Nokia's Lumia 925 is available in a choice of colors and supports wireless charging. It also boasts some of the best photography capabilities of any handset currently on the market. Photo: AFP
The latest Lumia is more of an evolution than a revolution but will be a big hit for smartphone owners that put a premium on photography.
A new flagship for both the company and the operating system -- Windows Phone 8 -- on which it runs, the Nokia Lumia 925 builds on the foundations of its predecessor, the Lumia 920 (which itself is barely six months old) but ups the screen and camera performance while reducing weight and improving construction materials. The case still uses recycled polycarbonate but this time around, the plastic backing is fused to an aluminium frame for greater robustness while reducing thickness and, essentially weight. The handset measures 129 x 70.6 x 8.5 mm yet is only 139g, almost 50g less than the 920 (which is slightly bigger all-round at 130.3x70.8x10.7mm), yet retains the 920's 4.5-inch screen size. However, the new flagship's display is a full HD AMOLED unit, sensitive enough to work when touched with fingernails or when wearing gloves. It can also be viewed in bright sunshine or in minimal light but it's the phone's camera performance that really sets it apart.
Promising the clearest, sharpest images, even in low light, the 925 can shoot full HD video at 30 frames a second or 8.7-megapixel still images. Helping things in this regard is something Nokia calls Nokia Smart Camera Mode, which the company describes as a "way to capture ten images at once and edit the pictures with options like Best Shot, Action Shot, and Motion Focus for creating the perfect high quality image."
Nokia has one of the best reputations in the industry in terms of imaging and camera lens and image sensor technology, however, until the 925 can be put through its paces alongside the latest Sony Xperia offerings -- the Xperia Z and Xperia ZR which both boast similarly impressive phtotography performance -- it will be hard to judge how good the handset is as a replacement for a standalone digital camera.
Away from photography, the phone packs 16GB of internal storage as standard (which can be upgraded to 32GB) and supports wireless charging via an optional backplate case. It also comes with 7GB of free SkyDrive storage.
In addition to the UK, where it officially made its debut Tuesday, the 925 will also be coming to mainland Europe in June and will roll out to the US and China later this year.
Though pricing will be country, network-operator and subsidy specific, Nokia has put a recommended retail price of €469 on the handset.