At Nokia's Oct. 22 Nokia World event in Abu Dhabi, Nokia showed it's serious about delivering what the world (if Samsung sales are a measure) says it wants: thin, light devices with giant displays. It introduced the Lumia 1520 and Lumia 1320—smartphones with 6-inch displays—alongside three new Asha phones for developing markets and a 10.1-inch Lumia 2520 tablet. (For more about the tablet, click here.)
With the 1520 and 1320, Nokia showed it's no doubt been taking notes on Samsung's successes. It not only delivered a smartphone with a tremendous display—serious phablet territory—but it wasted no time delivering a more-affordable follow-up. The 1520 and 1320 are sister devices at a glance, each with a 6-inch display and LTE connectivity, but from there the specifications diverge, the 1520's to the high end and the 1320's to the midrange.
The Lumia 1520's display is a full HD 1080p LCD with ClearBlack technology, High Brightness Mode, sunlight readability and Super Sensitive Touch technology, meaning it can be used with gloves on and will respond to just a fingernail, instead of the fingertip.
The tremendous display makes room for three rows of Windows Phone 8 tiles, which now include Nokia Camera—a single app that solves the three-cameras-apps confusion that plagued the Lumia 1020—and Microsoft Office. Documents can be opened, edited and shared (and comfortably, thanks to those 6 inches of screen real estate).
The rear camera is a 20-megapixel PureView with auto focus, Zeiss optics and optical image stabilization (OIS) technology—enabling crisper photos in low-light conditions—and the front-facing camera is a 1.2-megapixel wide angle.
For "unparalleled audio capture," per Nokia, the phone includes four built-in microphones and a Nokia Rich Recording app. This comes alongside the Nokia Storyteller app, a new way to share videos and photos, as well as the also-free Nokia Music and Here maps app.
The 1520 measures 6.4 by 3.36 by 0.34 inches and weighs 7.37 ounces. It features wireless charging; LTE, near-field communication (NFC) and WiFi connectivity; 2GB of built-in RAM and 32GB of storage; a microSD card slot (supporting up to 64GB); a 2.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor; and 7GB of free SkyDrive cloud-based storage.
It will come in choices of white, red, yellow and black (the black is made of recycled materials, says Nokia), will ship during the fourth quarter and will be priced at $749 before subsidies (which can be expected in the United States).
Big Screen, Little Price: Lumia 1320
The Lumia 1320 is a way to go large at a lower price, says Nokia, adding, "This does not mean there was a compromise on quality."
The 1320 features a 720p HD display with Gorilla Glass 3 and a Super Sensitive Touch screen.
"With the best from Nokia, and the best from Microsoft, supported by LTE connections, you can play the latest Xbox games, read web content, or watch movies on the six-inch screen," Nokia said on its Conversations blog.