Lumia 830 is the last phone to carry the iconic Nokia branding. But will it leave its mark behind? Is it geared to take on the competition? Himanshu Juneja has the answers.
With the launch of Nokia Lumia 830, an era definitely has come to an end. The phone is the last handset to carry the famous 'Nokia' branding as Microsoft completes its acquisition of the Finnish firm's mobility division.
Microsoft has been claiming that the Nokia Lumia 830 is an 'affordable flagship'. The comparison with Nokia Lumia 930 is unavoidable as Lumia 830 does appear to be a somewhat toned down version of its elder sibling.
Still, the Lumia 830 seems to be capable enough to hold on to its own. With features like a spectacular battery, memory card slot and slim profile, it seems that the last phone to carry the iconic Nokia branding is prepared to take on the competition.
Build and construction
Lumia 830 greets users in the typical Nokia build, which oozes quality and sturdiness. The phone measures 139.4 x 70.7 x 8.5 mm, and weighs 150 grams. It has been provided a metal frame with squared edges.
The rear part is pretty good for the job and has been provided with a slope. This enhances the grip while holding the device. The back panel also being removable means users get to snap on the coloured panel they prefer.
The top part of the phone houses the 3.5mm audio jack and the micro USB port as well. The right side carries the power button, the volume rocker, and the camera button. Left side is devoid of any buttons or ports, making up for good grip.
The rear side of the phone houses the camera module. The Dolby digital speaker is also located at the bottom part. As the panel comes off, it gives the user access to battery and the microSD card slot.
Users can easily switch freshly charged batteries if needed.
The 830 comes with a 5" IPS LCD carrying a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels. This gives it a decent pixel density of 294 ppi (pixels per inch).
The screen sports Clearblack technology, which makes reading content in direct sun light a breeze. Auto brightness setting works really well. The display is vibrant and colours come out looking rich. Despite the 720p resolution, text and icons came out reasonably smooth. The screen carries the characteristic strong black contrast levels known from Nokia.
Below the display, there are the usual Windows Phone capacitive touch keys for back, start and Bing Search/Cortana (Microsoft's voice assistant). The viewing angles are satisfactory, but they could have been a bit better. This is a non-issue since phones are meant to be used by single users. Super sensitive touch feature has been provided with the Lumia 830, which makes it possible to operate the phone while wearing gloves.
OS and features
Although the Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 chipset and the quad-core Cortex A7 CPU (clocked at 1.2 Ghz) do not happen to be the fastest of the configurations around, Lumia series' work ethics ensure that the phone doesn't lag or goes about its task in an ungainly fashion.
The phone carries 1GB of RAM to support the hardware. The phone comes with 16GB of onboard storage, and a microSD card slot ensures that a further 128GB worth of storage capacity is always an option. This is pretty good, since users get only 11GB for personal use.
On the software front, the Nokia Lumia 830 comes with Windows Phone 8.1 Operating system and the Denim update out of the box.
The Windows operating system has been very impressive of late, and clearly shows that Microsoft's efforts have started to bear fruit. A number of updates and new features bolster the new version of the OS.
Utility features like the mobile version of Microsoft office and Nokia Xpress deserve their place. The latter makes web browsing considerably quick, by reducing the quality of the images and text. This takes care of the situations where the internet connections are slow. The camera app has been provided with useful features (more on this in the camera section).
Other features like pinning the favourite app or the favourite webpage looks neat and practical. In the latter case, updates on the tile looks nifty.
Lumia 830 comes with lots of other apps as well, and good thing about them is empowering the user to either uninstall them or transfer the apps over to the microSD card to free up workable space on the phone's internal memory.
The homescreen carries a vertical list of the installed apps, and the user flicks upward or downward to navigate further. The customisation option for the Start Up screen, that is, applying a wallpaper has been provided this time. The tiles show the new wallpaper owing to their transparency. Unfortunately, there are few opaque tiles as well which play spoilsport of sorts.
One of the biggest draw for the new OS is the voice-based assistant called Cortana.
Although not available for India yet, one can enable it by tweaking the region setting and giving it a try. It is yet to reach its zenith, but Cortana shows ample promise and just like Siri and Google Now, this should be persisted with.
Microsoft has taken care and introduced some long pending inclusions.
A consolidated notification centre to view all the notifications was long overdue, and it certainly comes as a relief. The latest updates also brings about word flow to the keyboard. The Windows OS already had one of the better keyboards in the mobile device segment and the word flow (pretty much like the SwiftKey keyboard) brings about predictive text style typing comfort.
Another long overdue update makes it possible to tweak the volume controls of different features, like songs vs ringtones, providing better control over the device.
Windows Phone 8.1 brings Internet Explorer 11 with a bunch of new features, prominent one being incognito mode where the browser does not store history. This ought to be good for guests and users alike.
Overall, the Windows 8.1 OS needs to be taken seriously, as it has been consolidated and revamped in many areas and has left quite a good impression on the users.
The Nokia Lumia 830 camera has been provided with a 10MP PureView camera, which carries a Carl Zeiss Lens. Another boost provided here is the optical image stabilisation (OIS) for photos as well as video recording. The phone gains from the OIS, as it allows for better results, preventing shake or low light conditions from ruining captures.
The camera app, named Lumia Camera, has been stacked up with numerous features. The manual access provides for adjusting various parameters like ISO controls, aspect ratio, white balance, exposure and even the shutter speed.
Users can animate certain sections of the photographs by using the Nokia Cinemagraph. The gif styled images thus rendered provide a nice option for users to experiment. If that is a bit gimmicky, users can reset the focus of the photographs as well after clicking them, to provide a more subtle effect.
The filters onboard provide the option to fine tune the results to user's preference as well.
The app does take a bit of time to fire up which really should have been taken care of, but it is not too bothersome.The results are pretty much satisfactory, more so when the light intensity is ample. Photographs came out accurate with the colours and were high quality.
The quality doesn't take a dip with low light conditions either, and the photos were more than satisfactory. It will not be an over statement to make that Lumia 830 captures some of the best photographs for the mid to high end camera phone segment. The camera on the rear carrying a wide angle lens proves to be a boon, allowing more view field exposure for the snaps.
The front facing camera is 0.9MP, yet manages to click some good selfie shots. By adding features like filters, and timer facility, Microsoft has made sure this department too is decently covered.
The rear camera is capable of shooting video at 1080p @ 30fps as well, along with options to tweak the capture settings to include options like Dolby audio etc. However, the settings here only allows for audio bass filter, manual focus and white balance.
The results with video recording were impressive as well, as the details came out quite nicely in the clips. Parameters like colours, contrast, blur did not go awry to spoil the captures. Optical image stabilisation comes out to the rescue here.
Packing in a 2200 mAh battery this phone has been supplied with enough juice to last a full day, but a daily charge becomes inevitable. The phone provides more than 14 hours worth of talk time on full charge, and can easily go up to 22 days on standby.
Since the battery is removable, users can pop in second battery pack in order to continue using the phone without bothering about immediate charging of the battery. The Lumia 830 has wireless charging support too.
The Nokia Lumia 830 will be the last phone to carry the Nokia branding, but it is safe to say that Nokia's last appearance on a Lumia device most certainly will live up to the expectations the brand has always been consistent with.
There is no doubt that Lumia 830 is a truncated version of the Lumia 930, but there is very little wrong the Nokia Lumia 830 managed to bring with itself. The Screen being 720p instead of full HD, downgraded camera sensor, lower capacity battery pack, all these are well in line with the lower price point the Lumia 830 offers. To make the deal even sweeter, the phone brings plethora of features onboard like removable battery, expandable storage, and the goodness of the latest OS.
The Nokia Lumia 830 provides a good option for users looking for a phone which is sturdy, runs smooth, and carries a very impressive and capable 10MP camera. However, the current pricing of the phone is stuck at just a shade above Rs 26000.
Microsoft will do well to revise the rates just under Rs 25,000 and set their cash registers ringing with better sales.