Review: Nokia Lumia 928 for Verizon Wireless
The 928 runs Windows Phone 8 from Microsoft. Because handset makers and carriers aren't allowed to adjust the user interface, the experience on the 928 looks and feels just like it does on other WP8 devices.
The lock screen has customizable alerts. You can choose which alerts reach the lock screen and which don't, as well as pick which type of alerts are given priority. I like that you can customize the lock screen wallpaper, as well as set passcodes and jump straight to the camera.
The Start screen offers plenty of customization options. The Live Tiles can be resized in small, medium, and large variations, and of course the Tiles can be arranged however you want. Plenty of apps support Live Tiles in WP8, which makes the Start screen even more lively with the ever-changing array of content.
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Windows Phone supports multitasking - or quick-app switching - and will pick up right where you left off when you return to an open app. Press-and-hold the Back button to activate the feature.
The 928 has a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 Plus processor. Windows Phone has always been a quick operating system and the dual-core engine provides more than enough power to keep the 928 feeling light on its feet.
The phone app is simple to use and offers a standard set of features, such as hold, mute, speakerphone, merge calls, send to Bluetooth, and reject calls with text messages. It's easy to text or call a number stored in the call log, as well as add it to a contact. The interface is stark, but in a good way.
The People Hub ties in users' Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter profile data, as well as their email-based contact database. It's an extremely rich contact app and provides a near flood of updates about those in your various social networks. Each contact card holds tons of data, including links to social accounts, and make it easy to call or message someone without having to type numbers anywhere.
The stock messaging tools are unchanged on the Lumia 928 when compared to other WP8 devices. The email app is excellent, though it stops short of being as awesome as Gmail on Android (or on the iPhone, for that matter.) Social networking - which is built into the People Hub - is quite useful.
The two features that really set Windows Phone 8 apart are Groups and Rooms. These are both subsections of the People Hub. They essentially let you manage, communicate with, share photos with, and coordinate calendars between small groups of people. Groups are meant to be larger social and/or work circles, while Rooms are meant to be smaller collections of your closest family/friends.
The text messaging app also encompasses Facebook messaging and Skype IM. It used to include WIndows Live, but Microsoft has moved all Windows Live users to Skype. If you want to include Skype messaging, you have to first download the separate Skype app and sign in. Only then will your Skype contacts be loaded into the messaging app. Once they are, you can see who's online and who isn't. I have always liked that WP8 puts all your messaging services into a single app with a unified interface.
Despite having certain social networking functions built into the People Hub, you need to download the full Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn apps if you really want to interact with your social networks in depth.