You know everybody says the megapixel war is over? Nokia apparently didn't get the memo because its 808 PureView is the first cellphone to cram a 41-megapixel sensor into its chassis. Overkill? Hell freakin' yes and we're totally down with that!
Betting big on Windows Phone and its new Lumia smartphones was a ballsy move for Nokia. Despite minor shortcomings on the Lumia 800 and 710, Nokia's managed to sell 1 million Lumias, putting the company back on track to growth.
A solar-powered cellphone sure sounds like a great idea: use the power of the sun to never have to charge your phone again, woo! For the last six months, Nokia has had some prototype solar phones out in the wild to see how well this actually works, and the results are in: the sun kinda sucks for charging phones.
The Lumia 710 isn't the only Nokia smartphone coming to the U.S. Intel points to AT&T getting a larger and faster variant of the Windows Phone 7-powered Lumia 800, rumored to be called the "Ace" or "Lumia 900."
In a column earlier this week, my DVICE stablemate Raymond Wong posited that the Nokia Lumia 710 running Microsoft Windows Phone 7.5 "Mango" and due to go on sale on January 11 from T-Mobile is the wrong phone with the wrong OS from the wrong carrier for Nokia and Microsoft to use as a fiundation to begin their comeback in the smartphone market. Sorry, Ray, I beg to differ. I think the Lumia is the right phone at the right price with the right carrier, or at least a necessary calculated risk by Microsoft and Nokia to make headway in a market dominated by iOS and Android. Oh, and the photo of the Lumia 710 accompanying Raymond's editorial? It's not a photo of the Lumia 710 T-Mobile will sell — there won't be an all-white version. Only an all-black and black with a white frame. But I digress.
All eyes are on Nokia right now. Last Thursday, it announced the official launch of the Lumia 710 on T-Mobile — the first Windows Phone 7 smartphone it will release in the U.S. Back in October, I had the lovely opportunity to play with prototypes of the Lumia 800 and the Lumia 710. As I said in my hands-on and review, the Lumia 800 is a handsome piece of polycarbonate, whereas the Lumia 710 was really just a poor man's version and a lower 5-megapixel camera instead of an 8-megapixel one. Nokia might not be a huge player in the U.S., but it's still a global one that still sells lots of cellphones in Europe and Asia; the company still knows a thing or two about making phones. Choosing Windows Phone 7 to be its smartphone OS of choice moving forward was surprising indeed. Now that we've had enough time to let that fact sink it, can Nokia re-enter the U.S. and become a dominant force once again? Can it stare down the mountains of iPhones and Androids and claim a stake on the pedestal? I'm not saying it has no chance at that, but it certainly doesn't look like Nokia's going into this with a huge bang.
Nokia's Lumia 800 leaves a solid first impression. I had a few minutes to play with it when the phone was first unveiled, and I came away from that thinking that this was finally it. The Nokia Lumia 800 was Windows Phone 7's killer smartphone. That prototype Lumia 800 felt great in the hand, ran the latest Windows Phone 7.5 Mango and was lightning fast, even without any fancy dual-core processors. The Lumia 800 felt like the best Windows Phone 7 device to ever arrive. I finally had a chance to use it for a few weeks (this review would have arrived sooner if not for a battery charging-related software update that couldn't be done manually and Wi-Fi issues that required us to get a replacement) and I'm sadder than I was that brisk October morning. Read on to find out what happened.
Nokia is showing off a supremely crazy phone concept called HumanForm. Shaped like a teardrop, this is a touch-activated and completely flexible phone that looks like it's straight out of a sci-fi movie.
CES, the tech industry's annual orgy of new gear and gadgets, is about two months off, and we're already seeing rumors about what to expect there. One interesting tidbit: AT&T and Nokia may be set to announce the first 4G LTE Windows Phone there.
The tablet wars were supposed to get really ugly this year between Android tablets and the iPad 2, but that didn't happen. iPad 2 crushed the Xoom, PlayBook and Galaxy Tab all into the ground. What's Nokia to do if it wants to make admirable tablets? Apparently, get in bed with Windows 8.