Microsoft Lumia 532 first impressions: continuing with the winning formula

“The Lumia 532 aims to build upon the success of previous blockbusters in the Lumia 5xx series”

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Microsoft (the erstwhile Nokia) has tasted an unparalleled success with its Lumia devices in the budget range. While the Lumia 520 created many records ever since its launch, the brand also continued expanding its Lumia 5xx series with many more offerings such as the Lumia 525, 530 (review) and 535 (review). Now, the brand has added yet another smartphone in its lineup, the Lumia 532. The handset takes the features which made its predecessors popular, along with offering some much-needed upgrades. We were able to get our hands on the Microsoft Lumia 532 at the official launch event to bring you our first impressions. So, here we go.

While the Lumia 535 became the one of the most affordable WP offerings sporting a large 5-inch display, the Lumia 532 accompanies other devices in the Lumia 5xx range with its 4-inch screen size. Due to this, the device feels very handy and can be comfortably used single-handedly. It might not feel very bulky at 136g, but it does seem quite thick with its frame measuring 11.6mm. In terms of the design language, the Lumia 532 has strong parental ties with its sturdy polycarbonate build available in multiple hues. Apart from standard black and white options, you can also purchase the smartphone in green or orange options. However, one distinction in terms of design is that the phone gets a transparent layer along the edges, which looks really nice.

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The 4-inch display bears a resolution of 800 x 480 pixels, resulting in pixel density of 233ppi, which seems low when compared to the competition. But thanks to WP’s metro interface offering colourful tiles, the display looks quite good. However, when viewed closely, pixelation can be noticed. Along with the screen, the front of the Lumia 532 houses an earpiece and a front camera above, and a row of capacitive keys for navigation at the bottom.

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Both the volume rocker and power key are available on the right spine, whereas the left side is completely empty. The 3.5mm audio connector can be found at the top, while micro-USB port is at the bottom.

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The rear features a smooth finish and hosts the primary snapper and a speaker grille. Sadly, the camera on the Lumia 532 misses out on LED flash, just like its predecessors, which means that shooting in dimly-lit environments could be a bit of an issue. The back cover extends along the edges and removing it exposes the 1,560mAh battery and slots for inserting SIM cards and a microSD card.

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The Microsoft Lumia 532 ships with the latest Windows Phone 8.1 Denim update, bringing forth numerous features. However, the basics of the WP interface remains the same with live tiles acting as the start screen and all apps present alphabetically on the next screen. The phone also comes preloaded with a number of apps such as Foodpanda, Jabong, Truecaller among others.

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Tasked with handling the performance aspect of the Microsoft Lumia 532 is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 chipset offering four cores throbbing at 1.2GHz paired with a gigabyte of RAM. Yes, this is one of the biggest upgrades in the device since the 512MB RAM that many of its predecessors offered is a limiting factor while playing many graphics-heavy titles. Although we weren’t able to play any games during our hands-on, we expect the performance to be smooth. In the storage department, the device comes with 8GB flash memory, out of which around 3.8GB is available to end users. The memory can also be further expanded up to 128GB with the use of microSD cards.

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Camera-wise, the Lumia 532 offers 5-megapixel fixed-focus shooter which is just good enough for casual usage. You also get a VGA camera on the front, and it’s reasonable to say that you’d be disappointed if you expect it to shoot awesome selfies or deliver a high-quality video calling experience. In terms of connectivity, the dual-SIM smartphone offers support for 3G as well as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS.

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Microsoft has strategically priced the Lumia 532 at the price point of Rs 6,499 making the device affordable, and yet offering a wholesome experience thanks to ample storage and RAM, along with the inclusion of a front shooter. The handset also comes bundled with numerous offers from services like Paytm, Redbus and Jabong. Further, Airtel users will get 500MB of free 3G data for a period of two months. While there are formidable options such as the Xiaomi Redmi 1s (review | FAQs), ASUS Zenfone C (first impressions) and more in the Android segment, the Lumia 532 is able to stand out thanks to its intuitive OS and decent hardware.

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