Android, Nokia, Windows Phone

An Android Addict’s Antics With The Lumia 920 – I

Once upon a time, not so many years ago, most smartphone users were on Symbian, with a few on Windows Mobile, and all was right with the world. Then the iPhone came along and changed the way we view our phones. In the months that followed, Google bought over a company and launched the Android operating system. Both of these were in their infancy and us Symbian users scoffed at them.

Fast forward two years, and things were looking quite different. The two infants were growing up quite fast. In fact, they were even beginning to challenge, and in some ways, exceed, the giant that was Symbian / Series 60. Nokia tried to keep up, with a refreshed S^3 (with S^4 in the works) upgrade path, but sadly this was too little too late for most. A lot of power users decided it was time to jump ship and leave their Nokia (and Symbian devices) behind for greener pastures, including Yours Truly. The Feb 11 fiasco simply caused more people to feel the same. Most Symbian users moved over to Android-powered devices as it was in many ways the Symbian of the future.

Meanwhile, Nokia side, the first range of Mango running Windows Phone devices did the rounds, and we all know how that went. Finally, Microsoft launched Windows Phone 8 and it seemed like a decisive step forward in the direction that the competition was in. Nokia’s first batch of WP8 phones have been doing the rounds for a couple of months now and I finally got my hands on a Lumia 920.

Lumia 920 in hand

For the past two and a half years I have been using an Android device as my full time phone. First the Samsung Galaxy S and more recently, the Galaxy Nexus. The usage pattern of an Android device has got ingrained deeply in my muscle memory. Having never tried a Windows Phone 7 device for longer than half an hour at a time, this is my first experience with the Metro Interface on phones and I’m quite curious to see how it goes.

The point of this walk down memory lane was to show that like me, there will be tons of people who have a history with Nokia, but due to their recent smartphones, have been forced to jump ship. The Lumia 920 is Nokia’s flagship device in this crucial year and I am curious to see if it is good enough to win me back.

Since we have already reviewed the Lumia 920, that will not be the aim here. The next couple of articles will be about how Android users will find the Lumia 920, if switching from their current device. Stay tuned.

  • Lowell Denzel Orlando Richmond

    WP sucks in general…they should have stayed with Meego.WP is a wanna be of iOS…..i spent a day with it and got bored.No widgets and Tiles Blow very hard

    • Alvin Wong

      As someone who owns an N9 and has spent tons of time with WP7 and WP8, I’d say that Windows Phone in its current iteration is a very strong proposition in the low-end/mid-tier segment in terms of the quality of the user experience and the hardware available. I would gladly recommend Windows Phone devices to people upgrading from low-end Android phones or feature phones without any hesitation whatsoever.

      There was little to no guarantee that Nokia would see any form of success with the company’s old strategy of pushing Symbian and MeeGo, unifying both with Qt. As enjoyable to use and as unique as MeeGo Harmattan is, it was delayed and delayed again, wasn’t ready for the average consumer when the N9 finally shipped and was stuck on an extremely dated hardware platform.

      Also, having lived with an iPhone for several months, I think Windows Phone follows similar ideas as iOS with regards to a strong focus on design, simplicity and perceived performance, but differentiates itself by being a lot more integrated with other Microsoft products and allowing for a greater extent of customization that even average users can make use of.

      • Privet Romashki

        I disagree that the N9 shipped with an “extremely” dated hardware platform, unless you count relatively mid-range to fast hardware offering (at the time) coupled even with NFC. No way was it dated.

        I too have spent two years with the N9, and months with the Lumia 800 (both as you know very similar in many respects) and whilst WP7 is nice (although the UI is what I’d call half-smooth half-kludgy), the swipe UI of Harmattan is a beauty to behold – absolutely intuitive, smooth and productive.

        The underlying architecture of MeeGo itself is excellent from a development point of view (and I’d argue more mature than Android in some ways and I’m an experienced Android Developer!) as is the open nature, compared to WP7/8 there is simply no contest – as most developers I feel would agree.

        Upgrading from a low-end Android to a Lumia (as I assume you implied) is not a straightforward transition, especially given that most users would already be experienced with the Android UI and more importantly the applications space.

        WP7/WP8 can be as great as the stars themselves but with no application traction they are dead. Pure and simple.

        I’d argue more decent quality apps are produced in a week for Android than entirely exist in the Windows Market – in fact I know this simply by taking a cursory look (never mind I am familiar with both markets in some depth).