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Lumia 1020 video review - 41Mp camera phone has striking design, but is expensive with poor battery life

The Lumia 1020 is a Windows Phone 8 smartphone with an amazing design and camera. Here's our Lumia 1020 video review. See all smartphone reviews.

The Lumia 1020 is in essence a Lumia 920 with a better camera tacked onto the back. It's a mixed bag when it comes to design with a solid chassis which has a nice soft matte finish. However, the camera gets in the way in day to day use and the what we've dubbed neon banana colour is garish – luckily there are black and white options. See also: Nokia Lumia 1020 review: an amazing camera to year-old smartphone hardware.

Much of the Lumia 1020's hardware remains largely the same as the 920. It's got the same 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor but RAM has been doubled to 2 GB. The phone ships in 32 GB but O2 has the exclusive, for now at least, on the 64 GB edition.

As is typical for Windows Phone 8 handsets, performance is predominantly smooth apart from loading certain sections of the settings menu and some apps.

The screen is still 4.5 in, surprisingly small considering the overall size of the smartphone and resolution is the maximum Windows Phone 8 supports, 768 x 1280. Although it looks good and works well outdoors, it's by no means a class leader.

Lumia 1020 review: how good is the Lumia 1020's camera?

The 41 Mp camera combines with a Xenon flash, focus light and Nokia's Pro Cam app make this this most advanced and powerful we've seen on a smartphone to date. It produces, the vast majority of the time, excellent results.

The floating lens and optical image stabilisation come in handy for both photos and video, avoiding blurry mess. Visit: What's the best Nokia smartphone?

Although it has 41 Mp, the 1020 takes two photographs when you hit the shutter button, one at 34 Mp and a smaller and more sharable 5 Mp. You can then reframe or crop the larger image to create new photos.

The Pro Cam app gives you optional control over a lot of settings including ISO, shutter speed, exposure and even focus. We like the app but it takes a long time to process and save shots so you can't snap multiple shots quickly.

We also love the camera grip accessory which gives the 1020 the feel of a proper camera, a tripod mount plus an additional battery so you don't run of juice half way through a shoot.

So the camera is undoubtedly a great asset, but it's a shame that the Lumia 1020 is running Windows Phone 8. The OS runs smoothly apart from loading some apps, including the Pro Cam app, but still has a dismaying lack of great apps to download. Notable omissions include the wildly popular Instagram and Vine.

We found battery life to be unimpressive with the device struggling to get through a day of normal use. Once you start snapping away the battery drains very quickly so the camera grip will be a necessity.

The Lumia 1020 has an amazing camera and will tempt most smartphone photographers. However, it's expensive for what is essentially a now out-of-date Lumia 920 with a better snapper. Poor battery life and a lack of good apps for the OS put us off significantly. See also: Nokia Lumia 925 review.

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