Nokia Lumia 920 for AT&T hands-on: a Windows Phone 8 flagship with PureView imaging and LTE (video)

Much like the 900 before it, Nokia's Lumia 920 will be making its US debut on AT&T as an exclusive. Despite not having Microsoft's "signature" blessing, this Windows Phone 8 flagship is poised to ship sometime this November with all the stuffings of its international counterpart. Inside that vibrant polycarbonate hull, of which there are now five colors (including cyan), is a 4.5-inch PureMotion HD+ 1,280 x 768 display, 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor buffered by 1GB RAM, an 8-megapixel PureView rear camera and 2,000mAh battery augmented by the inclusion of wireless charging. Naturally, this locked and branded variant will run on the carrier's 4G LTE network and offer the same "Super Sensitive Touch" panel that we tested extensively at the company's Espoo HQ.

This being Microsoft's WP8 game, however, we still weren't able to go past the live-tiled start screen and into the meat and potatoes of the fuller app drawer, nor could we truly give the OS a spin -- that'll all have to wait until end of October. From the tightly controlled software bits we did demo, though, the 920's shaping up to be a smooth and solid contender for the beast phone race. Icons and text scroll by without any marked blur thanks to the screen's 60Hz refresh rate. And colors on that saturated display pop, while viewing angles remain consistently impressive. What also hasn't changed is the handset's girth and weight -- it's still chunky and relatively heavy in hand, but we're willing to overlook it for the PureView rear module alone.

Within the frenzied constraints of events like these, it's hard to really dive deep into camera performance. But we don't really have much need for that given our exhaustive coverage of the 920's optical image stabilization, low light capabilities and Cinemagraph GIF-making magic. Still, expect us to give it a fuller poke when final review units land in our laps (hopefully) later this month.

Unfortunately, the wait for Nokia's next of high-end Lumia kin isn't over yet. AT&T's playing coy and won't fess up to a concrete date or even on-contract price. That should all change as soon as Microsoft makes things officially official. Until then, sate yourself with the images below and don't miss the video after the break.