After a few weeks of consistent leaks, earlier this week Microsoft revealed the Microsoft Lumia 535. The Lumia 535 is Microsoft’s iPhone alternative and the first Windows Phone ever made to carry Microsoft’s branding instead of another company.
Microsoft announced the Lumia 535 overnight on Monday. As rumors predicted, the Lumia 535, isn’t the most ambitious iPhone alternative in the strictest sense. It doesn’t push the hardware envelope in ways that older Lumia Windows Phones have.
Specifications indicate it’ll be the Lumia 535 and not the Lumia 635 that Microsoft will be pushing as the best smartphone for just about everyone internationally. The Lumia 535 will come in two different versions – one with two SIM card slots so that users internationally can get the best calling rates. Both will have 3G internet connectivity and Bluetooth 4.0 LE technology so that they can communicate with fitness bands and smartwatches without compromising battery life.
The Lumia 535 is the first Windows Phone to offer what Microsoft is calling its “5x5x5 proposition.” Essentially, all of the things that make the Lumia 535 a great iPhone alternative breakdown to fives. The Lumia 535 has a large 5-inch IPS display. This display isn’t as nice as those included in older Lumia phones made under the Lumia brand. It has a resolution of 960 x 540. It’s not as good-looking as those others.
The front-facing and rear-facing cameras are what account for those other two fives. Typically, smartphones include a rear-facing camera with a decent sensor that the device is capable of being a point-and-shoot camera replacement. Often times, low-end smartphones won’t have a front-facing camera, but if they do, that camera isn’t as decent as the rear-facing camera. The both of the cameras on the Lumia 535 have 5 megapixel sensors.
In theory, this means that every self-portrait taken with the Lumia 535 should look just as a good as the pictures taken with its rear camera. Lumia Windows Phones usually have a dedicated camera button so that users can quickly activate the camera fresh out of their pocket. That isn’t the case with the Lumia 535 and it’s slightly troubling.
More troubling is the ultra-low-end processor included in the Lumia 535. The Lumia 535 has a Snapdragon 1.2 GHz quad-core processor inside. That’s actually a step down from the Lumia 830’s Snapdragon 400 processor. In our brief look at the Lumia 830, Windows Phone’s transition were already pretty rough. How the operating system will hold up on the Lumia 535 with its Snapdragon 200 processor remains unclear. The Lumia 535 does include an ambient light sensor, that’s something that past low-end Lumia devices, like the Lumia 635, haven’t.
Read: Lumia 635 Review
Like the older Nokia-branded Lumia iPhone alternatives, the Lumia 535 will have multiple different colored shells for buyers to personalize it’s look. So far those shells will include bright green, orange, white dark grey, cyan and black; what colors are available will likely depend on the individual carrier itself. As for which mobile carriers will carry the Lumia 535 ,that remains unclear. Microsoft says that the Lumia 535 will begin showing up on store shelves this month in what it calls “key markets.”
Neither AT&T, Verizon, Sprint nor T-Mobile have confirmed plans to carry the Lumia 535 in the United States. Internationally, the Lumia 535 will sell for 110 euros. That’s roughly $137.26 in US dollars. It’s hard to imagine that Microsoft wouldn’t roll out the Lumia 535 to as many localities as it possible can. The Lumia 520, the Lumia’s 535’s immediate predecessor in Nokia’s line-up, is the most popular Windows Phone ever in terms of sales and real-world usage, according to most third-party analytics services.