Get started shopping for great pay monthly phone deals on the new Lumia 550 with TigerMobiles.com. The new low budget Windows option has better performance than you might think, plus it’s got some nice cameras and a great screen and battery, all for a very affordable price. Want a new phone without breaking the bank? Then check out deals on the Lumia 550 below.
When you think Lumia you automatically think Windows phone, and the brand has produced tons of hand sets over the last couple of years. But whilst Android users tend to get good budget choices, Windows users generally don’t. But with the release of the new Lumia 550 Microsoft are out to prove that you don’t need to spend a fortune on a Windows phone, in fact, you don’t have to spend more than £100…
Why should you want a Lumia 550? Obviously that low price is the big draw, but the Lumia 550 also gets very solid performance, has great battery life, and a very nice screen too. Round that out with some cameras and the new Windows 10 OS and you’re good to go. Great phones don’t need to send you bankrupt, and the Lumia 550 really does prove that.
The 550 is everything you’d expect from a Lumia, it’s angled and slim, industrial looking and sleek. As with most Lumias the back panel is plastic and removable, and the screen covers the entire front panel with no physical buttons there at all. The 550 feels solid and rugged in the hand, not as fragile as upper end devices, like it could survive a drop or two.
Inside you’re getting some decent specs, particularly on a phone that’s extremely low budget. Performance is solid, the cameras are fine, there’s a good amount of RAM and processing power, and a surprisingly nice screen as well. Keep in mind that all of this is coming in at under £100, you can’t expect miracles, but you will get a very solid little device indeed.
Budget is not generally a word that we associate with Windows phones, but the Lumia 550 makes a great addition to the family. A solid entry level device, with good performance and an affordable price, what more could you be looking for?
Let’s take a closer look at that performance. Windows phones are noted for the high processing numbers that Androids are, but the 550 is still getting some nice specs. It’s got a quad core 1.1 GHz processor, with a Snapdragon 210 chipset and 1 GB of RAM. That’s not bad at all for a budget phone, and the 550 proves to be speedy and responsive as long as you’re not being too CPU intensive.
Yes, it’s a Lumia and yes, it’s running Windows. In this case you’re getting Windows 10, the newest mobile incarnation of the operating system, and it’s everything you would expect. Intuitive, light on memory, familiar to anyone with a Windows PC, 10 is streets ahead of Windows 8, with some nice features and a very easy to use interface.
As far as performance goes the Lumia 550 far exceeds what we’d expect something of this price point to achieve. No, it’s not going to be great at high end gaming or video editing, but if you’re looking for something solid and dependable, then the 550 is your man.
The Lumia 550 comes in with a 4.7 inch screen, which is actually a very nice compromise. You get plenty of room for on screen typing and video watching or browsing, and yet you can still very easily fit the 550 into your shirt pocket.
When it comes to resolution you’re getting 720 x 1280 pixels, which on a 4.7 inch screen works out to about 315 PPI, and this is an LCD display. All the tech jargon aside, picture quality on the 550 is good, very good. Colours are bright and true, and lines are sharp and defined. You’d be hard pressed to find a better display at this price point.
For HD video the Lumia 550 might not be the best choice, but that’s not what it’s designed for. For the average user though, that display is going to be more than enough, it’s bright and bold and just nice to look at.
The cameras on the Lumia are good, not great, but good. But then even mid range Lumias don’t tend to have the best cameras around. At the front you’re getting a 2 MP camera for video calling or taking selfies or what have you, which should be fine.
Turn the phone around and you’re going to find a 5 MP rear camera. Not the highest resolution around, but fairly standard on budget hand sets. You’ll get LED flash, touch focus and auto focus included, again, fairly standard.
There are no surprises when it comes to the 550’s cameras, either good or bad. You’re getting more or less exactly what you’re paying for. Having said that, photo quality was sharp and bright, and more than good enough for online use, though printing pictures might not be the best plan.
This is a budget hand set, so don’t expect to see a lot of extra features here. The price is low and performance is good, and that’s all you can ask for. There are a couple of things that deserve a mention here though.
Firstly, battery life is exceptional. There’s only a 2100 mAh battery on board, but given that there’s an LCD screen that’s under five inches and processing power isn’t too juice intensive, this still gives you a lot of energy. The 550 boasts around 672 hours of stand by time, and more than enough juice to get you through the regular work day.
Speaking of work day, there’s another pro here. This is a Windows phone, so it’s loaded with productivity apps, from word processing to excel spreadsheets, the 550 has everything the average office worker should need. Plus, you get a 15 GB OneDrive cloud account too.
|Technology||GSM / HSPA / LTE|
|Dimensions||136.1 x 67.8 x 9.9 mm (5.36 x 2.67 x 0.39 in)|
|Weight||141.9 (5.01 oz)|
|Type||Capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors|
|Size||4.7 inches (~64.7% screen-to-body ratio)|
|Resolution||720 x 1280 pixels (~315 ppi pixel density)|
|OS||Microsoft Windows 10|
|Chipset||Qualcomm MSM8909 Snapdragon 210|
|CPU||Quad-core 1.1 GHz Cortex-A7|
|Card slot||microSD, up to 256 GB (dedicated slot)|
|Internal||8 GB, 1 GB RAM|
|Primary Camera||5 MP, f/2.4, autofocus, LED flash, check quality|
|Features||1/4" sensor size, geo-tagging, touch focus|
|Video||720p@30fps, check quality|
|Secondary Camera||2 MP, f/2.8, 480p|
|Alert types||Vibration; MP3, WAV ringtones|
|WLAN||Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, hotspot|
|GPS||Yes, with A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS|
|Messaging||SMS (threaded view), MMS, Email, Push Email, IM|
|- MP3/WAV/eAAC+ player|
|- MP4/H.265 player|
|- OneDrive (15 GB cloud storage)|
|- Document viewer|
|- Video/photo editor|
|Battery||Removable Li-Ion 2100 mAh battery|
Budget phones so often mean missing out on something important, particularly when it comes to performance. But with the Lumia 550 this just isn’t the case, performance is solid, the price tag is low, there are some decent enough cameras and great battery life too. The 550 is all you could want in a budget mobile and then some.
So, connectivity. You’re getting the standard connections, which means WiFi, 3G, 4G and Bluetooth. Internally you’re getting just 8 GB of memory, however the 550 does have a Micro SD card slot which allows you to add up to 200 GB of external memory, so storage is no problem.
What about complaints? It’s difficult to complain about a hand set that’s so affordable. Yes, we’d like a metal build, we’d like a little more processing power, we’d like higher screen resolution. But the truth is that all these things would just add to that price tag and they’re simply not necessary. The Lumia 550 is a solid phone with solid performance, and it’s a great choice for anyone on a budget.
by Dan Forster, Mobile Phone Expert
Dan is our mobile phone review expert helping customers make better buying decisions. With a passion for technology and taking things apart Dan single-handedly reviews all the phones listed on the TigerMobiles.com website.