Microsoft Lumia 640 Review: Released in 2015, the Lumia 640 was one of the first phones to come under the Microsoft branding after the takeover of the Nokia brand. The naming system was kept intact with only the manufacturer changing. Thus, the Lumia 640 can be considered the upgrade to the Nokia Lumia 630 which was released a year beforehand.
Cosmetically little was changed about this handset, and it came in a range of colours. If the Windows operating system on board was not a point enough, the bright neon colours offered an alternative to the Apple iPhone 5c (which also came in a range of colours).
Under the hood though there were differences. The most obvious one being the beefing up of the display from 4.5 inches to 5 inches and a much better resolution to boot. The camera was significantly upgraded as well – a higher resolution, LED flash and front-facing selfie camera was added.
There were actually two Lumia 640s – the Microsoft Lumia 640 XL was a variant released at the same time. This was had more in common with the Nokia Lumia 1520 as the screen size came in at a very large 5.7 inches.
The Lumia series never really sought a confrontation at the top end of the market. As such they gained a niche following. The 640 spawned a successor: the Microsoft Lumia 650, which was released the next year.
Microsoft Lumia 640 Review Pros:
Build quality was good. The phone came in at a sub 1cm thickness. A reduced bezel size allowed a large increase in screen size with only a very small increase in size of the handset.
Like most in the Lumia series, the backs were designed to be removed; this made the phones very easy to maintain in the case of battery problems.
The screen was great: a 1280 x 720 resolution, 5.0 inch size. This was not quite up there with the dpi of the latest Apple iPhone 6 but it was not far away.
Video was much improved on the handset: the front facing camera allowed video calling and capture was at 1080p.
Microsoft Lumia 640 Review Cons:
The intensity of colour of Lumia screens was a little less than the Super AMOLED handsets we became used to, even at lower price levels.
Despite the camera being 8MP, captures were not as clear as on other handsets, perhaps due to superior photo processing. LED flash was small and quite weak.
The Windows OS and tiling system was clearly suited to bigger phones, but for a beginner was much less intuitive rather than Apple or Android.
Battery life had decreased on this model: the extra power creating more demand on the battery.
Future Prospects and Current Pricing
Although the Windows Mobile operating system is now not supported any more, these phones are still operational as handsets. They make cheap smartphones, often being priced at around £10-20. Not sure what the future will hold.
Where can I get one?
Interested in more phones? See a list of phones I own here.