Nokia C3-01 review

This is the second phone from Nokia integrating touchscreen as well as traditional alphanumeric keyboard. The handset is targeted at users who want effortless messaging and to stay connected with friends on social networking sites on the go, in one convenient and tiny package.

Design

It is a solid phone which makes a good impression with the first look itself with its classic candybar design. The body measures 47.5mm wide, 11mm deep and 111mm tall and has stainless steel chassis of warm grey, silver and khaki gold variants. It is extremely attractive phone and feels very light in the hand weighing just 100g, quite surprising since the feature phones usually take on the bit heavier side. Of course, it might be a feature phone but seems like a business oriented mobile and not just the mundane phone. It has brushed metal polish with real metal for the battery cover. However rest of the body is plastic but coated with metallic paint.

The package includes handset, charger, headset and earphones. Onboard memory of 30MB is provided.

Display

The 2.4inch touchscreen is not very big by smartphone standards, however it is suitable for the candybar shape. It supports 256k colors and 240X320 pixel resolution, which means quite a bunch of text can be displayed on single screen. The screen uses resistive touch technology rather capacitive, but it is in fact responsive while choosing items in the menus, also the large icons and options helps in this regard as well.

Scrolling along the long lists doesn’t work quite well and you need to deliberately tap the screen bit harder. One of the minor issues is that whenever you press on the touchscreen, some ripples tend to appear below the finger and somewhat muddles the colors around that region.

Keypad

The incorporated 12-button keypad is very huge by Nokia standards. The buttons are receptive and provide a noticeable click whenever you press. Above the keypad 2 call buttons are present, one for receive and other for end. Unlike other Nokia phones here a central menu button is missing, but for that you have touchscreen.

  • Display : 2.4inch touchscreen
  • Camera : 5MP
  • Dimension : 111 x 47.5 x 11 mm
  • Weight : 100 gm
  • Price : Rs. 9,000

Ports and Connectors

The left spine houses nothing whereas the right spine houses volume rocker switch, dedicated camera button and lock button. Like today’s Nokia’s mid-range phones C3-01 has micro-USB port as well as mini Nokia charging port. You can charge the handset using any of it but mini port charges faster. Between these 2 ports you’ll find standard headphone jack. The battery cover at the back glides off to bestow you access to microSD card slot and SIM card slot. The former can accept up to 32GB memory cards which is more than enough to store all your photos, favorite music and videos.

Connectivity

The phone supports HSDPA at speeds equal to 10.2Mbps, 3G, Wi-Fi to use around office/home, Bluetooth 2.1 to pair with other handsets or to use with Bluetooth stereo headphones. However GPS is not supported.

User interface

The C3-01 usage is straightforward. After you boot it up you’ll notice small delay and then you’ll be taken to homescreen.

The phone is powered by Symbian S40 6th edition OS. The series 40 interface has been fine-tuned to make it even more touch-friendly. The main menu and the scrollable submenus have large icons. You can navigate around the phone swiftly than the older phones without touchscreens because you no more have to swindle around with direction-pad to choose the item you want. Here you just have to reach out and touch.

Web browsing

The web browser included is kinda slow and unwieldy to use but you can download Opera Mini browser for that sake, which is a limelight. It can load the pages speedily and zooming, navigating with the screen is a big time joy. C3-01 is one of the premium traditionally shaped phone we have ever seen for web browse.

Multimedia and other features

The standard Series 40 music player looks bit old-fashioned but can be used easily. Music can be categorized into usual playlist, album, artist and genre, so finding the songs you want to play is very simple. Playlists can be created on the go and can control audio output using 5-band graphics equalizer. The audio from the 3.5mm jack is decent but from the included headphones is poor with frail bass response and abrasive mid-range frequencies. There’s FM tuner to hop into in case if you are bored with music player.

Unluckily, camera is not so impressive. Though the capability is 5MP resolution, shots lack in detail and sharpness. It has flash with it to take advantage whenever working indoors, but this simple LED leads to unnatural bluish hue to photos. Video recording is possible at 15fps in QVGA quality.

The standard applications like calendar, calculator, alarm clock, stopwatch, voice recorder, note app, to-do list and timer are also added in.

Software

On the software part, handset ropes in latest Nokia Messaging 3.0, Nokia’s instant messaging and e-mail software that also supply Twitter and Facebook access. You can also access Nokia’s Ovi Store for 3rd party apps.

Performance

Like other models, call quality is first-class. The microphone and earphone delivers clear and crispy audio. Loudspeaker works fine too. The Li-ion battery life is the key selling reason for this type of phone. You can use it continuously for 3 to 4 days but you need to recharge it before and offers a talktime of 5 hours 40 mins.

Conclusion

The phone is attractive and affordable. Users who prefer more of a traditional experience like calls, texts, camera, a bit of browsing and e-mail, then C3-01 will be sound investment for them. It can be accessed by both familiar and non-familiar with the touchscreens, an added benefit.

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