Lumia 535 Review : Perfectly Balanced Windows Phone You Will Love to Have

When Microsoft announced the Lumia 535, we really loved that fact that phone had the right hardware combination we had expected in a Windows Phone at this price segment from a very long time. There is no limitation on amount of RAM, Storage, sensors and even processing power.  Check out our detailed review to find out all the answers for your questions.

Video Review

Display & Screen:

The display is a 5 inch IPS LCD screen with qHD resolution i.e 960 X 540 and pixel density of 220 PPI. Overall there is no complaint about the display. Its looks rich and sharp and bright. The phone supports 3 column of tiles which means it looks even better.

When it comes to protection, the phone comes with solid performing Gorilla Glass 3 which makes sure you get less scratches. I have kept my phone with keys, and no scratches yet. The phone does not have any Colour Profile to change the colour profile.

Lumia 535 Display

Day Light or the Sunlight Readability: Its decent enough, but you need to enable one display settings to make it better. Microsoft should have this turned on by default. Go to Settings  > Display > Turn on Sunlight Readability. If this doesn’t help, switch the brightness to  medium or high. The default auto settings don’t work really well, and with that you will end up seeing your reflections more. Make sure to keep it medium with sunlight readability on if you are on the move all the time.

Lumia 535 Sunlight Redability Setting

Touch Experience:  The touch experience is excellent at most of the places. You can swipe, tap and flick all the time without getting stuck somewhere. I have played games, and used a lot of apps and there is nothing much to worry about. However, there is a small issue where tap doesn’t respond. This is getting fixed and it should not stop you from buying the phone.

Swipe Experience: Surprisingly, swiping is not a problem at all. I can swipe really fast without getting stuck. The screen is of good quality, and easy to swipe. While the screen is a big finger magnet,  the dust did not catch up with screen for good.

Build & Design

How does it feel in the hand:  Those who crave for a big phone, it’s an awesome phone to have at this price range. The screen is huge, the curved corners and edges gets you a great grip as well. You will be able to handle the phone nicely, but may take time to adjust if this is the size you never used.

Rear : The rear case is smooth finish, which is slippery. This has its advantage of a clean surface with just one swipe, but attracts a lot of fingerprints.

Button Experience: These are responsive and easy to click.  No complaints here.

Camera (Picture and Video Quality)

The front camera is a 5 MP,  f/2.4, auto Focus camera which does an extremely decent job in taking pictures. You can use the Lumia Camera which gives you full control on the settings part and captures images in 16:9 aspect ratio. There is an LED flash which is strong enough for low light conditions.

Lumia 535 Camera

Main / Rear Camera:

Daylight

Lowlight / Night:

Macros:

Video Recording: Tha maximum resolution for recording video is FWVGA which is 848 X 480 in resolution. It’s decent to capture daily videos. The video recorder comes with Audio Bass Filter which lets you record clear video when noise is high. You can even filter out engine noise to a great limit by setting audio bass filter to 200 Hz.

Lumia 535 Audio Filter

Front Camera:

This who love to take selfies, the phone comes with 5 MP Wide angle camera and aperture f/2.4 . It’s perfect for family moments when you on tour and want everybody to come in one single capture. Use the Lumia Selfie app for some amazing results.

Taken with Lumia Selfie

Video Sample:

Application Performance

Powered with Snapdragon 200 Quadcore Processor, the phone houses 1GB of RAM with 8 GB internal storage. This combination gives enough hardware power for apps to run smoothly. Windows Phone as an OS never had an issue even with 512 MB, but with 1GB its more than enough.  If you look back past one year, the overall specs of the device is bumped up in this price range.

Lumia 535 Multitasking

The phone can run 8 applications together with one active at a time, and rest can be resumed back using the back button. You can switch between apps very quickly except for few games where it takes a bit to resume back.

Video Playback:

This is one issue which I had faced on all Windows Phone with Snapdragon 200 Processor. Even though the processor says it supports 720P video playback, but not all videos can be played well. There are only particular codecs at specific farm rates that works well, not all  So consumers who watch HD movies a lot, might not like the overall result You may try, but it will be choppy and half of the video will not be visible.

That said, the only option out is to sync videos using the desktop application. If you are using Windows, you will have option to convert which takes care of the whole thing. I synced a 1080P video which was converted. The overall quality was good and it worked nicely.

Game Performance with Asphalt 8 : Airborne

Overall the game plays has no issues with most of the games. We had tried with Asphalt 8, Temple Run 2 and similar games, they all work fine. The phone is powered with Adreno 302 along with 1 GB of RAM which is more than enough to run the games, and still get multitasking done.

Lumia 535 Gaming

HD Display : The screen is not HD and the game settings are on medium for sure. That said, the graphics are still good and details out all the game aspects nicely. You won’t be disappointed

Lag: Absolutely no lag anywhere while playing the game. The game loads up little slow when resumed back, but nothing after that. I have wrecked cars multiple times, player for at least an hour, and even my son plays it along. No issues whatsoever.

Heating Issues : Surprise Surprise.  After a long time I am experiencing a Lumia which doesn’t heat up during gaming, using navigation and any GPS apps. One hour of game play, without lags.

Battery:

I have tested the phone mostly on the move this time. It gave me a real idea on how much exactly it will last. I am pretty sure that’s how the normal consumer will use the battery. I had used WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Photo upload, MixRadio, Gaming, Camera and what not. Here is what it averages out to:

  • On 3G : 15 to 17 hours.
  • On WIFI : 22-23 hours
  • On 3G and WIFI : 19 to 20 hours.

Remember this is heavy testing for a battery of 1905 mAh.

Storage:

Finally Microsoft understood that putting a 4GB of internal storage is of no use when it will make a consumer spend at least Rs 1000 ($25) on Micro-SD. Lumia 535 comes with 8 GB of internal storage at this price point, something which consumers should always get. You get around 5 GB (a couple of preinstalled apps) of free space which will get you a long way.

Lumia 535 Storage Sense

Now, those who are heavy video, music loves, you need to grab yourself a 32 GB of microSD card anyways. I will suggest for 128GB which is what the phone supports, and a class 10 if you want to keep apps on the SD card and save space on main phone memory.

Good thing is that Microsoft does allow to install apps, games and update them right over to SD card. While it works on Class 4, you better grab a class 10.

Audio Quality

The good part of the Lumia 535 and devices like the Lumia 730, that you can use equalizer with Speakers. Most of the consumer would want to listen to the music on the go or just casually when on break. This is where it becomes handy.  Go to Settings > Audio, and check if you can change the audio setting by tapping on the drop down or on the graphics equalizer.

Luia 535 Equaliser

I had used MixRadio for testing music, along with couple of offline music from my collection. The streaming is pretty good, and you can have offline mixes for best experience.

On Speaker:  Like all the Lumias the speakers are powerful and clear on speakers, even on high volume. I would still recommend you to keep the level 25 for best experience.  Use the equalizer for best experience.

Using Earphones:  This totally depends on what kind and quality of earphones you use, but it does sound good even on normal earphones. The audio engine of the Lumias are good and you can trust them on this.

Lumia 535 MixRadio

In-call Audio: You still need to use your phone as a phone and receive and make calls. The audio is pretty loud, and works well. Those who are pretty particular about it, don’t worry.

Dual Sim Features:

You can manage both the SIM, their settings from one central dealers. Its smart and does a good job for those who want to mange two SIM together.  I have done a detailed post on Dual SIM Features which you should read. 

Verdict

  • Design and Build - 8/10
    8/10
  • Display & Touch - 8/10
    8/10
  • Camera - 8/10
    8/10
  • Performance - 9/10
    9/10
  • Battery - 8/10
    8/10
  • Music and Speakers - 8/10
    8/10
  • Gaming - 8/10
    8/10
  • Value for Money - 9/10
    9/10

Summary

If you want to start with a Windows Phone and want a great combination of hardware and software in one place, this is THE phone to start with. The quad core processor delivers power, 1 GB RAM lets you run all games and apps, 8 GB space makes sure you have enough space to start with, 5 MP front and rear camera takes care of your daily pictures and self cravings. Windows Phone has enough number of apps, even Candy Crush Saga so you don't miss if you are switching.

Go ahead and buy the phone, you won't regret it.

8.3/10

About Ashish

A die-hard fan of Windows, Windows 10 Mobile, Windows Phone and Xbox, Loves to Do Video reviews on Windows Phone Apps, Games, Xbox Games, Xbox Tutorials.

38 comments

  1. There is a touch sensitivity issue and Microsoft is releasing an OTA firmware update on 27 December to fix it. You did not speak about any issues you are facing with Screen sensitivity specially the second half of the screen.

    Also Snap Dragon 200, some reviews say it is very slow, did you try browsing…how did it respond..?

    Looking forward to hear from you.

    • Hey Prakash, I actually did say about touch issues where I see tap sometimes not working. Its getting fixed as well. To my experience its not something major and since it is getting a fix, one should not worry.

      I ddi try browsing it worked fine. Is there anything in particular you want me to check? I will do that for you.

      Ashish

      • Hi Ashish, Thanks for your quick response. I had been to a Nokia Priority and there I saw this phone and its display looked very dull like a cheap android, may be in settings the brightness was very low. So my question is, does the display look good enough or because it lacks Clear Black like Lumia 630 and 638, its not as sharp as 630/638..?

        Also 1gb ram, all sensors, more battery, front camera, all in less than 10k, this is less than the introductory price of Lumia 630 when it was launched..? Is there a catch..?

        can we compare its performance with lumia 630..? does 1 gb Ram compensate for Snapdragon 200’s slow performance..?

        • Two things that makes it look dull. One the setting is automatic, which really doesn’t work well. You need medium and also need to enable sunlight readability. I do agree that clear black would have made a different but its not that bad.

          Compared to Lumia 630 and 638, this device is at par. There is no catch, Microsoft has no bumped up the minimum hardware at this price range. Snapdragon 200 Quadcore is not slow, not sure why you see that way, but I would like to know.

          Lumia 630 is an older device, all the device launched at that time had low hardware config. This is changing now. As a matter of fact, 6K is the new range for low end Windows Phoen which was 9K previously.

  2. Which one is the best? Lumia 730 or 535.

  3. Currently i am using lumia 520 which got the denim update recently. I am thinking of changing my phone. Which one should i buy? Lumia 535 or 730.

  4. Ashish, one last thing…can you perform a benchmark test for Lumia 535..?

  5. nokia should once again patch up with windows

  6. Hi Aasish
    Thanks for great review. I like a lot your reviews, I am big fan of android, but now I move on with windows phones, so could you help me which phone is good for start
    Xolo winq900s
    Lumia 535
    Or lumia 730
    I know 730 is better but it expensive to، so please tell me who is better to go 900s or 535 ?

    • I have Xolo Win Cell.
      Also i checked reming model before buying this..
      i suggest buy xolo due to low price, brilliant sharp display, cell looks gorgeous.

  7. after updating lumia 535 …..not install app from store….
    what the matter ….anybody help me to fix this problem

  8. Little Bit Confuse about Display quality about 535.
    I have Xolo Win..Superb Screen of this cell..Please mention 535 screen quality..535 screen is good compare to xolo or not ?

  9. hey, i got this phone and i am very happy with it, the touch issues are not what people make out to be, its comfortable and good, just switch screen magnifier off from settings>ease of access , also i encountered a different problem : i am unable to download additional speech language, can you please tell something about that

  10. dont misguide people lumia 535 is total waste of money
    you said ”absolutely no lag in gameplay of asphalt 8” .totally wrong
    its a laggy device my friend recently buy it as secondary phone with lumia 1020 and i saw that phones gaming its totally shit

    its totally a gimmick from microsoft

    and dont consider me as apple or android fanboy because and i personally use
    nokia lumia 930 i personally love windows phone. great business phones

    you just push few good things of windows phone and dont recognize bad things of windows phone
    sorry to say that you are a “”blind”” die hard fan of Windows Phone

    • Completely agreed with you john
      Low end windows phone sucks total waste of money

      Mr. Ashish why don’t you make a review on internet explorer crashes on low end windows phone
      Its a huge problem

      Browse on net so you can recognise it

      Blind die hard fan its true

      • Let me know what sites you would want me to check. I have 630, 530, IRIS WIN1 and Celkon 400 to test.

        • Ok you want to try then go for
          Youtube(play video in 720p or 480p quality in internet explorer with desktop version) for some time
          Then try phonearena, verge, ny times all in desktop mode
          And use phone with installed apps and games not unboxed one and 512 MB ram
          Go for it
          Thumbs up…

          • I will give it a try. 1. Snapdragon 200 has problem with HD video plays. I have mentioned that. Processor issue. 2. Why desktop mode ? 3. “Use Phone with Installed Apps and Games” what do you mean ? 4. I have always scolded Microsoft for putting 512 MB RAM and 4 GB combination. Check my 530 Review. 5. Why to test with 512 MB RAM when this is a 535 review?

            Cheers,
            Ashish

  11. Because Mr. Blind fan of windows phone
    why 512 MB devices because you said “I have 630, 530” in my last reply remember it first

    Use Phone with Installed Apps and Games it means that use a regular phone which consist running few social apps or other stuffs in background ….not a unboxed one…….. Because their are few apps which are runs in background like WhatsApp, FB, twitter, battery saver, mail accounts..etc

    I also mentioned not HD then HQ (480p) will be fine

    why desktop mode because desktop mode is great experience and now a days this phones uses html5 then many websites are open in its full desktop version while browsing with google or bing (instead you put m. before website and its annoying)

    clear all history, cache memory also bing search history and then search anything you want on google or bing and click link, it opens desktop version
    For example – phonearena

    Before you want to click see mobile version ……..BOOM browser crashes
    This are not java or old phones which open website in low quality form
    You just mentions 512mb are limited for gaming otherwise no issues
    You never mention web browsing issues in any review

    And don’t tell us how much you scolded on ms or nokia for putting 512 MB ram

    your website history says that you always promote Lumia 520,620,625,720,630 as best devices and they are 512 MB ram phones
    And low end means all this phones should be considered

    And don’t think this devices are history. microsoft is not growing anywhere as you say why 512 MB its a review of Lumia 535

    Their share is fallen in each year
    This are devices that’s why Microsoft survived.

    For your concern I use Lumia 925 and Lumia 625 for months

    Come out of your small world of wpxbox and see reality on web then you will find their are tons of complaint regarding crashing of internet explorer and its performance issues
    See websites like wpcentral, nokia discussions

    So cheeerrrsss Rahul with blind fan

    • if you are here to be just arrogant, there is no point in discussing with you. Feedback can be constructive, and language can be proper. You aren’t really doing it.

      • Wow man great escaping. You haven’t any answers for that.
        But I got mine.and really there is no point to discussing with you.

      • Hey Ashish , I have only two questions . the first one how much space do the default apps take ? and the second how can i move or save my apps and games on SDmicro in order to free much space on the phone memory ?

        Marcos.

  12. Hi thanks for review really liked it i purchased 535DS on 7/12/2014 this is my 1st WP I noticed 1st display poor touch response & was oily without screen guard after screen guard it was ok but still had issues while using workflow keyboard after update on 27/12/2014 70% of issues solved still some are there like using browser using apps etc 2nd is I played all games you have mentioned above phone gets heat on top corner also while using3G for more than 20mins

    while talking to calls opponent voice heard backside of the phone without using loud speakers it may because of light cover or earpiece placed in wrong place I think it should be in place where Microsoft logo is I’m from Chennai my phone hardware ver 3.0.0.0 I noticed above issues more than 8 535DS from friends,family,colleagues and showrooms.

  13. Its a buggy and laggy phone my friend also using it @senthil kumar s . You are right man
    Same issues and video playback is also poor …its not a good media phone..even Lumia 520 have better performance in terms of HD video playback,gaming and other daily tasks.

  14. Hi Ashish and rajan

    I bought this phone on Nokia priority after updating I visited Nokia care point they said its Normal and some issues will be solved using OTA UPDATE
    What I’m trying to say is 535 DS have some issues I have seen morethan 10devices all are same also recently I met my friend in Delhi he is using 535DS he is also facing same issues I have friends in Bangalore and hyderabad same replies

    535 missing compass,sensitive touch but overall its a good phone now i think 730 DS is better only two it misses 5.0 display and design wise 535 is attractive also 730DS is 14K price range my personal opinion is Microsoft must tested device before release and compass is must.

  15. Ok I have some doubts about my 535 DS
    In mix radio I can’t download offline mixes but it was working fine when I bought it if subscription was over how to subscribe

    2) sometimes maps are not accurate turned on location services how to fix it

  16. my phone’s back get heat up when i play games. My re-seller told me that it is because of processor is right below the camera. so it is getting heat. can you please suggest what should i do?
    Is he making me fool,?

  17. Hello the phone is great , but why it gets overheated in the camera zone just when using whatsapp or messenger in 3G networks??
    could you please help me??

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.