Until a few years ago, touchscreen phones were generally attached with higher price tags. Today it’s a completely different story and touch-enabled handsets are no longer the arm candy of just the elite. With manufacturers like Samsung coming out with their affordable yet efficient touchscreen phones the Corby series to be specific, there seems to be a touch phone for everyone. Well, Nokia too ventured the low-price touchscreen phone space with the new Nokia 5230 and 5233 devices.
One of these nifty phones, the Nokia 5233 is what we’ve recently reviewed. The mentioned phone is claimed to be the cheapest Nokia touchscreen handset and a run through the feature list or citing similarities with the 5230 or any other Nokia touchscreen phone didn’t really excite us. So we’ve just scanned through the phone independently. The phone arrived in a rather attractive box with patterns similar to the Ovi logo on the exterior. Our enthusiasm died down however when we opened the box as there were hardly any accompaniments.
The bundle simply included the 5233 phone in black color along with a power adapter, earphones, a fancy plectrum stylus, a 10 track Nokia Music Store voucher and the User Guide. We were pretty livid with the absence of a USB cord and a memory card. Nevertheless highlights among the feature list were the 3.2” touchscreen display with a resolution of 640 x 360 pixels, 16:9 widescreen with landscape navigation, 3.5mm AV jack, 2-megapixel camera, access to Ovi store and customizable homescreen. There’s Bluetooth support too though Nokia didn’t fancy putting in Wi-Fi in this phone. A media key next to the Nokia logo on the right top corner of the screen offers a shortcut to multimedia applications.
Moving on to the fabrication, the phone sports a plastic chassis, the front edges of which don a steel black hue while the rest of it is painted in a neat shade of black. The front face of the phone is austere with just the large touchscreen and three slim buttons at the bottom. The anterior appearance of the handset was actually quite similar to the recent Nokia N97 Mini that we detailed. The left button for call answer/dial illuminates green while the center one is the menu button and lights up in white. The last button in this row is the call reject/back button that shines red. The phone felt quite bulky in the hands and is distinctly designed into three compartments. Between the front and back panel are two slots one for memory card and the other for the SIM card that take up quite a lot of space.
We failed to comprehend though why the Finnish giant has offered a SIM card slot that’s so inconvenient. Inserting the SIM was quite a task - open the back panel, remove the battery, open SIM card slot and insert SIM card, close the slot and be scared that the SIM won’t come out easily! Well, that’s exactly what ensued at our end. The slot was not just bothersome but could also scare the daylights out of novice mobile users. The right brim included a volume control button, followed by a keyguard switch and a dedicated camera key. Toss the phone over and a neat back panel welcomes you with just Nokia inked at the left edge and the camera lens infused at the top. The back panel also includes a speaker along one edge. The uppermost portion of the handset includes a USB port, the headphone jack and charging pin followed by a power knob.
Switching on the phone takes you to a very responsive touchscreen that is quite alive. Though the screen wasn’t that efficient when we used our finger, it seemed to work brilliantly with the supplemented stylus. The screen takes quite some time to switch from the landscape to the portrait modes and vice versa though. Among the themes, the General one lets you pick your preferred color while the Menu can be viewed in either the Grid or List option. The Home Screen theme lets you choose your homescreen layout from among the basic, shortcut bar and contact bar options. Personalizing the homescreen is also a breeze allowing you to set a maximum of 4 shortcuts from among the features in the menu. Besides, you can also choose to keep the homescreen to a bare minimum by ticking off the contacts bar and shortcuts option. You can also opt to have email notifications visible.
While being able to tweak the brightness of the display, we also had fun playing around with the large, normal and small font size options.
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