aNewDomain.net — Windows Phone 8 phones are relatively new and the Lumia 822 is the first Nokia phone to grace the Verizon airwaves in several years. It comes with a 4.3-inch AMOLED 800 × 480 display, 8MP rear camera, 1.2MP front-facing camera, LTE, 16GB built-in memory, Qualcomm Snapdragon 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, micro SD card slot and a user-replaceable battery. As shown below, the 822 on the left is thicker and wider than the iPhone 5.
The reception and voice quality of the phone are both very good, as is the data speed on the Verizon 4G LTE network. The 8MP camera with Carl Zeiss lens and dual LED flash produces excellent results. It also captures HD video at 1080p. Nokia has special apps in the Windows Phone Store like Smart Shoot and Panorama that augment the camera’s functionality.
The low-end 800 × 480 display on this Nokia Lumia, however, is a weak point. The AMOLED screen makes the screen look pretty good. It is adequate for everyday use, but in a side-by-side comparison to an iPhone 5 or any other higher resolution phone, the Lumia screen does not compare well.
Several stand-out features of the Lumia 822 include simultaneous voice and data, Data Sense and wireless charging. Unlike the iPhone 5 on Verizon, the Lumia 822 supports simultaneous voice and data. Data Sense is an app that lets you set limits on your data usage and automatically compresses information as you approach your limit. Wireless charging is also available with the addition of an optional back plate and base station.
The new Windows Phone 8 operating system and the wireless charging feature remind me very much of Palm’s webOS and the Palm Pre which had a similar wireless charging station. I loved webOS and thought the Pre was a very capable phone at the time. Yet, we all know what happened to Palm.
What becomes of the Windows Phone 8 operating system is yet to be seen. Like Palm’s webOS, Windows Phone 8 is a powerful OS that is also easy-to-use. The colorful live tiles are both functional and fun. The information-centric design is rather refreshing in comparison to app-centric phones like the iPhone. Of course, Windows Phone 8 integrates beautifully with Microsoft Office, including SharePoint, Outlook, and Exchange.
I was hoping that this would be the phone to really showcase Nokia’s comeback and the Windows 8 Phone operating system, but it is not. Although the Nokia Lumia 822 has a great camera and some excellent features, Nokia and Microsoft need to come out with some special feature that can act as a knock-out blow if it wants to overtake Apple, Google, and Samsung.
The Nokia Lumia 822, however, is a very good entry-level Windows Phone 8 smartphone. The price was recently lowered to $49 with a two-year contract and I have seen some “free” offers with a two-year contract. That makes it a well-priced smartphone that won’t disappoint.
Retail Price: (At time of writing) $49 with two-year contract
Image credits: Sandy Berger for aNewDomain.net
Based in Pinehurst, North Carolina, Sandy Berger is a veteran tech journalist and senior editor at aNewDomain.net covering tech tips and tricks, apps and gadgets in general. Email her at Sandy@aNewDomain.net. Follow her on Twitter @sandyberger, +SandyBerger on Google+, and www.facebook.com/sandyberger on Facebook.