Nokia Lumia 1320
22nd Oct 2013 | 10:39
A phablet for the masses? Really?
The Nokia Lumia 1320 is a phone that tries to straddle two worlds, but is in danger of failing to sit comfortably in either.
On the one hand, it's got the same phablet-sized dimensions as the bigger brother, the Lumia 1520. On the other, it has the spec list that rivals only the Lumia 625, a phone that's been quietly released for the budget-fancier and doesn't seem to be making great waves.
It's clear the market Nokia is going for here: Asian users who don't want to spend oodles on a phone with the spec list of the Lumia 1520 but still want a number of the features.
Gone is the decent camera in place of an average 5MP choice. The CPU is downgraded to an S4 dual core 1.GHz option, and while we don't have information on RAM, we doubt it's anything above 1GB and could be even less than that.
The phone does, however, have a lot of design wins that many will appreciate. For instance, the covers are changeable, there's a microSD slot under the hood, and the whole device has a curved form that makes it sit nicely in the hand without being too cumbersome.
Yes, that display is far too large for some people, but to others (notably those in China and Vietnam, a couple of the primary markets Nokia is targeting with the Lumia 1320) it will be the foray into phablets they've been craving.
There's not a lot else to really celebrate on the Lumia 1320, especially when you see what's going on with its better-specced brother.
Sure, it makes things very busy, but we all like having options in this area.
Things like the StoryTeller app will make a difference to some users, allowing them to tag just where they made the one Cinemagraph that we all feel compelled to when taking the phone out of the box (before realising it's rather creepy and never doing it again).
The camera enhancements don't seem to have slowed down this handset, which is good to see, and in general Windows Phone flows as nicely as we'd hope it would on a new handset. Especially one running Lumia Black, the new update which brings a range of performance improvements to Microsoft's OS.
There seems to be a very real possibility that we'll never see the Lumia 1320 outside of Asia, coming as it is in the early part of next year. That said, it would do very well in some markets where a larger screen is lauded - and if the Samsung Galaxy Mega can be pitched to the student market, why not this phone?
After all, it still comes with Microsoft Office and can run all manner of games, which is fine given Windows Phone still isn't geared up for the really powerful titles.
We can't help but feel nonplussed by this effort from Nokia, simply because the Lumia 1520 is so much better in a number of ways - although given it's under half the price of the Lumia 1520, perhaps there's still a place in the market for this under-powered phablet.