Nokia Lumia 930 vs Lumia 1020: What's the difference?

Nokia's latest flagship smartphone, the Lumia 930, is packing a serious camera and some top-level specs. But it's still just a spin-off from the original smartphone super camera found on the Lumia 1020.

But now Windows Phone's have quad-core support and full HD screens, is the 1020's super camera enough to help it stand up to the next generation of Lumia?

Cameras: the Goliath of smartphone snappers

There's no way around saying it, the Lumia 1020 has a massive 41-megapixel sensor and the Lumia 930 has a 20-megapixel sensor. Both are PureView smart but those numbers tell a lot.

READ: Nokia Lumia 1020 camera review

On paper, at least, the 1020 wins this round. But as we all know from the iPhone 5S it isn't all about megapixels. At the moment the 930 offers far better software with all the Nokia camera extras like Refocus and Cinemagraph built into the Nokia Camera app. But the 1020 will get that upgrade later in the year with the Lumia Cyan update.

Both cameras have optical image stabilisation and dual LED flash plus plenty of manual controls.

But with the clear 6x digital zoom that the 1020's 41-megapixel 1/1.5-inch sensor affords it, options are far greater - making it the superior camera.

Display: the next generation of Lumia

The poor old Lumia 1020 might have had an amazing camera when it was built, but back then Windows Phone could only support lower resolution screens. That's why the 1020 can only muster a 1280 x 768 resolution (331ppi) on its 4.5-inch AMOLED screen in the face of the Lumia 930's mighty 5-inch, 1920 x 1080 (441ppi) AMOLED display.

The Lumia 930 not only offers a larger screen but it's higher resolution too. Reading web pages, zooming in on photos, watching videos and enjoying the extra row of live tiles are all too good an offering to ignore. The 930 wins this round.

Power: double hard-core

The Nokia Lumia 1020 features a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 chip backed by 2GB of RAM. Cutting edge stuff when it was launched. But now Windows Phone supports quad-core it's starting to look dated.

The Lumia 930 features a 2.2GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 CPU and 2GB of RAM.

The 930 is fluid fast keeping up with anything a user can throw at it. The 1020, on the other hand, is a little laggy at times where waiting is required to browse websites and update apps, for example.

Software: updates for all

The Lumia 930 ships with the latest Windows Phone 8.1 including the Lumia Cyan update. That means a unified camera app, the Activity Centre pull-down menu and notifications area, an extra row of live tiles on the start screen, Cortana voice-controlled personal assistant, Word Flow for Swype-style typing, and 5.1 Dolby Digital Plus audio recording.

READ: Nokia Lumia Cyan update will offer more than just Windows Phone 8.1

Of course all this should be coming to the 1020 also as Nokia says the Lumia Cyan update will rollout to its Lumia devices later in the year. But for now the 930 is out in front.

Storage: is there ever enough?

The Lumia 1020 comes with a hefty 32GB of onboard storage, which is well needed with its huge photos consuming about 11MB each. Unfortunately the 1020 isn't expandable physically but will give users a further 7GB of cloud storage with OneDrive.

The Lumia 930 also has the 7GB OneDrive space and comes with 32GB onboard.

Neither has physical expansion as an option.

Dimensions: size is important

The Lumia 1020 suffers a bit of heft in the top half owing to that bulging camera. It's certainly smaller than the 909 PureView before it but still protrudes when in the pocket. It measures in at 130.4 x 71.4 x 10.4mm and 158g.

READ: Nokia Lumia 930 preview

The Lumia 930 is 137 x 71 x 9.8mm and 167g. So while the 930 is heavier and larger than the 1020, owing to that 5-inch screen over the 1020's 4.5-inch display, it is 0.6mm thinner.

The outcome: we have a winner

Nokia's latest flagship handset, the Lumia 930, is a powerhouse of a phone with Full HD screen, Snapdragon 800 quad-core speeds, that latest Windows Phone 8.1 software and a beautiful smooth design. It beats the Lumia 1020 on all those counts.

But the camera. The Lumia 1020 still offers the most powerful smartphone camera on the market. If that's what users are looking for the other specs could be put up with – they're not bad, just not bleeding edge.

The Lumia 1020 will cost about £400 offline while the 930 should be around $599 (£361). So unless that extra 19-megapixels are really wanted the Lumia 930 is the superior and more affordable handset from Nokia. 



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