The Nokia XL features a 5" IPS LCD touchscreen of WVGA resolution (480 x 800) and a low pixel density of 187ppi. At the price point, we wouldn't have complained about the resolution too much until recently, but the Moto G and its 720p display (over twice as many pixels as WVGA) changed that.
What we miss more is perks like Nokia ClearBlack, which is a polarizing filter that diminishes reflections and greatly improves screen legibility in sunlight.
There seems to be no scratch-proof glass of any kind, certainly not the popular Gorilla Glass.
Anyway, the large screen lends itself to comfortably browsing desktop pages, which don't require zooming in too closely. The low pixel density otherwise becomes apparent, with small text almost illegible and medium-sized text looking soft. Thin fonts don't work well, bold or italic text looks off.
Viewing angles are surprisingly good for a display in this price bracket, however contrast and colors are not great.
|Display test||50% brightness||100% brightness|
|Black, cd/m2||White, cd/m2||Black, cd/m2||White, cd/m2|
|Nokia Asha 503||0.28||178||647||0.56||358||635|
|Sony Xperia tipo||-||-||-||0.75||561||751|
|Nokia Lumia 520||-||-||-||0.51||422||834|
|Sony Xperia E||0.19||157||813||0.50||433||875|
|Sony Xperia E dual||0.21||181||844||0.54||473||870|
|Samsung S7500 Galaxy Ace Plus||0.27||239||873||0.6||528||888|
|Nokia Asha 501||-||-||-||0.37||354||947|
|Motorola Moto G||0.35||315||906||0.57||550||967|
|Sony Xperia C||0.18||151||842||0.66||639||962|
|Apple iPhone 5||0.13||200||1490||0.48||640||1320|
Brightness is good, we found that setting it at about 50% is usually good enough, but even at full blast it's not enough to overcome the reflectivity of the screen. The Nokia XL has one of the most reflective screens we've seen, earning it a place at the bottom.
The Nokia XL doesn't have a tack sharp screen or a blazing fast chipset, but the upside of that should be good battery life. With a 2,000mAh battery we were a bit skeptical, yet the XL proved us wrong with a 62 hour endurance rating. Note that we tested the dual-SIM version of the phone with two SIM cards in it.
Talk time was pretty good nearly 11 hours, although the HTC Desire 600 dual sim did an hour more with a smaller battery. It's the web browsing that was particularly impressive though, 12 hours is about as good as we've seen (another dual-SIM HTC, the 5" Desire 700, did even better).
It's the video playback time that let the phone down with 6 and half hours. The video player has limited capabilities as we'll see later.
Anyway, for a dual-SIM device the Nokia XL showed excellent standby performance. This allowed it to top both the Desire 600 and 700 in terms of endurance rating.
For a more detailed breakdown of the Nokia XL battery performance check out our blogpost.