Nokia Lumia 620 preview: First look

GSMArena team, 21 December 2012.
Pages: 12345

Design and build quality

Considering the Lumia 620's target audience, Nokia could've done a lot worse. There's enough color and gloss to get this handset noticed and, although some may scoff at the Asha-grade plastic, the Lumia 620 is not without character. The four flashier paint jobs are a bit too teeny perhaps, but the black and white combo will hopefully appeal to serious users and more conservative tastes too.

The back actually uses a two-layer finish, similar to the Galaxy S III's hyperglaze back. There's a transparent layer on top of the base, which is painted in one of the six colors the Lumia 620 is available in. Our green unit has a yellow accent at the front - a very thin inner frame, which the handset could've easily done without.

The glossy plastic doesn't feel as nice to the touch as, say the matte black version of the Lumia 920, but looks durable and should last a while.

We are not particularly excited about the 11mm profile of the Nokia Lumia 620, which makes the smartphone feel a bit chubby perhaps, but it's not too bad. The ample space below the capacitive keys at the front could also have been put to better use. As for the 127g of weight, we think Nokia found a good balance between portability and solid feel.

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Nokia Lumia 620 next to the Lumia 800

Overall the Nokia Lumia 620 design and build feel more than adequate for its price range, though if we had to go by looks alone, we'd go for the HTC Windows Phone 8S.

Display and controls

The Nokia Lumia 620 packs a 3.8" ClearBlack LCD (that's first gen) of WVGA resolution (800 x 480 pixels). 246ppi provide excellent sharpness and the image quality turned out surprisingly good.

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The display is pretty good for the class

The brightness levels are fine, and make up for the blacks that are only average so the overall contrast is excellent for the class. Colors are generally very punchy and viewing angles are quite decent too. There's a lot of color shifting as you tilt the phone, but what's on the screen remains legible until you reach absolute extremes.

Above the screen you will find a discreet earpiece, the ambient light and proximity sensors, as well as the front-facing camera.

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The earpiece and the front-facing camera are flanking the proximity sensor

Below the screen are the three touch-sensitive buttons for getting around the Windows Phone 8 UI.

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The usual three-button combo under the screen

There is absolutely nothing on the phone's left side but things are a lot busier on the right. The volume rocker is there, along with the power/lock key and a dedicated camera button. The power key is a bit too stiff for our taste, but the camera button is pretty comfortable, offering easily distinct half-press.

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There's nothing on the left, but three keys are located on the right

The 3.5mm audio jack and a microphone pinhole are the two things of interest on the Nokia Lumia 620 top.

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The audio jack is on top

Moving on to the bottom of the phone, we find the microUSB port and the primary microphone.

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The microUSB port at the bottom

The back of the device is where the 5MP camera lens and the LED flash can be found. The loudspeaker grille is also here - in the bottom right corner of the Lumia 620.

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The back panel hosts the 5 megapixel camera lens and the LED flash

The easiest way to open the Nokia Lumia 620 battery cover is to push against the camera part, while at the same time holding the edges of the phone. You will need to clean the lens afterwards, but it's a lot easier than removing the cover by only pushing up.

Under the cover we found a 1300 mAh battery, which is the smallest we have seen in a smartphone recently. There seems to be little reason to worry though - Nokia says the battery can last for 9 h 50 min of 3G talk time or 14 h 40 min of 2G talk time or 330 h of stand-by. We'll have to get a retail unit and run our usual set of tests to believe that though.

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A relatively modest battery is sitting under the hood

The microSD card slot is also under the hood, letting you expand the 8GB of inbuilt storage on the Lumia 620 by up to 64GB. microSD cards are going for pennies these days, so you won't need to pay the premium manufacturers charge for smartphones with more internal storage out of the box either.

It's interesting to note, that while it does use a micro-SIM card, the Lumia 620 SIM slot can be operated without special tools, which makes replacing the card so much easier. It is still located under the battery though, so you'd need to turn off your phone beforehand.

Handling

The Nokia Lumia 620 is comfortable to hold and single-handed operation is quite easy. As we said, it could have been slimmer, but having all the controls on one side and a small display certainly helps.

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Handling the Nokia Lumia 620

The handset's curved sides allow it to fit perfectly in your hand. The glossy finish doesn't exactly do wonders for the grip, but the Lumia 620 won't easily slip off your hand either.

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