Nokia and Verizon Wireless began teasing the Lumia 928 earlier this week, but now it’s official.
The flagship Windows Phone will launch on May 16 for $100, counting a $50 mail-in rebate.
As expected, the Nokia Lumia 928 is similar to the Lumia 920 that launched on AT&T late last year. Both phones have 4.5-inch, 1280-by-768 resolution displays, 1.5 GHz dual core processors, 1 GB of RAM, 32 GB of storage, wireless charging and the ability to use the touch screen through gloved fingers.
They also both have Nokia’s 8.7-megapixel PureView camera, which offers solid low-light performance and image stabilization.
So what’s different? Verizon’s Lumia 928 is a little bit narrower, thinner and lighter than AT&T’s Lumia 920, but also it’s slightly taller. The look of Verizon’s phone is more traditional, with a tapered backside and only black or white color options, whereas AT&T’s model has five color choices and rounded edges.
Although this isn’t the first high-end Windows Phone 8 handset Verizon has carried–that distinction goes to HTC’s Windows Phone 8X–the Lumia 928 does have the advantage of Nokia HERE Maps. Nokia’s mapping service is more useful than Microsoft’s built in software, because it can provide live turn-by-turn directions. (Correction: Since February, Nokia’s HERE Maps app has been available for all Windows Phone 8 devices, and its turn-by-turn navigation app is available in beta.) Nokia has some other unique software features as well, such as the Internet radio service Nokia Music and City Lens, which lets you look through the phone’s camera for nearby points of interest.
Windows Phone fans who aren’t on Verizon should sit tight; Nokia is holding a press event in London next week, where the company may announce its first aluminum-clad Windows Phone.