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Nokia Lumia 920 versus HTC 8X: Windows Phone 8 showdown

The first two high-end Windows Phone 8 models from HTC en Nokia

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Conclusion

After extensively testing the first two Windows Phone 8 smartphones (the Lumia 920 will become available in January) it's difficult to draw a clear conclusion. Both devices run on the same processor and perform about the same. The Lumia 920 is slightly more expensive than the HTC 8X, but it also has another 16 GB of storage. The Lumia 920 has the larger screen with a higher resolution, somewhat better viewing angles and is slightly brighter. What's more exciting, however, is the unique ability to operate the touchscreen of the 920 with gloves or long nails. The wireless charging feature is another strong selling point. At first the optional loading station will be included for free, but after the initial launch period you will have to pay for it.

In terms of looks both smartphones look fairly similar from the front. The unibody finish of the  HTC 8X is matte, while Nokia opted for a high-gloss finish. This will be a matter of taste, but since the slightly uneven surface of the Lumia 920 is made visible due to the gloss, our personal preference in terms of looks is the HTC 8X. What's more important regarding the physical characteristics is the weight of the Lumia 920. With 186 grams it's heavier than even the larger Galaxy Note II.

Nokia Lumia 920 Red

Looking at the included software, it's Nokia that comes out ahead. Especially Nokia Drive and Nokia Music provide added value you don't get with the HTC 8X. Then there's the impressive camera on the Lumia along with the corresponding apps. No other smartphone has a camera that is so light sensitive, and along with the optical image stabilisation it performs really well in low light conditions. The Nokia Lumia 920 is unparalleled in this regard. The hardware-based image stabilisation works really well, better than the software-based counterpart of other high-end cameras. The Lumia 920 doesn't stand out as much with video recording, here the performance is in line with other smartphones such as the Galaxy S III or iPhone 5..

So which Windows 8 phone should you get? We're tempted to go with the Lumia 920, despite its bulky size and weight. The software, the camera and the screen that can be operated with gloves on set it apart from the competition. However, the HTC 8X is also an excellent phone.


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