The Nokia Lumia 900, the Windows Phone camp’s best smartphone to date, is coming to Singapore on May 26 and will go for a rather attractive S$849 at retailers as well as via all three mobile operators here.
Launched in the United States last month, the update to the Lumia 800 comes with a bigger 4.3-inch display (over a 3.7-incher) and sports the same “pillow” of a screen that sits quite sexily on the one-piece polycarbonate body.
The bigger screen, of course, comes with slightly more heft. The new phone weighs 160g, compared to the previous 142g, though you’ll really have to have sensitive hands to be able to feel the difference.
Other than that, the Nokia Lumia 900 has some of the features that have worked for the Lumia 800 before, like a 8-meg camera with a Carl-Zeiss lens and a useful f2.2 aperture for getting in more light, for example, in dim settings.
The new phone will come in black, white and cyan, though it’s likely white will be the standout colour here, considering how popular white versions have been for other phones here.
The big question, though, is whether the Lumia 900 will bring Microsoft and Nokia back into the game. The hardware has all the attributes of a good phone, that is clear, and the new Lumia will stand toe to toe with other Android phones or the iPhone 4 S.
The price is attractive too, considering that rivals from Samsung and HTC usually cost S$900 or more. No, it’s not likely that the telcos here will drop prices to S$126 (US$99) with a subscription, as was the case in the US. But priced right, the Lumia 900 is surely a good alternative to Android or iOS devices.
The issue for Microsoft and Nokia is whether they can rally enough developers to come up with the apps for Windows Phone.
In places like Singapore, where everyone is used to the way Android or iOS works, it would take more than a solid Lumia 900 to chip away at the two main rivals’ lead.
In other countries like Indonesia, however, Nokia and Microsoft may find more joy. There are still many users, many toting Blackberrys, who are not so used to the two dominant OSes and are probably more open to a different experience on Windows Phone.
Either way, the Lumia 900 has come at a critical time for Microsoft and Nokia. Slow sales will make things even tougher for the two challengers to the Google-Apple dominance. Do well with the Lumia 900, and they may have a chance to turn around their fortunes and rally more developers to their side.