Microsoft Lumia 535 - a comprehensive review

Ryan ODonnell

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In the month of May 2015, I purchased my new smartphone to replace the existing Nokia Lumia 630/635 I had with a brand new and shiny Microsoft Lumia 535. Many reasons persuaded me to get this phone over any other Android phone, and in this review, I shall explain why.

Unboxing the phone
Whilst unboxing the phone, I was met by the design of Microsoft's packaging for mobile phones, which was carried over by Nokia's Windows Phone 8.1 device series, and it looks pretty sleek.
It comes with the handset (well, you would hope so!), a wall charger and the Lumia 535 user guide and that is literally it!

First time initial setup
Setting up the Lumia 535 was easy due to the fact that I had owned a Windows Phone before, two in fact (Huawei W1 and Nokia Lumia 630). The setup screens are detailed and easy to follow, so it is hard to make a mistake whilst setting up the device. When it got to the backup section, I managed to restore all of the apps I had on my Lumia 630, and restore the text messages, settings, etc, which made the experience much nicer!
The "We're installing all your apps" section took the longest, as much as 10 to 15 minutes, but you know, you've just got to let the phone do its thing.

Performance
I have had the Lumia 535 for nearly a month and there just is not any lag at all because of the magical 1GB of RAM which replaced the older 512MB RAM found in the Lumia 630 and 635. The processor is a 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 processor but Windows Phone makes it fast and snappy with their Windows Phone 8.1.1 OS.

Display
When the phone came out originally last year, I heard of the touchscreen issues people were facing. I can tell you that Microsoft have fixed these issues and are no longer present. The display is, I believe, a qHD display running at 540x960 pixels. When wanting to view full screen content, I can just flick away the navigation buttons at the bottom to have a bit more screen space, which is handy for most apps but unfortunately, some apps don't support full screen on this phone yet, so when the navigation bar is flicked away, there's a black bar and that's it. The quality of the display is by far better than what I've seen on Android handsets I've owned in the past, with its clear text.

Battery life
With the Lumia 535, I can get around 18 hours of battery life with medium usage, which is very fair indeed for a phone of this price range!

Cameras
5MP on the back, 5MP on the front. Both of these cameras are very good indeed, it's just the low light situations you'll have to look out for, but what do you expect from a budget phone!

Overall judgement
My overall judgement of the Lumia 535 is that you should definitely purchase the phone. It's a great first smartphone for people who want to try Windows Phone and will be upgradable to Windows 10 later in the year!
 

TheSteve87

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May 7, 2015
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very good review, all the positive qualities you're pointing out are the same that made me buy this phone: low price, big screen, good cameras with flash (finally!) and all the features needed in a smartphone


as for the screen, i can tell you that microsoft is actually replacing the touchscreens on phones reported as defective (at least here in italy), and it seems that only a specific hardware revision of this phone has the touch problem, the 3.0.0.0
 

Sarcastic Bastard

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I would like to add too this review a little. Samsung Android user here, and only got the 535 for media and both cameras and only ?89.

For me the setup was easy as it just seemed to flow naturally, maybe because I have used Microsoft products for years.

Using the USB cable to connect to the PC was easy and the phone acts as an external hard drive, making file transfer so easy, and quite quick.
 

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