Love or loathe Windows Phone devices with 512 MB RAM?

Lumia 520

We’ve seen this a lot here at Windows Phone Central - passionate debates in comments whenever a post mentions a game that can’t run on Windows Phone devices with 512MB RAM. We also know that Nokia Lumia 520 with that low amount of RAM became the sleeper hit for Nokia last year, and has been the best-selling Windows Phone device across the board.  

I spotted this thread on Windows Phone Central forums about the same, and wondered why these devices get all the rants despite their irrefutable success.

Of course, the usual argument is that a lot of apps and games don’t run well (or at all) on these devices, and there’s a noticeable lag in the Windows Phone experience.

However, I’ve found that apart from some games, almost all apps run on 512MB RAM devices. And I believe, that’s a compromise most people knew before buying the phone. The observations about laggy experience are also misplaced. If you keep a decent amount of internal memory free, it’s not that bad. Some suggest an occasional soft reset too. Some folks on the thread also note that the performance has improved with Windows Phone 8.1, and of course it’s only the preview.

Obviously, a low to mid-range smartphone won’t match the performance of a flagship device. The low specifications and certain compromises made brings the costs down, and makes these devices mass market.

What are your thoughts on this? Tell us in the comments, or have a look at that forums thread, and sound off your thoughts and observations there.


Reader comments

Love or loathe Windows Phone devices with 512 MB RAM?



Well m waiting for 8.1 so i can move the space hungry apps to sd card, i always have to delete some app to install another app. Need to keep at least 600mb for smooth working of my L520

Yes, really looking forward to putting apps on the SD card. Sometimes the installation process wants even more room than the actual app size. I have 1000MB free and am still unable to download Kinectimals Unleashed.

My wife's 521 feels sluggish now, and many games do not install, or didn't initially install (temple run 1). 

Heck, not even Skype worked initilly in 512Mb RAM devices (Lumia 610)

So, I hate 512Mb RAM in a phone not the phone itself

Lumia 610 had 256mb RAM. Skype used to work on it, but they raised minimum requirement to 512mb RAM to make sure no one complained of inferior performance.

Thanks for the clarification, I guess I picked a bad example

The rest of my post still stands, though

Microsoft need to come out with a new phone on T-Mobile. My 521 is super lazy right now. 16gb 5" quad core device

I still don't get why they don't have a second no-contract phone. There needs to be something with more ram and slightly better specs than the 520 available off contract, even if it's not one of the Nokia lines. 

I love em! I do not even feel that 512MB RAM limitation coz most of the apps that I need supports it. Well, except for Subway Surfers though. I guess that's the only game/app that I need that does not work on my phone.

There seems to be a bit a hint of delay on the start screen, when there are too many apps running on the background. It was more evident on 8.1, back on 8.0 this doesn't seem to be a nuisance. But, everything comes at a price. I am saving up for a 1320 As of now. 

Official 8.1 apps don't close when you press back as they did with previous versions of WP... So you need to manage these yourself.... Tap and hold your back button, tap the "X"... Or as of 8.1 you can swipe down on the app to close it.

Yeah, I realized that, it does seem much a downer, as the start tiles seems to dissappear for a second then reappears. Although, its not that bad, it does leave an impression, that it still slows down. But then again it's thee lowest lumia. The only 8.1 rant that I think is the social integration which I worshipped back at 8.0 has been replaced by the new framework thing. Sure it'll be easy for third party devs, but, the ease and smoothness of the past integration made me stay at windows phone. Now you can't even change your FB profile picture even with the app, photo uploads are also slow. compared at 8.0

Sometimes when I go back to the start screen and go down very quickly the tiles take a little while to load up (like, they're all blank). That happens too when I go on one of the groups pinned on my start screen.
925 on 8.1

You don't need to close them, they're still not allowed to kill your CPU and battery in the background. They just stay resident in memory until that memory is needed.

I see rare, occasional lag as well on returning to the start screen and I'm on an Icon. I think there is a small flaw with the start screen that is across the board and not specific to low end devices. It's not a huge deal or nuisance to me but it would be nice if they get it resolved by launch.

I have the ICON and after the 8.1 dev update i have noticed a few sluggish issues from time to time. But before the update my phone worked flawlessly.

Obviously Windows Phone is NOT "Meh" if you took the trouble of posting a comment to denigrate it. What that makes you is a troll!

Horrible optimization.
That bad is on part of the game developers not the hardware.
Though I am surprised to hear that A8 and 6Guns run at all, Very impressive!

It has nothing to do with the engine that game engine is great its the developers who used the engine, their obviously not very good at what they do.
If Asphalt 8 can run buttery smooth on a Lumia 520 then SW Surfers should flow like a raging river.
Simply put Gameloft has a better team of programmers behind their game.

Other unity games run just fine on phones with 512MB ram so the engine is certainly capable of it. So please tell us why you think that it has anything to do with the engine.

Well my friend, because by definition, the optimization part of game development is managed into the game engine's source code. That's all.

There are some small things you can do to improve performance, but you can't manage more than a few things. At best you can combine materials in a single texture and avoid scaling objects for better performances.

As for the fact that some games are working on phones with 512mb, its only logical that a puzzle game made with unity will demand less memory than a 3D racing game with complex textures for example.


Look here Aanze have some manners about yourself, I'm nobody's bitch and you will no place a finger on anybody.
Join a discussion even if its already dead fine have at it but coming in insulting people is just childish and way out of line.

Well I just joined the discussion of a highlighted topic in the main page. The title of the post is by the way made to make people react right ?
My previous post did not insult anyone. I your referring to the "bitching" argument I had a while before, I would do it again and again since the amount of people bitching about developers being "lazy" is ridiculously high. Especially coming from people who never had the slightest idea of what it takes for a small team to release a mobile game. Those are the same people that will rate 1 star an app just because "it should be free". I'm just tired of this.

And so you think you know me and what I know and what I'm about?
You have the nerve to call anyone out of their name in a respectful forum where even if conversations get heated people still show Respect. Honestly you deserve No ones attention but I just needed to let you know.
So I'm no longer going to engage with you or entertain your empty rhetoric. Have at least an ounce of class about yourself. Peace.

Well, feel free to be offended and close the debate the way you want. You're talking about my empty rethoric but you're the one who only focused on the fact that I sounded rude, but never actually had something to say regarding the real subject.
And please, pretty please, do not talk about being respectful especially after the way you talked to Zamir about its english level/grammar because this was the coward move of someone trying to escape a debate.
Yeah, "peace" like you said.

Asphalt 5,7,8; six guns, halo, etc all run like fluid in both my 520 and 720...
Developers of subway surfers are too lazy. They should learn from gameloft...

Do you know how large Gameloft is compared to Kiloo? You expect smaller company to have same resources as long time large company do you

Sure gameloft is much bigger than kiloo. But get real, can't you find a difference in size of their games as well? Asphalt 8 VS Subway Surfers? HALO VS Subway surfers? You think both requires same effort for optimization? I know both use different game engines as well so they are optimized in a rather different way. It's nothing but laziness and ignorance.
I've seen much better indie games optimized for low ram devices too. It doesn't really need a big team.
FACT: Subway surfers indeed works if not smoothly in developer unlocked 512mb (WP) devices. Search YouTube.

"Developers of subway surfers are too lazy".

What do you know about anything ? You're just bitching. Bitching people deserve to be slapped like bitches.

Learn some manners first, then talk. Seriously, your comment is not worth a reply... At least the guy above^ makes sense, you don't.

Well I don't have manners, but I won't say someone is lazy just because I'm frustrated. What I just stated was fact, the comment I replied to was just.. childish statement , something like "this project is taking time so the team is lazy". If every damn application that is not optimized was due to a lazy team the entire IT world would be made of lazy people.

Frustration is a whole different thing. I've emailed many developers many a times. And to be honest, kiloo appeared most ignorant to me. If one individual developer can make a simple tweak to run the game in 512mb device, why not kiloo?

"What do you know about anything ? You're just bitching. Bitching people deserve to be slapped like bitches."

Sorry but I can't find where is your reply in the above quote. Kindly point me to that.

"If every damn application that is not optimized was due to a lazy team the entire IT world would be made of lazy people."
-Read my reply to Zamir Yusuf above.

"if one individual developer can make a simple tweak". Again: What do you know about the simple tweak ? What is the tweak ? On which platform ? Do you refer to the tweak that made it work on dev unlock WP device ? Or do you refer to a tweak applied on any other mobile os (ios or android) ? Because in that case your argument is completely invalid, especially since its a well known fact that optimizing Unity framework cannot be performed the same way on android and WP: One uses OpenGl, the other is direct X only compatible, which basically do not work the same way at all.. Please describe ?

Oh, and developer unlocked phone allows DEVELOPERS to override material limitation on the phone by using debug-enabled only functions for testing purpose. Once you try to publish your app on the store with those functions, your app is certification is denied.

If you're interested in the Unity project:


Read the entire post and check out how the windows phone 8 porting of unity games seems to lack the optimizations it benefits when switching between iOs and android. Unity is a relatively new platform and like I said:

It compiles the rendering for iOS and android using OpenGL library which DOES NOT exists on Windows Phone. Therefore, the implicit conversion to Direct X it requires to work on WP devices implies a loss of performance.

because the games has been pretty much stripped down. asphalt 8 on wp8 missing some graphics effects compared to android's version

I have this game on both my 920 & 1520 and they both have every graphical detail that is included in their respected classes the 1520 of course maxing the game out with 0 frame drop. I also own this game on an S3 & played it on an S4 the 920 is on par with both and the 1520 including even more particle effects & so on.
Of course the 520 like all other devices in its class is running with less effects turned on just as a game would if it were running on PS4 vs a High End PC.
Common sense.

in case you don't notice, I reply directly to tho this comment "Asphalt 8 and six guns both run extremely smoothly on my 520. Why not subway surfers"
so in which part my statement is false? if you compare the game on android phone with same hardware level as 520 you can see the android version have more eye candy turned on while on 520 it's just basic.

I wasn't attacking him at all as you read, it was an honest question as he didn't seem to be understanding what I was saying, and what exactly what I wrong about since you seem to be getting me clearly.

android phone with SAME hardware level, which is low-mid range phone on comparable price to Lumia 520 run the game with more graphics effect. that's why they tend to run the game at lower fps, not because the hardware on that android devices are crap compared to 520 or wp8 magically allow low-mid range phone to run games smoother.

Actually... The version of asphalt 8 on the 1gb ram windows phone is the same as that on android. But for 512 mb ram phones, yes some effects were trimmed down, like mirror reflections, destructible objects and a few textures were made low res. But ONLY for 512 mb ram phones.

Of course I said this in my previous comments, why do people seem to be so confused about the standards of hardware vs software?

Checked just now. Asphalt 8 on Lumia 1520 do noticeably missing lens flare particles and motion blur, and that comparing to Galaxy S4 which is previous gen. So what's false with my statement if you care to explain.

Do you understand being 'on par' doesn't mean it's 'the same'?

After doing a bit of digging on the current state of the game I have found that A8 has been updated on the android platform that has not yet made it to windows allowing there to be more particle effects so in that respect you are correct the visuals are currently better on the android devices at least on the higher end models at this point. This still doesn't mean that the devices are more capable then anything windows this just means that gameloft decided it was best to patch the android market first as it has been available longer and has a larger install base makes sense to me, in the coming weeks or months windows will get the same patch update and we will see the same visual flare on equally suited devices.
Look what your not getting is that there is no magic behind android, apple or windows the only three factors are hardware, form factor and developer potential that's it.
I'm not sure your even getting me clearly so I'm just gonna stop here. Cheers. :)

Sorry, but that just FALSE statement you gave there.

The video in the link below shows Galaxy S4 mini run Asphalt 8, published on 23rd August 2013 which just a day after the game released to android 22nd August.

In case you didn't notice, the game running with lens flare particles and motion blur from the start which still not exist even on high end 1520. and fact is, S4 mini is mid range android phone with comparable specs to Lumia 920.
Quoting your earliest response: "I have this game on both my 920 & 1520 and they both have every graphical detail that is included in their respected classes"

See? Just admit it that you're wrong and don't try to insult our intelligent. You keep showing your unnecessary 'explanations' in this discussion but the fact remain : "asphalt 8 on wp8 missing some graphics effects compared to android's version" and thus explain "Asphalt 8 and six guns both run extremely smoothly on my 520" as quoted from OP

case closed. cheers ;)

True. I've installed Asphalt 8 on both Lumia 720 and iPad 2, and the graphic on 720 is pretty poor while in the iPad 2 is quite great. Both have 1 GHz dual-core and 512 MB RAM.

When comparing hardware running the same software you have to consider form factor.
Seeing as the iPad 2 is a much larger device it has much more room for the heat to dissipate and keep other vital parts like the battery, ram etc. cool while running such a task.
On the much smaller 5 inch 520 you have virtually no room at all in the device to keep all the parts from heating up basically simultaneously making the same task running on similar hardware even more taxing and another thing to consider is the battery size & output that is a major part in all of this as it like the PSU in a PC is the driving force of all your parts and if its being heavily taxed performance drops Period so in order to maintain a smooth and enjoyable gaming experience on a much device developers very wisely decided to remove unnecessary effects without sacrificing the core gameplay experience.
This along with all the other specific computing commands each chipset has stored that we don't know about play invaluable roles in performance potential.
I hope this made sense I didn't want to be too long winded but there's a lot to factor lol.

Subway surfers does run on 512 MB device... There is a workaround way for it... Not official, You know..

I was under the same delusion until recently. But a commenter here pointed out that unlike Airborne, Subway Surfers is based on quickie reflexes. And as the game moves forward, it becomes really fast, under such resolution. May be this has something to do with 512 MB RAM being insufficient and may be Kiloo doesn't wanna launch its game risking low ratings. But then, the clone runs just fine :X I hope WPC asked Kiloo on behalf of its readers and get us the reason :P

At the same resolution it still lags in Lumia 525.. Not much of a difference in this case although it has 1 GB RAM...

I heard that the 525 lags with Temple Run 2 too. But I also heard that the Temple Run 2 is horribly optimized and never updated or bug-fixed.

It does lag.. But sometimes... I mean maybe that's because I play it sometimes... And subway surfers is played on a daily basis.. So maybe I noticed more lag on Sunday... :P

I think lower-end phones are an important part of the ecosystem regardless if certain games can't run on them.  If you compare the 'lag' you mention compared to lower-end Android phones it's a HUGE difference.  Windows Phone runs buttery smooth compared to the Android lower-end phones.   As for the games, developers need to learn to optimize their games better to run on lower-end hardware I feel.  But graphics intensive games unfortunately a trade-off, and you should know that before investing into a lower-end phone. :)

Yep love that they are making Windows Phone more well known, but loathe developing for them because of performance issues.

Low end devices, even on Android still sell better than high end devices. And back in the 90s hardly anyone had a cellphone.

obviously...but 1gb phones should cost the same as 512 mb phones now regardless of a market. that's what I meant by my first comment.

No, that's why i own 16gb RAM phone with 4TB storage and sweet sweet 200mp camera with 4k and slow-mo capabilities and don't even get me started on holographic display

I don't know about 512mb phones but when I went from a 928 to an icon i saw absolutely no improvement in performance in any situation, including gaming. That change in phones doubled my ram and doubled the CPU cores, but it seems unnecessary.

Just proves how awesome WP was on previous high end hardware.. My 920, and 1520, have similar performance... But, better processor, and ram, help things like camera performance, and make our 1080p screens possible.. So, the higher specs do have their benefits..

Driving the 1080p makes sense to have the extra power. But that camera. I don't know. Nokia cameras are extremely slow. Slow to start up, slow to autofocus. They're just slow. Personally I am unable to perceive a speed difference between my old 928, my current icon, and my wife's 925. Do any games even properly support 1080p displays yet? Games like halo Spartan assault look pretty bad on my icon and looked real sharp on the 928.

Exactly!! You're right.. Our cameras are molasses slow.. Sick of waiting on my camera to start in 2014.. MS needs to work on that.. But, as far as 1080p goes.. I'm happy about the advantages so far.. I love the extra content displayed, especially in IE11,, now that the resolution is fixed... I'm looking forward to a new 1520 with a QHD display.

Yeah, its slightly faster.. Fast enough to not be annoying, so yeah its good... I like that the Lenses button is right on the screen.. Nokia Camera needs more on screen button options, like FFC.. I hate it hidden.

Yea camera app is a bit faster than Nokia camera, but I actually use the raw format feature of Nokia camera + icon. That probably slows down between-shots time, but the autofocus time is always slow. I guess there's tradeoffs in everything...

Have you played Grand theft auto, or asphalt 8? Game play between my 925/8x to 1520 is a BIG difference.

You're able to play GTA on maximum settings with very little lag, but its completely unplayable on the others.

I have played asphalt 8. It does look amazing, but on my icon it drains battery even when plugged in to the wall. When not plugged in it drains the entire battery from full in under an hour.

It's not unnecessary. Windows Phone is much faster running on twice the power. Windows Phone has always been good at masking the lag/loading times.

More phones should have 1gb ram for a consumer there aren't much choices for a mid range device with 1 gb ram. I wish the 720 had 1gb ram it would be the perfect device for me.

Loathe with a passion. Nokia should be sued for making these pathetic 512 MB devices. The 630 has a pathetic 512MB RAM and it is going to be priced more than the Moto G...to me that is such a ridiculous thing. It is an inferior device in every way imaginable, except maybe in design and build.

Look, every device (Android) in that price range has a 1 GB RAM. And the 512 MB RAM on my 720 does cause problems and app-crashing when multitasking. Enough said.

No Android is not crap, at least not on the Moto G- it's got 4.4.2 on it. It's another matter that I much prefer WP to Android, but it's my unbiased observation.

Out of the box every android is buttery smooth... Its after 3 months and lots of installations... It starts to lag... Be it low end or the flagship... After 3-4 months it will lag...

Agree with you on that. I can consider 512mb ram for a 520 for its too cheap, but 720 ain't that cheap. It's a mid range Lumia (at least here in India) and my only complain for this phone is low ram... Android devices of lower prices have at least a GB of ram.

I'm with you. I fail to understand why Nokia can put quad core CPU in 630 but not put in at least 1gb ram. it's 2014 already, how much extra 512mb ram will cost. People praising how well Lumia 520 can run games but they don't really see what dev have done to the games to make it run well. Android phone with same specs as Lumia 520 can run asphalts 8 too smoothly, provided they run the game with wp8's graphics effects level.

at least with PC part you can install more ram without much cost  on phone where you got to stuck with same hardware at least almost a year before it worth upgrading, you need to make the dollar counts. 

I agree. 512MB is horrible. I know because I have it. There is NEVER enough space for any normal use. Sure you can call and text. But receive/send several pictures at once in WhatsApp? Crash and back to the start screen it is. Try to browse like it's normal since 10 years and use tabs? Too bad, the low ram means that pages won't load in the background and wait for you to click on them. They will start loading only when you go to that tab. And when you close it and go back to the first tab, it has to reload because the small ram means that it has space for only one website at once and has to flush the others from the memory. There are hundreds of these examples, and only someone who uses it can truly understand how horrible 512MB ram is. WP8 with 512MB RAM is much worse than WP7 with 512MB, probably because of much higher system memory usage. WP7 was at least still usable, but WP8 is a strong degradation from the WP7 experience.

Once I downloaded subway surfers for 512 ram on my Lumia 620, still its working... The game doesn't exists now for 512 ram :/

Probably the only thing I don't like about my 521 is the lack of space. But in all, its a great phone. Plus with the Windows 8.1 preview, its even better and faster! It gets the job done lol.

No problems with my 521. Just need to make sure there isn't a lot of apps running in the background. A lot of the games I downloaded have worked just fine.

I've had a poor experience with some apps where its obvious the dev hasn't bothered optimising. This is very noticeable in the official vine app which is virtually unusable when it comes to recording... But then the unofficial 6sec app works perfectly well in this regard. You compare the number of updates we've had on 6sec compared to the original and you see the possible cause is simply present dev commitment.

Not exactly loathe.Loathe is a harsh word.

Let's just say not extremely pleased :p

I'm not happy that my 620 doesn't play some relatively simple games but I'm very happy that it plays games like Asphalt 8 and Six Guns very smoothly :)

The Lumia 720 with 1 GB RAM at the same price would have swept the market away. This new 630 should have at least had 1 GB RAM, given that it already doesn't have a flash on the rear and a ffc. So, 1 GB RAM should have been a must.

Ok, here's a comparison for you. The Lumia 720's competitor at that price point 1 year ago was the Xperia L which had 1 GB RAM, a better blocked Snapdragon SoC and an 8 MP camera. Granted the Xperia L's camera was shittier, why was Nokia charging the same for lower specs??

Because Nokia doesnt just slap phones together, specs arent everything, I'd rather a low end nokia then a high end of pretty much every phone, purely because of their awesome build quality. Also, you gotta keep in mind, Sony is a big company, much bigger than nokia, they can easily sell things at a loss, Nokia simply cannot afford to sell products at a loss (I dont know if sony was selling that device at a loss or not, but its jsut something to think about)

I never had a 512 Mb phone but I don't see how people can hate it if they do their research. From my short time playing with one the phones dont seem that bad.

Apart from some the games and apps which require 1 GB, the biggest problem is when the phone (my 720) becomes unresponsive when trying to switch between apps. Sometimes you click on the home button, and the screen goes blank for like 5-6 seconds with the frustrating 'resuming...' until the homescreen appears. Pathetic performance I should say. That said, I would blindly pick up a Nokia WP any day, given that I dont really enjoy using my Moto G although it's lag-free and has stellar performance.

Well then, it does not reflect well on our beloved OS then, does it?While Android KitKat has got it all covered. Let's all be honest here- we like WP for other things, else these 'resuming...' and 'loading...' screens should have gotten us to abandon this platform since long.

This resuming "issue" is not a big issue for me at all as I have had my 920 filled to the brim and have not experienced this issue in all areas of use.
I have however experienced it in the Music Player apps and that ish is extremely annoying forcing me to bounce between the two just to get a song playing.

This resuming thing was solved my Micorsoft when they introduced fast resume but not all devs use it that's why you're getting 'resuming...'. And specs don't really matter ; it's all about software optimization.

You mean to say apps such as WhatsApp and Facebook which have been developed under the close watch of Nokia & Microsoft still don't employ 'fast resume'?

No. It's an OS issue. Why should I see "resuming..." for few seconds even when I press start when two or more apps are running behind?

back when I had my 521, I neer had that issue, how many apps are you guys running at once? :s i could run about 6 before apps were getting removed from memory, but i never lost performance for it :s

I have a Lumia 822 with 1gb of ram and sometimes the screen goes off with the resuming screen, so don't blame dude!

"You get what you Pay for". I don't even know why they complain. Low-end Android phones can't run a lot of Apps and I don't see why Windows Phone 8 buyers would think otherwise.

I did say "Low End". I bought the Lumia 521 for my daughter last year April for $150 off-contract, she hated it, ended up giving her my Ativ S when I got my 1520.3.
Show me a $150 phone and I'll show you a "Low End Device".

Ok, granted. Now the 630 is either the same-end or even a downgrade to the 521. Now tell me a low-end device at the price of the 630...umm, I present to you the Moto G for at least $10 less. It's sad really, while I root for the Lumias, I cannot really recommend a Lumia over a Moto G to my friends, although I don't like it at all.

what? the 630 is an obvious upgrade from the 52x, its got double cores, bigger screen (same res but meh) whats worse? the only thing it steps back from is the dedicated camera button.

The Moto G is good but I wouldn't recommend it over a Lumia 520 or 630. Overall, I found the Moto G's performance no better than the 520. I occasionally get slowdown with my 520, but then again I did with my 920, and it took a long period of use for that to happen. On the other hand, with the Moto G I experienced slowdown and crashes shortly after use. While it also offered access to a larger number of more perfomance-intensive apps, it didn't run these great - e.g. Batman and GTA were stuttery, compared with the good performance on a 920 with similar spec. Dead Trigger 2 was also very laggy. To me, the performance of demanding apps/games negates a lot of the advantages of getting the Moto G as a "better performing" phone, unless you definitely want to be in the Android eco-system.

The 520 is a faster device to use in my own experience and the 520 and 630 also include expandable SD storage which the 8GB/16GB Moto Gs do not. So overall the Moto G is a good device and an excellent value entry to Android, but the 520 is a better value smartphone and will be a great experience if you configure it a bit.

Yep I heard a lot about the Moto G, it's just I don't like it, I prefer my 520 (and even more after the WP8.1 update), fantastic price, runs smoothly and I love the Metro design. It's all about tastes.

Ok, but in my country the Moto G it's overpriced and the cheapest version comes with only 8gb. I don't play games but I need a lot of space, because of that the 520 it's my option. But in a certain point I agree, my next Lumia will be a model with 1gb RAM (at least).

Micromax has a horrible reputation and is nowhere near the level of R&D that Nokia is and has no place in this conversation.

Well, we are also talking about 'You get what you pay for'...and you get Micromax too for the same amount you pay for 630 or the Moto G, with better specs. So, yes, Micromax has a place in this conversations...so do others such as Gionee.

The Moto G being made by a credible manufacture yes stands a chance in an argument but when you start getting into knock off brands that don't even have a professional or stable mobile website you step into a whole other arena.
It has no place here. Nokia is a World Class Company who has done way too much to be paced against the likes of some half baked pop up company throwing specs in your face.
Remember "You Get What You Pay For." so if your paying for specs at the cost of a 520 then your paying for turbo speed hot garbage.

All I'm saying is do you really think a low end phone will perform just like high end device?
The 521 loads apps slower, the 5MP (without flash) camera sucks and the screen resolution sucks.
Low end and low costs are not the same in my book.

Of course not, show me who does. . . .
Now let me ask you this, do you
Really expect a phone developed by a pop up to have as high quality parts or overall build quality as one built by a World Class manufacturing and design team?
Knowing the obvious answer how long do you expect that high speed lowest bidder parts phone to last before it self destructs?
There is again no reason Nokia should be Respectfully compared to an off brand company.
Micromax belongs in conversations involving companies like Blu, Zero, VeryKool and so on. :)

I don't mind the 512 mb ram. Still love my L520. I bought a phone with a fantastic, smooth UI, on great price. Most of the games are able to run on the device and the gaming experience is great.

Wow I haven't heard the term "Sleeper Hit" in years Must be an 80's Baby!
The 520 Rocks it really shows of the technical skill behind the WP8 OS.

I think they just worry about it in terms of releasing a quality gaming experience. Game publishers are really iffy about releasing things that have slight sluggish performance. Even if the general masses would not mind. I had complained to Rockstar because they did not release GTA Vice City on my device. It was a quad core processor 2gb ram phone with a 1080p display device, but they said it might have some stability issues...so it wasn’t even worth looking into So I think the people who are responsible in making these decisions...really just don’t want to put the effort into testing them with batches of test groups, which is why indie developers are thriving on the PC with things like early access and alpha/beta testing, and on consoles as well, just my opinion though!

I do not agree that performance is improved for the 520 with 8.1. I actually see "loading..." or "Resuming..." just to bring up the Start screen a lot after closing an app! Not that I don't like the 520. I paid $40 off contract for a device that runs the most up to date software and keep me current after MS tricked me into buying the WP7 Lumia 900 at launch :)

Agreed I was not going to jump on the 8.1 Dev kit bandwagon even though I have been tempted I've already seen little losses that people are experiencing with it.
It does sound fun experiencing the tiny changes as the come like Cortana's voice change and what not but I can wait. ;)

like the comment right above yourse said, you are running WP8.1 on drivers optimized for WP8.0, their will be bugs and slowdowns until nokia releases WP8.1 optimized drivers (Nokia Cyan) although I dont get that issue on my 925, I seem to be lucky, I dodged pretty much every major WP8.1 bug on my 925

Loathe! I can't freakin believe they'd even think to release the 630 with half a gig of ram. That's a step down from the 525 and it completely turned me off that phone.

It's great. I have Lumia 520 with 512 ram and its pretty much great till now. Some games like subway surfers or detective games aren't available for this phone by its alright cuz we have asphalt 8 which works smoothly on Lumia 520 and also temple run and many many more. Also apps works as best as any other wp8 smartphone.

I think the time has come for Microsoft to ditch 512MB phones and just stick with 1GB as the minimum.

This! people ask devs to bring their popular apps to this 3rd place platform but then ask them to work overtime just to make sure their apps can run on your low end hardware.