Nokia C3 review

Reviews 22:11, 5 Oct 2010

We review the Nokia C3 — the only phone in the Symbian S40 family to be equipped with Ovi Chat support and Nokia Ovi Mail

Nokia C3 is touted as the new messaging phone loaded with superb social networking features. For endless chats, umpteen Facebook updates and Tweets galore, the Nokia C3 handset features a full QWERTY keyboard.

The device offers instant access to social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook. But is it any good, and more importantly, can it fight off the competition from LG, Samsung and INQ?

When you first take the Nokia C3 out of its box you could be forgiven for thinking that you've been sent the wrong device – it looks expensive, has a beautiful metallic finish and a full BlackBerry-esque QWERTY keyboard.

And this is something of an aberration from Nokia, albeit a pleasant one, as its low-end devices usually look, well, just that: lowly, plastic and cheap.

The Nokia C3 is none of these things. The device is beautifully crafted featuring a metal back plate and high-shine plastic on the front, which looks, at first glance like its metal.

Unfortunately, it isn’t. But for Rs. 5,999, it'd almost be rude to ask for more – especially as it looks like a lower end BlackBerry and not really like a Nokia at all.

The device is also well proportioned and measures in at 115.5x58.1x13.6mm, which means it is marginally bigger than the BlackBerry Bold 9700 and will fit into your pocket snugly. Interestingly, though, the Nokia C3 at 114g is actually lighter than the Bold 9700, which measures in at 122g.

Unfortunately, this is where the BlackBerry comparisons end and, because the Nokia C3 is aimed at the "less fussy" mobile user, Nokia have scrimped on both the hardware and software in order to get the price down to a modest low amount.

Equipped with QWERTY keyboard, dedicated messaging and contacts keys, the Nokia C3 displays a 2.4 inch TFT screen and a 2 megapixel camera. The camera, which is 2 megapixels, doesn't have a flash and while it's okay in well-lit environments, it's pretty useless after dark or in poorly lit rooms.

For connectivity, the Nokia C3 offers 2.0 mm charger connector, Bluetooth version 2.1 with Enhanced Data Rate, High-Speed USB 2.0 and a 3.5 mm AV connector. There's also no 3G either, so you've only got Wi-Fi at your disposal, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, so long as you're not bothered about being online 24/7. If you are, however, then you should probably think about upgrading to either an S60 device or a low-end Android handset.

Obviously in a bid to keep the price dramatically low, Nokia has opted with Symbian S40 OS in the C3 – so, it's not the fastest thing in the world and there's absolutely no multi-tasking.

This may put off a lot of users, but on the whole during testing, we found that for basic stuff such as navigating, playing games and loading web pages it performed admirably. If you want more than that, you’ll have to pay more. Simple.

On the downside, we had a lot of problems with the Nokia C3's Wi-Fi, which refused out right to connect to three separate networks – we persisted for about an hour, decided to reset the phone, tried again and, eventually, we managed to get it connected to a network.

Preloaded with BL-5J 1320 mAh Li-Ion battery, the device offers talk time up to 7 hours and standby time up to 800 hours. The device comes with 55 MB of internal memory and MicroSD memory card slot, hot swappable, up to 8 GB.

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