You've probably heard a lot about Nokia's Lumia 920 already, as it's the hot, new, second-generation Windows Phone from Nokia. New display technology; an amazing camera and cutting-edge speed all combine to make the most advanced smartphone on the market today.
The first thing you'll notice about the Lumia 920 is its display, seeing as it's a 4.5" whopper that'll be staring right back out at you as soon as you've finished furiously tearing it out of the box.
As well as hitting the sweetspot between too big and too small at the 4.5" size level, Nokia's paid particular attention to the actual output quality of the screen, implementing what it calls the PureMotion HD+ system, so what you see is more realistic, and faster to update, which reduces the appearances of motion blur as you page around its apps and screens.
Nokia's also managed to out-do the competition on a technical level thanks to its capacitive touchscreen tech. With winter on the way, you’ll be happy to hear that the Lumia 920’s display doesn’t require the human touch to work, meaning you can use it while wearing gloves, or with your jumper over your finger.
Capacitive displays offer that solid, glassy feel of a premium product, but they’ve previously required the electrical conductivity of naked human skin to work. The Lumia 920 does away with the requirement to be touched by a skin-like thing, so even Mr Edward Teddy Bear can work the display for himself while you're asleep.
Another additional tech plus you won’t find in any other smartphone today is the Lumia 920’s support for wireless charging, right out of the box. The phone has Wireless Charging in-built, which through clever science stuff, lets the phone’s battery fill itself up by simply placing it on a charging pad. People will look on in amazement. Crowds might even gather to watch the battery filling itself up wirelessly.
The performance of the camera is one of the things everyone looks at very closely when choosing a smartphone these days, with the Lumia 920 destroying the competition in terms of image technology and raw power.
You get some features taken straight out of standalone digital cameras in the Lumia 920 too, with proper optical image stabilisation taking the place of the poorer digital stabilisation software that usually features in other smartphones. The 920's PureView sensor captures its 8.7megapixel images at 3552x2448 resolution, with the phone featuring a two-stage capture shutter button for easy focusing and shooting.
The Lumia 920's camera also features the newest sensor illumination technology, which manages to pull more natural light into the camera and therefore increases low-light performance. This means better shots inside, better pics in the evening and less of a reliance on the flash to pull out details.
Oh, and there's another one. A secondary front-facing camera shoots footage at 1280x960 resolution, for use with video chat apps and anything else that requires you to be making eye contact with your smartphone’s camera while using it.
And all this awesome hardware needs a brain to manage it well, with the Lumia 920 packing a best-in-class Snapdragon S4 chipset. It's a dual-core model, with mobile brain supplier Qualcomm producing a staggeringly powerful unit that blitzes even the quad-core competition in power benchmarks, thanks to the company's mastery of mobile processing.
This means a faster, more responsive experience throughout the Lumia 920. Web pages load and draw quicker; the camera app pops up virtually instantly and general app and gaming performance is just plain awesome thanks to the advanced tech inside.
One notable additional feature the S4 chipset provides is compatibility with LTE radios, which, in lay-bloke terms means the Lumia 920 is "4G Ready" and fully compatible with the UK's emerging 4G superfast mobile data connections. It'll be stocked by new 4G supplier EE, in fact, which is using the Lumia 920 as one of the new service's flagship launch models.
But the key to success for any modern smartphone isn't just the hardware, the size of the camera, the bewildering numbers on the box or the colour of the case -- it's all about the apps to make it actually do stuff other than look pretty on your desk.
Thankfully for app fans, Nokia and Microsoft have already done a lot of the heavy lifting in terms of building a huge app ecosystem. The Windows Marketplace already has over 100,000 mobile apps in its listings ready to go, with apps covering everything from online payment expert Paypal, hot movie streaming service Netflix and the Big Fat Travel Controller the Trainline already out, tested, tweaked and ready for installation on day one.
One exclusive Nokia feature is its Mix Radio app, which enhances the built-in Music player with access to an enormous resource of streaming music. Some 17 million tracks are available to listen to, instantly, with no sign-up or fees required to get your Lumia 920 making some noise. There are plenty of preset stations – 60s, 70s, 80s, hip-hop and dance -- plus new music channels if you’re not already set in your ways. Here's looking at you, dad. It all caches for offline access as well, should you be the sort of jetsetter who’s regularly in tunnels, aeroplanes or rural bits of the country with no reliable data connection.
And it comes in yellow. And red. If you're bored of smartphones that are all bland, black rectangles with the personality and style of a particularly poorly-maintained 1970s bathroom tile, the Lumia 920's for you. [Nokia Lumia 920]