Microsoft announced three new Lumia smartphones running Windows Phone at IFA in Berlin on Thursday. The most powerful of the bunch is the Lumia 830, but the Lumia 730 Dual SIM and the Lumia 735 are shaping up to be bestsellers.
Although Microsoft is calling the Lumia 830 a “flagship” phone, other Lumias, like the Icon, have better specs across the board. The Lumia 830 comes with a mid-range Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 chip clocked at 1.2 GHz, a slightly curved 5-inch 720p display, and an LTE modem. It’s also thin and light — 8.5 mm wide and weighing in at only 150 grams.
But the Lumia 830’s main selling point is its 10-megapiel PureView camera, which is claimed to have a very thin optical image stabilization system. It will retail for €330 ($429) in Europe and Asia later this month, and it’s nice to see Microsoft take some of the camera technology it inherited from Nokia and bring it to more affordable handsets.
Microsoft says the Lumia 730 Dual Sim and Lumia 735 are built for “selfies,” but they’re really built to expand the Windows Phone footprint among price-sensitive consumers in countries without full smartphone penetration, which is the niche in which Microsoft’s been having the most success with Windows Phone lately.
The banner feature on both of these phones is a wide-angle 5-megapixel front-facing camera, but most consumers will end up appreciating that Windows Phone runs smoothly and well on lower-end hardware. Like the 830, these phones are packing Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 chips paired with a 4.7-inch, 720p display. The Lumia 735 will have an LTE modem and will retail globally for €220, while the Lumia 730 Dual SIM lacks LTE support and will cost €200. There are less expensive Windows Phones, but at those prices I suspect these will hit the sweet spot for a lot of folks.
Microsoft also announced the Wireless Charging Plate DT-903 on Thursday. This charmingly named accessory is a wireless Qi charging pad that can pair with Lumia smartphones through Bluetooth or NFC so it can light up when your phone is low on batteries or receives a notification. There are a lot of generic Qi charging pads out there, but the DT-903 offers enough features that it could be worth its $60 price tag.