The Supernova series comprises four models which were featured in an earlier article spotlighting the world announce. The most interesting of the four is Nokia 7610, judging by the number of catalog page hits and search calls. Attaching incomprehensible suffixes to the product names is quite typical of Nokia – once again, the new 7610 handset seems to erroneously duplicate the suffix originally reserved for an earlier smartphone product. Nokia 7610 isn't a smartphone, yet for a conventional cell phone it displays a very high level of functionality. It's a slider equipped with a 3.2 megapixel camera, which serves as the next step in development of the 6500 Slide and 5610 models; another spin-off from the same platform, to say so.
The most characteristical feature of the handset is the Theme Colorise used to quickly swap interface colors in all imaginable ways. A detailed review of this feature is available in a later section of this article. Right now, a few more general words introducing the new product. The handset is based off the fifth revision of the S40 software platform, which is due to the limitations of the hardware platform. The lower-ranking 7510 model uses the sixth revision of the S40 software platform, for instance. Supernova series' signature Xpress-on models come in a variety of colors, letting you customize even the physical features of the handset.
Nokia are targeting Supernova at a largely female audience (still firmly counting on the male buyer, but to a lesser extent), trying to attack Samsung on a front where the Koreans hold especially strong positions. The Korean manufacturer is famed to favor the slider form factor, and Samsung female-tailored sliders enjoy an unmatched popularity on the market. However no known Samsung product can offer an analogous functionality in this segment. U600 is probably the closest alternative, yet incapable of posing direct competition to Nokia 7610.
Despite its distinct orientation towards the mass market, 7610 has no direct competitors, which is a very intriguing combination. Talking in advance let's note out that the solution is rather controversial; yet an active advertising campaign planned for Supernova handsets and a scarce number of highly functional fashion slider models from other manufacturers are the two factor that are going to overcome any possible criticism and further bring the product to the top of popularity. Nokia now have at their disposal a full set of variations of the same platform: 5610 stands for music, 6500 Slide stands for business, 7610 now stands for fashion. Marketing seen in action.
Design and Ergonomics
Nokia 7610 Supernova is a mid-sized, lightweight slider, entirely made of plastic. Two color versions are available – the dark and the bright ones, each coming with two changeable panels. The dark variant comes with blue and turquoise panels, the bright – with blue and red ones. These the Xpress-on panels, a standard element of design customization which has been used by Nokia in a number of earlier products. The moment is especially actual for a youth audience. Theme Colourizer is the company's next move catering to the youth tastes. It changes the splash screen and Navi backlight to match a specified color. This unique feature will be discussed a bit further in a special section of this article.
The style of Supernova's design is intentionally kept very neutral. It is likely to attract both female and male audiences. Unfortunately the compromises, simplifications and concessions introduced to reach this goal make the handset's exterior look a bit plain, at least too plain for a top-ranking fashion-oriented solution. The only original thing around is the mirrorlike pieces reminiscent of Sony Ericsson's emotive solutions. However even these elements look slightly out of place.
An Xpress-on panel feels like rubber when you touch it, to be more precise it sports an actual thin rubber coating, which will never let the handset slip out of the hand. It's held very tightly and won't ‘peel off' just by accident, which from another point can be considered a downside: hot memory card swapping becomes unavailable. Bright-colored star-shaped stickers are supplied along. The assembly and materials show us a very good example of what is the proper way and substance for making a durable and good-looking phone. Unlike 6500 Slide, there are no metal pieces, save for the back panel of the upper sliding part. All the parts fit each other tightly, the surface coating is resistant to physical damage.
Thanks to the compact size and low weight, 7610 feels as natural appendage of your hand, every aspect of shape, size and weight is very balanced.
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