 820 ships with the updated Windows Phone 8. The new OS comes with numerous new features like a smaller live tile size for apps that you don't want taking a lot of space in your Start screen. You can also create live tiles for individuals, which consolidate missed calls and relevant alerts from a single person.
Nokia Maps, which has the added capability of offline maps, is also included, as well as Nokia Drive and Transport. Drive calculates your daily commute travel time and can alert you when to leave, while the latter gives you times for public transportation.In addition, an augmented reality feature called City Lens is included. Though nothing new (Yelp's Monocle view has similar capabilities), it's still cool to see the names and other short information of the restaurants and businesses nearby in real time.
And, perhaps most importantly to those working in tech journalism, the new Lumias can take screenshots (hooray!). By holding down power and the home button, screenshots are taken and then saved into a separate folder in your gallery.
Battery and wireless charging
As previously stated, the Lumia 820 runs on a 1,650mAh battery, which roughly translates into 8 to 14 hours of reported talk time. If you opt for the aforementioned wirelessly charging back shell, they can also purchase several audio accessories for more options.
The audio company, JBL, has a slew of of new audio products tailored to the new Lumias, such as its Power Up speakers. Used in conjunction with the 820's Near Field Communication (NFC) capabilities, you can play music, as well as charge the device, by simply placing it on top of the speakers. With JBL headphones, you can tap your phone to the headphones to begin playing music as well.
Other accessories include a Fatboy soft charging pillow and a standing charging dock.
Though the Lumia 920 was the headliner at Nokia World, the 820 comes with enough exciting pizazz as a standalone device. Its dual-core processor will make it faster than previous Lumia devices, and the updated Windows Phone 8 OS comes chock-full of new features. Furthermore, its novel wireless charging capabilities and top-notch camera give it that extra edge over other phones just hitting the market. Both Nokia and Microsoft are riding on the success of the Lumia line, and once both handsets are released, only time will tell how the masses take to it. But for us over at CNET, the new Lumias' better specs (and not to mention that pop of color) proves to be another, refreshing, breath of fresh air.