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Microsoft Lumia 950 XL - Push the Limits

Microsoft Lumia 950 XL - Push the Limits
Anyone buying a smartphone nowadays will be spoiled for choice. Smartphone manufacturers are selling devices in every imaginable configuration, so we're certain you won't have a hard time finding the perfect device catering to your every need. I feel the urge to try something different instead of sticking with the same software year after year. If you're like us, then we have some good news. Microsoft recently launched two flagships featuring Windows 10, Lumia 950 and 950 XL. Today we are taking a closer look at the latter so stick around to find out more!

Microsoft Lumia 950 XL


Buying a premium device doesn't come cheap. Most flagships will set you back a considerable amount of money, although nearly all of them feature impeccable design alongside cutting-edge hardware. While Lumia 950 XL delivers on the hardware, we are not so sure about the design.  Microsoft opted for a very plain industrial design, very different from Lumias of the past. Some might enjoy the simplicity and indistinctiveness, while others will yearn for something more contemporary. Nonetheless, Microsoft made sure Lumia 950 XL is built like a tank. Removable back cover grants access to the battery and microSD slot, maintaining a much needed dose of flexibility in times when more and more manufacturers opt for unibody design. Dimensions come in at 151.9 x 78.4 x 8.1 mm and it weighs 165 grams.

Microsoft Lumia 950 XL


If the design didn’t live up to your expectations, the screen certainly will. Featuring a 5.7-inch AMOLED screen churning out a resolution of 1440 x 2560 pixels and 518ppi, Lumia 950 XL manages to squeeze in right alongside other flagships. Colour accuracy and contrast are exceptional providing users with unprecedented immersion, and thanks to 518ppi density, text and Windows tiles are incredibly crisp. Microsoft designed mobile versions of Windows in such a way that even on low-end screens the interface looks incredible. The only drawback we could notice was that the brightness didn’t go up as high as we wanted. Indoors the problem isn’t noticeable at all, however in direct sunlight we wished there was one setting higher. Since we don’t spend much time viewing content in direct sunlight, the issue didn’t tarnish our overall experience.

Microsoft Lumia 950 XL


Under the relatively featureless frame lies a true powerhouse in the form of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 810 accompanied by 3GB of RAM and Adreno 430 GPU. For example, a quick AnTuTu benchmark on Android will reveal how a particular device stacks up against competition. While the benchmark figure can’t put a score on the overall smartphone experience, it is a pretty accurate measure of performance. Benchmarking tools for Windows do exist, although they are not nearly as developed as their counterparts. Those familiar with hardware won’t need an app to tell them that specs listed above are overkill for most tasks. There isn’t an app on mobile version of Windows that comes even close to utilizing the full potential of Lumia’s hardware. Like its smaller brother, 950 XL features Continuum which allows you to connect it to a screen for a “PC-like” experience. The feature is still in its infancy, however we see huge potential for the future.
 

Microsoft Lumia 950 XL


In terms of imaging, Lumia 950 XL comes with a 20-megapixel main sensor, Carl Zeiss optics, optical image stabilisation, triple-LED flash, and something called 'Rich Capture' technology. Rich Capture mode is a type of editing assistant allowing photos to be modified after they have been taken. The whole process is very intuitive, takes very little time, and produces exceptional results. In most cases we were able to improve images taken in unfavourable conditions without any issues. Front facing sensor comes in at 5-megapixels is capable of taking detail-rich selfies.
Even though Lumia 950 XL doesn’t look appealing on the surface, there is much more to it than plane Jain design and huge screen. Windows mobile aficionados will be delighted with new features.
 

 


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