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Jan 24

This is part 1 of the review : Initial reactions  + Physical features

I have grown up using the Nokia E63 and E71 so when dad lost his E71 (got stolen, no FIR from Delhi Police, deja-vu ? ) , E72 was the natural upgrade for his needs. So he backed off to the Nokia N72 while we searched for a good deal on the Nokia E72. Finally we got the E72 for around $220 from the United States, the phone came with the car navigation attachments which consists of a stand.

Anyway, the background ends here. Moving onto the phone itself. As soon as you hold the phone in your hand, you see it’s a sleeker version of the Nokia E63 and possibly even of the Nokia E71, although it’s a gram heavier than the E71 with the new features built in , it would be injustice to call it a bulkier version of E71.

The phone unlike its earlier version E71 has 2 cameras (one of them 5 MP)  and a much larger internal memory at 250 MB. The dual cameras promise good video calling capabilities and the much needed internal memory upgrade means more good things inside the phone for you. The phone came with a 2GB microSD card.

Physical Upgrades :

Nokia E72

Compared to the Nokia E71, the Nokia E72 while having the same shape does have an individual character about it. The keys are changed, the camera is changed and even the unlock key combination is changed. All these changes add to a non-seamless transition from the Nokia E71. My first impression of the E72 was that it unlocks differently than the E71. That itself takes some getting used to. The email key is also precariously placed underneath the right soft-key. I accidentally keep pressing the email key every now and then. On usability these things push the E72 a notch lower than the E71.

But there is a silver lining. Nokia has addressed a long standing demand from the E71 which even the E63 had. The E63 had a flashlight button, the E71 lacked it but with the E72 Nokia has addressed the particular point.

The Nokia E72 has a trackpad instead of a 5 way navigational key. The trackpad is so small that its actually very annoying and prone to mis-clicks and mis-navigation.  The older nav key was definitely better than the new track pad which just gives the phone some novelty but nothing on the usability. Even browsing photos using the trackpad key is difficult as multiple images get swiped many times.

The Nokia E72 also has a standard micro USB port, to tell you the truth I don’t remember what was on the Nokia E71 as I always used it with bluetooth. 

The E72 also has a 3.5mm audio jack as compared to a non standard 2.5mm jack on the Nokia E71. What it essentially means is that you can use your normal headphones with the Nokia E72. The built in earphones aren’t really that great with respect to quality but do the job.

The E72 also has volume keys which allow you to zoom into and out of images. It took me a bing/google search to figure out on how to zoom in and out of images on the Nokia E72.

Apart from this the E72 comes with an accelerometer (I didn’t see where they use it till now). The phone interface doesn’t seem to have been customized for the accelerometer which is a dampener.

The E72 also has GPS which I am surprised to say is extremely accurate and beats the GPS on my windows phone in terms of accuracy (atleast here in Delhi).

The E72 is also supposed to have a proximity sensor and a magnetometer. Will update as soon as I see how to use those. Overall from a physical perspective, the device is a definite upgrade from its poorer cousin but there are still chinks which Nokia need to address.

Stay tuned for the second part of this review, internals.

Jan 14

Nokia E63-2

First a little background on the whole cell phone business, I love mobile phones. My first tryst with a powerful phone was with a Nokia 3100, ok do i hear you laughing ? , well the Nokia 3100 was a Series 40 phone and the 1st one for  which huge amounts of customizations were available and possible via wap sites (most popular one being the ones hosted on tagtag.com , those were the days :P ).

Anyway , since then I have had an Imate (JAQ) (pathetic service in India),  an Asus (P320) phone (bad build quality), LG (M550) (bad battery and availability of spare parts), a Sony Ericsson (K700i) (awesome phone, no complaints, but I hear service is bad anyway).

I have also briefly used the Samsung C100 (good phone) and Nokia E71 (which is my dad’s phone). Now the Nokia E71 is a powerful phone (not to mention expensive for my pocket too). So its the price factor where the Nokia E63 enters, firstly the looks and physical features.

The Nokia E63 has a plastic look with a matte finish , the E71 has a metallic look which makes it look much more classy.  The metallic look is also a fingerprint magnet and this problem is automatically solved in our Nokia E63 phone. I bought the phone from US BTW under a crazy Amazon deal. The phone has a similar keyboard with a small exception, the spacebar key is smaller than your E71 and allows you to start the flashlight instantly. The smaller spacebar is infact a hindrance to typing if you have big hands like me.

Other than that the E63 lacks GPS, I had grown quite fond of GPS and its omission is an obvious down-point. You can however pair up the Nokia E63 with a bluetooth GPS device.

This was the 1st part of the review, you may read the 2nd part at Indiantechblog.com

Mar 13

Nokia E71 Stainless Steel

Its actually my dad’s phone, but the Nokia E71 is a perfect Indian phone. Rugged, smart and filled with features to the top there is never a dull moment with it. Major features include, good email support, QWERTY keyboard, Wifi and GPS. It kind of reminds me of my old Palm Treo 650 currently being enjoyed by my brother in the US. But be sure to buy a screen protector for the E71 since it has a large screen and silver area near the screen. Good screen protectors also protect the silver area near the screen.

My last 2 mobile phones have been Windows Mobile phones, so i have kind of gotten addicted to the layout and functionality of Windows mobile. But this phone has sort of rekindled my love for Symbian devices which are not touchscreen. Touchscreen is no longer a novelty these days with most cheap Chinese phones being touchscreen and trying to emulate Windows Mobile devices and/or popular N-series models from Nokia. Plus touchscreen phones without keyboards are pretty difficult to use. Qwerty keyboards on the other-hand are indeed a pleasure to operate on.

So this phone has a great battery life, awesome screen, the pictures on it are crisp and clear. The camera is great. Although sometimes the photos can look to be a little bit too overexposed.

The Wifi is superfast and the interface overall is very very responsive. It really kicks the butts of N-series phones in terms of speed. It kicks the butt of my Windows Mobile phones also.

But all in all, super cool phone to have :)