I've been testing out the Nokia Lumia 1020 for over a week and last night I made the decision to sell my iPhone 5, cancel my Verizon account, switch to AT&T, and return my Nokia Lumia 925 to T-Mobile. There are five main reasons I made this move and understand these decisions were made to meet MY smartphone needs.
Earlier this year I had accounts on three networks so that I could better test out smartphones and write about my experiences. I am blessed to have a job where I get to play with the latest mobile gear before making informed purchase decisions, but I found that three lines were just too much and one line always sat idle. Last night I put my Verizon account on hold (with the intent to cancel later) and signed up for a new AT&T account with a yellow Lumia 1020 purchase.
- The camera: The Nokia Lumia 1020 is an exciting device and every reviewer has confirmed there is no modern smartphone that can match the camera experience of the device. I also own a Nokia 808 PureView and while that may take better photos (this is arguable), the camera capture and editing software on the Lumia 1020 can't be beat. With the 1020, there truly is no need to carry a point and shoot and my memories will no longer lack details where other smartphone shots have left me with regrets.
- Nokia extras: In addition to the amazing camera on the Nokia Lumia 1020, Nokia impresses with its ability to bring extras to Windows Phone, including the glance utility that lets you double tap to wake the device up and see the time when the display is off, HERE Maps suite, camera lenses and utilities, advanced touch screen display, and more. Nokia is definitely pushing Windows Phone forward, much like HTC did with Windows Mobile back in the day.
- Music: I have always said that the Zune HD and Windows Phone devices sounded incredible and both Nokia and Microsoft help make the Windows Phone music experience the best. For just $4/month you can get unlimited streaming and downloadable music with Nokia Music+ and for $10/month you can get music via the Xbox Music service. The next thing I am looking to see from Nokia is great integrated stereo speakers.
- Wireless and standard microUSB charging: The Lumia 1020 doesn't have wireless charging in the device itself, but a shell is available to provide the capability. It refreshing to have wireless charging support and I find myself looking for this in all my devices now. I also like that Nokia, and most every other smartphone manufacturer, use standard microUSB for charging. I often found myself without a charging cable for the iPhone 5, but no longer have to worry about that.
- Metro user interface: Frankly, I am bored with iOS and the funny thing is that is exactly why the AT&T rep last night said she owns a Galaxy S4 even though she found the iPhone to be more dependable. I am a fan of the Windows Phone experience and Live Tiles. Windows Phone is approaching its 3rd birthday and the experience hasn't changed much either, but it is still fresher to me and I find it works better for my needs than iOS.
Windows Phone 8 is increasing in market share and when I compare the apps I use daily there are just a couple missing. I do enjoy the metro UI and consistency in the apps though and for the couple I still want, I can get the data through the browser. I am blessed to write about smartphones here and get the opportunity to test out a lot of them. I am keeping my HTC One on T-Mobile and still think that is the best smartphone I have ever used, but I also want a great Windows Phone device.
The Lumia 1020 isn't perfect, but as I wrote before it appears that Windows Phone is holding back Nokia more than their inability to continue pushing the limits. There is a dual-core processor in high end Lumias and no support for 1080p displays, but these are current Windows Phone 8 limitations and not Nokia limitations. I look forward to future versions of Windows Phone and Nokia Lumia products and it seems that Microsoft and Nokia are generating excitement with devices like the Lumia 1020.
I was considering keeping my iPhone 5 on Verizon to see what came in iOS 7 while keeping the Lumia 925 and HTC One for T-Mobile and that probably would have been the sensible thing to do. However, where is the fun in that?
I think the Nokia Lumia 925 is the best piece of Nokia hardware produced running Windows Phone, but the 16GB internal storage is tough to deal with on a phone that captures great photos. It is likely we will see a Lumia 1020 successor later this year or early next year with a higher resolution display, quad-core processor, and other improvements, but I wanted this camera experience now and will make future purchase decisions when we see future devices.