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Nokia Lumia 735, see for your 'Selfie'

Updated on October 29, 2014

Green Amongst Autumn Colours

Packaging and Contents

Retail Box
Retail Box
Back with Qi Charging coil & NFC Chip, phone with slots for Nano Sim, SD Card & Battery
Back with Qi Charging coil & NFC Chip, phone with slots for Nano Sim, SD Card & Battery
1520 sim and sd card solution versus 735
1520 sim and sd card solution versus 735


So , the usual disclaimers, I am a Windows Phone fan , I use it daily and have used most Lumia handsets since the launch of the Lumia 800 at Nokia World 2011, either long term or as trials or loans and it suits my requirements, if you haven't tried Windows Phone I would recommend you do and if you tried it and disliiked it, this piece won't change your mind !!

Now just over a week ago I was lucky enough, once again , to be sent a trial handset from the lovely people at Connects, the Nokia Lumia 735, which as the title suggests is being aimed at the modern social media phenomenon of the 'Selfie' , as I have written about many Lumia models and as the basic function is pretty consistent throughout I won't go too deeply into specs and performance, but try devote a bit of time to the 'Selfie' aspect. I don't tend to take a lot of photos of myself, although I have occasionally when on holiday or sight seeing, but generally having a morning shave is enough of an experience for me without actually looking at photos of my ugly mug as well :-D That said, I do actually know both young and attractive people who post self portraits from nights out, trips, events etc on all sorts of social sites and the quality of many is to say the least , wanting, and from a personal point of view I am often trying to include something of interest in a 'selfie' and so I try to use the main camera on my phone , but obviously composition is an issue when you can't actually see what you are photographing , the Lumia 735 has convinced me it may be a solution and a lot more !! So on with the meanderings



The first thing I noticed when I opened the box containing the 735, mine was bright Green, was how solid it felt, this is a mid range phone with a removable rear shell and yet it feels like the Nokia N9 or Lumia 800, a mono-block of polycarbonate with a bonded piece of curved Gorilla Glass flowing into the body, the fit and finish defy the fact it is two bits clipped together, and it is really light, the overall result being it's great to hold and use, fits in a shirt pocket a treat and the AMOLED 720p Clear Black Screen makes anything that appears on it look great. The Snapdragon 400 processor and 1 gig of Ram fitted run the whole experience really smoothly and comparing day to day use with my Lumia 1020 the new 'mid-range' handset either matched or beat the more expensive handset for speed, opening apps , web pages etc. Ok the hardware is more modern, but it really has surprised me. Also having built in Qi wireless charging and NFC chip were a boon, along with using 4G.

Full Specs Here

Size Comparison Lumia 1520 Red, 735 Green,1020 Yellow,N9 Black

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Bad/cost cutting

The whole user experience with the 735 has been really great for me, I can be critical for a couple of things, the lack of a dedicated camera button is something of an inconvenience, and maybe a little short sighted for a handset that has a camera feature as a USP but fact is, it ain't got one, there is however a shortcut in the drop-down notification panel and you can always pin Lumia Camera to your main screen, the phone doesn't have glance screen, but you can double tap to unlock the screen and the quality of the rear mono speaker is a little weak in my opinion, but I do tend to use earphones(I used my own as the retail package doesn't include any) and I guess savings had to be made to get a sub £200 price point on PAYG.

Virtual Buttons Concealed & Revealed on 735

Button showing
Button showing
Buttons hidden and more Real Estate
Buttons hidden and more Real Estate

Good Stuff.

This section is basically everything else about the phone, and it is all good !! I really can't see anyone being disappointed with this handset, OK I'm really 'into' photography and this mid range phone with a 'good' camera can't produce shots like my Lumia 1020 or 1520, but it isn't claiming it can !! It is aimed fair and square at people younger and more socially active than me, in fact at young people who have a life and want to share it with their mates, and if that's what they want, this little phone could absolutely transform most social media timelines, at least on a Friday and Saturday :-D

In spite of its 'Selfie' moniker the 735 is much much more than just a selfie phone and has been stellar as my daily phone for the last week, it feels and looks great, runs all the apps I need, has great battery life, lasting all day every day irrelevant of usage, as a direct decedent of the Lumia 720 , which was one of my all time favorite Lumia models, it follows the family line and improves on everything , speed, real estate, build , power and software and I could honestly use it as my main phone, the only downsides being rear facing camera, as the front facing 'selfie' camera actually out performs everything else I have !! Also the 735 has a few features I absolutely love, expandable memory via a micro sd card is always great to have, a removeable user replaceable battery is another boon, but best of all, it has slidey up and down , appear and disappear virtual capacitive buttons, so when you want to view a web page or play a game you can slide your control buttons out of the way and have more viewable screen and just slide them back to close or go back, they took a bit of getting used to, but I soon matered them and this is honestly may favourite feature on the the phone , sort of simple things please simple minds as it were.

Detailed Crop Comparison From FFC 735/1020/1520


735 v1020 FFC Compared

Click thumbnail to view full-size


Finally I will get to the USP of the 735, I already said I'm not the worlds biggest selfie fan, but decided to have a go with the 735, and hopefully the photos in this piece will demonstrate the quality of the 5 megapixel FFC on the lumia 735. Apart from improving the Saturday night out selfie or quick post on social media, the fact that the front camera produces a good quality wide image would certainly have helped me in the past on solo holidays and trips, I had about 5 attempts to get a decent shot of myself in New York in front of the Statue of Liberty and could have got it in one on the 735 to name just one occasion . The comparison shots here confirm the quality I think, and having said that, I've always liked the 6.7 megapixel unit from the 720 which is the main camera on the 735 and does a sterling job, it just isn't 'high end' the FFC on the other hand IS !! At least compared to the available kit I have at home.

So well done Nokia/Microsoft, you have produces something I didn't know I needed, it looks and feels great, it's fun to use and does everything it says on the tin,and produces photos from a front facing camera that are worth viewing again after Sunday Morning :) it has also demoted the Lumia 720 on my list of all time favorite Windows Phones.

FFS 735/1020/1520


Main Camera Samples 6.7 megapixel from the 735

Click thumbnail to view full-size


All that is left to say is thank you to Connects for the trial, thanks to you for reading and looking at the pictures and thanks to the guy who thought a 'selfie' phone was a good idea, it is , even for those who don't realise it !!


Stephen Quin



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