Nokia 808 PureView Philippines Review by Actual Owner : Design, Imaging Prowess, Software, Verdict

TechPinas Reviews...
Nokia 808 PureView by Jovrien Darimbang

Mark of TP: "Nokia 808 PureView featuring an unprecedented 41 MegaPixel autofocus camera with Xenon flash and a Full HD Video recorder paired with LED torch light is quite inarguably the best cameraphone in the world.

Months before the handset was officially released in the Philippines, our friend - Jovrien - got in touch with me via Twitter and inquired about the availability of the handset. 'It will arrive in June,' I told him. 'I'm sure I want to get this phone, TP. I own a Nokia N8 and it would be a fitting upgrade,' he shared. To which I replied, 'If your heart desires it that much, I'm sure you'll have one.'

And he did. Just a few days ago, Jovrien tweeted me several sample shots that he took using his Nokia 808 PureView -- as if to tell me that he's totally happy with the purchase.

Knowing that the best gadget reviews usually come from those who actually own them or those who get to use them on a daily basis, I invited him to write a quick review of the smartphone for TechPinas. At first he was hesitant to do it as, according to him, he's not used to writing such articles. But he eventually agreed to share his thoughts on the device for the benefit of those who are interested in buying it. So really, 'Thanks, Jovrien!'

But before we go to his quick review. Let me share my photos of Nokia 808 PureView (Oh, and don't forget to check out our TP post explaining Nokia 808 PureView's key features especially its stellar imaging capabilities.)."

nokia 808 pureview
The face of the phone flaunts its 4-inch 360 x 640 pixels resolution AMOLED display protected by scratch-resistant Gorilla Glass touchscreen. Below that, you'll see the familiar hardware buttons - call, home, and drop, which also serves as the power button - connected by a strip of plastic. And above, we'll find the earpiece, the proximity sensor and the front-facing VGA camera.

nokia 808 pureview
At the top panel, we have the HDMI and microUSB ports, and the 3.5mm audio jack.

nokia 808 pureview
At the right side, we'll see the volume rocker, the screen-lock switch, and, of course, the camera button.

nokia 808 pureview
The back flaunts the key feature of the handset; The 41 MegaPixel sensor with Carl Zeiss optics that also works as a 1080p video recorder, the Xenon flash and beside it, the LED torch light.

nokia 808 pureview
Nothing on the left side. But from this angle, we can clearly see the prominent camera bump, which gives a hint to the size of the camera sensor underneath that part of the shell.

nokia 808 pureview
Nokia 808 PureView comes in three colors; White, Red and Black. As I mentioned in a previous post, I can't choose which one I like best. All of them look great in the flesh!

nokia 808 pureview
Check out the sexy back! Oh, and if you're wondering, the official suggested retail price of this hottie is Php 26,550.

nokia 808 pureview
The body of the phone, I believe, is made of metal but the back cover is made of plastic (probably to avoid problems in reception). Lifting the case, we'll find the 1400 mAh Li-ion battery, which should provide enough juice for a whole day of taking photos.

"Ok, now on to Jovrien's thoughts..."

Design

There’s something oddly appealing about the (slightly) hulking presence of this phone. I actually think it is a good-looking phone especially the white-black color combination of my Nokia 808 Pureview which reminds me of Eve the robot in WALL-E. The screen displays the darkest black even under direct sunlight that it actually looks as black as the bezel. It also feels nice to the touch, and the curved back makes it comfortable to hold. Although the phone is quite heavy, the extra heft gives a reassuringly solid and premium feel. This phone feels like it could last a decade in my pocket even with moderately rough handling.

Software

Symbian has come a long way and the latest Nokia Belle FP1 brought many improvements and features. Haters should first try the Nokia Belle FP1 before bashing it so they would have an idea on how good it is now. The UI is very smooth and fast with very nice transition effects, there are new widgets and there’s an even better pull-down notifications bar. As for the browser, you can always use the Opera Mini/Mobile Browser if the native web browser is still not good enough for you. Nokia Store also has the basic useful apps like Gravity, Tweetian, fMobi, flickrUp, WhatsApp.

Camera

The 808 PureView is a camera I would be more than happy to take with me every day or at any special occasion. Much has been said about how amazing the PureView camera is on any lighting condition. But what I love most are the detailed macro shots with very little depth of field producing very beautiful bokeh. The 41MP sensor still sounds unbelievable for a camera phone but it actually performs at its best in PureView mode (2, 5, 8 megapixels) capturing a photo with pure detail and pure definition. The PureView camera takes very beautiful photos I don’t even want to use my Nokia N8 or Cybershot anymore. It’s so smart that even in Automatic mode, pictures come out as stunning as they could be while retaining their natural colors.

"That's a wonderful description of the imaging prowess of the phone. But of course, here in TechPinas, we always let the photos speak for themselves. These were all taken using PureView setting, which - as earlier explained on TP - condenses several pixels into one pure pixel." - Mark of TP






"Jovrien recorded this video using the lowest settings on Nokia 808 PureView. Note that this is not even 720p and we still get what Nokia calls 'lossless zoom'; Thanks to the phone's massive sensor. Let me know what you think about the video by leaving a comment below." - Mark of TP



Verdict

The camera is definitely the strongest suit of this smartphone. I think Nokia had to go through all the trouble of releasing PureView on Nokia Belle FP1 because it's about time they show again to the world their technological supremacy in hardware. Even though PureView is coming to WP8 handsets in a few months, I didn't regret buying this phone even with an OS unloved by many because the camera alone is more than enough to justify its price. Plus the Nokia Belle FP1 is very fast, smooth and stable, far different from the infuriating S^3 and Nokia Anna. I highly recommend this phone if you want nothing but the best cameraphone that's always ready to shoot stunning photos no matter what situation, and quickly upload those photos for the world to see. Nokia 808 PureView distinguishes itself camera-wise from the rest of the smartphones, and for me, this is something special.

About the author: Jovrien Darimbang is a Business Management student at Xavier University - Ateneo de Cagayan in Mindanao. In his About Me page, he wrote that he loves his "Nokia N8 (and now, obviously, his Nokia 808 PureView), colorful sunsets, chicken beebeecue, afternoon cartoons, playing in the rain, love (itself), and his Redeemer"

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