The "1-Minute" Review
- Lack of apps
- Very grainy low light pictures
The Lumia lineup has been known more for its fun color options than its premium build, but Microsoft hopes to change that with the Lumia 650. While still mostly made of plastic, the 650 utilizes a soft-touch matte for smoother finish and a brushed aluminum frame for sturdiness. Reporters describe it as "lovely" although they didn't miss the obvious iPhone 5 inspiration with its chamfered edges. What impressed them the most, however, was its incredibly thin (0.27 inches) profile and light weight (122 grams). Many were impressed with how light it was though some mentioned it took away from that 'premium' feel.
Spanning the majority of the front is the 5-inch AMOLED display with a resolution of 1280 x 720 for a pixel density of 297ppi. While technically not a full HD screen, reviewers still consider it a fairly sharp display. Thanks to the ClearBlack technology, they were able to get incredibly inky blacks, which brought out the vividness of the onscreen colors. For the most part, they had no qualms with the viewing angles or sunlight legibility for the most part.
As a lower end handset, the Lumia 650 doesn't have the latest in processor technology or a lot of RAM. It does come with a reasonable 1.3GHz quad-core processor and only 1 GB of RAM. On paper this might seem incredibly weak, but critics were quite surprised at its decent performance. While they warn gaming isn't its strong point, especially with power-hungry 3D games, it worked fairly well for more basic tasks like checking email and browsing the web though they did notice some extended load times. MS Power User ads, "If you are happy with the decent-enough performance and [don't] do a lot of gaming, the Lumia 650 should be a pretty good device for you." Battery life is quite good with critics able to get a full day with moderate usage.
As for the camera it, like the processor, was perfectly adequate for the price. The 8MP rear camera didn't wow experts, but it didn't have any glaring issues either. Their daylight pictures came out detailed and colorful and, as expected, low light images were fairly noisy. And while they had some issues with the autofocus, they add that for the price the camera itself performs well enough to post pictures to social media. It also comes with a 5MP selfie camera that experts note was "capable enough."
While it isn't free of issues, for the price reviewers consider the Lumia 650 one of the best Microsoft 10 phones available. Yes, it still suffers from a lack of apps, but its sleek design, good battery life and decent performance make it a strong contender in the entry level Windows 10 market. Windows Central states, "The Lumia 650 is a good, cheap Windows phone…For the average person buying a phone that costs this much, there's not a whole lot to dislike."
What the Critics Are Saying...
Prices (Where to Buy)
Microsoft released the Lumia 650 on February 15, 2016.
Microsoft Lumia 650 prices will vary depending on retailer, age, special offers and whether or not it's purchased with a service plan. If purchased with a 2 year service contract for example, you would likely pay much less for the phone itself up front. Microsoft's suggested retail price is $149.00. You can compare Lumia 650 prices from around the web here on The Informr.
We've got you covered! Download a free PDF copy of the Microsoft Lumia 650 user manual here.
Microsoft backs up the Lumia 650 with a 1 Year parts & labour warranty.
If your Lumia 650 has problems and is still within its warranty period, you could contact Microsoft support or the retailer you purchased the phone from. You'll find Microsoft's contact information here. If your phone is off warranty and needs repair for a physical problem such as a broken screen or bad battery, you should visit an authorized service centre or a local phone repair shop. You can also connect with others in The Informr Community Forum to find and share answers to questions.