Nokia 3500 Classic
- Simplistic but stylish design, decent features list, impressive keypad and controls, user interface, Bluetooth, microSD card slot
- Poor resolution display, 2.5mm headphone jack, average camera
The 3500 Classic is compact, stylish and easy to use. If you're after a basic mobile phone containing all of the basics and a little more, this is one of the best options out there.
Price$ 269.00 (AUD)
A basic prepaid mobile targeted at first-time and low-end users, Nokia's 3500 Classic is a stylish, well built handset with some impressive features. Although it doesn't wow with its feature set, it nonetheless remains a solid handset thanks to an easy menu system and pleasant design.
The first thing you'll notice about the 3500 Classic is its design – this really does look like a much more expensive handset than it is. The plastic build feels solid, despite being incredibly light, while the gloss black front combined with the solid chrome edging adds a touch of class. Both the keypad and controls are impressive. Despite a sunken feel, each key is quite large and well separated, making them easy to press. The bright blue backlight in between the keys also adds a stylish touch. The five-way navigational pad and selection buttons do the grunt of the work and ensure the 3500 is a joy to use. In particular, we found messaging speeds exceptionally fast after just a short period of use.
Inside, this is a familiar Nokia handset, which is good news. The main menu is a simple 3x3 grid layout with the submenus in a list format. Each icon is clearly labelled and a short description is displayed if you leave the cursor on an icon for a few seconds – a feature ideal for first-time users who may not be familiar with certain functions. A downside is the display – it's not crisp or clear and is quite small, so it isn't the best for displaying rich content like photos and videos. On a handset at this price point though, we can't complain too much.
In terms of features, the 3500 Classic is solid, without being outstanding. SMS and MMS messaging with T9 predictive text input, a standard phone book, and the full array of PIM features such as an alarm clock, calendar, to-do list and calculator are all included. For multimedia, Nokia includes a 2.5mm jack handsfree headphones in the sales package and the handset has video and music players (with equaliser and stereo widening settings), an FM radio and a voice recorder. Conveniently, the 3500 includes a microSD card slot beneath the battery that can hold cards of up to 2GB.
Bluetooth and a standard mini-USB port for PC synchronisation mean the 3500 Classic is well equipped in terms of connectivity, especially considering its position in the lower end of the price spectrum. A 2-megapixel camera on the rear handles imaging, but it's fairly basic, lacking autofocus and a flash. The photos are decent enough to save as wallpapers on the phone, but poor colour reproduction and high levels of image noise are negatives – though these are a common trait of phone cameras in general and not just the 3500 Classic.
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