Nokia Lumia 520 review – detailed

Nokia Lumia 520

Rating : 4 off 5

Bought for INR 9,000/-

There are two things to a phone, the device and then there is the OS. Here device is Nokia Lumia 520 and and the OS is Windows Phone 8. In this review I’m gonna club them both.

Good stuff:


For a smartphone, Nokia Lumia 520 has a superb battery life. I use the mobile extensively for twitter, whatsapp, calls, texts and mails. Other apps I use are Kindle, Hackernews and Linkedin articles. I do not use if for gaming. The battery stays for 18 hours – from 100% to 5%.

Screen :

At 4″ screen size Lumia 520 strikes a fine balance between good-to-read and easy-to-hold. I personally believe anything more than this is ridiculous for a mobile phone (go buy a tablet). The screen is scratch resistant, not gorilla glass. Screen display clarity is great.

Maps and navigation:

Wow. I didn’t know Nokia HERE maps were this great. I used it for city navigation and it was GREAT! I have not taken the phone out on any road trip yet to check its “off the city” maps. Hope to do that soon.

nokia lumia 520 nokia here maps screenshot review


The 5 MP camera is good, given that there is no flash. If you have adequate light ( less light needed for this camera), the photo quality is good. This phone comes with a lot of native apps to shoot panorama shots and backup to Skydrive and lot of other photo-related apps


I’m no connoisseur of music but it sounds good and NOKIA MUSIC is giving unlimited download of music. What more can you ask for. It has everything – Pink Floyd, U2, Jethro Tull… genre – Jazz, rock… everything. It should be illegal to give so much music away for free.

nokia lumia 520 screenshot review


This device is fast. With a dual core processor 1 GHz, 512 RAM, Nokia Lumia has what it takes to run all these apps that I mentioned above. I did not experience any lag in the device. If you are a hardcore gamer, this may not be enough.

The screen and navigation:

The windows phone 8 design is a welcome change for the eyes after using android for more than a year. The flat design is clear, and notifications are shown on the icons, if you pin them on the home screen.  You can change the color of the tiles, there are 20 options and you can change it to whatever color you want. There is also an option to switch between “light” and “dark” background. Dark bg is easy on your eyes when using the phone in low-lit surroundings.

Dark brown tiles, with dark background:

nokia lumia 520 live tiles screenshot review


The various colors from which you can choose from:

nokia lumia 520 theme colors screenshot review

The lock screen is something I love. You can change the bg image(whatever is your fav pic) on the lock screen. Mine is:

nokia lumia 520 review


App availability:

Yes, this is a bit of a problem. But, before switching to Windows, I did check out Windows app store. I was able to find most of the apps I needed. But one difference is not all apps that you find in Windows store is design by the app company. For example you can find a Pinterest app by Pinterest inc, on Google play store, but the same is not found in Windows store. Instagram is not available.

Even the apps that ARE made available by the App company (eg. Whatsapp) has a different experience compared to its Android counterparts. Whatsapp has a bit of a lag in Windowsphone8, a tiny lag, say 3 seconds.

But I’m sure the apps will come to Windows phone 8 platform soon. As Alex Wilham points out in his TechCrunch article:

I’d say that the most recent mobile market share figures affirm both points: Windows Phone is growing, shipped the third most units, and all other platforms that have less unit volume than it saw their numbers decrease.



Nothing seriously bad, but some minute things which you wish you had control over.

Automatic screen rotation is something that I don’t like. Nokia Lumia 520 does not have an option to disable that.

Gorilla glass, Lumia 520 does not have Gorilla glass, which means you have to be a little bit more careful with how you drop the phone. If it falls on its screen, it might crack. But for INR 9,000/- Gorilla glass is too much to ask for.

Flash: Why not have a LED flash for the camera, Nokia? Looks like only reason for not having flash is to push the Lumia 620 to users, but it is ridiculous to not have flash. Though I personally never shoot with the flash, I use flash as a torch. But there are lot of people who shoot with flash and they might miss it big time.

Apps grouping:

I wish there was an option for folder creation, wherein I can group all travel related apps and so on.



I love this phone. It is definitely worth the money. I bought this phone 10 days back and it is a bliss. If you wanna move out of Android or just want to give Windows a try, go for this.

If you have any questions wrt to Lumia 520, please ask below in the comment section.

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