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Published On: Sat, Nov 10th, 2012

Nokia Lumia 610 review – Budget Windows Phone

Windows Phone haven’t been able to compete hard with Apple iOS or Google Android but this equation could change with Nokia jumping on the Windows Phone bandwagon. Nokia Lumia 610 was one of the first Nokia Windows Phone to come in to the market and it is made for the budget user. This phone is made to compete with lower end Android mobile phones.

For people who don’t want to spend big

The high speed components have all been sacrificed in order to keep the price low and this phone will certainly attract the younger crowd of mobile buyers.

This phone is the cheapest Windows Phone available in the market to date. There isn’t pin sharp screen or quad core processor inside but you still get satisfying and smooth experience for a price that is muc less as compared to other high end phones. The build quality and user experience too is a bit better than some high end phones out there.

Nokia Lumia 610 Specs

Design

Nokia Lumia 610 review says that the this phone has cheerful and cheap aspirations and the design of this handset is quite modest. There is plastic bezel surrounding the display and there is metallic faux coating. Back side has plastic soft-touch battery which wraps around this phone’s lower section and it forms a fetching chin.

Remove cover of the Nokia Lumia 610 and you will find a battery and microSD card slot. That’s it. There isn’t any microSD card slot for memory expansion.

For the physical inputs, this phone has camera, screen lock, and volume buttons located on right side of this phone. There are 3 buttons – Search, Home, and Back and they relate to the Windows Phone commands. These three buttons are located below the display.

Apart from this, the phone is all bare except for a 3.5mm headphones jack and a microUSB port located on the top. This phone isn’t fussy in terms of design. I liked the minimal look of this phone and the design is quite robust. The understated and restrained nature makes this phone look more than the price that it is being sold for.

Nokia Lumia 610 Price

Display

Nokia Lumia 610 has a screen of 3.7 inches and this LCD display has a resolution of 480×800 pixels. This resolution is standard for all Windows Phone gadgets. The display is capacitive touch screen and hence you won’t need to apply too much pressure for registering touches. The responsiveness and accuracy too is good enough and you don’t to use traditional stylus.

LCD display is quite average, I liked the viewing angles, they are decent but the colours looked a bit washed out. The blacks aren’t as deep as that on phones having AMOLED displays. This display isn’t the best I have ever seen but the quality is acceptable considering the low price tag.

Nokia Lumia 610 Cellphone

Processor

Microsoft had previously laid down some minimal specifications for the OS but they have now been relaxed to endorse Nokia’s endeavour to make affordable phones. Nokia Lumia 610 comes with single core 800 MHz chip inside and this is accompanied by 256 MB RAM which is half of what you get on other Windows Phone gadgets. During testing, I found that apps like Skype and Angry Birds didn’t run because of reduced Ram but I think that there will be updates issued soon for rectifying these problems.

Memory

Nokia Lumia 610 comes with 8GB internal memory and there is no memory card slot. You can’t put in more memory. Fortunately, there is Microsoft SkyDrive having 25GB cloud based storage space.

Windows OS

This phone runs on Windows Phone 7.5 which is also called Tango. The OS has been modified to run on lower end specs and it revolves around the tile based Metro UI. This is done to avoiding bugging the user with lots of torrents of the information and focus instead of the activities that are important.

Looking at the modest specs, I expected this phone to stutter a lot considering other lower end Android phones have these problems but I was surprised to see that Nokia Lumia 610 didn’t have any of these problems. This phone is as good as the more expensive Nokia Lumia 800. The transitions are pretty smooth and the navigation too is fast. There aren’t any long delays while switching between the applications. OS has been well modified for running on the slower hardware.

In spite of this performance, there are some caveats that are worth noting. There are some apps that don’t work due to slower hardware and Nokia has also removed some of the features of the OS for making sure that this OS runs smooth. For instance, there is no support for HD video play back and this won’t go down well with the people who like to watch movies on their mobile.

Also, Windows Phone Marketplace app and the game support aren’t as good as Android and iOS. Young people like to download a lot of stuff and hence Microsoft will have to do better if they are to compete. Also, the developers will have to optimize the apps for running on lower RAM.

Nokia Lumia 610

Camera

Nokia Lumia 610 doesn’t come with any front facing camera and hence you can’t make video calls through Skype. I was disappointed to see this but this isn’t really a deal breaker considering that this phone is made for the lower budget section of the market. However, I was more concerned about the poor quality pics taken by the five megapixels camera on the back.

I took photos in a lot of different conditions and there was lack of colour replication in all of the pics. The shots which are taken in bright conditions looked drab and washed out and the flash wasn’t good enough for illuminating subjects in dark locations.

Software of the camera doesn’t have a lot of features – there is no panorama shooting mode or face tracking. On the bright side, there is dedicated button for camera for starting the camera app fast and it improves the experience of taking photos.

Nokia Lumia 610 Camera

Video recording

It isn’t reasonable to expect HD video capture on such low cost phone. There isn’t even 720p video recording on board and all you get is 640×480 pixels resolution recording which is good enough for sharing stuff on Facebook. However, if you are looking to store memories, I would recommend you to get a better phone.

Price

Nokia Lumia 610 price is Rs. 11390.

Battery life

I thought that Nokia Lumia 600 would have big battery life considering that there isn’t any high end hardware inside and this turned out to be true. This battery isn’t the same as other batteries but it will still last for week.

For one day, I used this phone heavily and it still had enough battery life for the following day. For the next day, I used this phone more casually and there was enough battery life for entire next day.

Nokia Lumia 610 Windows Phone

Conclusion

Making budget phones was a wise move for both Microsoft and Nokia. This phone surely won’t be able to fight with HTC One X or Samsung Galaxy S 3 but still the Nokia Lumia 610 will go well with people who are looking for budget phones.

Intrinsically speaking, the Nokia Lumia 610 is priced a bit higher than the budget Android phones. The experience is silky smooth which isn’t seen in cheaper Google phones. It is good to see Windows Phone OS at budget price.

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