Nokia has unveiled its latest phone, the Nokia Lumia 1020, which features a 41megapixel, optically stabilised camera.
Although based on existing Nokia technologies, the Lumia 1020 is the first phone to combine the 41 megapixel Pureview technology, optical stabilisation and the Windows Phone 8 operating system.
The camera, says Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, will "change how you shoot, how you create and how you take pictures forever."
The 41 megapixel technology, first seen in the Nokia 808 Pureview, can be used to provide a useful digital zoom, allowing users to crop into pictures without resulting in a blurry, blocky picture. The phone will capture a full resolution image (actually stored as 38MP) as well as a 5MP image with each press of the shutter. What's more, even if the user zooms in when taking a photo, the whole scene is still captured, allowing the user to zoom back out and reframe the shot.
The extra pixel count can also be used to 'oversample' the image, merging multiple pixels together to create a more accurate, less noisy picture at a lower resolution.
As for the optical image stabilisation (OIS), this compensates for the wobble and shake of the user, allowing for blur-free shots when shooting handheld in low light conditions or on a rocking boat for instance. Nokia debuted OIS technology on its Nokia Lumia 920 but has had to rework the mechanism for this phone, moving from tiny springs to a ball-bearing mounted system for shifting the lens.
The camera's high resolution allows for a useful digital zoom.
As well as these core technologies the phone also features a powerful Xenon flash, as opposed to a conventional LED, records high-quality audio and features a unique camera app that allows for full manual control of exposure.
The phone's camera app allows for full manual control and provides quick access to settings.
With manual control, it's easy to create artistic shots like this long exposure example.
On sale alongside the Lumia 1020 will also be a camera grip case, which as well as offering 1020mAh of extra battery power, will provide a dedicated shutter button and a screw mount for tripods.
The rest of the phone is a modest evolution of the company's Windows Phone 8 lineup, featuring a class-equalling dual-core 1.5GHz processor (Qualcomm MSM8960 Snapdragon), 2GB of RAM and 32GB of onboard storage (no microSD). It is one step behind the competition with its screen, though, which is a 4.5in AMOLED panel with only 768 x 1280 pixels, whereas others feature 1920 x 1080 panels.
Pricing for the UK is yet to be revealed, but it is to cost $299.99 on an AT&T two-year contract in the US, where it will be an AT&T exclusive. The release date in the US is set for 26th July, with other regions following "this quarter". Phones4U has confirmed it will be stocking the device but has given no further indication of price or availability.
Nokia Lumia 1020 Specs
- Dimensions: 130.4 x 71.4 x 10.4 mm (5.13 x 2.81 x 0.41 in)
- Weight: 158 g (5.57 oz)
- Screen: 768 x 1280 pixels, 4.5 inches (~332 ppi pixel density)
- Chipset: Qualcomm MSM8960 Snapdragon
- CPU: Dual-core 1.5 GHz Krait
- GPU: Adreno 225
- Camera: 41 MP (38 MP effective, 7152 x 5368 pixels), Carl Zeiss optics (6 elements), optical image stabilization, autofocus, Xenon flash, 1/1.2'' sensor size, ND filter, PureView technology, optical zoom, geo-tagging, face detection
- Storage: 32 GB, 2 GB RAM, no microSD
- Colours: Yellow, white, black
- Battery: Non-removable Li-Ion 2000 mAh battery