Clearblack technology is great on AMOLED screen
The Lumia comes with a 3.7in AMOLED display that has 480x800 resolution. This is the same resolution found on the larger 4.3in Samsung Galaxy S II. The Iphone 4S has a 3.5in screen, so the Apple handset display is smaller than both in terms of size but still boasts the highest resolution display with its 640x960 resolution.
However, Nokia's Clearblack technology produces deep blacks, making primary colours pop out, particularly blue live tiles on the home screen. Blacks are so deep that at times you struggle to see where the screen ends and the bezel begins, which is impressive.
Text and images are very sharp and the Lumia has one of the best brightness levels on any device we've tested. Colours appear vibrant and text is readable even with the automatic brightness level set to medium. However, like all AMOLED screens, white backgrounds have a slight blue tint.
The screen is a good size for web browsing, and the inclusion of IE9 makes using the internet a swift experience, although there is no Adobe Flash support so viewing video content from the web is limited.
Smooth performance but still no microSD support
A Qualcomm MSM8255 Snapdragon 1.4GHz single-core processor together with the Adreno 205 GPU provide the processing power. The handset also features 512MB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage, but there is no microSD card slot.
The Iphone 4S and Galaxy S2 have dual-core processors, but in reality the Lumia's performance is very similar. Navigating the Windows Phone interface is fluid thanks to the 3D hardware acceleration, and features such as pinch-to-zoom and multi-tasking are just as fast on the Lumia as on competing Android and iOS devices.
Heavy-duty data users will be disappointed to learn that there is no microSD card slot, but this restriction is common to Windows Phone handsets and will even be omitted from the forthcoming Samsung Galaxy Nexus Android device.
The most disappointing hardware feature of the Lumia is the 8MP camera, which doesn't quite live up to expectations. Picture quality doesn't stack up against the Iphone 4S, which also has an 8MP camera and is generally regarded as the smartphone snapper to beat. Outdoor shots appear saturated on the Lumia compared to the Iphone 4S, which captures more natural colours and sharper images.
Additionally, there is no front-facing camera on the Lumia, which means that it's not possible to do videoconference calling.