back to article Nokia Lumia 1020: It's an imaging BEAST... and it makes calls too

Nokia's marketing department is comparing its new imaging champ, the Lumia 1020 smartphone, to digital SLR cameras. That's just silly. But what the Lumia 1020 can lay claim to is that it takes the best photos of any current modern smartphone – by a clear head and shoulders. And Nokia has packaged it into a modern phone, rather …


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  1. Anonymous Coward


    So, the Lumia 1020 its a nice phone because 95% of its appeal came from Nokia superb engineering and not all that much from the remaining 5% from the OS?:-)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Engineering

      Can we please deal with the fact that Nokia runs Windows Phone and get over it. Every single review of a Nokia phone there are the same "the hardware looks great, but I'm never using Windows, I wish it had Android" comments. It's just so much noise, if you don't like it please put a sock in it, personally I'm interested in how the market develops and without competition, it's not going to develop.

      1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

        Dual boot phone?

        Imagine if phones came with one of the free operating systems installed, with the option to buy, download and install one or more of the others. That would be real competition.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Dual boot phone?

          "Imagine if phones came with one of the free operating systems installed, with the option to buy, download and install one or more of the others. That would be real competition."

          That's never even happened for PCs so I'm not holding my breath.

        2. Downside

          Re: Dual boot phone?

          I guess you have no idea of the real effort in porting an OS to a hardware platform, nor the effort in testing that it works, flawlessly, with all apps.

          "free" OS. Yes, "free" as in right up to the point of writing the GFX driver for your video, supoort for your choice of bluetooth and WiFi, LCD backlight, panel, the touch controller (ad infinitum).

          "Free" software ho ho ho

        3. Charles Calthrop

          Re: Dual boot phone?


          some sort of grub screen at start up?

          How many people use that on their desktop PCs? Would people really want to see that on their phone?

          I accept that some people would find dual boot useful but I bet most people would not.

      2. Anonymous Coward

        Re: Engineering

        I was teasing about the fact that Andrew being so supportive about Windows Phone OS, spent almost the whole review talking about the hardware, which I've stated already many times that its what differentiate Lumias from the "horde" of Windows Phone offers. So, after saying that...

        "the hardware looks great, but I'm never using Windows, I wish it had Android"

        Where I implied that ma'boy?

        "if you don't like it please put a sock in it"

        If you jump the gun so fast, I think its you who are in need of a sock...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Engineering

          ""the hardware looks great, but I'm never using Windows, I wish it had Android"

          Where I implied that ma'boy?"

          In a substantial proportion of your previous comments.

          1. Anonymous Coward

            Re: Engineering

            ""the hardware looks great, but I'm never using Windows, I wish it had Android"

            Where I implied that ma'boy?"

            In a substantial proportion of your previous comments."

            Care to point them? I'm really curious because if I wanted a different OS on the Lumias it would be MeGoo, or maybe you think that's same as Android...

      3. Anonymous Coward

        Re: Engineering

        "Can we please deal with the fact that Nokia runs Windows Phone and get over it"

        I couldn't sleep well since Elop tied Nokia to Microsoft...sigh...

      4. Mark .

        Re: Engineering

        Agree. And it's also worth noting the thing you never hear on an iphone review: "I wish I could get one with Android".

      5. Chris Parsons Bronze badge

        Re: Engineering

        Too true. I've got a 920, nice phone, it just works, you can make phone calls, send texts, browse the web, do your email and take great photos. I expect you can do other stuff, but that really is all I want.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Engineering

      And the reason your pc works is because of the billion or so transistors in it. Not much good without those is it

      So your point is?

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Re: Engineering

        I can always use an abacus...

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Yawn Re: Engineering

      Boring, predictable comment

    4. Robert Grant Silver badge

      Re: Engineering

      Do you mean because iOS has now caught up with some of the better features, and looks more like WP? Still makes WP a decent choice, unless you have iOS 7 or a lot of money you don't like having.

    5. John P

      In fairness, isn't that the case for most phones these days?

      I don't think any of the OSes have added features in recent years that make me want to rush out and buy a phone just for the shiny new OS, it's all about the hardware.

      I'm possibly biased considering 80% of my phone use is the camera, the remainder being texting and Candy Crush, so this suits my uses perfectly.

      1. King Rollo

        WARNING. Candy Crush is NOT AVAILABLE on Win Phone.

    6. Oddlegs

      Re: Engineering

      Isn't that exactly how it should be? A decent OS shouldn't get in the way but should merely facilitate the hardware and software.

      If you're not noticing the OS on any system then it's doing its job perfectly.

    7. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Engineering

      The OS is nice, fast and secure with no Malware - and is more efficient than all the Android stuff on the market - it also has a more modern UI.

      It might only be 5% of the advantage on a device like this, but it's still an advantage...

    8. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Engineering

      Don't understand the downvotes, it's a one sentence summary of the review, and seems quite accurate.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Re: Engineering

        Worse than the fanboys are the winboys, and oh boy, they think they are better than Eadon....

    9. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Engineering

      Clever technology but ultimately far more than 99.5% of people would really need or use. If you want to take the best pics you would carry a SLR - if you want a great camera on a smartphone the one of the iPhone 5/5C/5S is already superb. The issue is also the OS - I suspect for most they would not change from iOS to Windows for the camera.

  2. Dr Stephen Jones

    "Ann Frank's drum kit"

    Damn you, Orlowski.

    1. Andrew_b65

      Re: "Ann Frank's drum kit"

      Yes Andrew. For that corker, please step up and take a sweet from the jar.

      (Feel free to continue the good work 'bigging up' the Lumia/WP proposition btw.)

    2. Chris Reynolds

      Re: "Ann Frank's drum kit"

      I'm going to tuck that one away. One day I'll deploy it with devastating effectiveness.

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

        Re: @Betacam

        Most humour pokes fun at _someone_ and in many cases humour/satire is the way people deal with terrible things.

        If you can't laugh then you will cry.

      2. Jemma

        Re: "Ann Frank's drum kit"

        I suggest you learn your history. Anne wasn't 'murdered' she died from an infection. Diphtheria if I remember rightly (although since that was her dad on blue peter of all things, when I was about 12 my memory is fuzzy).

        Its a pet hate with me when people go off at half-educated-cock to protect one group of persecuted people yet usually are the same people who'll happily put the bums rush up the gypsies.

        If you want to show respect at least bother to research before you jump in all guns blazing

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

        2. Solmyr ibn Wali Barad

          Re: "Ann Frank's drum kit"

          "If you want to show respect at least bother to research before you jump in all guns blazing"

          Some folks are in the business of demanding respect, not showing it.

        3. stu 4

          Re: "Ann Frank's drum kit"

          er... you have a pretty fucked up definition of 'mudered' then, if you ask me.

          she died in a german concentration camp. Of typhus.

          I think most people would agree that however you die in a nazi concentration camp, you've been murdered by the germans/nazis.

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "Ann Frank's drum kit"

          @Jemma: I'm not going to come in either side of the "Good joke/inappropriate joke" camp here, but I think there's a pretty good call to say murdered. Were it not for the Nazis trying to eradicate Jews, she would not have been in a forced labour/death camp. If you die from malnutrition and typhus having been forced to live in insanitary conditions and forced to work, I'm pretty sure that counts as murder, unless you were going to do that anyway, which I severely doubt.

          You are getting dangerously close to apologising for the Holocaust.

        5. Tapeador

          Re: "Ann Frank's drum kit"


          In addition to all the criticism levelled at you thus far, with which I thoroughly agree, I must point out that your statement

          "Its a pet hate with me when people go off at half-educated-cock to protect one group of persecuted people yet usually are the same people who'll happily put the bums rush up the gypsies."

          seeks to impute to the earlier commenter, hypocrisy which you have no evidence he/she possesses, based on your imagining he is probably intolerant of Roma. I wouldn't dignify such a risible assertion with even the designation of "fallacy". Being even half-educated might have prevented you from making it: alas...

          1. dogged

            Re: "Ann Frank's drum kit"

            Speaking as a Gypsy, it's pretty funny to see this comment, Tapeador. We don't call ourselves Roma when speaking English because that would be acting like a pretentious twat.

            For the record, I thought the original "Ann Frank;s drumkit" joke was funny. And as such, "appropriate" doesn't enter into it. You don't have the right to not be offended. You especially don't have any right to be offended for somebody else.

            If the somebody else is me, not only do you have no right to be offended on my behalf but I reserve the right to punch you for your assumptions.

      3. Arthur 1

        Re: "Ann Frank's drum kit"

        I have to chime in for the "out of bounds" crowd, although I see it as fairly borderline. It's one thing for off colour pub humour, but even for El Reg's intentionally tabloid-y feel this strikes me as a bit much. It's a casual throwaway comment mocking someone's horrible death. I don't buy the 'coping with tragedy' joke concept either, the casual out of nowhere usage and the fact that it's mocking her directly as opposed to the situation or circumstances really makes it seem like it's not.

        Oh, and as for the moron who chimed in with the assumption that a) anyone offended by this must hate gypsies (Romani is the inoffensive term by the way, dolt) and b) Anne Frank's ethnicity was the driving factor in any defence: you need serious help. I'm not sure there's enough therapy in the world, but seek it out anyway.

      4. Darryl

        Re: "How is that funny? A young person spent years living in fear and was then murdered."

        Too soon?

      5. This post has been deleted by its author

  3. Jemma


    Why do you bother reviewing anything that isn't Apple?

    All you ever do is bitch and whine, picking the most inconsequential little features to complain about...

    Ooh the camera grip has only a 1amp/hr battery - did you not get the memo where its in ADDITION to not instead of the phone battery..

    Ooh the pureview 808 is running crappy Belle. That would be the 'crappy' Belle with HDMI out, full multitasking & USB-OTG - that is perfectly capable but for all those American companies who won't support it because they refuse to employ programmers since script kiddies with delusions of grandeur are cheaper.

    Interesting too how you fail to mention that prices for the 808 are going *up* not down.

    And the customers did look upon the 1020 & did note the lack of HDMI & MS trying to steal their files and did see that it was second rate crap.

    And lo they said as one 'bugger that, I'm getting me a proper pureview' and ebay made much commission...

    And far away, in the Palace of Ballmer, there was much wailing & rending of toupets. And eggshells were much walked upon for fear of flying chairs.

    To be blunt the 1020 does not & will not appeal to the cognoscenti. It lacks important features & adds others that people don't want & put purchasers intellectual property at risk (trusting an MS cloud with your livelihood, with the Elop in charge? you'd have to be mad). What's not to loathe about that?

    I'm getting bloody tired of saying this but when did the meaning of the word progress change to mean 'go backwards' & why didn't I get the memo..

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Seriously...@Jemma

      "To be blunt the 1020 does not & will not appeal to the cognoscenti"

      In an otherwise excellent and entertaining post, you're wrong on this assertion. There's lots to not like about the 1020 and you make a good case on those elements, but unlike most phones of the past few years it has a unique sales proposition. There is nothing else with a camera like this. Every other 1020 feature is very much par for the course on an expensive smartphone (excepting Nokia Maps which continues to best all other bundled or free offers).

      Now consider what's the difference between a Iphone 5, a Sammy S4, and whatever today's top of the line HTC is? Not much, really - polished operating systems, adequate cameras, big screens, some form of mapping, access to app stores bursting at the seams with useless crapware. But Nokia now have something on offer that differentiates them (or rather they have just differentiated themselves but sold this competitive advantage to Microsoft).

      If I were either of the big two in smartphones, I'd be worried. Neither have really added any killer technology or application to their hardware for three years or more, neither have really delivered polished navigation and mapping that you'd want to rely on.

      I'm not in the target market, and I don't like Microsoft, but even I can see that this offers something distinctive. Expect plenty of celebrity and movie product placements, and I'm sure MS will be bribing app developers to offer their wares into the Winpho app store, so there's billions going to be pushing this.

      1. RyokuMas Silver badge

        Re: Seriously...@Jemma

        " I'm sure MS will be bribing app developers to offer their wares into the Winpho app store"

        Hahahahahahahaha stop it, you're killing me!

        Okay, $19/year subscription is a big improvement on $99 (as long as it lasts), but the developer center is falls over more regularly than an Essex girl after an all-night chardonnay binge - this not only makes it difficult to accurately track downloads, it also can crucify a newly launched app through zero exposure in the marketplace if the timing is bad. Plus the primary in-app advertising offering (bing ads) is piss-poor, frequently having no ads to serve and microscopic returns.

        Microsoft have a lot of learning to do when it comes to supporting developers...

      2. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: Seriously...@Jemma

        "There is nothing else with a camera like this."

        Well actually there is, there's an 808. If you twiddle the preset camera settings you can saturate and sharpen the image a bit so the photos turn out like they do on the 1020 as well.

        So then we're left with the real question, Symbian Belle vs. WP. Neither have much in the way of apps but at least with Symbian you're getting a more mature OS with more features.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Seriously...

      Let's just look at then conclusion of the review you're bitching about;

      "Still, momentum is now with the platform and with Microsoft's billions backing Nokia, you can be reasonably confident that your Lumia 1020 will be better at the end of your two year contract than it is today. It's by a comfortable distance the most impressive cameraphone ever made."

      This is the negative review that you're complaining about? Now if you were complaining about one of Mr Orlowski's reviews of an Android product, you might have a point, because he has a chip on his shoulder about Android, and once Mr Orlowski has a chip on his shoulder about something, you'll never hear the end of it. But this seemed to me like a very positive review with most of the details mentioned being things that I thought were significant points.

    3. LarsG

      Re: Seriously...

      They bitch and whine about everything actually.....

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Seriously...

      "trusting an MS cloud with your livelihood"

      That has to be better than trusting it to The Borg - Google will scan the content and SPAM you for life.

      At least with Microsoft it's just the NSA reading it, whereas with The Borg, it's their automated SPAM / advert targeting engine AND the NSA....

      1. M Gale

        Re: Seriously...

        Calling Google "The Borg" while bigging up Microsoft? That would be some irony right there. Or cluelessness. Or perhaps both.

        Really, you think Microsoft won't be ad-tracking you to within an inch of your life as well?

  4. Jess

    Hopefully this will bring the price of the Pureview 808 down

    to the level where I can justify one to replace my N8

  5. Maharg


    The only thing that seems a big negative for me is the uploading to Sky Drive, I understand the reasons behind it, but I would rather it just be an option, rather than doing it automatically, which unless I missed something in the article it appears to be, hopefully it will be something that can be disabled.

    As for the apps side of things, while I do use a banking app and find it useful for quick payment checks It’s not something I’m going to miss, as with twitter, only being able to see 3 tweets seems pretty dumb, but again I don’t use twitter, and I assume that this will be sorted out with updates.

    the fact it would mean a move from Android to windows I’m not to bothered about, my girlfriend has a windows phone, and just the same as if I were to move to apple there would be negatives and positives.

    The big seller is the camera, I bang on about it, but I loved my N8, and while it was still alive it out classed practically everything it came up against (Although I never compared it to an 808, which would beat a N8) to the point it had brought a newer phone, with a supposed great camera, yet I still took the N8 as my holiday, gig and festival phone just because of the camera abilities.

    I have been disappointed with my move over to android, but thats due to hardware, not software, yeah the apps are good, yeah its quicker on the internet, yeah the screens a lot bigger than the N8, and yeah it seems more intuitive, but that’s because its 4 year younger, and they still haven’t been able to rival the N8 in terms of camera, (using instagram or having to apply other filters in post-production may make it look nice, but it doesn’t mean the camera is better) I know being "connected" is the selling point, but not for me.

    In other words I am really looking forward to this!

    1. o_0

      Re: :-)

      It's optional - you can turn it off. You can also tell it to be lossless, and say whether you want it to go over 3G/4G (your data network) or wait till it finds wifi before uploading.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: :-)

      If it's like my 820, all the auto uploads are selectable, you can just use the phone separated from the Internet and just upload files when you get home by syncing.

      I did this for a while, then I smashed the screen by managing to throw it at a stone floor (don't ask) it was at the point where the shop said they'd probably have to completely reset the phone that I decided to start using auto-uploading... (As it happens they didn't have to reset it, but it was a lesson...)

    3. Michael B.

      Skydrive Upload

      Skydrive upload is optional on Windows Phones. There are 3 modes that can be selected, no upload, low resolution upload for sharing or a full resolution copy on Skydrive.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: :-)

      Skydrive upload is an option on my Lumia - its under settings for photos rather than in the camera settings.

      choices are don't upload, "good quality" with a warning that it may eat into your mobile data allowance, and "best quality (needs wifi)"

      [PS RBS and - unsurprisingly - Natwest have Winphone 8 apps]

    5. OldWarrior

      Re: :-)

      Just remember if moving to Android that >90% of Malware is targeted to Android, so be sure to load up on Security if you are doing Banking etc. An earlier story on TheReg listed MacAfee as the best at that time with ~80% resistance. Sadly, WP does, as yet, not have a lot of security Apps that I personally trust, but that might have changed since May when I last looked. (I do no banking on my phone, nor anything that requires security. If they want to steal my Rolling Stones, Have At)

  6. James 51

    Now that Microsoft has got it's mitts on Nokia and the patients behind this, perhaps we'll see those camera apps being intergrated as the new WP standard camera app.

    1. Professor Clifton Shallot

      You don't have to be mad to work here . . .

      "Now that Microsoft has got it's mitts on Nokia and the patients behind this"

      I guess we want the lunatics to take over the asylum then.

      1. Danny 14 Silver badge

        Re: You don't have to be mad to work here . . .

        On my S2 I just remove the SD card if I need to send the phone anywhere. Only store apps are saved on my "phone" so no problem there. as for syncing, dropbox app has had autosync for some time so that can be used on other brand phones if you wish. Nothing new here.

        Good camera, i'll wait until android phones start having something similar.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just Imagine

    How much better a phone it would have been with MeeGO on it

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Just Imagine

      1000 apps instead of 100,000 or more.

    2. Kiralexi

      Re: Just Imagine

      I've owned an N810, an N900, and an N9, which I used as my primary phone for over a year.

      The N810 and N900 are fun but very much not fit for general consumption. The OS has a lot of gotchas, is not particularly finger-friendly in places, and occasionally has unexplained crashes of core components a la Windows Mobile. That being said, for a power user who's familiar with Linux, the N900 kicks ass.

      The N9 (which runs Meego) is both frighteningly generic and quite limited - far from the wide-open Linux phone I think most people imagine. It can only load signed firmware, you can't downgrade your firmware, and only runs signed binaries unless you do some hacks (Inception). It also has a number of bizarre bugs - for instance, the camera often saves images with a temporary filename and file extension, which means they don't show up in the gallery. The browser really sucks (slow *and* unstable is a bad combination, and it doesn't even do text reflow).

      Overall, I think Meego wouldn't have been Nokia's savior without a lot more work. Windows Phone may be limited in some ways, but it's far, far beyond Meego in actual readiness.

      1. Terry Barnes

        Re: Just Imagine

        Meego ended up such a tangled mess it needed starting again from scratch to be a viable long-term OS. that's exactly what Nokia didn't have the time or money to do. Their strength was always in hardware and their own apps - Android would have left them just another 'me too' with little to differentiate them - who buys an Android phone for the manufacturer's apps? This game's not over by a long shot.

        1. David Simpson 1

          Re: Just Imagine

          "little to differentiate them" If only that some kind of unique camera technology......

    3. Squander Two

      Re: Just Imagine

      I have an N900. I really liked Maemo. Until I tried Windows Phone, which is simply far better. Yes, yes, Unix, blah, rootable, blah... but, for actually using the interface, rather than mucking around under the bonnet, Windows Phone wins hands-down.

  8. DaLo


    Rather than having to crank up the exposure, can you not touch an area of the live preview to auto set exposure and focus on?

    Also wouldn't an HDR mode like most other cameras and smartphones have be better rather than having to choose which part of the image is over or underexposed?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Are you serious when you say I can't even lock orientation? Also, you don't appear to say whether the default upload to skydrive can be turned off? Given that microsoft have closed people's accounts for pictures containing nudity and the like, what happens if I were to take pics of my special other? And why would I want potential blackmail material like this to be on skydrive where it's all accessible to the Nsa and by extension several other governments? In fact, why would I want any closed US tech like this? Android is no saint either but can be rooted and controlled, can Windows Mobile?

    1. APJ
      Thumb Up

      Re: What?

      I have one on order but it's not arrived yet. I have an older Lumia 900 and that certainly has an option in the Pictures - Settings list to "Automatically upload to SkyDrive". I can't imagine why this would be any different on the 1020, particularly as for the most part you wouldn't want to use up the bandwidth allowance.

    2. Andrew Hall

      Re: What?

      Some screens are locked, others not. Obviously browsing the web, you can simply rotate the screen and the orientation changes to suit, but on the home screen, rotation would be pointless and therefore it doesn't do it. For me it rotates in the situations that I need it to, I haven't really had any issues where I though "I wish this goddam app would rotate", it just does it where it's appropriate.

      What is Windows Mobile, isn't that an old OS from about 5 years ago? Windows Mobile probably can be rooted as it's so old.

  10. MacroRodent Silver badge


    Now, perhaps for the first time, a phone can take photos with a level of richness and detail good enough for posterity – for the mantelpiece or a family album – rather than for Facebook.

    Your mantelpieces are demanding... I would say the family album level was already exceeded with the 5mpx camera of Nokia N95 and its competitors. At the typical postcard size, it is as good or better than what you got from an affordable compact 35mm film camera, which was what most photos of this kind used to be taken with (or with an Instamatic, with much worse quality).

    1. Antonymous Coward

      Re: Mantelpieces

      At this scale a modern 5mp sensor would almost certainly be BETTER!!!!!one!! More megapixels is just a marketing scam for morons. Despite the (newly invented by Nokia - according to the ad!) on chip pixel binning. The reason being: Each subpixel requires on sensor logic and circuitry... for a given generation of sensor that ancillary silicon will be a set scale, so, the more pixels you've stuffed into you headline grabbing sensor, the more of it's area you've WASTED on non-photosensitive infrastructure... and the more sensitivity, DR and colour fidelity WILL SUFFER as a result. Furthermore, the aggressive binning and NR you'll have to apply to the pitiful signals from your tiny pixels will smear away any additional resolution your pixel density MAY have THEORETICALLY been able to capture. So your images won't even be sharper or more detailed!

      There's a good objective illustration of this here:

      1. Jack Faust meets Mephistopheles

        Re: Mantelpieces

        Hello AC!

        If you want to know about how the tech works rather than spouting gibberish, have a read of:

        Enjoy, and toodle pip!

      2. Squander Two

        Re: Mantelpieces

        OR you could look at the actual photos taken in the review and base your opinions on facts.

  11. Mick1976

    First up, I would just like to say that if you are with Nat West, then there id a very good banking app available for WP, as well as Halifax and RBS, so this article may be somewhat misleading.

    I switched to a Nokia Lumia 620 from Android (Samsung Galaxy SII) because I was looking for a cheap, temporary replacement for the remainder of my contract... My Galaxy SII having come off second best in a headbutting contest with a wall... I was intrigued by the simplicity and of the UI of a Windows phone, so I thought this was the best time to give it a go.

    It wasn't until a month after getting the 620 that I realised just how frustrated I had become with Android. Yes if you love tinkering with stuff and are obsessed with having 3 different iterations of the same apps then Android is perfect. But, I didn't realise that I had become accustomed to having to power cycle my Galaxy SII (Turn it off and back on again) and that it freezing up was just part of having a phone...

    Having a Windows phone was like a breath of fresh air to me, all the apps that I wanted are available and I don't have to use trial and error to make sure that the app I am downloading is any good or may freeze up what was already a temperamental OS. The Nokia Here apps are great and I have used these more times that I ever thought I would. I have Office 365, free of charge. I don't need Dropbox as I have Skydrive, and again I have found that I use this more than I thought I would.

    Needless to say, I have preordered the Lumia 1020, on O2, with 64Gb storage and accessory pack which includes the wireless charging cover and wireless charger, camera grip and a mini tripod.

    1. Terry Barnes

      I bought an 820 - and like you found myself seriously impressed at how well it works after owning Android. The hardware is good, certainly, but the OS is really very, very good. The simplicity and integration between apps - especially the Nokia developed ones - is exactly how a phone should be.

      1. Tim 69

        I like the WinPho GUI so much that when I had to replace my windows phone with an Android (don't ask, network issues) I immediately installed the Launcher8 app which gives me the best of both worlds. Feels like WinPho, but has the benefits of Android notifications, etc.

        I must be in a minority of actually liking the Live Tiles and an apps list ordered in a way that makes it straightforward to find an app. Select a letter, find apps that start with said letter. But then, I don't have 500 apps on my phone. I don't see why I need them.

      2. Darryl

        Downvotes for the people who actually had the gall to suggest they actually like their WinPhones

        How dare you compliment Windows Phone??

        Don't you know that Evil Micro$oft is destroying the world? If you buy Windows Phone, it will molest your sister and eat your pets!

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "the camera compensates for a shaky hand or wobbly undercarriage"

    Who holds their phone down there?!

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: "the camera compensates for a shaky hand or wobbly undercarriage"

      I like to call mine my monopod.

      You can get some very interesting pictures if you screw a camera on the end. Almost good enough to make the trip to casualty afterwards worthwhile...

      [should I have clicked anon here?]

  13. Jon Green

    It's a phone

    So what're the call quality and signal strength like? Is Windows Phone well-implemented, or are there glitches? How responsive is it? What are the bundled apps? (Other than imaging ones.) Is it something that you'd be happy using as a phone all day, or is it just a camera with some RF attached?

    This is not a phone review, it's a camera review. OK, it's got an interesting camera. Got that. Given that I'd be using it for taking pictures maybe once a day, and as a phone *all* day, I know little more about what it's like in practice than before I started reading the article.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: It's a phone

      As Colombo would say, just one more thing.

      Someone below commented on satellite lock times. My old Lumia 710 go the fastest satellite locks of any phone or in-car sat-nav I've used. I've never used professional kit though. And it gives you an error circle, so you know when you've moved from the WiFi element of aGPS to the satellite one. Another thing that made the Nokia mapping apps good.

      Incidentally, is it just my imagination, or is that Nokia phone a much yellower yellow than the Apple iPhone 5C?

    2. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: It's a phone

      I'd imagine he's bored of reviewing Windows Phone, and suspects the readers will be bored with reading it. You don't get a review of Android with every 'droid that's released. Only the first ones, with new versions.

      As for that, I used to have an older Nokia Lumia, and I doubt things have changed. Call quality and signal will be good, because it's a Nokia. Also it's plastic, so you don't get the radio and WiFi/Bluetooth issues you sometimes get with metal ones. There's a stupid issue with Win Phone where you turn the volume down on apps,and that also turns down the ringer volume, rather than being separate.

      The bundled Nokia apps are brilliant. I think you have to download some of them, but as it's a Nokia they're free. You get HERE maps, which gives off-line maps, off-line sat-nav - and it can recalculate routes offline as well. Nokias maps don't have as good local information as Google's and they're not as pretty as Apple's, but they're very good quality and work properly when you have no signal. Unlike dedicated sat-navs you can just go to the controls when you're on WiFi and download the map for a whole country to the phone. Microsoft's app store (Marketplace) isn't as good as the other 2 major ones, but it's apparently improved a lot in the year since I moved to an iPhone.

      As a phone Windows Phone is better than both Android and iPhone. In my opinion anyway. And I've owned all 3. The address book has big text, and is customisable and searchable. If you like that sort of thing it fully integrates Facebook and Twitter, so you can have your friend's combined witterings displayed combined with their call history, emails and texts. This last bit is excellent for business, where I get to see a list of recent emails as I call someone. It also handles my 4,000 business contacts far better than the iPhone, in that I can display just my personal ones and 'favourite' customers, while hiding the 4,000 others - who turn up as soon as I search by name. Apple will only let me search what's displayed - or tediously set long lists of favourites. All the Android ones I've tried have been quite fiddly, but at least the search feature actually worked properly. The phone operation is all pretty standard, but with nice chunky buttons.

      For me, the standout feature of WinPho is the big buttons, big text and big icons for the stuff you use a lot in the home screen. Which is more customisable than Apple, but nowhere near as good as Android. The browser on Win Pho 7 isn't as good as iOS or Android. I've not used a Win Pho 8 enough to have an opinion. My summing up is that Windows Phone is a better phone, and worse mobile computer. The top end Nokias also seem to have superb cameras, with this one being double-superb I guess. Hope that all helps.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Memory space

    I like my Lumia 620 but I have a bit of a gripe about how it handles internal storage.

    Windows Phone 8 seems to reserve a lot of space for local copies of files ("media and files") it thinks you might need. I have told the phone to store mp3s and the photos from the camera on a 16GB SD card and that is where they lie.

    It ought clear this local storage out but doesn't seem to. You can force clearance of the browser files and some temporary files and app storage is reported by the inbuilt tool so you can see what's happening there. However the big block taken out of use is vast and mysterious (4.7 Gb on my phone out of 8GB internal).

    I'd like to think that has either been addressed on the 1020 or its internal space is large enough for the OS land grab to peak while still leaving plenty of room for pictures.

    I will see what effect the Amber(?) update will have on my phone - once I've found 520Mb of space to download it.

    1. Jack Faust meets Mephistopheles

      Re: Memory space


      This problem is much reduced in Amber but if you've built up storage it won't really clear it, it will stop adding to it. I think this is the bug that has taken 6 months to quash which is why they're so behind on the update schedule. (citation needed)

      So after you get Amber, if you still need to free up space and 'Storage Check' Nokia system app won't clear it down enough, a hard rest might be necessary. After that it shouldn't build up again but I have no info either way tbh.

  15. returnmyjedi

    Default SkyDrive upload can be turned off, folks. I think the point being made in the review, albeit unclearly, is that only the 5MP image can be uploaded to BSkyB Drive. The hefty 38MP one can only be transferred off the handset by physically plugging it into your computer. A micro SD card in the camera grip would have been a genuinely useful addition, especially if you're not getting the O2 exclusive 64GB version and are stuck with the 32GB one.

  16. Sil

    I'm almost sure you can deactivate the auto uploading to SkyDrive & choose between a few resolutions.At least with stock camera app.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Am I the only one...

    ... who don't think those images were any good?

    High res, yes, but they had purple fringing, blurring, some signs of nasty high iso noise, and other problems often found on cameras using small sensor chips.

    Picture quality is a lot more than just high resolution.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Am I the only one...

      It's a camera phone, it's not supposed to be rivalling SLRs, it's approaching the quality of a compact camera, that's it.

    2. Terry Barnes

      Re: Am I the only one...

      The sensor is 2/3" - the same as most compact cameras.

      I think you're missing just how deeply zoomed some of those images are.

      1. Paul Shirley

        Re: Am I the only one...

        ...for a camera sold on it's ability to zoom (by cropping) post capture, we're not missing anything about the zoom level. What disturbed me more than the lens artefacts were the quite strong compression artefacts. I hope that's not the highest quality compression on display.

        It does confirm there's no sufficiently good substitute for optical zoom yet or a bigger lense. Looking forward to the first head to head comparison of the Sony Z1 with addon Bluetooth lenses against Nokias efforts.

    3. Ian 55

      Re: Am I the only one...

      Yes. For that money, you can buy a lot better camera and have enough left over for an OK phone.

      1. Terry Barnes

        Re: Am I the only one...

        For the price of an i7 laptop I could buy a typewriter, some paper notebooks, a full set of felt-tip pens and a portable DVD player - but it kind of misses the point.

  18. o_0

    Uploading to Skydrive is optional guys

    and you can choose the resolution you want to upload, and whether to wait till the phone connects to wifi first before uploading to save on your data plans.

  19. Andrew Hall

    Unless they've changed the options specifically on the 1020, you can most definitely turn off uploading to SkyDrive if you'd prefer it not to, at least I've had the option on the Nokia and HTC Windows phones I've had.

  20. Anonymous Coward

    Review requests

    When doing phone reviews can we get a standard set of images in similarish conditions? I'm after "this is a standard object" e.g. postbox, cafe front, etc.. at x ANSI lumens, this is the same object in low light at x ANSI lumens. Here is a vista shot, here is a movement shot, etc...

    I'd settle for a standardised camera phone shown next to it, e.g. here is the Lumia 1020 image and next to it is the iPhone 4S taking the same image. As long as the standardised camera is used accross lots of different reviews.

    It's like the battery test, knowing the phone will last x hours looping a video is quite helpfull.

    Also with phone reviews, I would hope for a browser JS benchmarking test (using stock browser), something like the Antutu score. While I'm not sure if these are solved some information on quality the GPS*, bluetooth range**, etc... would be nice. For example the Z1/Z Ultra push wireless mirrorcast, but does it work well?

    *Years ago I had an Xperia Play and encouraged family to go for smartphones and ditch the tomtoms. It turned out the Samsung Galaxy S and the Samsung Nexus S had truely terrible GPS reception. None of the Samsungs at the time could get a fix in any family members car. I saw nothing in reviews about this at the time.

    **A friend has a HTC One X, recently he was talking about the poor bluetooth range of the device. Which seems to be less than 2 metres. Again he assumed it would work fine to 10m's.

    1. cambsukguy

      Re: Review requests

      This video might suit..

      The comparison starting at 5:50 or thereabouts is good, the HTC has OIS also so there are enough TLAs in that sentence.

      The zoomed image at 6:24 basically says it all but it is interesting none-the-less.

      There is no point at all comparing a phone against the 4S - it is so appalling as to be pointless - the 5S may be worth a shot (haha), the same outfit that made the video above do make a comparison video for that that device too.

      And, so you know, unless they decided to go around and hobble all the capabilities compared to my 920 and my friends' 925, the BT is easily good for 10m - I wander about cleaning etc. with BT headphones while my phone is on the table top, dropout occurs but only when walls and the 10m distance limit would expect it to. Headphones use A2DP which has highish data rates and stresses BT reasonably. It also supports BT4.0 giving 24mbs as well as BT Low Energy (as does the 9xx series with the Amber update).

      And, just in case you wonder why your friends HTC has a crappy BT range, look at the case. What makes it attractive is also a radio opaque material, especially for BT. Still, as long as it looks nice, who needs phones calls, BT or WiFi to work, not to mention GPS?

      All the radios work very nicely on my 920, GPS can lock in 5 or fewer seconds if I have a data connection, often faster when on WiFi and often just as quickly even if I am driving. Phone calls, especially noise cancellation is excellent, I would expect nothing less.

      And as for the Samsung, well, I did ask my other Note2-owning friend to show me her maps and GPS stuff so I could make a fair comparison but after waiting for her to turn on the GPS ('cause of the battery drain), then wait for the signal for more than a minute ('cause we were indoors) and then wait for the pixelated nightmare of Google maps to load when the GPS dot finally appeared ('cause of the poor signal reception area), well, I had my answer, mine took a few seconds and the map was already present and correct at any zoom level - not to mention that it would have been so even if I had been out of data range or, indeed, roaming in another country altogether.

  21. Terry Barnes

    It's interesting how in the space of maybe three months the comments on Lumia articles have gone from "no-one will ever buy one" to "I've just ordered one", "my 720 does this", "my 620 does that". I'm seeing a fair few in the wild, and both me and my wife have bought 820s - which means we can do the party trick of opening a photo on one phone and sending it to the other just by touching the cases together.

    1. Paul Shirley

      Still haven't seen one in the wild. Or in a shop come to think of it. Maybe the streets of London are awash with them, they seem vanishingly rare in the Midlands.

      1. James Hughes 1

        I've seen them (Windows Phone Nokias) in the wild, and the eldest offspring (11) wants one now he's at 'big school'. Methinks they may be making a comeback, much to the commentards annoyance.

        More to the point., a post I made on this thread was obviously rejected - shame - it contained quite a few facts about the 808 and who actually did the hard camera work (i.e. my team @ Broadcom). Also had a comment about Damien Dinning, the ex-Nokia 'imaging guru' Perhaps that's why it was rejected...

      2. K Cartlidge

        They *do* exist in the Midlands

        I'm there and have an old 800 and a current 720 (amazing battery life).

        Our office has 3 and a member of the wife's family (a non-techie) just bought one (unprompted by me).

      3. Jack Faust meets Mephistopheles

        They're rare in the South East, I have a L920 and when I see another we instantly gush about them at each other for a moment then look embarrassed and never bring it up again!

      4. cambsukguy

        Weird, my experience of the Midlands was always sensible folk that understood the value of money. Maybe that precludes the 1020 being popular but the 5xx, 6xx, 7xx and even 8xx - all better value than anything but Landfill Android - all updated and looked after for reasonable periods and all with excellent Nokia call quality and build.

        I shall have to update my views unless my next trip there tells me otherwise.

        1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

          Maybe that precludes the 1020 being popular but the 5xx, 6xx, 7xx and even 8xx - all better value than anything but Landfill Android - all updated and looked after for reasonable periods and all with excellent Nokia call quality and build.

          What a load of shit: semantically nonsense as you are actually saying that "landfill Android" are better than the Nokias. It's a clever pejorative but I'm not sure which phones actually count as such. As for updates (hello Microsoft when are you updating Windows Phone) or support for any period of time: remember Windows Phone 7 by any chance? We've yet to find out how long <strikethrough>Nokia</strikethrough> Microsoft will support any of these devices but I'd be willing to bet that not all of them are going to be getting OS updates and could landfill themselves soon enough.

          When it comes to "value": no one needs any of the devices so in that sense they're all waste. Millions, sorry billions, of people could do pretty much everything they want with a normal phone. My 6-year old E65 is still a technological wonder though it could do with a new battery and there seems to be a problem with one of the speakers, yet I can watch videos on it, use it as a sat nav, oh, and of course, use it for calls and text.

      5. Charlie Clark Silver badge

        I saw my first ever in Germany at the weekend. I was so impressed I posted about it on El Reg even if it was bought mainly for research purposes.

        The sale of Nokia's handset business to Microsoft says volumes about how well phone sales are going. Even if they are up on a year ago they are not where they should be. Nokia has produced some great kit, Microsoft has failed to update the OS and it's a fast moving world.

  22. poopypants

    I wonder how this compares

    with the Sony DSCQX10 and DSCQX100? (These are separate no-display cameras that are linked by WiFi to your Android or iOS phone - although they connect more quickly to Android by using NFC as well).

    The Nokia is definitely more convenient, but on the other hand the Sony cameras don't force you to get a new phone with a different OS.


    1. Paul Shirley

      Re: I wonder how this compares

      Yes, they're lustworthy. Optical zoom, IS, large lenses and the flexibility, what's not to like - apart from the price. Should beat Nokia on everything but low light performance (and price of course) though Sony camera sensors do have good low light performance in general.

      I can see myself getting one of these before my increasingly untrusty camera finally dies.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I wonder how this compares

        Only main negative I heard about them is that the clip isn't all that universal and has problem with large and smaller phones such as the iPhone5 and the Galaxy S4.

    2. cambsukguy

      Re: I wonder how this compares

      The best camera is the one you have with you. One may as well carry a compact zoom around as carry those lenses. They are clever (and presumably drain the battery like crazy if you keep them ready to shoot) but ultimately no-one will have them in their pocket all the time.

      1. James 51

        Re: I wonder how this compares

        "The best camera is the one you have with you. "

        Not always. I had a S3 IS and when I tried to use it, people were nervous and the photos were terrible. When I used the camera in my phone, the same people were much more natural and the photos were better (even though the quality of the image was a lot lower).

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Preordered mine with Three last week so getting the camera grip, charging plate, wireless charger and tripod thrown in for free.

    1. RyokuMas Silver badge

      "Preordered mine with Three last week so getting the camera grip, charging plate, wireless charger and tripod thrown in for free."

      ... but now you're on "the list" with Three. Wouldn't go back to them if you paid me.

  24. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

    How does it compare to ....

    DSLR's with a similar mega pixel count?

    Even though it is a phone with a Camera I am sure that a lot of people will just see the Mega Pixel count and start compareing it to the top of the line offering from the likes of Nikon and Canon.

  25. Vociferous

    So, it's comparable to a cheap compact

    but inferior to something like Canon G15.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Anyone who needs a camera this good will have a SLR or bridge camera and everyone else will probably buy one of the newer iPhones or Android devices.

    1. Squander Two

      Portability is worth something, even if you can't see it. A portable CD-player still gives better sound than any MP3-player on the market for less money, and yet no-one buys them anymore. Anyone who needs a camera this good is going to make a serious comparison of the one they already have, which is a pain in the arse to lug around, to the one built into a phone. Personally, I'm getting one as soon as my contract's up for renewal. I have a rather good camera, and it hardly ever gets used, because I just can't be arsed with the weight and unwieldiness of the thing. Time will tell how many people are thinking like me.

      And of course Nokia don't insist on only having The One Phone, so the 1020 doesn't need to take off and be popular with everyone. All they need it to do is to do well in its own little niche.

  27. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well, Hello there! Let's get started

    Does Microsoft have to sound like a tacky prostitute?

    (Oh how I'd love to have a camera (that also makes phone calls) like that in my pocket, but sadly, I fear that it will be a long wait for the Android manufacturers to catch up. Is there any sign of any of them even wanting to?)

  29. h4rm0ny

    What's this? Did I actually just read an unbiased review with fair discussion of the advantages and disadvantages, rather than flame-bait and misconceptions? Rarer than hens' teeth these days.

    Oh wait, it's Orlowski. One day we'll get him, Dana Wollman from Engadget on the same site and it will be the least troll-ish review site on the Internet.

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