1. angryGTS's Avatar
    Hey all, I am primarily an android user and have never used a Windows Phone prior to purchasing the 521. Why did I purchase the Nokia 521? Well I consider myself a tech geek who happens to hate contracts and before the 521 came out most other Windows 8 phones were too expensive for me to justify the off contract pricing of other Windows Phone 8 devices. At $150 or $129 at Wal-Mart this was the price point I thought I would jump into Windows Phone 8 as another backup to my Nexus 4.

    Device hardware: I have rather large hands and I really like the way the phone feels in my hand. I can do every function of the phone single handed. I have good access to all of the buttons that are all placed on the right side of the phone. The phone has a good weight for its size, not too light to feel super cheap and not too heavy. The hardware buttons have smooth motion and clicks nicely. The screen size at 4 inches seem to be the size most people are looking for again not too big and not too small. My biggest complaint about the screen is only because I am used to a much higher resolution 720p screen is the resolution at 480 x 800 is a little too low at my taste, I wish it was at leas qHD but I'm sure that would have raised the cost of the phone a bit. The screen being an IPS screen which is a good thing seems a bit washed out and if you try viewing at some extreme angles there is a lot of backlight bleed but who is gonna constantly use the phone at those kind of angles anyway but again that could be the cause of the screen being washed out. Nokia was not lying when it said it had a super sensitive screen, again a good thing and even when the sensitive screen option is turned off it still responds well. One other complaint I have is the bezel of the phone which is probably at the fault of T-mobile because they had to put their branding somewhere and I guess the back wasn't good enough. It is also missing a compass and only a half of a gig of RAM so some Nokia apps will not install on the phone because some Nokia apps require a full gig of RAM to install.

    Software My initial setup of the phone although easy I think it took a bit too long. There were a couple of times where it said this could take a while while programs are being installed(It didnt say exactly that but thats basically what it said) that was another thing I was not used to but again initial setup was a breeze, maybe I missed it but I wish there was a way to sign into WiFi during the initial setup while signing into my Live account since I didn't have an active SIM in the phone while setting it up. Once I was signed in and past the initial setup and I was looking at the very minimalistic design of the Metro UI the first thing I did was go into setting and change the theme from that awful T-Mobile Magenta theme. Doing that for task for someone who has never used a Windows Phone was very simple and self explanatory. The live tiles are pretty neat and somewhat similar to the widgets on Android. I do wish that some of the tiles displayed a bit more info on them for instance the Nokia Music tile would be nice if it said what was playing and even track controls to skip or pause songs but it is on the lock screen thankfully. If you can set the tile up to display that info please let me know! A few things that do strike me as odd is moving through some menu screens I see a few loading screens here and there which stop the normally smooth flow. The web browser seems smooth enough until you load a rather content heavy sites then it seems to bog down a bit and zooming in and zooming out is smooth but it redraws a lot the browser seriously needs an update to smooth things out and even though the S4 processor is under clocked from the normal 1.2Ghz the extra 200Mhz wouldn't make much of a difference on that aspect. I have not had the phone long enough to thoroughly sift through the app store to make any judgements yet but from what I have seen most of the popular games on iOS and android are present. I have noticed some lag while searching through the app store, mainly while typing or deleting my search.

    The camera is surprisingly decent for this price range, although it start a little too slow for me, it wont win any awards but for the price I can't complain......much. Where is the LED flash Nokia?!?! There I'm done complaining about the camera but only because of the price point the phone is at.

    Overall my first ever experience with Windows Phone 8 has been a pretty good one. There are some things I can nitpick about like customization since I am a big customization junkie the options to customize aren't there thats my biggest complaint with Windows Phone 8 but that seems to be the nature of the OS, to be minimal. For this initial review I tried to be as unbiased as I could. My next post will be a comparison between an android phone in the same price point as the 521 and I will see how they compare.
    05-19-2013 08:00 PM
  2. angryGTS's Avatar
    Reserved for comparison.
    05-19-2013 08:01 PM
  3. rdb4133's Avatar
    What android phone do you plan on comparing the 521 to?
    06-03-2013 03:39 PM
  4. Eruditass's Avatar
    Which apps can you not install on 512 GB of ram?

    What android phone do you plan on comparing the 521 to?
    A good one would be the Pantech Burst, though it is definitely one of the fastest cheap android phones. I'd also love to see a comparison with an android phone of similar hardware specs, to see how much better(?) WP8 runs on lower hardware.
    06-03-2013 03:55 PM
  5. rdb4133's Avatar
    A good one would be the Pantech Burst, though it is definitely one of the fastest cheap android phones. I'd also love to see a comparison with an android phone of similar hardware specs, to see how much better(?) WP8 runs on lower hardware.
    The only issue I've read with the Pantech Burst is since it's an AT&T phone it doesn't have all of the necessary bands to get proper data coverage with T-Mobile, unless I read that incorrectly :)
    06-03-2013 11:18 PM
  6. Shad0wguy's Avatar
    Which apps can you not install on 512 GB of ram?



    A good one would be the Pantech Burst, though it is definitely one of the fastest cheap android phones. I'd also love to see a comparison with an android phone of similar hardware specs, to see how much better(?) WP8 runs on lower hardware.
    The Nexus S might be a decent apples to apples comparison as far as specs go.
    06-04-2013 08:07 AM

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