Sometimes an excellent operating system can be made even better
Nokia N70 Music Edition
- Excellent build quality, FM radio, Expandable MMC card slot with 1GB MMC card included, Good voice quality, Solid features list
- Delay when saving images, cramped keypad, location of keys, uncomfortable to use
Minor improvements and good build quality, however the N70 Music Edition still has a cramped keypad.
Price$ 979.00 (AUD)
Nokia has added music capabilities to the N70, with a 1GB MMC Card, a dedicated one-touch music key and new music player combining to create the N70 Music Edition. Despite the improvements, users will still be frustrated by the cramped keypad.
The N70 Music Edition supports SMS, MMS and e-mail messaging with T9 predictive text input as well as Java, voice recording and dialling and a load of PIM features such as calendar, notes and to-do list. We were extremely impressed with the quality of voice calls, and their high volume means they will rarely go unheard, even in noisy environments.
The N70 Music Edition has an excellent display; a large, clear and crisp 2.1-inch screen with 262,000 colour support. Images were a joy to view, video calling was clear and video playback using the supplied RealPlayer software was also displayed well. The N70 Music Edition features Nokia's 'active standby screen', which allows users to easily select their most frequently used functions without having to navigate through the phones menu. The default items on the N70 Music Edition include Contacts, Log, Profiles, Gallery and Image Print. Below the row of menu items on the standby screen is a convenient space which displays any calendar entries for the current day. Date and time, currently active profile, unread messages and missed calls are also displayed on the active standby screen.
The N70 Music Edition includes two cameras: a 2 Megapixel on the back for imaging and video recording and a VGA camera on the front for video calls. A useful feature is the ability to switch between cameras, handy for taking self-portraits. The camera contains plenty of options normally reserved for standalone digital cameras including adjusting the scene, white balance and colour tone. A self timer which can be adjusted to 10, 20 or 30 seconds and sequence mode (which takes six photos in about five seconds) is also included, rounding out an impressive list of imaging features. The photos we uploaded to our PC were bright and clear for a camera phone. Our only major complaint with the N70 Music Edition camera was the amount of time it took to write the images to the phones memory.
The N70 Music Edition only contains 22MB of internal memory, but Nokia has included a 1GB MMC Card slot in the sales package. The MMC Card slots into the right hand side of the phone, which is guarded by a plastic cover. Also included is an FM radio. Reception quality for the radio was a mixed bag, especially as the supplied headphones also act as the antenna. We found the radio volume levels weren't loud enough and this was especially obvious when outdoors.
Despite being a "Music Edition" the new N70's MP3 capabilities aren't anything to write home about. Volume could have been louder at high levels and the included headphones are poor, though the remote is a nice touch. Nokia has included an adapter that allows a standard 3.5mm set of headphones to be used though, which will be a relief for many budding audiophiles. Nevertheless, the 1GB of storage is impressive for a mobile phone.
The N70 Music Edition's keypad layout is cramped and uncomfortable; the entire keypad is squashed towards the bottom of the phone. We also found using the four-way navigational pad to be a hit and miss affair - it is difficult to register each press of the central key due to its small size. The phone houses four buttons to the left and right of the keypad, including menu, clear and music keys. These buttons are also frustrating to reach.
Despite the disadvantages of the keypad, we were very impressed with the N70 Music Edition's build quality. The phone feels sturdy and solid, without being too heavy. Its matt silver/grey finish spells professionalism and although at 108.8mm x 53mm x 21.8mm it is fairly bulky, we didn't feel the size when the phone was stored away in our pocket. According to Nokia figures, the N70 Music Edition features a notable battery life rated at up to 3.5 hours talk time and 11 days standby time.
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