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Lumia 900 remains a strong experience, with some ups and downs

I've been using the Lumia 900 LTE by Nokia Oyj. (HEX:NOK1V) as my day-to-day smartphone since mid-April.  So far living in the Windows Phone world has mostly been a great experience.

I. The Good News: Lumia 900 Appears to Have Self-Healing Paint

Perhaps the most surprising thing that has occurred during my brief tenure with my colorful new smartphone occurred a couple weeks ago when, whilst shuffling several items when entering my car, I dropped it on the hard pavement.  I feared the worst.

The glass did not shatter or chip, to my relief, but that relief turned to dismay when i examined the back face, which had long, deep black gashes in the previously pristine blue plastic back-plate.  My mind flashed back to Nokia's snarky commercials making fun of the easily-damaged screens on Apple, Inc.'s (AAPL) iPhones and I felt a bit bitter at Nokia for not magically creating a way to better protect their phone against user carelessness, such as my own.

Except, apparently they had.

After a couple days I tried to "tune out" the damage and stopped looking at it because it was depressing me.  But last week, while I was discussing my new phone with a couple of colleagues, I went to show the the back, and noticed something extraordinairy -- the subtle, but distinct black gashes were gone, completely filled in.  I could not even spot them with my eyes.

The only remaining evidence of the drop was a slight dent on the corner of the phone -- and even that had visibly shifted and lessened.

Lumia 900
My Lumia 900's back-face is back to a pristine unscratched state.

I believe Nokia has incorporated some sort of self-healing polymer into their Lumia 900's eye-catching colored polycarbonate-derivative backplate.  I'm surprised that they haven't made a bigger deal marketing this.  But I'm sure not complaining -- it made my damaged phone look pristine once again.

Such self-healing paints/plastics have been rumored to be coming to the smartphone space for several months now, but this is perhaps the first phone to be spotted in the wild sporting the robust coat.

I searched for information and could not find anything much specific to the Lumia 900.  But either my phone was healed by Jesus or the Flying Spaghetti monster, or Nokia has a (perhaps) industry-first self-healing case design.

II. The Bad News -- More Connectivity Issues

I've noticed a couple of times that my phone seems to drop its data connection, despite the bug fix, which was supposed to remove the connectivity issues in Nokia's firmware.

About the best I can figure is that the issue sometimes appears to be correlated to having just downloaded several apps.  The issue is somewhat infrequent, but when it lands, it is persistent until I resort to a soft reset.

AT&T glass
My Lumia 900 LTE keeps losing data connection with AT&T's network, post update.
[Image Source: Reuters/Shannon Stapleton]

While I've only seen a handful of reports, it appears some other users are experiencing this.  Writes "21stNow" on AT&T, Inc.'s (T) support forums:

This gives me evil flashbacks of my iPhone 4.  An update was supposed to fix a problem that I didn't have, I did the update, then I started having the problems.  Please fix this Nokia!

At this point I'm unsure if the issues are with Nokia or AT&T.  But clearly the problems aren't all solved.  The good news is that powering off and on appears to fix the problem for me.

Note: I'm not on an LTE connection, my region of service only has HSPA+.  I mention this, because some early reports on the connectivity problems, suggest LTE-to-HSPA+ handoff errors were to blame.

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RE: Dont panic!
By althaz on 5/11/2012 10:21:38 AM , Rating: 2
WP7 doesn't support multi-core processors, but for some reason my Lumia 800 is feels roughly 1,000 times faster than my Galaxy S II.

Multi-core processors are a good thing, but WP7 on single-core is WAY faster than any Android phone yet released (Galaxy SIII might finally be first not-chuggy Android phone, Nexus was best for Android, but still crap compared to WP7 or even iOS).

Android has some real advantages over WP7, but hardware specs are an IDIOTIC reason to buy a phone - unless you are married to Android, in which case obviously you want as powerful a phone as possible so you don't throw your phone out the window out of frustration. Android is highly customisable and has a wide variety of handets, these are it's advantages. It's disadvantages are truly atrocious performance.

RE: Dont panic!
By Darksurf on 5/16/2012 1:41:51 PM , Rating: 2
That may have something to do with everything in android requiring a vm to run in.. This is one reason I've always disliked java. But the ease of programming, and multi-platform use of java is nice and saves us from a lot of issues.

BTW, I'm an Android fan. Until recently, Windows phone has always kind of been a joke to me. Reminds me of windows vista (when it first came out) and my friends new windows phone. When he plugged it into his vista laptop, both the phone and the vista machine would crash lol.

"It looks like the iPhone 4 might be their Vista, and I'm okay with that." -- Microsoft COO Kevin Turner

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