Lumia 1020 with a 41MP camera? Do not want

Marc Flores
 from San Francisco, CA
Published: July 11, 2013

If I want to buy a really nice camera, I'll go out an buy a really nice camera. What I won't do is buy a phone because it has a decent camera on it, and that's why I don't think I'll ever spend my own money on the Nokia Lumia 1020. To put it another way, would anyone buy the phone if it had an 8MP camera instead of 41MP? Exactly.

There are advantages and disadvantages to shooting with a 41MP camera. The immediate disadvantage is storage space -- that's obvious. The advantages include being able to zoom in and retain 5MP image quality, which is what the camera normally shoots at. If you had to crop at 41MP, there's the obvious advantage of being able to retain image detail greater than what you can with most smartphones and point-and-shoot cameras. 

The 41MP camera in the Lumia 1020 is undoubtedly the best camera you will ever find on a smartphone right now. The HTC One has an exceptional low-light shooter, and the iPhone has excellent color and clarity right out of the box. But the Lumia 1020 camera offers the highest resolution, low noise at high ISO sensitivities and excellent dynamic range. And with the Pro Camera app for the Lumia 1020, you'll have greater control over focus and exposure and white balance. 

Unfortunately, this amazing camera is housed in a Lumia phone running Windows Phone 8. Not that there's anything inherently wrong with that, but Windows Phone's market share compared to iOS and Android is small, and for good reason. While its apps are improving, and app selection is growing, it's still not on par with their iOS and Android counterparts. Some popular apps, like Instagram, aren't even on Windows Phone 8 yet. It's already 2013!

Windows Phone 8 is nice for seeing live information on the go with live tiles, but I really prefer having widgets. Why? Widgets are more customizable, and the apps and live tile system are terrible for notifications. In fact, Windows Phone needs a notification system overhaul, because unless you're looking at an app's tile, chances are you may not know you have pending notifications when the app isn't presently displayed on screen.

Nokia is really trying to sell you a brilliant camera, not a brilliant phone. Put that same camera in an Android device, and you can bet it'll be in high demand. But in a Windows Phone 8 device, and at $300, it's about as appealing as, well, a Windows Phone device. 

Sorry, Nokia, but between my full-frame, 24MP Nikon DSLR and my good-enough smartphone cameras, I just don't see why I'd fork over that much cash for the Lumia 1020.

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