Microsoft Lumia 640 Review: Another Budget Windows Phone

By Scorpus
May 20, 2015
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  1. microsoft lumia review, windows 10 mobile

    Since Microsoft acquired Nokia’s smartphone division, the company has focused its efforts on mid-range and entry-level handsets, where Windows Phone has been most popular. In less than two years, the Lumia line has welcomed 11 smartphones priced under $300, without a single flagship device.

    The Lumia 640 we are reviewing today is one of those sub-$300 devices. It's aimed at the upper segment of the entry-level market, priced at $250 unlocked. It's got a decent hardware package for the price and runs Windows Phone 8.1 out of the box, with a promised upgrade to Windows 10 Mobile later this year.

    The use of a Snapdragon 400 SoC is a little strange, considering Qualcomm’s newer 410 silicon is already available. The familiar chip has been paired with 1 GB of RAM and 8 GB of expandable storage. On the front, the device packs a 5.0-inch 720p LCD display. Cameras are also fairly standard, with an 8 megapixels shooter on the back, and one megapixel on the front, while on the design front Microsoft continues the long-running trend of colourful, plastic Lumia phones.

    Read the complete review.

  2. Cryio

    Cryio TS Booster Posts: 191   +57

    This review is off...

    No way in hell a SD400 powered WP8.1 device is slower than an equivalent on Android, even on Lollipop (maybe especially).

    Also, the Moto G has a better camera across the board compared to the 640 ? Be it quality or speed? Funny. If rich capture is not used, the 640 is just as fast.

    The battery life, for this price bracket also seems pretty great, dunno where all these "mediocre" are coming from.
  3. Scorpus

    Scorpus TechSpot Staff Topic Starter Posts: 1,782   +186

    It's slower. Tons of loading screens and slow animations on the Lumia 640 compared to the Moto G 2014, especially comparing re-opening times of apps. I can provide more evidence through a video comparison but I'd rather not go to the effort of making one.
    Last edited: May 20, 2015
    Steve likes this.
  4. Cryio

    Cryio TS Booster Posts: 191   +57

    Reopening app from the carousel is faster than opening the same app from Start again for example.
  5. Scorpus

    Scorpus TechSpot Staff Topic Starter Posts: 1,782   +186

    Multitasking, a comparable function, is also faster on the Moto G. Windows Phone is simply slow these days, they haven't bothered to optimize the OS since it came out
    Steve likes this.
  6. bazz2004

    bazz2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,213   +200

    I'm seriously thinking of buying the Lumia 640 as my first smartphone. Do you think it is going to be faster running Windows 10? That's probably what Microsoft had in mind when they launched this model?
  7. 67sjo67

    67sjo67 TS Rookie

    If you are really interested in using Windows Phone, you should go to a Microsoft store and also look at the Blue HD LTE. It has latest processor and is noticeably faster (Blue also has an entry level device for $99 that seems to be more similar to the 640 in terms of processing power).
  8. bazz2004

    bazz2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,213   +200

    I'm in the UK and Lumia or Asha are the only phones on the Microsoft site.
  9. Squuiid

    Squuiid TS Enthusiast Posts: 35   +13

    Nice review. Thanks.
    Pretty disappointing device, was hoping for more at this price-point.
  10. Nobina

    Nobina TS Evangelist Posts: 803   +270

    I've never seen a slow Windows Phone device and I really thought that this one would hit the spot. I guess not.
  11. Scorpus

    Scorpus TechSpot Staff Topic Starter Posts: 1,782   +186

    To clarify, it's not slow as in laggy. The animations are still smooth. However information, such as your contact list for example, can take a while to show up after you press on the contacts app, relative to other budget handsets I've used
  12. mschmi02

    mschmi02 TS Rookie

    This thing is $129 on cricket with no contract, and will prob be similarly priced on t-mobile and at+t... $250 is way off.
  13. DKRON

    DKRON TS Guru Posts: 567   +25

    He may be talking in $250AU
  14. mikeg520

    mikeg520 TS Rookie

    The Lumia 640 from cricket wireless is an amazing phone. I got sick and tired of my 2014 Moto G 2nd gen getting laggy and having apps stick I bought a 2015 Moto e 2nd gen and its the same thing it works but its slow very slow. I ordered the Lumia 640 and let me tell you its freaking amazing . Its fast very fast . Every bit fast as my brothers iphone 6. The camera is outstanding I have no idea what the problem is with all the negativity from this website but the Lumia 640 is extremely solid and the plastic shells used on most of the Lumia phones fits seamlessly. This is a dream come true for a mid range phone . The guy who posted this review had it in his mind to do nothing but complaining for the review and was clearly trying to compare the 640 to what he wants in a flagship phone. If you are looking for a extremely fast solid and fun phone the Lumia 640 is 1000% worth every dollar . $129 no contract.
  15. mikeg520

    mikeg520 TS Rookie

    I don't see this on my Lumia 640 . On my Moto g 2nd gen I see it all the time . I even have to reboot my motog once a day to speed it back up screen redraw on motog has a entire page on motog forums asking for help. My Lumia 640 is fast
  16. Scorpus

    Scorpus TechSpot Staff Topic Starter Posts: 1,782   +186

    It's not $129 outright. You need to "activate" the phone on Cricket to get it for $129, and I imagine they are subsidizing the cost of the phone to reach that price.

    To be honest I'm not sure where the $250 price tag came from. Most retailers have it listed somewhere around $200 unlocked, outright and off contract.

    I mean you can also say the Moto E is $50, but it's actually $130, but subsidized to $50 when you activate it on Cricket
  17. Scorpus

    Scorpus TechSpot Staff Topic Starter Posts: 1,782   +186

    That's nice. However I did test both devices side by side, and the Moto G 2014 was noticeably faster on Android 5.0. I can only report on what I personally see during my usage.

    As for comparisons to a flagship device, the Galaxy S6 is leagues ahead in terms of smoothness, responsiveness and performance in general. But that's a ridiculous comparison to make as it's more than three times the price. Compared to other devices in this very price range, though, I don't think the Lumia 640 is worth it.
  18. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,681   +86

    "simply slow these days" is a problematic part in this comment, I've Lumia 1520 & G2/D800 these days as my daily drivers (for personal + work). Similar SoC/RAM, resolution etc. and only G2 can be a pain to use with its stuttering performance, and un-explainable lag at random times.
  19. bazz2004

    bazz2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,213   +200

    It's up to purchasers to look into getting a good deal so I'm not sure price has much relevance here. Microsoft have a lot riding on Windows 10 so they will make sure there are attractive deals. Performance is the main thing and mikeg520's comments are reassuring. Anybody got any thoughts about Windows 10? Hopefully I'm not detecting anti-Windows sentiments in this thread rather than objectivity. Even the title sounds a bit prejudiced: «Another Budget Windows Phone.»
  20. Scorpus

    Scorpus TechSpot Staff Topic Starter Posts: 1,782   +186

    At this stage it looks like Windows 10 Mobile is a big step in the right direction, especially with some of the cool new features they're planning, and Microsoft's one platform vision is pretty clear. However it's still early days for the OS and I wonder how they're going to address the app issue. It's a really tough problem for Microsoft
  21. Ultrafighter202

    Ultrafighter202 TS Rookie

    A 3/10 review.

    I've been reading opinions from Lumia 640 owners for months and most of the stuff in this review are false.
    I also own a Moto G 2014 and a Lumia 730.

    The Moto G is not faster, actually get slower with time and don't try to multitask or use the phone for intensive things you will be hugely disappointed. The camera on the Moto g is also just bad, impossible for the 640 to be worst especially from all the pictures I've seen it looks sharper and with more natural colors. Low light with the Moto G is just a joke. You also have HDR function with the 640 just have to select Rich Capture.
    Battery life is more than decent according to 640 owners, 2 days of average use and with mobile data or wifi activated all the time.

    What I'm saying is that Moto G is no faster or better than the 640 in any way when it comes to hardware or performance. The 640 is also cheaper priced at 150$ vs 180$ for the Moto G so I don't understand where all that "Not Competitively Priced" comes from.
  22. JDFWS

    JDFWS TS Rookie

    Maybe so, but in the U.S. this phone is $99.97 at Walmart for T-Mobile. That is a HUGE difference between the Galaxy or iPhone at $650. I just got this phone and overall I'm impressed. For the price point I'm blown away. On WiFi it works better than my iPhone 5s. I haven't swapped the SIM yet so that's all I've used this phone for so far. Apps are less available, but honestly many mobile sites work as good or better than their app anyways. You can tile the mobile website to the homescreen and just pretend its an app.

    This phone is very snappy and not slow loading. I haven't used a flagship Android device, but have used my iPhone 5s for nearly 2 years. This phone is nearly on par...but for 1/6 the price. Yes iOS is a tad more smooth opening stuff, but this windows OS isn't bad at all. We are talking about milliseconds and silly benchmarks. The biggest con for me is the width. For a 5" it is a tad wider than its peers. I prefer texting with one hand (hence the 5s) and it is challenging with this. I don't have big hands and to make it worst is the back case is very smooth and slick. A matte finish with curved back would have been my choice. I ordered a slim design case that'll provide more grip which is why I'm still using my 5s until the case arrives. I can't wrap my entire hand around the phone and reach all the keys with my thumb. With as slick as this phone is you will need a solid grip. I'm hoping a gel type case will stay in hand with out having to wrap my hand around it while I type.

    The reasonI purchased the 640 is my 5s battery can't make it throughout the day and browsing the web is struggling at times. This phone battery was rated good and it has T-Mobile's new band 12, 700mhz frequency which will hopefully work better indoors and in rural areas. The damn new iPhones don't even have this band and my 5s is struggling in doors. Also, I just could not bring myself to spend $600+ for a phone at this time.

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