The Nokia 1520 phablet (something that sits between a smartphone and a tablet) is now available in Thailand, retailing for B22,900. Can it genuinely rival the Samsung Note 3? Here are our thoughts:
• A massive and absolutely superb 6.0” 1920x1080 screen with a bunch of built-in polarizers that makes it clear from any angle, even under direct sunlight. It’s a joy to behold.
• A very snappy 2.3 GHz quad-core CPU.
• A roomy 32 GB of internal storage with a microSD card slot if you run out of space.
• An unparalleled 20 MP camera that takes high-quality images worthy of a dedicated compact camera and has all the manual settings (ISO, shutter speed, etc.) you could wish for.
• A battery that just keeps on going, even if you forget to charge it overnight.
• Great build quality, design and materials, with the all-black version the coolest phone we’ve seen since the iPhone 4.
• The apps for the Windows Mobile OS look and function more like web browser versions of themselves. Instagram “BETA” won’t even let you tag your location, let alone do any of the snazzy things that were introduced in recent versions—annoying given how good the camera is.
• The 16:9 screen format is great for movies but it’s a pretty awkward format when reading magazines on Zinio. The double tap doesn’t zoom in enough to make text large enough to read.
• Games suffer from similar issues, meaning that because they’ve not specifically designed for this phone they end up pixelated.
This phone seems like a missed opportunity. The screen is amazing but none of the apps we tried could fully make use of it, most often because the resolution of the app itself was too low. The problem here is clearly that Windows Mobile is still very limited as a smartphone OS, not really through any fault of its own, but because developers are not trying very hard to build better apps for it. So, you do get the fantastic camera, but we’d rather get it packaged into a smartphone, as opposed to this huge tablet that won’t really fit into your pocket.
Gallery: Shots taken with the Nokia 1520