Nokia Lumia 620 review

The Nokia Lumia 620 is the brand's affordable Windows 8 smartphone

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For

  • Clear screen
  • Good storage & expansion

Against

  • Poor battery
  • Sluggish web skills
  • Cheap build

Windows Phone 8 needs a budget smartphone to compete with Android rivals - could the Nokia Lumia 620 be the very phone to do just that?

The recent range of new Nokia smartphones take Windows Phone 8 to a new level of performance and Nokia has crammed the best bits into the Nokia Lumia 620 - a smartphone that costs £226, under half the price of the flagship Nokia Lumia 920.

This means the Nokia Lumia 620 is a Fiesta rather than a Ferrari in smartphone terms but it has competition from the HTC 8S - can it measure up?

Nokia Lumia 620: Size and build

There’s no secret about the look and style of the Nokia Lumia - the removable casing offers a range of shocking colours designed for a youth market. Press on the camera lens and the case pops, allowing access to the battery. It’s a rugged smartphone but does feel overly plastic against all rivals, even at a similar price level.

The side-mounted camera button, power and volume controls are squidy rather than reassuringly responsive and there’s a feeling that this is a value smartphone that makes no effort to hide that fact on the outside. It’s also heavy for the small dimensions (and battery) at 127g.

Nokia Lumia 620: Features

A 3.8-inch screen is joined by 8GB of storage, a 5 megapixel camera and a 1Ghz dual-core processor. There’s also the Nokia Music, Nokia Drive and useful Nokia City Lens app for exploring cities. The overall feature list is impressive and the storage can be boosted by a Micro SD card - handy for music downloads.

Nokia Lumia 620: Screen

The 3. 8-inch display offers a good 246 pixels per inch resolution which is a bonus for the money and makes the Windows Phone 8 OS and apps look great. Crucially, there’s enough definition for detailed web pages but the screen does suffer in bright light and struggles with a high reflective panel.

Like all Lumia smartphones, the display is very responsive and easy to use - it never misses a swipe gesture though you may struggle with the keyboard, depending on the size of your digits.

Nokia Lumia 620: Performance

Window Phone 8 has proved that the OS can work with low and high speed processors and there’s no change here, though initial set-up and web browsing can chug against similar priced rivals. The camera produces average, sometime overly bright results but is fast and has the option of effects that can be downloaded for free.

We still don’t feel completely at ease with Windows Phone 8 on this size of screen however, especially after using bigger rivals. They’re much more expensive, of course, but Windows Phone 8 really is a great operating system and built for a big screen experience.

Nokia Lumia 620: Battery

The small 1300 mAh can get you through a day but it’s not as big as we expected which is disappointing, though you can carry around a spare of course.

Nokia Lumia 620: Verdict

If you’re after a Windows 8 Phone, the Lumia 620 is a good if not great option. It’s affordable but lacks the apps and expansion options of Android. The Office and exclusive Nokia Drive and Music services really need a bigger screen to show their credentials against the new BlackBerry Z10 and iPhone 4S too.

The Micro SD storage option is good for music fans, as is this smartphone in general, but there’s always a pay-off the price tag and with the Lumia 620, that’s the cheap build, poor battery life and sluggish web performance.

Nokia Lumia 620 release date: out now

Nokia Lumia 620 price: £226