Nokia Lumia 930 and Lumia 635 Hands-On (Update: Video)

Nokia continues to show its prowess in photo capabilities. The Lumia 930's 20 MP camera includes many of the algorithms and other optimizations from devices like the Lumia 1020, with its 41 MP camera, according to Nokia CEO Stephen Elop. The demo room had all sorts of odd lighting, so it was impossible to do any side-by-side photo testing, so we'll have to wait for a review unit. The front-facing camera is only 1.2 MP, and the Lumia 630 and 635 do not have front-facing cameras at all, only a rear-facing 5 MP camera.

The cameras take what Nokia calls Living Images, using a series of photos to create a slight animation. In the Nokia Story Teller app, those Living Images come to life in the picture collages. Those collages are automatically created based on knowing the time and location of those photos. In other words, it's an automated picture story maker. The Lumia camera takes Living Images photos automatically, as long as the shot is in focus, and it does so by capturing about 15 frames prior to the actual photo. The image creates an MP4 file, according to a Nokia spokesman, and that image can be shared on social media sites.

Read more: Lumia 625 vs. Lumia 635: Entry-level Windows Phone 8.1

Like every phone manufacturer, Nokia couldn't announce a new flagship phone without also hocking some accessories, and in this case it's the Nokia MD12 Speaker, which bonds to the surface it's on to accentuate the bass and can play music for 15 hours uncharged. On it you can play all the music from Nokia's Mix Radio app. The MD12 comes in Orange, green, yellow and white.

There's also the Fat Boy Pillow. Don't ask. OK, it's a small, green pillow that wirelessly charges the Lumia phones. Good luck with that.

Read more: Nokia Lumia 620 vs. Lumia 630: Budget Windows Phone 8.1

Nokia is also including Creative Studio, an app that allows image editing, with filters and high resolution re-framing.

The Lumia 930 includes 4 microphones, which lets the phone capture surround sound, but you can also do directional stereo recording as well. The room we were in was too loud, with too many echos to really get a sense of the quality.

Read more: Nokia Lumia 930 vs. Lumia 920 vs. Lumia Icon

Finally, the new Lumia devices include SensorCore, which tracks motion and location, and third-party developers will be building apps that take advantage of this with the SensorCore SDK. Nokia sees this as a potential phone-version of a fitness tracking wearable.

Fritz Nelson
Fritz Nelson is Editor-at-Large of Tom's Hardware US.
  • vaughn2k
    Wow! 4 mics! to record surround! how cool is that!
  • epileptic
    Can you tell us a bit about or show us the covers we partially see in the second photo?
  • falchard
    The plastic casing in the Nokia 820 and 920 looked a fair shot better than these casings. The outer metal ring makes it look like any other smart phone. Personally even though I want a Windows Phone 8.1 device, I probably won't be getting either of these because of the casing.
  • FritzEiv
    Can you tell us a bit about or show us the covers we partially see in the second photo?
    My apologies on the cases. There are three -- black, green and orange, each with dark grey lining. I didn't play around with them much, but they are just protective, not necessarily "smart" covers or peek-thru ones like you see with some for the Galaxy S devices. Nokia also has Treasure Tags (I didn't see these, but they are on the spec sheet they gave me, and I am only noticing them now). These alert you (via the Treasure Tag app) when you are about to leave them behind -- in the app, you can see it on a map. They come in yellow, cyan, white and black.
  • red77star
    What a boring phones...
  • CaedenV
    While the 930/Icon is a step up from the 920 (of which I am a proud owner), I cannot help but feel a little disappointed.1) No Glance screen? This is one of the best features of high end Lumia devices, and I am surprised to see it go away. They say it is due to technical limitations, but they have implemented it on other 1080p displays, and other oled displays... so what is the problem?2) VZW only in the US? Really? I understand that ATT is being silly with their anti wireless charging stance, and T-Mo is not into supporting WP devices, but the carriers are finally changing here in the states. Now would be the perfect time to start releasing unbranded phones in the US. On ATT you practically have to beg to keep your old contract subsidized phones anymore, and I hear that Verizon and T-Mo are much the same. Never a better time to start disrupting business as usual and introducing some sanity to the US markets.3) No real features with the Cyan update? The Amber and Black updates released with GDR2 & 3 brought some really cool features to the WP platform that were specific to the Lumia lineup. But the Cyan update is yet another minor camera tweak that very few people are going to notice, and a few additional apps that nobody is really going to use. This is not the innovation that Nokia has been known for and it feels very weak compared to previous offerings.4) No Nokia Lumia design/feel? Every Lumia to date (except for the 925/928) has had a nice durable and resilient polycarbonate case that don't really require a case. And on the 925/928 it was constantly criticized for poor construction (creeking noises and gaps at the seams), and for being easily damaged on the metal edge when dropped... so we decide to continue this bad idea on the next gen flagship? And while they did trim 1mm from the thickness, it looks much chunkier than the 920 and is still a very hefty phone (something I do not mind personally, but reviewers lambaste them for). I somehow expected something better in the design department.Still, the larger/better screen, the better camera, wireless, and a quad core CPU with extra ram are all welcome additions; Truly next gen compared to the 920... it just does not look like a big brother to the 920.
  • alextheblue
    You should probably mention that the Fatboy pillow is a Qi wireless charger.
    No Glance screen? This is one of the best features of high end Lumia devices, and I am surprised to see it go away. They say it is due to technical limitations, but they have implemented it on other 1080p displays, and other oled displays... so what is the problem?
    A few moments with a search engine will tell you why. It's not due to AMOLED, but rather due to the TYPE of AMOLED display used. You need either an LCD or an AMOLED with display memory for Glance. Apparently that size 1080p AMOLED with display memory would have been cost prohibitive. They debated the issue heavily and decided to go with the best display they could budget, even at the cost of Glance. It also sounds like they're working to find a better solution for future devices. Running Glance anyway without display memory would have been power prohibitive. I think it would be nice if they at least enabled Glance functionality while it's plugged in. That would slow charging rate a bit, but as an option it's better than nothing.
  • jasont78
    what are these video recorded with, let us know so we never ever buy that camera. i have not watched such a poorly focused video in years. i think people are doing better jobs taking cams into the cinemas ripping of movies lol!!!