Lumia 928 Steps Out of the Shadows

Nokia has created a video that shows off the PureView camera in its upcoming Lumia 928 handset and more importantly show how it compares to two of its rivals. The video highlights how the new Lumia 928’s 8.7 megapixel camera fares better in low light, and how the optical image stabilization can handle fast movements.

In this latest effort to build Lumia buzz, Nokia compares the video quality of the Lumia 928 with that of the iPhone 5 and the Galaxy S III using footage of a roller-coaster at night. In the video, the Lumia clearly delivers better color saturation than the iPhone and less video noise than the Galaxy S III.

Nokia is expected to officially debut the Lumia 928 at a launch event next week in London.

Nokia declined to provide further details.

Going Negative

It is noteworthy that Nokia is showing off the phone’s camera capabilities in a video that could go viral, considering its embarrassment last September, when teasers for the Lumia 920 PureView smartphone were found to be using “simulated video.” The company apologized for the mistake, but in light of that debacle, it seems particularly bold for Nokia to be going negative with its current Lumia ad campaign.

“Going negative makes the people who bought the attacked products go into defensive mode — and even if the criticism is correct, leads the buyers of the other products to justify their choice and reject the attacker,” said Roger Entner, principal analyst at Recon Analytics.

“Negative advertising is also not going to help much. Just remember how great Nokia’s last negative campaign went,” he said.

It’s also questionable how big a factor camera quality is in a phone buyer’s decision making. Nokia is not exactly the first company that comes to mind when one thinks of quality photography.

“People are buying smartphones because of the app ecosphere. Having a great camera is not a top reason to pick a smartphone,” Entner told TechNewsWorld. “The Lumia camera is very good, and with its special Carl Zeiss lenses superior to the competition — but the consumer doesn’t get it.”

Snapping a Picture

While consumers may not buy a handset for its camera today, Nokia could be aiming to change that behavior. Considering the Lumia’s 8.7 megapixels and optical image stabilization, it’s apparent Nokia want to make camera functionality a differentiator.

That strategy may be consistent with changing lifestyles. It used to be that cameras were something taken out for birthday parties, vacations and other special occasions. Now everyone who has a mobile phone is walking around with a camera, and many of the latest handsets offer superior resolution to that of a high-end digital SLR camera just a few years ago.

“I’m a Lumia 920 user myself, and I love the camera,” said Rob Enderle, principal analyst at the Enderle Group.

“It is so much better than my wife’s iPhone — and rubbing that in gives me no end of pleasure,” he quipped.

“It arguably has the best lens — Carl Zeiss — and image stabilization on the planet,” Enderle added, “and this actually does make a huge difference.”

The upcoming Lumia 928 will also have Zeon flash, and it will be the first smartphone to bring it to the mainstream. This could make the new handset as much a solid camera as it is a solid smartphone, bolstering the video’s favorable comparison to Apple’s iPhone and Samsung’s Galaxy series.

“The 900 line is in line with the best from Apple and Samsung, a bit more refined and often with differentiating features like inductive charging and enhanced sound to differentiate it from the pack,” Enderle told TechNewsWorld.

“It is a Lexus to Apple’s Porsche and Samsung’s Cadillac Galaxy line,” he commented.

“People are increasingly living off the cameras on their phones to capture their kids growing up and their pet’s antics,” Enderle pointed out. “Coupled with SkyDrive, Nokia has the best solution in this area currently in market. For me, that was the difference. I can’t wait to get the new phone.”

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