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Until not that long ago, Nokia phones (as they were then) were not the first choice of the trendy crowd. Lacking some of the bells and whistles of their Android and iPhone cousins, Nokia languished in the sales figures.

However, with Nokia’s purchase by Microsoft, and subsequent rebranding, they have undergone something of a renaissance. So if you’re looking for a new phone, the sleek and rather beautiful Lumia 535 is an excellent, great value option.

First things first, its looks. With a matt case that comes in several colours, the 535 is rather nice to hold. Its 5-inch screen gives you everything you could want in one hand. Talking of the screen, however, the colour and resolution aren’t the best on the market, but are comparable to other phones in the Lumia’s very reasonable price bracket.

Those familiar with Windows 8 and above will be instantly comfortable with the interface, which works on the same tiles as your common or garden PC. Even if you – like me – work on a Mac all day and have an Android handset – you’ll quickly get used to it. The menu tiles are well labelled and the phone is pretty intuitive to get around.

But if you’re seriously considering the 535, there is probably one main reason: the camera. Lumia has put real effort into setting their cameras apart – read our story on their epic assignment to a National Geographic photographer to snap the wonders of the world on a Lumia. Unusually, the Lumia 535 has a 5MP camera both front and rear, and has a 24mm wide-angle lens on the front for some interesting shots and friend-filled selfies.

With autofocus and an LED flash, as well as automatic facial recognition and correction, the camera is easy to use. Lumia Selfie is a function you can use to take automatic selfies with your main camera. Simply hold it up, and it will detect your face and get ready to take a photo. A few audible beeps give you time to compose your perfect pout. With a few swipes you can apply various effects and filters to your photo, from a vintage tinge to putting yourself on the cover of a magazine. You can also apply effects such as making your eyes bigger and your face slimmer, which are fun if slightly disconcerting when overused …

At the price, the Lumia 535 delivers decent specs in a handsome handset that you’ll be more than happy to flash around, no matter how trendy you are.

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