Nokia Lumia 900 Windows Phone gets reviewed: This is what AT&T will push over the iPhone

Nokia Lumia 900 Windows Phone gets reviewed: This is what AT&T will push over the iPhone

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h3>Nokia's Lumia 900 pairs out of this world hardware with elegant Windows Phone Mango release 2 software in a bid to become AT&T's next darling. But is it hot or not?

Among the very first, and certainly most comprehensive, Nokia Lumia 900 reviews comes our way courtesy of WPCentral's Daniel Rubino, and not surprisingly, he finds a lot of Windows Phone to love.

For $99 on contract, the Lumia 900 is one of the nicest Windows Phone on the market today and for the foreseeing future all at a great price. It has solid hardware including super-fast 4G LTE and the latest version of Windows Phone Mango ensuring a great experience for new users and veterans looking for an upgrade. Plus the device oozes with Nokia's quality craftsmanship making it a device many will want to talk about. With all the hype around this phone, this could be the next "it" device for the summer.

I had a chance to accompany Daniel to his Windows Phone and Nokia interview at CES 2012, and spent a few minutes playing with the Lumia 900. It's build quality is fantastic, using a metal-feeling plastic that I'm not convinced actually comes from this planet. It meshes beautifully with Microsoft's latest release of Windows Phone Mango, which adds an LTE radio stack to the Metro-based user experience. Judging by the reaction of the typically jaded gadget bloggers at the show, it was the first phone since the iPhone, with possible exceptions of the Palm Pre and Nexus One, to really get design-centric attention.

Still, they made the screen bigger without making it denser, which in the age of Retina displays makes for an overly pixelated experience. Doesn't sound like the typical AMOLED color saturation problems help out much there either. Branding also remains an issue, with Windows Phone not being anywhere near as sexy or enticing as something like Xphone. (Slap that label on it, put out a Halo special edition, and just try to keep it on the shelves.) It's also a big phone, like recent Android devices, using size to fit in the current generation of LTE chips and the batteries that go with them. And while apps are getting better all the time, they haven't gotten anywhere near what the iPhone has to offer.

There have been rumors AT&T would make this their most marketed phone ever, even more so than the iPhone. That's believable only insofar as Apple marketed the iPhone so well there really wasn't that much for AT&T to do but slap their logo at the end of Apple-made ads and count their money at the end of each quarter.

It's nice to see Nokia back in the game, though, and who would have thought Microsoft would be blazing the elegant UI trail? I don't think many perspective iPhone buyers will be tempted to jump ship (the iPhone still reportedly outsells all other AT&T phones combined), but I do think the race for "not iPhone" just got far more interesting.

And that's good for everyone.

Check out WPCentral's complete Nokia Lumia 900 review and then come back here and let us know what you think. Will the Nokai Lumia 900 cause any problems for the iPhone on AT&T?

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, ZEN and TECH, MacBreak Weekly. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter, App.net, Google+.

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There are 50 comments. Add yours.

infiniti says:

OS looks smooth while scrolling up and down. Decent price as well.

doublebullout says:

"I don’t think many perspective iPhone buyers will be tempted to jump ship"
I don't know if I'd say that. I'm a current iPhone user who gets closer and closer to jumping ship to WP7 because the WP7 calendar, tasks and contacts integration is frankly much better than iOS. After 5 years of watching Android grab marketshare while jailbreaking continues unabated to address iOS' deficiencies, can't Apple finally admit that rows of static app icons is not appealing anymore?

Shameer M. says:

"....WP7 calendar, tasks and contacts integration is frankly much better than iOS."
I totally agree with this. Although, with WP 8 and dual-core Windows Phone phones less than a year away, I'm tempted to wait before jumping ship.

SockRolid says:

Microsoft is wise, very wise, to avoid copying iOS as blatantly as Google has. Before iPhone blindsided them in 2007, Android phones were fugly imitations of Palm / Blackberry units. iPhone and iOS gave Google and their hardware partners something vastly better to copy, so they did. Shamelessly.
Good luck growing that 1.4% market share, Microsoft.

Carioca32 says:

If by copying iOS you mean the rows of static icons on mobile devices, I must say that is much, much older than iOS.
Nokia, for instance, had been doing that for years with Symbian, and Palm had those since 1996, a full decade before the iOS and the Phone.

Andrew says:

I'm also waiting for the fall Windows phones to jump ship from the iphone. I could also go Android depending on what's out there, but barring some miracle device my next phone won't be an iphone. They just haven't kept pace with the times in either their OS or their phone design.

Sancho90 says:

Where WP7 intrigues me, the physical style of this phone is just ugly, in my opinion. I don't really see what all the hype is for...

SockRolid says:

Re: "There have also been rumors AT&T would make this their most marketed phone ever..."
Two reasons for that.

  1. Nobody will buy the Lumia 900 unless AT&T and/or other carrier(s) market it to death.
  2. Microsoft has a 2.8% stake in AT&T. Bought $5 billion in stock in 1999.
SockRolid says:

Oops. Microsoft owns 3% of AT&T. Not 2.8%.

SkottM says:

Don't want to be too much a dick but why is a WP the first story I see when I come to iMore.com? Isn't that what WPcentral is for?
Come on now.

Marzell says:

That's what I was thinking. Also, theres no negatives about the phone?

tqmcguire says:

You expect Dan to say something negative about Microsoft or a Windows Phone? It's not going to happen. I love Mobile Nations but Dan is the only "head guy" who's work I can't read. Love Rene, Phil, Derek and Kevin, they actually call it like they see it. It's unfortunate because my wife loves her Windows Phone and I'd like to read more about it (I actually used a Focus for a month as my daily driver, not a horrible phone, easy to use but the OS power, flexibility and ecosystem is not there) but I can't get past Dan's overly-biased writing.

chris.lenderman says:

Overly bias? Read Rene's stuff much? But that's the point of a platform-centric blog isn't it? Personally, I have no problem with a Windows Phone post being on the TiPB website. I'd rather read about what other Apple competitors are doing than rumor post after rumor post.

Guest says:

Look at the verges review if you want to hear the negatives

doublebullout says:

It's on iMore for two reasons, I bet.
(1) Because, as the headline suggests, this is the latest "iPhone killer" smartphone to garner significant media attention. Some iPhone users, like myself, may be interested in the story and don't visit wpcentral regularly.
(2) To help drive traffic to a Mobile Nations sister site, wpcentral.com.
I don't see anything negative or complaint-worthy in either reason.

SkottM says:

Ah, yes. But every time a new Android phone comes out, it would get the front page of iMore.com, because don't they all basically try to be an "iPhone killer"? Which makes me wonder about this WP story even more, because if there were to be an "iPhone killer" I would be willing to bet money it will not be from Microsoft or running a Windows operating system. Also, instead of putting a story up about a WP to draw attention to WPcentral, maybe just create a post saying, "Hey guys, WP aren't doing as great in the phone market as the iPhone, but we've agreed with other phone-centric websites to "sister up", so please visit our lesser known friends such as WPcentral and the soon to be out of business Crackberry.com."

Zumanity says:

Wow, I never expected a Windows Phone article to make headlines on an iOS website. Thanks! I hope WP does some iOS article in return.
My dad actually just got an iPhone4S from his work and I definitely put it on par with my WP7 Phone.

Analog Spirit says:

I read that review on the Verge too, and the one on wpcentral.com. I'm kinda disappointed in the Lumia 900 now (especially as I've been looking forward to this phone and I'd been hoping that the camera would be better; at least as good as the 4S).
From all the reviews I've read on it thus far, the general consensus appears to be that while the design and build quality of the hardware are superb, battery life is good, data speed is shockingly fast over LTE (if you can get LTE), and call reception is excellent, but the camera is kinda mediocre, and certain aspects of the whole WP7 OS still leave a lot to be desired in terms of overall fit & finish, and functionality. I guess these would be non-issues if you don't take a lot of photos with your phone, and/or you like WP7 enough to where you're satisfied with it as it is now.
So I'll withhold judgement til I can get a hold of one and try it for myself. If it doesn't exactly light my fire, I'll just keep my 4 and keep looking. I'm in no hurry...

cardfan says:

I can't understand the praise people are giving this design. Doesn't matter though.
It's single core, has a low res screen, and runs an OS that still looks as if it's in beta. Feels like Palm again.

Yngwie says:

Apple kook aid is mighty tasty and distorts your mind , vision and soul :lol:

doublebullout says:

Single core really doesn't matter where WP7 is concerned. It runs very quickly and efficiently, even on older 1st gen devices like the LG Quantum and original Samsung Focus. The Verge review is pretty accurate about the WP7 OS and ecosystem, though. The situation isn't as dire as that of webOS, but Microsoft is still way late to the party and the time for excuses is past.

cardfan says:

I never felt like it could take off until windows 8 come out and it fares well. Until then, it's more like android was before the Droid launch. An early work in process.
The only concerning thing is that I couldn't get windows 8 off my PC fast enough. It's a horrible experience. Maybe Metro is better on a tablet, but then that's not really windows so what's the point?
Still, MS has always had all the puzzle pieces it needed. I just don't care for how they're assembling them. Maybe MS should have just bought webOS. Metro or wp7 is the culprit here.

Carioca32 says:

As for single core, as Steve Jobs said, it's not about specs, it's about the user experience. The iPhone 4 is a single core phone and it is quite good.
The screen is not "low res", it is a 200+ DPI Clearblack AMOLED and it looks stunning, colors are much better than the power hungry old school LCD Apple insists on putting on its devices.
As for beta, at least MS is not copping out with the "beta" label and it is taking responsibility for their system. Siri users know all about endless "betas".

cardfan says:

Whatever. We saw the same story with webOS. All kinds of potential but braindead leadership. WebOS remained buggy, laggy, and incomplete. The hardware was poor. The marketing even worse.
In Microsoft's case, the potential is their ecosystem. The hardware is fine but limited by the software. The culprit is an ugly, limited mobile OS. So far it's been a failure every time with consumers. Based on this "success", MS thought it wise to force this horrible mess on all windows users with upcoming windows 8. It's another train wreck in the making.

Rajeev says:

Potrebbe anche non essere aatftfo male ma voglio aspettare qualche news in pi anche per la trama ed il game play. Comunque devo dire che mi sembra che qualcosa si stia muovendo.

Brag McFee says:

Be forwarned about assuming that WP7's calendar integration is reasonably reliable and stable in the enterprise. Exchange 2007/2010 consistency, calendars, proxy meetings... Predictability is just as much of a problem here. Exchange is still only highly reliable on the desktop, and only as good as your local admin.

Not says:

I'm sorry, but WP is just plain ugly. The UI is horrible. I don't know why some people and MS think that it's anything short of the worse GUI ever invented. The Metro theme is also going to be MS's big mistake with W8 when it comes out. Metro is just not all that it's cracked up to be. WP and W8 will fail because of the bad looking theme that Metro is. I don't care if it makes a device function quicker, for some reason, people will not like it. Others agree and very soon you'll see that nothing that has Metro on it will make a big dent into the market. The only thing that running WP did for Nokia is that it now allows admins to easily integrate those phones into the Enterprise. Running WP is a lot more compliant for support than what they previously had on their devices. That is all this partnership has given Nokia... certainly not anything that will turn their percentages around one bit. Nokia made the move to WP because they didn't have anything else and rewriting from scratch and expecting people to support a new OS with ActiveSync technology licenced into it would have cost them more than just partnering up and running WP. Like I said a year ago... NOTHING running WP will take over the market, nothing.

chris.lenderman says:

Xbox has Metro....yup, no dent in the market whatsoever. And your critique of the UI is just that, YOURS. Personally, I like it way better than my iPhone's rigid and boring tiles - to each his own. That said, I'm happy to see Microsoft putting forth a quality phone, that can potentially bridge the gap between mobile, desktop, and gaming.

Farid Rahmi says:

Like Tim Cook said : don't underestimate WP and I agree but IMHO the Lumia 900 will be more competition for Android than for iOS.

c_hack says:

I love that Nokia is not just making a cheap clunky copy of the iPhone the way Android did. WP is truly innovative. That's a lot for an old company like MS to do.
However, most of the reasons I love the 4s - fast task swapping (even better than Android), outstanding camera, smooth response in all apps, excellent rendering of the web, and outstanding selection of top quality apps - are lacking on the Nokia.
Although it looks good and has promise, I would not consider it as an alternative. From all the reviews I read I would regret getting the 900 and want my 4s back.
By the time the 900 is out and all the bugs are addressed and apps are available, it will be competing with the next iPhone.

carolinamic says:

Im actually liking the look of this phone and I also think that it will help Microsoft gain back some ground in the smart phone market. Mainly because the OS looks user friendly and in no way resembles iOS, which is going to be big for people who don't like apple products.

AsdollaMirza says:

This is great news not only for MS and Nokia, but also for the industry !
We need competition and this is competition at its best. While MS&Nokia truly stay competitive, theyre also trying to be ORIGINAL and not copy, like Android does.
Kudos. Seriously considering replace my homeline(iphone 4) with this one, cant go wrong with a $99 ;)

kidding, right? says:

You must be joking with the copying. Can you say notification panel?

AsdollaMirza says:

oh ok one thing :roll:
Think back to 2008 and tell me who had touch screen phones like iPhone before Apple came out with theirs ?

Avil says:

Bahh a volte non vi capisco qutsee a mio parere sono immagini in game precalcolate, e della Wii.Anche perch un fottuto 360 fa decisamente di meglio.finalmente qualcosa di veramente decente a livello tecnico. Mario Galaxy e molto curato come titolo, ma altrettanto poco ricco di particolari e nemici su schermo. ma questo e voluto ovviamente come tutti i mario in 3D.Niente di cui sbalordirsi, e quello che avrebbero dovuto fare dall'inizio.Anche se devo ancora papire come ditte come la Capcom che ha sfornato RE4 su Gamecube, non riesca a proporre un titolo devente a distanza di 3 anni sulla Wii, contando che il Kit di sviluppo sostanzialmente e lo stesso.

crateish says:

Is this 'iMore' or 'I want Windows Phone?'
iDon't come here for this.

patricksmangan says:

I have lots of experience now with both iOS and wpos7. I have iOS devices, the rest of the family has windows phones. They got them because they liked the tile interface better, and because it looked different from all the other smartphone interfaces, which all looked more or less the same to them. I actually agre with them, and put the revive os7 theme on my iPhone 4s, but that's the only thing wpos7 has going for it right now. Mostly on the premiss of app ecosystem, I still prefer iOS.

haz click says:

What a weird story. How does a guy who lives in a boarding house afford Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr as his attorneys?

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Cecilia Sugabo says:

The title is confusing. I thought it was about changing the icon PICTURES, not their placement. That is possible too, without jailbreak I think, just not for official bundled apps.

JaCk says:

no, 1 to Nokia Lumia 900,,,
Awesome

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