Review: Nokia Lumia 710 for T-Mobile USA
Press and hold the dedicated camera button at any time and the camera application springs to life. The user interface of the camera has not been altered by Nokia. Most of the screen serves as the viewfinder for composing images. On the right side of the screen, there's a black control strip that provides access to the video camera, zoom function, and the full camera settings.
The camera settings tool lets you adjust a pretty good selection of controls, such as ISO, scenes, white balance, brightness, metering mode, and flicker reduction. The 710 can capture 5-megapixel images with a 4:3 aspect ratio or 4-megapixel images with a 16:9 aspect ratio. You can't dial the resolution any lower. The scene modes adjust for settings such as candlelight, macro, landscape, night, snow, and sunsets. You can also apply some effects (B&W, sepia, etc.) before you take the image.
On the left side of the viewfinder, you'll see the edge of the last image you just captured. This is part of the Metro user interface concept. Basically, it serves as quick access to your photo gallery.
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The Lumia 710 shoots images incredibly fast. Press the camera button and it focuses in a snap and fires of the shutter. The problem — as mentioned earlier — is that the camera button stinks. There's absolutely no definition between the two stages of the two-stage camera button so it's hard to tell when you've focused the shot before the 710 shoots. It's really annoying.
The Pictures Hub is an essential element to Windows Phone 7. Microsoft prioritizes the idea of sharing images as a part of who we are with our friends, family, and contacts. The Picture Hub is where the Lumia 710 deposits the photos you capture with the phone, but it also syncs to your Facebook account. It gives you access to your Facebook photo albums as well as the albums of your Facebook friends. The Hub uses the Metro approach, requiring you to swipe to the left to access different portions of the app. The layout and design are great; I really like using the Photo Hub. The Hub makes sharing to other services, such as SkyDrive and Flickr, a cinch.
The one great failing of the Picture Hub is its inability to let users adjust or edit their photos. All it offers is an "auto-correct" tool that alters brightness, contrast, and exposure automatically. Sometimes it helps, but often it does not. The Lumia 710 doesn't include the fine Photo Studio application that's available on other Mango smartphones. There are a number of options in the Marketplace, but the best ones cost several dollars to purchase.
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