Nokia released their new line of Lumia smartphones earlier this week, and the launch actually hurt them, as they withheld key details of where to get the new phones, and how much they would cost. Now, there’s a new fact about the Lumia 920 PureView, brought to light by a report from SlashGear today, which may impact the sales of the phones even more.
The new Lumia 920 PureView has one of the most advanced camera systems on the market today. It offers photos at full resolution, even when zoomed in for close up shots. It also has a revolutionary new “floating lens” system to reduce blurriness in photos, caused by the users hand moving. These advances in the photography world of smartphones give the Lumia a distinct advantage over similarly priced phones from competitors.
However, as SlashGear reports, the new Lumia 920 PureView, while having an extremely advanced camera system, finds itself behind the times in the world of audio recording. The phone touts not one, but three of Nokia’s High Amplitude Audio Capture microphones, which are specially designed to capture the best quality sound possible. These microphones were first developed for the 808 PureView model, and are designed to capture sounds that are very close to what the human ear would hear. This sounds promising.
The problem is, the new Lumia 920 PureView has software which will not record in stereo, and only offers mono recording of sound. Damian Dinning, who is the lead program manager of Imaging Experience for Nokia, has revealed this fact, as he explained the decision on Twitter. He said:
“In terms of audio recording, the difference is mono in the [Lumia] 920 vs 808 [PureView] which is stereo.”
When he was asked why this was so, he further explained that “the mic and HAAC and hi-fi quality is the same as the 808, but limited to mono.”
At this point in time, we are not sure if this means that Nokia is offering a new mono breed of the Rich Recording technology, or if they will be dropping this part of their branding altogether. It does seem a little off the wall that Nokia would allow the phone to come out with only mono sound, considering they have pushed the photography components to be cutting edge in their new phone. It would make sense that the phone would also have the leading hardware and software for full stereo sound recording as well.
The only thing which may prove to be a point of salvation for Nokia on this one, is the fact that it is a software shortfall. This means they could possibly address the issue through firmware updates later on down the road. However, when a customer purchases a new smartphone, as a general rule, they expect it to be up to date, and this one definitely is not.
After the launch of the two new phones, Nokia’s shares dipped by 13% in what analysts believe was a response to the company’s holding back on information, such as pricing and availability. This can all be read in our report, here. Nokia has struggled just to stay afloat in the new world of smartphones, as competitors like Apple and Samsung have taken over, and effectively unseated Nokia from its one time position of being the largest handset manufacturer in the world. It will be interesting to see how these two new Windows Phone 8 devices help them in their struggle to keep the company afloat in today’s competitive market.