- 2.0 Megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics and autofocus, external screen, distinctive design, crisp internal screen with high resolution, display light sensor
- Size and weight, small displays, lack of regular headphone jack, poor external speaker, extremely slow interface, no vibration, poor sound quality for MP3’s, slow loading times at start-up, expensive
The N90 is certainly an excellent camera phone but its size and weight and extremely slow interface, amongst other issues, leave a lot to be desired. At this inflated price, we expect much better.
Price$ 1,199.00 (AUD)
Nokia's N-Series line of phones has been highly anticipated for some time. In the clamshell N90, Nokia has created a distinctive, swiveling 3G camera phone which takes quality photos, but has sacrificed size and weight to do so.
Measuring 113mm x 51mm x 24mm and weighing a hefty 173g, the N90 is one of the largest Nokia's to hit the market and its bulky frame does not sit well in your hands. While we appreciate the stylish swivel design that Nokia has developed, we don't think this justifies the units sheer size and weight.
The design of the N90 makes it one of the most unique phones in the market and those who enjoy mobile phone imaging will surely appreciate the camera operation. The clamshell design N90 flips open after which the screen can be twisted sideways, automatically starting the dedicated photography mode. The design resembles a small video camera with a red record button and a small joystick to adjust camera settings that can be controlled by your right hand. Other functions are accessed by the two buttons at the top of the screen, which are controlled with your left hand. While recording video or taking pictures, the 2.0 mega pixel camera can be operated with one hand, but Nokia recommends using both hands for optimal image stabilisation.
The record button on the camera is sensitive: just a slight press will focus the image and a further press will begin recording when in video mode or take a photo in still shot mode. Supporting a resolution of up to 1600 x 1200 pixels, the quality of images we uploaded to our PC were very impressive to say the least and the Carl Zeiss lens that the N90 boasts certainly lives up to expectations.
The N90 has both an internal and external screen. The 2.1 inch internal screen was striking, but considering there is plenty of extra space, we feel Nokia could have accommodated a much larger display. The external screen displays basic information such as battery life, signal strength, operator information, time information, status indicators and the name of the currently active profile, The standout feature of the N90 display is the light sensor, which automatically adjusts the screen or keypad light brightness and dims or brightens these depending on lighting conditions. This is useful when you don't want the phone lighting up an entire room, such as in a movie cinema.
The N90 is capable of playing MP3 and AAC files with the supplied RealPlayer software. Unfortunately, the sound quality is poor for a unit which emphasises its multimedia features. The external speaker is extremely harsh, especially at louder volume levels. The supplied headphones are an improvement, but still far from the quality you should be expecting from a handset in this price range. The lack of a standard headphone jack is also a limitation as only the Nokia headphones supplied in the package can be used with the N90. Other multimedia handsets, like the Sony Ericsson W800i, use their proprietary jack but provide an adapter in the package so that any headphones can be used, but Nokia has failed to include this with the N90.
The N90 only contains 27MB of internal memory which can be used for contacts, text messages, multimedia messages, ringing tones, images, video clips, calendar notes, to-do list and applications. Thankfully, there is an option to expandable the memory with a MMC (MultiMedia Card) slot and a 64MB card is included in the sales package.
The N90 is well equipped with standard mobile phone features. The unit offers SMS, MMS and e-mail support and also provides full T9 messaging. We had no problems with the keypad which was quite responsive, but those who message frequently may be disappointed with the slow interface. Much to our surprise there is no included vibrating alert on the N90, which is puzzling to say the least. This is a feature which is generally standard across the entire mobile phone range. It is even seen on most low end pre-paid units, so it's omission from a handset in this price range is a mystery.
Calendar, alarm, calculator, converter, notes and voice recorder functions are all present, as is support for GPRS and WAP 2.0. For connectivity, the N90 provides integrated Bluetooth and USB 2.0 via a Pop-Port interface. A USB data cable is included in the package, which means users can transmit and synchronise data between the phone and their PC straight out of the box.
The biggest drawback of the N90 is the interface, which is shockingly slow. Start-up times were over 30 seconds, shutter lag was about one second and writing the image to the phones memory took an inconceivable four to five seconds. Browsing through the menu was also slow and delays were experienced when selecting a menu item. We found the menu navigation was frustrating and not what we have come to expect from Nokia. In a multimedia device such as this one, such delays are unacceptable.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Acer Swift 7
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Google Daydream VR headset
Lexar® Portable SSD
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Huawei Mate 9
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Surface Pro 4
HP Pavilion x360 13”
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
- 2 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 3 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 4 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
Latest News Articles
- Qualcomm details plans for Windows 10 PCs with Snapdragon 835
- Cog Systems offers more secure version of HTC A9 smartphone
- Intel isn't yet done with x86 smartphone chips
- Nokia, Sprint show a massive MIMO antenna to boost cell service
- Sony's Xperia XZ Premium has a 4K HDR screen, super slow-mo
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Horizon Zero Dawn review
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Japan's pop culture, anime-friendly, J-Pop shrine, Kanda Myojin
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- CCSQL Database AdministratorQLD
- FTSenior Business AnalystVIC
- TPSOE AdministratorQLD
- CCCloud Solution Architect - Financial Services - Continuous IntegrationNSW
- CCDesktop RolloutVIC
- TPTest AnalystQLD
- TPChange and Communications CoordinatorQLD
- FTITIL Service ManagerVIC
- FTLead PMONSW
- CCSenior Mobile Application DeveloperNSW
- CCFinance Analyst/ Project SpecialistVIC
- CCSQL Database Administrator (DBA)NSW
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- FTSenior Web DeveloperNSW
- CCProject Manager - Adelaide basedNSW
- TPBusiness AnalystACT
- CCFullstack .Net DeveloperNSW
- FTEnterprise ArchitectQLD
- FTDevops EngineerVIC
- TPProject CoordinatorNSW
- FTService Desk Analyst / Security EngineerQLD
- FTAnalyst Programmer (Natural/Adabas)SA
- CCProject Support OfficerNSW
- CCAgile CoachNSW
- CCSenior Project Manager - ApplicationsNSW