Nokia Lumia 820 Hands-on and Initial Impressions

Nokia Lumia 820 on the right, 920 on the left
Nokia Lumia 820 on the right, 920 on the left

Nokia Lumia 820

The Nokia Lumia 820 is the smaller brother of the flagship Windows Phone of Nokia, the Lumia 920. It sports a compact body, interchangeable back cover, removable battery, microSD card slot, and competitive specifications. We were able to spend a couple of minutes playing with a demo unit on display in SM Megamall last week and we just wanted to share our initial impressions based on our hands-on experience. Before anything else though check out the spec rundown below.

Nokia Lumia 820 Spec Sheet

  • 1.5GHz Dual-core Krait Qualcomm MSM8960 Snapdragon CPU
  • Adreno 225 GPU
  • 1GB RAM
  • 8GB Internal Storage, Expandable up to 64GB via microSD
  • 4.3-inch AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 480 x 800 pixels (~217ppi)
  • GPS, AGPS, Bluetooth 3.1, WiFi, WiFi Hotspot, NFC
  • 3G, HSPA+
  • 8-megapixel rear-facing camera with autofocus, dual LED flash
  • Can record video 1080p@30fps with image stabilization
  • VGA front-facing camera
  • Dolby Headphone sound enhancement
  • Li-Ion 1650 mAh Battery
  • Wireless Charging
  • Microsoft Windows Phone 8

Hardware Impressions: Finely Crafted, Solid, Comfortable to Hold

If there’s anything Nokia has mastered through the years, it’s the hardware part and industrial design of their phones. Their original line-up of Lumias were literally a breath of fresh air after the onslaught of generic-looking plastic Android handsets. Nokia continues that tradition of marrying design and function with the Lumia 820.

nokia lumia 820 philippines review

If I have one major gripe about certain phones in the market today, it’s that they’re not comfortable to hold. That’s not the case with the Lumia 820. The well rounded corners make it very easy on your palm. They won’t be digging into your skin or send you lifeless cold-biting sensations. It also helps that the phone is just 4.3-inches and not your usual jumbo 4.8-inch smartphone/phablet which makes it easy to navigate with one hand. When it comes to thickness, the Nokia Lumia 820 is not the thinnest smartphone in the block, and I don’t think Nokia was gunning for that.

Over-all I found the Nokia Lumia 820’s body design appealing, primarily because it’s not your usual generic ‘Droid and that it was very comfortable in my hand.

Display and Screen: No Gorilla Glass, flat AMOLED instead of Curved


Unlike the Nokia Lumia 920 which sported a curved screen, the Lumia 820 has a flat AMOLED display. I’m a big fan of the curved glass so this was a bit of a letdown for me. Another shocker that I found out while reading the spec list is that the Nokia Lumia 820 doesn’t use Corning Gorilla Glass. I’m pretty sure that Nokia uses some sort of scratch resistant glass for their display but we really aren’t sure if it’s the same quality as the Gorilla.

Microsoft Windows Phone 8 on the Lumia 820? Fast.

When it comes to the software side, the Lumia 820 delivers the Windows Phone 8 experience flawlessly. There are no lags or delays when we were testing it out and it was just a joy to use. I’m a big fan of the Metro/Windows Tiles user interface because it’s so elegant, classy, and intuitive and the innards of the Lumia 820 powers the software perfectly. Note that while the Lumia 820 is the “smaller brother” of the Lumia 920, the specifications are still very close.


SEE ALSO: Nokia Lumia 920 Initial Impressions

Initial Thoughts: Lumia 820 or 920?

So which one should we pick? The Lumia 820 or 920? Based on our initial encounters with both handsets they offer different pros and cons. The Lumia 820 gives you more control since you have the microSD slot, changeable back cover, and removable battery. The Lumia 920 doesn’t have those but it has the breakthrough PureView camera, curved display, bigger screen, and bumped up specs. Both have wireless charging but the Lumia 920 has the wireless charging pad bundled for free unlike the 820 where you have to buy it separately.

There’s no one definite better device between the two since the pros and cons are relative to what users are looking for in a smartphone. Just take your pick. 🙂

Unfortunately both devices aren’t officially being sold yet locally. I heard from several sources though that we can expect the local launch this January. Can’t wait for it myself! Definitely looking at getting either the 820 or the 920.

Carlo Ople

Carlo is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of During daytime he’s the Managing Director and Partner of a Digital Marketing Agency in the Philippines and by nighttime he’s living out his passion as a gadget enthusiast and story teller through Unbox.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top button