Mister Mo goes hands-on with the Nokia Lumia 630

Mo at Lumia630launch psitting

Yesterday in Lagos, the Lumia 630 Dual SIM was launched for the Nigerian market and I was present at the event. On arrival, my first point of call was the display stand where units of the 630 were available to play with. The Lumia 630 is the first Windows Phone smartphone to offer dual SIM functionality, so it is a milestone for the platform. You can use two SIMs on the device. Both SIMs are active simultaneously. SIM type for both slots is micro-SIM.

With a 4.5-inch display, the Lumia 630 is a very compact device. It is at the lower end of my sweet spot and feels very comfortable in the hand. The display is quite nice too, with ClearBlack technology helping to keep the 854 x 480 pixel LCD display punchy. Gorilla Glass 3 is here too, offering up-to-date protection for the display.

Lumia630 on stand

The 630 Dual SIM runs the very latest version of Windows Phone – version 8.1. That means that goodies such as action area, parallax background, intelligent email, better web browser, and swipe text entry, among others, are all there. There is an internal storage of 8GB, with support for SD cards of up to 128GB in size.

One of the units that I played with had 40GB of songs on a memory card, and the Lumia 630 accessed and played back those songs without any lags in interaction. Flipping through songs and albums was smooth. Switching through apps on the phone too was surprisingly breezy. With a 1.2GHz quad core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor, this performance is perhaps not strange. But it should allay the fears that some have about the device having just 512 MB of RAM. Windows Phone OS has been proven to run very well on 512 MB of RAM. This is very different from the often limiting experience of 512 MB RAM on Android OS.

Mo with Nokia Lumia 630

I didn’t have the time to play with the camera as I would have loved to, but the single shot that I took suggests an impressive performance for a 5 megapixel shooter. I will have more details on camera performance and other features in my full review.

Pricing

Mister Mobility and Nick Imudia
Myself and Nick Imudia, MD of Microsoft Mobile West/Central Africa after our chat. Photo taken with a Lumia 1020.

What makes the Lumia 630 even more impressive is the price point. Yes; as earlier hinted, it has been confirmed that the Lumia 630 is a sub-N30,000 smartphone. In an exclusive chat that I had with Nick Imudia, MD of Microsoft Mobile West and Central Africa, he said the phone will retail for between N25,000 and N30,000. Of course, Nick was delighted to know that of the over 100 phones I have owned, 32 of them were Nokias. Details of our meeting and chat will be published later in the day, so stick around.

Availability

The Lumia 630 is available right away in stores across Nigeria.


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7 comments

  1. Sounds like a device over which some would drool.

    //This is very different from the often limiting experience of 512 MB RAM on Android OS.//

    With ART becoming the standard on android, this statement will be permanently consigned to the dustbin of history. 😉

    No; you can’t judge a book by its covering pages, but I would certainly judge a phone by the Operating system it runs.

    Let Windowsphone remove the remaining, willful (and Ecosystemic) restrictions, and their fan base should increase even more.

    As it is, give me an Android, or give me (## in a strident voice ##) Android!!!!!!

  2. No front-facing camera
    No 1080p video recording
    No LED flash
    No proximity sensor
    512MB RAM may eventually turn out insufficient for future apps
    No headset or USB cable included in the retail package

    1. Ehis

      No proximity sensor

      This is not true. I am told that the Lumia 630 has a proximity sensor for detecting objects in front of the screen e.g. during phone calls, as well as an ambient light sensor for auto-brightness.

      No 1080p video recording

      No biggie. Even the Motorola Moto G at a similar price point doesn’t have 1080p video recording. Just same 720p at 30fps.

      512MB RAM may eventually turn out insufficient for future apps

      This is mere speculation. We still have a Lumia 720 with 512MB RAM here on the MOBILITY team, and have no problems running any apps that have been released since its launch a year ago. Many of the few intensive apps/games that didn’t support 512MB RAM initially have been fixed by the developers and all run smoothly on the 720. No-one needs be worried about 512MB RAM on Windows Phone.

      No headset or USB cable included in the retail package

      The 630 sales pack includes just device and charger. But that’s no oddity. When a manufacturer offers premium performance at a budget, something has to give. The Moto G, for example, has only USB cable in the box; no wall adapter/charger and no earphones either.

      No LED flash

      No LED flash on the rear camera is no biggie either. Nokia camera low-light performance is so good that many Lumia users don’t bother with turning on the flash any more. I was shocked speaking to Jesse Oguntimehin and Adewale Yusuf (both of them smartphone photography enthusiasts) at the launch event, and they both insisted that they don’t bother with the flash on their Lumias in low light situations.

      So, all you are really missing with the 630 is the front-facing camera. I know you detest Windows Phone, but…haba! Nice try 😉

  3. Dear Ehis, you can nag. lol! feel your pains though. Between 25 and 30k, at least shove in sensors and front facing camera. odd as it sounds, I LED flash is a deal-breaker for me except this will be my second secondary device

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