Nokia Lumia 610 Hand On: Budget Androids Beware

The Nokia Lumia 610 is the first Windows Phone Tango device; despite Microsoft choosing not to use that brand for lower spec’d Windows Phones. When you first pick up a Lumia 610, it seems to defy its 189 Euros (before taxes) price tag and feels like a fairly premium smartphone. The design is eye catching and the Windows Phone UI feels snappy, you would be hard pressed to say that it was not running on a 1 Ghz+ chip.

Major highlights include:

  • 3.7” LCD with a 800 x 480 resolution
  • 800 Mhz processor, 256 MB of RAM
  • 1300 mAh battery
  • Support for 7.2 MBPS HSDPA
  • 5 Megapixel Camera
  • Comes in Cyan, Black, White and Magenta.

Most budget Android devices on the other hand come with smaller screens that are low resolution. The build quality is nothing to write home about and on 800 Mhz chips, Android isn’t exactly flying. With the Lumia 610, it is this class of devices that Nokia is training its guns on.

Nokia Lumia 610 Hand On: Budget Androids Beware

The limitation that the lowered spec Windows Phone devices will have to deal with is with regard to background tasks. While apps like Spotify can remain in the background and play music just fine, applications such as Twitter clients that check for notifications every half hour will not be able to. That means that as long as the application you are running supports push notifications, there will be no problem. But if it relies on pull, the developer has some work ahead of him. According to Microsoft, about 95% of the Windows Phone apps will work just fine on lower spec’d devices, and incompatibility issues will mostly be restricted to high end games.

I did play with a Lumia 610 for a little while and Windows Phone Mango was fluid, and all the social network integration was present. This means that a device that cost less than 200 Euros in total, will give you a social networking experience on par with a high-end smartphone in a sleek design with excellent build quality. Not to forget the full Office functionality and Microsoft Exchange support.

While high-end Android devices are certainly forces to reckon with, I have never been a fan of ‘budget’ Android devices that barely get work done. Nokia has a lot going for the Lumia 610, and if they can price it at about the 12,500 INR mark in India, I can certainly see a lot of people being interested. To my eyes, it looks better than the Lumia 710. The Lumia 610 may well and truly put a fork in Android’s mid-segment reign.

Here is my hands on video from the Mobile World Congress:

Disclosure: I attended the Mobile World Congress on Nokia’s invitation.

11 thoughts on “Nokia Lumia 610 Hand On: Budget Androids Beware”

  1. If by some miracle Nokia decides to release this line of phones, or similar, on some of the smaller carriers (or paygo) in the U.S., I would purchase at least 3 of these and give them as gifts.

    This is really a nice looking device, and getting virtually the same experience as the other WP devices.

  2. why dont u tell people that it lacks vital features such as file manager, usb or bluetooth tethering, bluetooth file sharing. The same thing happened to me when I went to nokia store , I wanted a phone around Rs17000, The sales guy was forcing me to buy nokia 710 lumia for its speed , social n/w integration , etc . I just ask whether lumia supports usb or bluetooth tethering he was just giving me stupid answers like just look its speed bla blah . Instead I bought nokia 701 which was more advanced than bullshit tiles interface.

  3. It is priced at around 12500 , but i think in india pricing should some more lower , because 710 will cost you around 15000 and the specifications of 610 are half in terms of both processor and ram . so what u say it should be price a little bit lower ??

  4. Background agents don’t work, so unless the application supports push notifications, it will not be able to reside in the background and check for tweets etc. However, you will be able to switch between applications with a long press of the back button, just like other Windows Phone Mango devices.

  5. It may have a better display but Android is a much more usable OS. WP misses out on the features I preffer the most, Like external storage, bluetooth file sharing, mass storage mode and lack of real multitasking. So despite of fluid UI and better display, I would anyday preffer an Android or Symbian device over it.
    And also they offer double the RAM at the same price!

  6. How would you describe the quality of the display? It’s not Amoled and doesn’t sport Clear black technology, but how is it compared to say Lumia 710? How usable it is on direct sunlight?

  7. Hi, this is a non-nfc Lumia 610 version?

    can this phone record HD 720p or limited to 480p video?

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