Nokia 6500 Slide review

Reviews 21:12, 31 Mar 2009

Know Your Mobile India reviews the Nokia 6500 Slide - a solid, all-rounder which will appeal to slider fans who like well-built handsets

The Nokia 6500 Slide is a rugged, stainless steel slider phone with a sturdy frame, decent camera and a nice line-up of multimedia features and applications. And its Rs 13,500 price tag puts it in the upper middle range of the Indian market.

It's not cheap, and its 3G connectivity is yet to get used for a while over here, but you get what you pay for: a solid all-round package.

Like its sibling the 6500 Classic, the 6500 Slide looks like a quality phone as soon as you open the box. Its brushed stainless steel casing is a vast improvement on the usual plastic models, and large selection keys and a big rectangular navpad will please even the fattest-fingered users.

The final feature on the front of the 6500 Slide is a small front-facing camera, to be used for video calling if your provider permits it.

Slide the front of the phone up and you'll be impressed by the positive slide action as the slider clicks into place. The black keypad has large keys and none of the metal trim that can compromise key size.

The back of the phone is also all stainless steel, broken up by a Carl Zeiss lens with the legend '3.2 megapixel', and two LED flashes. On the side of the phone is is a volume up/down control and a camera shutter key.

There's an interesting configuration of ports on the top of the phone, with a micro USB port, small charger socket and 2.5mm output jack for attaching an audio headset or TV out port. Unlike the 6500 Classic, the micro USB can only be used for data connections, and not for charging the phone. There's also a small button which releases the back panel for battery and SIM access - a neat solution at last to the one feature which seems to be totally different from one phone to the next.

Disappointingly, we found that phone call quality wasn't great on the 6500 Slide, with callers repeatedly asking whether we were calling from a tunnel due to the echo. This effect was aleviated when we held the phone gently to the ear rather than cupping it tightly, but is certainly something to consider and possibly try out before buying.

If you like to share your photos and videos with friends, TV out is great feature. Unlike other phones which boast TV out capabilities, the cable is included in the 6500 Slide package and works instantly - just plug the RCA cable into your TV, switch to the relevant AV channel and your mobile screen also appears on the TV screen. Landscape videos and photos appear full-screen while portrait videos and images are fitted to screen size with the addition of wide black borders.

Aside from the rise in resolution, the 3.2-megapixel camera is something of a disappointment. While other mobile manufacturers are backing up ever-increasing resolutions with improved camera interfaces featuring shortcuts to options like flash and white balance, Nokia has persevered with the same basic menu system which means that you have to drill down to change settings. Nevertheless, the double LED flash (while no match for Xenon) is a big improvement on the single-light systems of old, and the addition of an auto-focus feature (activated by half-pressing the shutter key or holding down the centre selection key) appears to work well.

Otherwise the trusty Series 40 operating system holds few surprises for Nokia regulars. Texting has been speeded up with the addition of a 'Favourite' contacts list and the ability to call in contacts from your list of recently made or missed calls.

The system's log tools have also improved to include SMS messages, and data and packet data counters so you can log the amount of time - and money - you've been spending online.

The company has made a big deal about the addition of Flickr tothe 6500's applications suite, and it is integrated well in practice. Yes point, shoot, upload and share your pics. Nokia India's website has even include a page of tips on how to tag and promote your photos.

One truly useful standard-issue application is the Opera browser, so you're no longer tied into using Nokia's own mobile browser and can view a wider range of sites using the Opera program.

The Nokia 6500 Slide is a stylish mobile phone which boasts a solid feel, eye-catching design and the company's familiar and reliable Series 40 operating system. Under the covers it's not a revolutionary step forward for the company, but is ideal for Nokia's Indian fans looking for their next upgrade and who want to keep a 3G option open.

Nokia 6500 Slide info

Recommended price: Rs 13,200

Pros:
Carl Zeiss lens
Video calling
3.2 megapixel camera

Cons:
Bad call quality

Verdict: A solid phone but not one to set the world on fire

Rating:

More info: Nokia 6500 Slide microsite

 

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