Nokia Lumia 920 can take magnetic lens attachments too

If there is one area we hope to see Windows Phone grow in 2013 it's in third party accessories. Nokia's Lumia phones have the best chance of that since they're quite pervasive and well known as far as branding.

Redditor l1v32r1d3BmX (catchy name, dear sir!) has serendipitously discovered that those iPhone lens attachments (which work by magnetic adhesion) also happen to work on his Lumia 920. The attachments are made by a few companies--a lot coming from China as cheap knock offs--allow wide-angle and macro enhancements to the built in camera. As it happens to be, the Lumia 920's camera housing is magnetic, which is either due to design or perhaps the optical image stabilization (OIS) setup. 

Macro lens on the Lumia 920

That brings us to that question on the tip of your tongue: Yes, OIS still works even with these attachments on and no, there does not seem to be any negative effects from using them.

We'll file these under gimmicky though because although they do work, the quality of the "glass" used will probably not yield fantastic results. But hey, we can think of worse things to drop $18 bucks on, which is the going price on Amazon (opens in new tab) for a 3-part kit. That kit includes a 180 degree fisheye, macro, wide angle lens and a few adapters.

No worries, here at Windows Phone Central we ordered a kit and will have some results for you hopefully on Sunday. So if you are considering these but want some of our thoughts on the results, tune back and we'll provide some sample photos. In addition, we'll test to see fi they work on other Windows Phones out there too.

Source: Reddit

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.

  • I smell a lot of potential here...
  • for what? fridge magnets on your phone? These lenses have been around for awhile and I've only ever met 1 person that had some (and it was at a tech event).  Very niche.
  • I think he means since the 920's camera is one of the best around, even someone like Nokia could team up with Carl Zeiss to make some quality accessory lenses for the 920 to sell. And I agree, that could be a potential area for marketing and sales, especially for camera 'prosumers'.
  • If I could get quality accessories like these i'd definitely use the Lumia 920 to capture my B-roll footage and and photos.
  • Like I mentioned, niche market, not enough people buy these lenses to make it a worth while endevour.  Anyone that really wants the effects these lenses have will be photographers that own proper hardware.  People would just use a software solution to produce the same effect quicker than buying add-on lenses.  You do bring up an interesting point for marketing though.  They could be manufactured for the sole puropse of marketing the phones and the losses would actually be  a marketing investment.  Not sure how effective it would be but I could see it maybe working.
  • I will get one just for the fun factor.
  • I disagree. I have a Lumnia 920 and would love to have some add on lenses. I want to create content with my phone - not just consume. I love Nokia's design of this phone and I hope more accessories will follow. 
  • The fact that there are more options for consumers. And for some third party hardware partners to add to an already amazing camera.
  • an 8x zoom would be awesome.
  • Yeah, it stinks of opportunities!
  • Hmmm....super gluing magnets to this Tamron 18-270 lens........
  • Are we sure it's the phone that's magnetic and not these lens attachments? I would have thought someone doing all these key/knife scratch tests would have noticed any magnetism by now...?
  • It is the lens, The frame of the camera housing must be made of steel so the magnet on the lens can stick to the phone. 
  • I believe there would be a magnet in the lense attachment and the camera frame contains ferromagentic material, such as the steel you mention. Thus the ferrmognetic material in the frame is attracted to the magnet in the lense attachment.  The frame itself is not magentized, but the lense attachment is.
  • Yep see the disassembled view of the 920 here:
    You can clearly see the metal frame around the camera lens area.
  • Hope it will work with other Lumia 800& 900 too :)
  • Hmm actually not too bad of a implementation.
  • That photo make me LOL!
  • Does the magnet affect the cameras OIS?  Would the magnetic field affecting the len's ability to "float"?  Maybe its a non issue since the phone has inductive charging anyway.
  • well if the springs are metal, and the magnet pulls them in one direction or another, basic physics says the OIS would be less effective.
  • I'm pretty sure I specifically and directly address the OIS question right in the post, no?
  • Oops missed that.  I have a tendancy to miss text inbetween picuters b/c it looks like advertisments... my bad
  • No worries about effect, or even damage, to the OIS system? Tiny little springs and strong magents may not play nice with each other. I'll pass...
  • Not all steel is magnetic.
  • A colleague of mine took pictures with a regular point and shoot with no zoom through binoculars at a zoo and the pictures were rather impressive for close ups. I think there is definitely potential if used with a quality lens setup.
  • I confirm this. The micro lens is awesome with lumia's camera.
  • I like this a lot. I wonder if it works for the 900 too. But Nokia should do this as well and make them cheap and affordable.
  • 18 bucks is cheap enough to give it a try thanks Jojogill
    Works for the lumia 800/900 as well (with a sticky ring)
  • This is pretty cool. I'm all about getting the most out of my current hardware until my upgrade time or I can afford the Lumia 920 off contract. Does anyone know if this will work with the HTC Titan? It feels metallic enough to be compatible.
  • X-ray vision lens, as seen in the back of several comics books... Nokia should market it before the iOS gang reads this.
  • They should package it with Sea Monkeys as a bonus.
  • And next phase of Pureview will be 41MP, OIS with detachable body which can change it to the full-fledge camera(a body with extra battery, external horseshoe, and canon-EF/Nikon-AF/Sony mount lense). ---> GOD CAMERAPHONE!!
  • I'm hoping for a nice car mount... Slide the phone into the mount with usb already in it.  Can audio go over the usb to the car???
    I've already got a decent car mount, they are just a lot nicer when they are  made for your phone.
  • If I was fortunate to get a umia 920, cannot on sprint, I would be interested in lenses if they provid3ed positive functionality.
  • Though magnetic is nice and yes, dependant upon the quality of the springs on the Lumia 920 may affect "floating", I wonder if having a bolt-mount hole for add-on lenses similar in size to the tripod hole on most cameras is something to consider for future "phones". While I know that photographers likely laugh at smart-phone cameras and dismiss them immediately, the Nokia 920 at least renews the discussion. Many non-enthusiasts probably cannot find their old stand-alone camera if asked right now, because they long ago left it in a drawer somewhere when the quality of smart-phone pics became mainstream. Add to this the rather large factor of "accessibility" and many users these days favor their smart-phone pics over traditional cameras if only for the easy sharing functions to FB, Twitter, etc. Crazy as it sounds, most users consider it "painful" to have to hook their camera up to their computer in order to transfer pics. How far we've come in such a short time, huh?
  • Would these potentially work on the 820?
  • Lumia 820 ?
  • I received a wide angle magnetic lens from a company for free and it stuck to my HD7 too, just slightly off though. These do come with little install kits that put a thin strip around your camera to hold the lens in place should you really want one.
  • isn't it risky? magnetic fields could magnetize autofocus mechanism, if there are iron parts..
  • are these lenses compatible with lumia 925? thanks :).. planning to get a 925 soon