Review: Nokia Lumia 925

The Lumia 925 is Nokia's best shot at cracking the smartphone market.

While the older Lumia 920 was criticised for its heft, the Lumia 925 is comparable with the HTC One and iPhone 5 in the looks department.

With the Lumia 925, Nokia has done away with the bold and bright polycarbonate shell of its predecessor.

Instead, the new flagship device sports an aluminium frame coupled with a plastic rear.

But unlike the Lumia 920, the Lumia 925 requires a separate charging cover that snaps onto the back of the phone.

Nokia says this is because there are more users who prefer a slimmer Lumia to a thicker one that can be charged wirelessly out of the box.

That said, this may not go down too well with Nokia fans who prefer the Lumia 920's direct charging capability.

To be sure, I prefer a slimmer phone. The Lumia 925 is definitely more pocketable and lighter than its predecessor, which I used more often as a weekend phone for taking pictures.

The Lumia 925 retains the imaging prowess of the Lumia 920.

Bundled with the device is Nokia's new Smart Camera app, which takes 10 photos at one go and lets you choose the perfect shot.

The app is also clever enough to create motion blur effects in the background and even delete unwanted elements in your snapshots.

Day shots taken with the Lumia 925, which has six physical lenses, were just as vibrant as those taken with the five-lens Lumia 920.

The new Lumia performs just as well in dim lighting too. Night shots taken with the Lumia 925 appear clearer and less grainy compared with my HTC One.

Another key plus is Nokia's Here maps app. With floor plans of 48 malls in Singapore packed into the app, you can easily find the nearest ATM or toilet while shopping.

An immediate difference you will notice with the Lumia 925 is its Amoled display, allowing Nokia to maintain the device's thin profile.

The drawback, however, is that screen colours are less vivid compared with the Lumia 920's IPS LCD screen.

Thankfully, Nokia now lets you tweak the screen's colour saturation and temperature in the colour profile settings.

While a slew of excellent Nokia apps are bundled with the sleek handset, the Lumia 925 is let down by the Windows Phone 8 operating system (OS).

The OS still lacks a notification centre, along with some apps that seem like scaled-down versions of its counterparts on iOS and Android.

The phone's battery will last a full day if you do not synchronise your e-mail messages and run apps in the background.

The best Windows Phone 8 device yet, it is a worthy rival to the iPhone and top Android smartphones.

aarontan@sph.com.sg

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