The Nokia Lumia 635's camera offering seems pretty weak at an initial glance. The main rear snapper is a basic 5-megapixel offering with no flash whatsoever, so night shots are out.

But do you know what? The Lumia 635 is capable of taking some surprisingly decent shots. I'm not saying it's anything to write home about, particularly, and there's certainly nothing here that warrants the PureView label of Nokia's high-end cameraphones.

But this is a pretty well balanced smartphone camera for the price, and it's certainly better than the vast majority of low-end Android phones that pass through our doors.

Nokia Lumia 635 review

Scenery snaps picked out the clouds surprisingly well, though the darkened foreground revealed the need for a HDR mode, which has since been added with the Lumia Denim update. Meanwhile close-up shots of flowers revealed reasonably sharp edges and accurate colours.

Finally, low-light indoor shots were distinctly less grainy than many of those aforementioned cheap Android efforts can manage.

More problematic for our money is the total lack of a front-facing camera. That means no video calls from the preinstalled Skype app, but more importantly, given the likely target audience, no selfies.

With that cheap price tag and gaudy design, the Lumia 635 is clearly going to be an appealing choice to kids - or at least to parents footing the bill for their kid's new phone. So omitting the facilitator for one of the key things kids do with their phones these days seems a little strange to say the least.

Nokia Lumia 635 review

Video recording on that rear camera is a bit of a weakness. It's 720p, but pretty much all of our test videos had an element of shake and blurriness to them, while it didn't react too swiftly to changes in lighting conditions.

On the software front, the Lumia Camera app is as intuitive as always, but it doesn't have a lot to work with here. There are settings for white balance, ISO, exposure and the like, but there aren't any funky filters or settings beyond Smart Sequence.

The latter takes a series of quick-fire photos and lets you form a single perfect photo from them, doing things like removing moving objects, changing faces (perfect for group or family photos), or simply picking the best shot.

Nokia Lumia 635 review

The Lumia 635 handles these clouds pretty well, but the foreground suffers

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Nokia Lumia 635 review

Detail is surprisingly crisp and colours fairly accurate for a budget phone

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Nokia Lumia 635 review

This indoors, unlit shot shows less graininess and more accurate colours than many budget camera phones

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Nokia Lumia 635 review

Again, a lack of strong light doesn't pose as much of a problem for this indoors shot as I expected

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Nokia Lumia 635 review

An average street scene, with somewhat washed-out skies

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