Nokia’s own Stephen Elop hit the stage this morning, and after a brief introduction he gave the floor to Jo Harlow, who had the privilege of showing off the Lumia 920 for the first time to the world. We also had a visit from Joe Belfriore who got on stage and covered two things. First, a recap and demo of what was talked about in June. Second, he sneaked in some new stuff while showing more innovation – mostly about the camera. Of course he also teased that more features will be shown off on a later date. Next up was Kevin Shields, who showed off some more features, including the NFC (Near Field Communication) functions. These involved wirelessly sending music to speakers and wireless headphones. He also touched on the wireless charging, being able to still use your phone while wearing gloves, and ultimately the PureView camera.
Joe Belfiore got on stage and showed us just how easy it is to make the start screen your own. Showing how easy it is to customize the start screen. Next up he showed us how existing Windows Phone 7 apps will still work, and still look beautiful on their new screen resolutions. The CNN app already has a working app with the new tile sizes, when stretched out to be a large tile, brand new news stories will be updated live on your phone, giving you a headline and a beautiful image to go along with it. Internet Explorer, got some customization options as well as you can now change the refresh button, to tab, or to favorites. HTML5 websites also work fantasticly on Internet Explorer. Pulse was used as an example, it showed that no matter what version of Internet Explorer you use, you will be getting the same experience.
One small, but often requested feature was the ability to take a screen shot of your screen, Windows Phone 8 will now have this feature along with the ability to easily share photos.
The camera app also saw its fair share of updates. When you launch the camera app you will now be greeted with a much easier set of options such as turning on\off the flash. App developers will also be able to develop their own “lens” straight into the camera itself. Examples showed some apps that tweak the image live as you shoot, and Cinemagraph – an app that allows you to take a small video that acts as a still. Then you can tap on areas of the screen to animate short scenes, similiar to a GIF. Last up is more lens apps for the camera – first up Smart Shoot. Take multiple images, then remove objects that are moving, so you can remove people from your photos with ease. No more photobombs!
This may also would hint that they are targeting developers such as instagram to come to Windows Phone since it’s very simple to add these filters to the camera.
Pureview and other features exclusive to Nokia WP8 devices
Pureview – keeps the shutter open longer allowing 5-10 more times of light in the camera, and has better balance, which brings brighter clearer images. Lens is very stabilized, no more shaky video. Largest aperture 2.0. Make sure to check out our more in depth look at the technology here.
Navigation – Offline Maps will be a key feature, not caching maps, but true offline maps (Take that Jelly bean!) and Free Voice guided navigation. The Daily Commute feature calculates traffic and will tell you when you need to leave to get to your destination on time. Walking directions and indoor maps are included.
City Lens – allows you to point your camera at any city block and get reviews from businesses, restaurants, etc. integrated with Nokia Maps. Once in maps, just lift up the phone to see your route, and anything of interest nearby. The inclusion of this augmented reality application can allow users to find nearby locations and relevant data all while using Nokia Maps en-route to their destination.
JBL Powerup - Integrated NFC, tap on the JBL Power up, then tap your phone on it, and the power speaker wirelessly will play your music, also leave your phone on the speakerand it will wireless charge your Lumia. Demo didn’t go flawlessly perhaps due to the high amount of bluetooth and networks going on during the event. JBL wireless headphones, also just tap to send the music to the headphones.
Lumia 920 details – Curved 4.5 inch pureblack display HD+,1280 x 768, with super sensitive touch, nfc, nokia music, city lens etc, Carl Zeiss camera, 2000 Milliamp Battery, 5 stunning colors, and wireless charging.
Nokia Puremotion HD Plus – Blur free scrolling, beautiful screen, adjusts outside when in sunlight, to give you a bright colorful display you can view anywhere. Nokia is super proud of this display, fastest LCD display ever on mobile, a 2.5 times faster pixel refresh rate. Higher then 720p resolution.
The Lumia 920 will come in a variety of colors including white, black, gray, yellow, and red. The poly-carbonate body is sleek and smooth, no camera bump. This phone exudes confidence. Nokia claims it is solid, and durable phone.
Nokia also had some exclusive new apps up their sleeve. City Lens of course and, Rovio is showing some Winodow’s Phone love with the Angry Birds Roost. A central hub for all things Angry Birds, including walkthroughs on tougher levels, news, ringtones and wallpapers, and of course buying, and launching of the games.
Lumia 820 details – Also announced is the little cousin of the family, the Lumia 820. This phone features a 4.3 inch PureBlack display with a resolution of 800 x 480, with super sensitive touch and NFC built-in. All the Nokia applications such as Nokia Music and City Lens are included. For the hardware the Lumia 820 doesn’t skimp, the Carl Zeiss camera is included and even features a Micro SD slot, 1650 Milliamp Battery, and the back shell pops of so you can change its color with various colored shells. One such optional shell will add wireless charging as well.
The 820 might not be as premium as the 920 but is still a beautiful device and should fill its role as the middle range handset nicely with its customization as a feature.
As Nokia summed it up, ”We’re creating the most personal smartphone experience…This is Lumia. The world’s most innovative smartphone.” Only the future will tell, but from where they stand now Nokia and Microsoft are looking pretty good.
Source: Nokia-Microsoft Press Conference