The Nokia Lumia 930 is a 5-inch Windows Phone running the latest Windows 8.1 mobile OS. Microsoft now own the mobile sector of Nokia, although you’ll still find the Nokia branding on the rear of the devices as transition continues.
The 930 has a very square build, and it’s not exactly the slimmest of devices at 9.8mm thick. This makes even its predecessor the 925 slimmer at 8.5mm. Because of the increase in thickness and the square body, the phone isn’t the most ergonomic and can be a little uncomfortable to hold and use.
The back of the phone is slightly curved which helps it to follow the contours of your hand when resting in your palm. However it’s not a massive difference and only makes a slight improvement. I did like how the sides of the device were encased in a single metal band, unlike the 925 where it was divided. This gives for a much higher quality look.
As well as two standard black and white colour options, the green and orange versions are my favourite. These really do make a statement and stand out a mile off. They may not be to everyones taste hence the black and white choices, but if you’re feeling adventurous and like something a little different like myself then I’d say go for it!
In terms of the button and port layout things are pretty normal as you would expect. On the top you’ll find the headphone port sat next to the nano-SIM card slot, which you can easily pry out using just your fingernail. On the bottom is the micro-USB charging port, while on the right edge is the volume rocker, power button and dedicated camera button which acts as a shutter when taking pictures in landscape mode.
Just like the 925, the Lumia 930 won’t allow you to increase memory as there is no space for a micro SD card.
The hardware of the 930 device is up to scratch, so you won’t have to worry about any performance issues or anything like that. The insides are packed with a 2.2GHz quad-core SnapDragon 800 processor, with 2GB of RAM alongside an Adreno 330 GPU.
When flicking through the Windows 8.1 user interface it wasn’t sluggish and we had no problem switching between multiple apps which were running at the same time.
We tested the device out with one of the few demanding games found in the Windows Store; Asphalt 8:Airborne. The game launched quickly, and gameplay was very smooth throughout. After around 20/30 minutes of playing I began to feel the device warming up on the back, however after exiting the game it quickly cooled back down, so I didn’t see this as a massive problem.
The 930 boasts a 5-inch full HD 920 x 1080 pixel AMOLED display, which is strengthened with Gorilla Glass 3. The screen is incredibly bright, and the vibrant colours of the tiled interface really stand out. If you feel like colours are a little oversaturated however, you can take a look at the different colour profiles to see if they help.
I had no problem using the phone outside in direct sunlight, and even with the sun shining directly onto the screen, SMS messages and other text could still easily be read. In terms of brightness most people would choose the auto setting, but you do also have the option to choose from three different presets: high, medium or low. This is slightly restricting as no brightness slider is present as you’re probably accustomed to using but it does its job.
On the 930 home screen you’ll find the Nokia Camera application, which uses the 930s 20MP sensor on the rear. It probably won’t surprise you that it uses the ‘PureView’ technology, and it produces some pretty good images as well.
For the techies: It has an f/2.4 aperature lens, 1/2.5-inch image sensor as well as dual LED flash.
You will also get optical image stabilisation which is great if you have shaky hands and will help you get a sharp shot. You’ll be pleased to know that the image stabilisation is also present when recording Full HD 1080p videos.
One thing I was a little disappointed in was the omission of the HDR feature, and is something that in my opinion should have been present on this device.
The Nokia Camera app is easy to use and hosts a whole lot of settings which you can customise to your liking. Layered across the top of the live display you’ll find the options for setting a timer, adding grids and also the option to capture high and low resolution copies of the image. You’ll also be able to edit the settings such as shutter speed, white balance and brightness from here.
On the front you have a 1.2MP camera, which can record up to 720p HD. This is more than sufficient for your selfies and Skype calls.
The phone packs a 2,420mAh battery, which is smaller when compared to other 5-inch phones such as the Galaxy S5 which boasts 2,800mAh, although the 930 does support wireless charging as well.
Throughout my tests I found the phone to drain the battery pretty quickly. Through normal everyday usage such as listening to music, occasional web surfing and taking the odd selfie I struggled to make it through a whole day without having to charge it.
There is a battery saver app which will allow you to disable applications based on battery consumption, and this definitely helps if you’re trying to conserve power.
Overall the Nokia Lumia 930 is great Windows Phone, however I’m not convinced that it will make users of Android and Apple devices change over. The 5-inch screen and PureView camera are both impressive features of this device, and go somewhat to winning me over.
The 930 is not a perfect device and there is still room for big improvements such as the battery life of the phone. Seeing as the camera is one of the stand-out features of this device, HDR would also be a welcomed feature.
All in all though I enjoyed using the device and performance-wise it was excellent.