Reviewed on Friday February 23, 2007 by Erik, Toronto
Note: A follow-up will follow in 2 - 6 weeks.
Note: I have not used any Internet-related or bluetooth features and so will not comment on them.
Excellent all-around phone. Instantly one of my favourites, despite its limitations.
I tried to keep this short... and failed.... There is a lot information here but I think it will be supremely helpful both for people looking to buy and people who alread have bought this phone....
The phone itself only has one serious con -- that of battery power. All other cons are minor and are easily outweighed by this phone's pros.
- battery time: rated at 3 hours and when used for all its multimedia options is much less, this phone should have come with at least a 1070mAh battery instead of its 0720mAh batt.; which is avail. for this size and configuration phone (though not recommended, check with Nokia for compatibilities).
- radio: Why can't you listen to it unless you have a headset (mono or stereo)?
- music player: The phone features a wonderful 4-way button: Why doesn't the music player take advantage of it?
- music player: Unless you have a specific attachment, you have to go into the music player in order to navigate songs. Regular headphone attachments will allow you to advance to the next song but won't allow you to go back, stop, or play a song.
- songs from the music player only show up as 1 line of text on main display -- this means that most song titles don't fit on the screen, and the song title doesn't scroll.
- only one speaker on phone (not stereo unless using stereo headset) -- however very very loud
- 'stereo widening' option not easily accessible for Radio or music player. You have to go to the 'media' sub file folder.
- sounds a bit tinny for music but still very good and mostly can be overcome by equalizer settings.
- headset connection not universal (2.5 mm headphone)
- no AM radio
- should be able to turn on speakerphone immediately after you hit 'send'. The phone requires you wait until it gets response from the tower (you hear ringing) before you can turn the speakerphone on when making a call. This is unsafe when using while driving, as you have to keep looking at your phone after you've hit 'send' to see if anything's changed, or keep the phone at your ear.
- video player: only plays 3gp and 3gpp files (no avi, mpg, wmv, mov, etc.)
- video player: I've tried making 3gp files in varying sizes and qualities and am dismayed that the largest resolution I can play videos in on the phone are 176x144 and that only in lower than normal quality. This means that videos are grainy and pixellated on the nice large screen. 320x240 resolution will not play at all and recording 176x144 videos in normal or higher than normal qualities results in sync problems between audio and video. Since all the test videos work without sync problems on my computer, I am forced to conclude that the phone's processor is too slow to process the better quality video files. NOTE: I am using a TransFlash card (as opposed to the recommened MicroSD card which is recommended). While essentially the same card, there may be small differences that could contribute to this problem.
- pop-open: feels a little cheap and works only one-way (opens). Time will determine if it really is cheap.
- "Camera On" button above power button way too easy to turn on. While a neat feature (allows you to record yourself (you see yourself in the mini-display)), this probably should have been one of those buttons that you hold for a bit before an action is triggered. In addition, once you turn it on using this button, you have to open the phone to turn it off. TIP: Hit the power button, then hit the power button again to scroll to "Lock Keypad" Hold the power button to select the option.. This does 2 things: 1, it ensures that the camera will not turn on, and 2 if you hit the power button again once the main screen will light up so you can see it in full brightness with a very quick splash screen. Normally, you need to hit volume to do this and it stays on the screen longer. CON TO TIP: You can't adjust volume using the volume buttons on the phone if your phone is locked!
- no camera flash (or even an 'always on' flash like in Motorola's E1). While people who use their cameras will miss this for taking night pictures, I miss it (the always on version) as a powerful wide-beam flashlight.
- you can't change the size or colour of the font on your mini-display. Since song names are listed here, 10 characters aren't much! Also, the default font is black, which blends in with just about all of my custom wallpaper.
- you can't set mp3s, m4as, or midis as ringtones. However, you can set a wav file as one. Keep in mind I have only tried a 28-second, 4.9MB .wav file so far.
- you can move files from one media to another (ie. transflash card to phone memory) but you can't copy files.
- deceptive keypad (this is actually good... see pros).
- strange placement for 'organizer' items -- found under 'my files' instead of under 'apps' main menu.
- no included games (ok--1 game, but this one is a trial version and asks you to purchase it after you've played it for a few mins.)
- 11MB of internal memory fills fast and includes installed applications (so effectively you have approx. 8MB of memory for pics, ringtones, etc.)
The good thing however is that the phone doesn't skip a beat and knows instantly when a memory card is attached.
- any settings tied to the memory card are lost as soon as you remove memory card. When you put the memory card back in, the phone doesn't restore those connections/settings; You have to reset it.
- shinier portions of keypad and main display get dirty very easily. This is easy to overcome, but it does require constant cleaning.
- phone doesn't come with any. Specifics:
- no stereo headset included
- no microSD card included
- no computer cable included
- most major retailers are not selling adapters or stereo headsets that are compatible with this phone's proprietary connection. The stereo headset I was able to find (hs-3) could not handle bass provided to it by the phone, meaning I had to use a dull equalizer setting.
This phone's so good that you easily forgive its flaws.
- Nice Styling; Best Nokia Clamshell/Flip phone I've seen
- Impressive Large and Clear main display: Great for my purpose (I receive a lot of text messages; The large screen allows me to see them in their entirety instead of having to scroll).
- Impressive mini (outer) display: This is almost as big as my last Nokia's main (candybar) screen!
- one of the best keypads I have ever had: a) looks great when lit up. b) I have not made a single error in dialing the phone, including blind-dials. That's a first for me and on a flat keypad, that's nothing short of miraculous. It has superb spacing for one-thumb dialing (like I employ) and reflects just the right amount of pressure when you press the buttons, while it's smooth surface allows your thumb to run effortlessly across the keypad, with minor changes its surface which you quickly and subconsciously register as line breaks. This one feature surprised me the most.
- pop-open long overdue in North American phones. Could feel better constructed but so far it's a great asset.
- Nokia made great improvements to their software. I've had Sony Ericssons, Panasonics, Motorolas, Nokias, Samsungs, LGs, (and a few others) and its clear that Nokia is using some of the better assets of these other manufacturers' software while working it into their own native software. VERY pleasantly surprised. Examples: a) you can set phone properties like rings etc. without having to do so through a profile. b) call logs now include sent, received, and missed calls -- along with their status (did the call go through?). In General, the phone is much more user-friendly than previous Nokias.
- very easy to customize all 6 shortcut keys
- In general, excellent options with regards to customization
- best reception of a Nokia phone I've had thus far, but I admittedly have not had many, nor have I put the phone through the usual battery of tests in this area.
- voice commands: Simply hold outside 'volume down' button and say what you want and voila! "Radio On" or call to "John"
- ability to record and send voice messages without calling the person is also a useful feature
- you can record your calls
- very clear and loud speakerphone
- FM Radio!
- decent sound and video recorders
- music player: great equalizer and ability to create your own sound settings. A 'stereo widening' option is also available.
- can play music player and can access your phone's applications even when no SIM card is in your phone, which is great if one day you just want to use the phone as a music player.
- great range of options for setting dates, times, and in applications like calendar, to do list, and even a basic scientific calculator. Also nice is that there is a stopwatch and countdown timer in addition to the alarm clock.
- camera night mode impressive despite no flash
- excellent placement of the microSD/transflash card slot and extremely easy to both remove and insert, while ensuring that it's secure once inserted. It's inserted by the way on the side of the phone rather than by the SIM card under the battery, which means that while you need to remove the battery cover to access the memory card, you don't have to remove the battery and can still receive calls.
- while it has bad battery life, it charges very fast (less than an hour from empty to full).