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Nokia is getting ready to start selling its top-of-the-line Lumia 900 in the UK on Friday, as it continues to bet on the Windows Phone-powered smartphone range to revive its fortunes.
At launch, the handset will be exclusive to online retailer Phones4U, which is taking pre-orders now for a range of operator price plans. However, other retailers and operators will soon follow, according to Nokia.
The handset was previously due to arrive on Phones4U on 27 April. However, it was delayed due to unexpected demand for the smartphone in the US, where it went on sale on 8 April. While the US model is built to use LTE networks, the lack of 4G in the UK means that the Lumia 900 in the UK will have lower-speed DC-HSPA features instead.
The Lumia 900 will join its previously released Lumia 800 and 710 siblings on British retailers' shelves. In April, Nokia admitted its Lumia smartphones have struggled to make an impact with British buyers, even though they have "exceeded expectations" in the US and other countries.
Seen above, the UK version of the Lumia 900 looks the same as the US model.
The UK model Lumia 900 is also very similar to the Lumia 800. Like its sibling, it includes the best of the Nokia-specific apps, such as Drive, Music and Transport, but unlike the 800, it comes some handy new features.
Among them is a 1-megapixel forward-facing camera, which can be used for video calling or capturing photos or video.
The Lumia 900 (left) also brings a larger 4.3-inch AMOLED 'ClearBlack' touchscreen display. It differs slightly from the 800 in that it supports dual-channel data connections — meaning HSPA+ speeds of up to a theoretical maximum of 42Mbps — and can be used as a mobile hotspot for up to five other devices.
Both Lumia models use the Windows Phone 7.5 Mango operating system. This means they provide largely the same user experience, including integrated social networking and account sync options.
The Lumia 900 measures 127.8mm by 68.5mm by 11.5mm and weighs 160g. By comparison, the 800 has a chassis measuring 116.5mm by 61.2mm by 12.1mm and weighs 142g.
Unlike the Lumia 800, the 900 uses a flat piece of glass for the display rather than rounded edges. However, it provides a similar level of camera functionality, with Carl Zeiss optics on board.
The Lumia 900's top section design is slightly different to that in the 800. It provides a micro-SIM slot and a headphone socket.
Phones4U is listing the Lumia 900 on plans with Orange, O2 and Vodafone, with the handset available free on a two-year contract at £36 a month, and with a delivery date of 14 May. Carphone Warehouse is also taking pre-orders with the same operators on similar contracts, but with a delivery date of 21 May onward. Clove Technology is selling the handset SIM-free for £458.40, with the first stock due in on 16 May, according to the retailer's website.
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