AsiaHong KongTravel Gear

Because Travel Demands Your #Selfies

By December 20, 2014 No Comments

Holiday travels nowadays demand that you come home with more than just a handful of presents and trinkets. With the onset of camera phones and proliferation of online photo galleries like Tumblr, Instagram, and the ever-reliable Facebook, taking photos are now essential especially during your vacation travels.  Whether you like them or not, Selfies, the act of taking a photo of yourself with your hand-held camera device (whether it’s an actual camera or a camera phone), is quickly creeping in any travel vacation photo album.

So, days before we left for our out-of-country trip to Hong Kong (land of coma-inducing-food), the guys from Microsoft Mobile and their PR agencies handed us their first-ever selfie smartphone camera: the Microsoft Lumia 730 for us to play around with.

I was reluctant, at first, since I’m not really fond of taking selfies (short arms make it hard for me to take any decent front-facing camera shot), but mere minutes into Hong Kong, I’m already happy with the decision of bringing these Lumias along. They are, for a lack of a better word, life-savers. And we’re here to show you why. :p

 

Let us...begin! *click*smile*

Let us…begin! *click*smile*

 

It’s #Selfie Time

Upon boarding the plane, I already started fiddling with the Lumia 730’s front-facing camera. Nokia has always been known for its optics, but this is the first time that much emphasis is being made for its front-facing camera. The 5 megapixel front-facing camera coupled with a wide-angle lens opens more possibilities for you to capture more and easily frame your selfie.

Wanged

Apply various effects with the Lumia Selfie App – dull colors, tone skins, and make yourself seem thinner. 😀

 

The Lumia Selfie App is gorgeous! It gives you the convenience of tweaking and fiddling with your selfie photos on the fly. With added filters and quirky effects (like making your eyes bigger, or teeth whiter or face THINNER), the Lumia Selfie opens your photos to worlds of creative tinkering. Heck, if after saving you feel you want to change the effects again or revert it back to its original form, the Selfie App can do that. 😀

So for someone who’s a Selfie Virgin, the Lumia 730 is godsend! Here are a few more quirky shots from our HK Adventure.

 

Before and After. Photo taken from Unbox.Ph

The Power of the Selfie App! OMG!  Photo taken from Unbox.Ph

 

One draw back of the thinning tool is, it could look super fake -- check its effect on Unpack and Unbox EIC, Carlo Ople.

One draw back of the thinning tool is it could look super fake — check its effect on our EIC, Carlo Ople.

 

Even inside a moving object, the front-facing's optical image stablization (OIC) function helps take pretty good photos (and in rich tones as well). :)

Even inside moving objects, the front-facing’s optical image stabilization (OIC) function helps take pretty good photos. 🙂

 

Wider lens means more subjects to capture! :D

Wider lens means more subjects to capture! 😀 Eason, what are you doing?!!!

 

You know who the Pinoys are in any country when they whip out their camera devices and start shooting the food before devouring them. Yes, we were guilty and, yes, the locals thought us strange (but quite amusing). Hehehe. 🙂

 

Ready your cameras, here comes the foodsss! :D

Ready your cameras, here comes the foodsss! 😀

 

Picturan naa! I mean, chibugan naaa!

Picturan naa! I mean, chibugan naaa!

 

Food photography-ception

Food photography-ception

 

This Chinese Pizza is pretty much one of the major highlights of the trip! Carlo and Mich cannot get over how good this is! :3 yum!

This Chinese Pizza is pretty much one of the major highlights of the trip! Carlo and Mich cannot get over how good this is! :3 yum!

 

Snake Soup, anyone? Snake. Snake? SNAKEEE!!!!!!!!!!!

Snake Soup, anyone? Snake. Snake? SNAKEEE!!!!!! (Also trying out the Macro capabilities of its 6.7 Megapixel rear camera. Wow.)

 

With Lumia's range of pre-installed camera app, your phone camera can create amazing depth-of-field tricks like this. Speaking of trick, yes, that's a Ferrero.

With Lumia’s range of pre-installed camera app, your phone camera can create amazing depth-of-field tricks like this. And yes, that’s a giant Ferrero.

 

For a mid-range phone, the camera optics on this is amazing! Capturing depth-of-field tricks, and taking in a lot of data even with just a 6.7 megapixel rear camera sensor is a feat not shared by phones in this product category. I mean check the next two photos out.

Details can still be seen, albeit a bit grainy and blurry, but then again....

Details can still be seen, albeit a bit grainy and blurry, but then again….

 

...this is where we were shooting from. And that's not even the focus of the shot! Wew.

…this is where we were shooting from. And that’s not even the focus of the shot! Wew. This is in Causeway bay, by the way. 🙂

 

One of the quirky things about the Lumia has always been its design. When all other phone companies decided to stay with black, brushed-metal grey or even silver and gold, Nokia (back before Microsoft Devices took over) decided to infuse their phones with splashes of vibrant colors. The Lumia 730 follows through with that tradition and even allows you to swap its colorful shells. Adding color to the phones instantly elevates them to additional fashion accessory items than just mere, well, gadgets.

 

Color-pairing? We are soo #Fashown!

Color-pairing? We are soo #Fashown!

 

Eason on being Green.

Eason on being Green.

 

Orange is the new Black!

Orange is the new Black!

 

Dual-Sim Saves The Day!

Unlike its LTE brother (Lumia 735), the 730 is a preferred choice particularly as a travel phone because of its Dual-Sim capabilities. When we booked our stay with AirBnb our host, CS Lee, graciously provided us all with unlimited data SIMS for our phones. The Dual-Sim slot means that you don’t have to bring an extra phone just so you can keep your local (Philippine) SIM active.

And, with a mid-range phone that can do pretty much everything that your flagship can, the Lumia 730 is equipped to tackle various potential travel woes. It comes pre-packed and fully equipped with HERE Maps and HERE Drive so going around foreign territories is a breeze.

One of our companions, Eason de Guzman, Jr. of Unbox Podcast and Team Techsquad, would usually go around the city by foot and meet us at various stations with the help of Nokia’s proprietary map tool (which also recently launched for android devices).

 

Unpacked ProTip copy

 

You want to get a local SIM (in our case HK) for in-city communications – and instant posting on IG and FB hehe. Certain SIMs carry certain properties. Hong Kong, in particular, divides their SIMS according to usage. There’s a prepaid SIM that’s specifically for call & text and another specifically for data consumption. We chose Data and had our VIBER on the whole time. The wonderful thing about most foreign countries is they have amazing mobile internet reach. Signal doesn’t break inside the underground subway systems or high-up in the Peak. Wow.

 

Taking a photo and sharing it on your social feed at the highest point in Hong Kong? No problem.

Taking a photo and sharing it on your social feed at the highest point in Hong Kong? No problem.

 

Conclusion

Great optics, good photos, and money-saving capabilities – the Lumia 730 was one of the best things we brought on our amazing Hong Kong Trip!  To read up more on the Lumia 730 and to check out more photos from our HK adventure, check our first article about this amazing Microsoft Lumia device in our sister site, Unbox.ph.

The Microsoft Lumia 730 retails for Php 11,990.00 and if you purchase it before the year ends, you also get 3-months worth of Skype credits so you can call any international mobile and landline phone — for free! For more details on that, check this link.

Selfie Pa More!

Selfie Pa More!

 

 

 

 

Colin Chan

Colin Chan

All-around geek, Colin stretches his passion for fashion and fragrances (really, he's an addict). A once regular contributor for Unbox, he's jumped from site to site and juggles Ungeek.ph as well as Unpacked.ph. In his off time he scours through mounds of websites, youtube reviews and ads that talk about perfume (that's when he's not busy gobbling up TV series, movies and videos games left and right).