Nokia Goes ‘Mini’ on the Compact Lumia 620

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By Erik Pineda | December 7, 2012 1:44 PM EST

Nokia's chief designer Ahtisaari has a new Lumia baby and we'll get to see it January 2013. Touted as the most affordable Windows Phone 8 handset that is set to hit global markets, the Lumia 620 will retail at $US249.

The Lumia 620 was intentionally designed for easy handling, packing a screen-size of only 3.8 inches but powerful enough to accommodate all the workings of the WP8 environment with its 1GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processing might plus 512MB of RAM.

It may not have the muscle of Samsung's Galaxy S3 Mini but the size of the 620 easily makes it a close rival of the small S3 sibling, some experts initially observed.

Speaking this week at the LeWeb 2012 in Paris, Mr Ahtisaari told his audience that Nokia is convinced "there was space in the portfolio for something more compact," hence the third Lumia handset that runs on WP8, which the mobile maker said will strongly appeal on the young audience.

"(This is) something that fits beautifully in the palm of the hand. But something that still had the camera, a solid camera, and the signature apps that Nokia is noted for. And as well we wanted something that would take our pure colour story and just give it a burst of playfulness - mix it up a little bit," TechCrunch reported the Nokia designer as saying on Thursday.

The entry-level 620 comes with a resolution of 800 x 400, which Nokia deployed with the ClearBlack display technology for enhanced viewing experience even on well-lit room ambiance or the sunny outdoors.

Paired with its 5MP camera shooter is an internal storage of 8GB with options to expand by up to 64GB on a microSD card slot, giving the Lumia 620's active owners just the right space to store their treasured clips and images.

It is a definite workhorse gadget, Mr Ahtisaari said, inherently configured for relentless social networking activities by the following Nokia-centric Windows apps: SmartShoot, Cinemagraph, City Lens, Lenses, Maps, Music, Drive and Transport.

"The Nokia Lumia 620 comes with Live Tiles for updates direct to the Start Screen, PeopleHub for all your address books in one place and a Me Tile to make it easy to post and track notifications across social networks," the company said on its blog Nokia Conversations.

Skyping is smooth with the Lumia 620, which comes with a front-facing camera plus a 'loud speaker' that eliminates the need, at most times, for a headset. Of course, the phone is also delightful music player.

"With the emphasis on a younger audience, it also has Nokia Music, providing free streaming of ad-free tracks with no subscription or registration required and the ability to download playlists to listen offline," add the Nokia blog.

Connectivity-wise, only 4G-LTE is lacking but the 620 is capable of accessing the fairly-fast 3G networks, with added compatibility on NFC and Bluetooth 3.0 devices, Nokia said.

The Lumia 620 will be released with seven colourful and exchangeable shells, glossy and matte depending on choice of colour, with phased launches, beginning the first month of 2013, in Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and other markets, Nokia said.

The handset was indeed lightweight based on first take by The Verge, adding that the matte-finish of the 620 is preferable as the glossy housing felt too plasticky.

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