Nokia has been busy of late, launching four handsets in quick succession. We compare three of them here – the flagship Nokia N8, the mid-range C7 and the keyboard-packing E7, all of which feature Nokia’s revamped Symbian ^3 OS.
The E7 is Nokia’s idea of a cutting-edge business phone that harks back to the days when we believed that the bulky Communicator was the ultimate do-anything smartphone. The Nokia E7 runs Symbian ^3, which boasts over 250 new features including multiple home screens, widgets, multi-touch and multi-tasking.
What stands out is its 4.0-inch (360 x 640 pixel) AMOLED display, which has been paired with a QWERTY keyboard to give business users the best of all worlds. This makes the E7 fairly weighty as a result (176g), but it retains a slim build and measures only 13.6mm thick.
You could argue that the lack of a memory card slot is an oversight, meaning the 16GB of internal storage can’t be expanded. Or moan that the 680MHz processor hasn’t got the kick of its 1GHz rivals. But an 8.0MP camera (with HD video recording), front camera (for video chat) and a 9 hour talktime go some way to restoring the balance.
The Nokia C7 is a more lightweight option than both the N8 and the E7. But it doesn’t skimp on features. Like the other two phones here, it runs Symbian ^3 and impresses with a stylish build that incorporates a 3.5-inch AMOLED display, rated at 360 x 640 pixels. In fact, the C7 is barely 10.5mm thick and weighs only 130g.
Like the E7 above, the C7 boasts an 8.0 Megapixel camera, with a fixed focus lens, dual LED flash, geotagging, face detection and HD video recording (720p). There’s also a front-facing camera so you can indulge in a bit of video chit-chat. Shipped with 8GB of internal storage, the addition of a 32GB microSD card will boost the capacity to 40GB. Not bad at all.
Nokia champions the C7 has a social networking phone and the 680MHz processor provides a decent turn of speed (if unspectacular). Extras include: GPS/A-GPS (with free Ovi Maps), a digital compass, Web TV, Flash support, an FM radio (with RDS) and a TV-out with Dolby Digital Plus support. Talktime is rated at 9.5 hours
The Nokia N8 is Nokia’s idea of a cutting edge smartphone. But despite some significant improvements and a beefy set of specs, it’s still not quite an iPhone-killer. The N8 was the first Nokia phone to out the Symbian ^3 software, which now includes all those clever features (multiple home screens, multi-tasking and HD video) that rival devices have had for a while. Too little too late? Only time will tell.
There’s lots to like, including a 3.5-inch AMOLED (360 x 640 pixels) display and 16GB of internal storage, which can be upped to a maximum of 48GB with a 32GB microSD card. Nokia has also pushed the boat out in terms of camera specs. The N8 features a high-resolution 12.0 MP camera, blessed with Carl Zeiss optics, a Xenon flash, autofocus, geo-tagging, face/smile detection, plus 720p HD video capture. Talktime? 12.0 hours according to Nokia. Nice. Very nice indeed.
The N8 is the best-specced of the devices here. But tech-sceptics will still take some convincing. Has the new Symbian OS got what it takes to challenge the likes of Android and Apple’s iOS? Will the 680MHz CPU be fast enough when rival devices favour 1GHz chips and 1.2GHz dual-core technology is on the way? The battle for mobile dominance isn’t won yet and the N8 is the hardest punch in Nokia’s counter attack.
The Nokia N8 wins!