It's the battle of the upstarts, BlackBerry Z10 and Windows Phone 8 represented by the Nokia Lumia 920 here. Of course, Windows Phone wasn't born yesterday, while the Z10 and BlackBerry OS 10 really are just over a month old. But Windows Phone is still very young compared to the established smartphone market leaders, iOS and Android. For those of you who think different, have a rebellious streak or are simply bored with the iPhone and Android, the BlackBerry Z10 and Windows Phone 8 are your best options.
Both platforms start with very good built-in apps that include an Office suite (MS Office mobile for the Lumia 920 and Docs to Go for the Z10), PIM apps with cloud syncing, music and video players, photo viewers, email and solid web browsers. Microsoft's XBOX music and video player app has lots more eye candy but we give BlackBerry points for having a video store on their phone while Microsoft has just music for sale in Windows Phone 8 (yes, that's a step backward from Windows Phone 7.5). We also give BlackBerry points for being one of the few mobile platforms to have Adobe Flash Player.
We've stood by Windows Phone and waited patiently for apps and after a year or two, the selection is finally livable even if it can't compare to iPhone and Android. So here we go again with the BlackBerry Z10 and the upcoming Q10 running BlackBerry OS 10. App selection is growing quickly but many of the basics are currently MIA. No Netflix, Hulu, no top third party password keeper apps or popular grocery shopping apps. A year from now the selection might be grand, but today it isn't. Developers can port Android apps to BlackBerry OS 10, and that may speed up app growth, though the downside is these non-native ported apps run a bit slower.
Winner: tie for built-in apps, Windows Phone 8 wins for app store selection (the WP store has been around 2 years, it has an advantage over the brand new BB OS 10 BlackBerry World).
Yes, the Nokia Lumia 920 is one of the more exciting looking phones on the market and with 5 colors to choose from, it gets personal. The BlackBerry Z10 is more staid looking but I still think it's an attractive smartphone, even if not nearly as striking as the Lumia 920. In the BlackBerry's favor: it's much less slippery and heavy, it has a microSD card slot and a removable battery. I'd lean toward function over form: the swappable battery and card slot are very useful.
In terms of CPU and what's inside, you're looking at much the same thing. Both run on 1.5GHz dual core Snapdragon CPUs with Adreno 225 graphics and a gig of RAM. The Nokia Lumia 920 has 32 gigs of storage vs. 16 for the BlackBerry Z10, but the Lumia 920 needs more since you can't expand storage with a microSD card.
Both displays run at 1280 x 768 resolution and they're high quality displays with sharp text and wide viewing angles. The Nokia gets the win though for it's ClearBlack display with inky blacks and popping colors. It also has a 60Hz refresh rate and works with gloves and fingernails. The BlackBerry Z10 at 4.2" vs. 4.5" on the Lumia 920 has slightly higher pixel density, but my personal preference is for the larger display. But that is a personal thing: some of you much prefer a smaller phone and are willing to live with the resulting smaller display. The Lumia 920 is protected by Gorilla Glass, unlike the BlackBerry Z10.
Winner: Tie! The BlackBerry Z10 gets huge points for it's more pocket-friendly form, removable battery, good repairability and a microSD card slot. The Nokia Lumia 920 gets big points for it's superior and superb display, Gorilla Glass and mega style and color options.
There are many more points to cover, so watch our BlackBerry Z10 vs. Nokia Lumia 920 Comparison Smackdown. We also cover the lovely HTC 8x in the video.