Its not been long when QWERTY devices were a craze (there are still a lot of loyalists though), but its becoming increasingly difficult for them to survive in the touch phones era. Somehow the same form factor been one of the biggest reasons behind the success of Blackberry (Along with BBM & pushmail of course). Nokia did come up with a select QWERTY models and they did fairly well. These days you don’t see many people carrying QWERTY phones but there are people who are still sticking to their E – series smartphones.
With Nokia falling way behind in the smartphones category, its their utility phones that have helped them sustain their top spot until now. And its interesting to see Nokia how they play their cards in the near future. Will phones like Nokia E6-00, help them survive the storm? Well, lets find out…
Nokia E6-00: the box
The box packaging is quite similar with the recent Symbian^3 devices like Nokia N8/E7 /C7 .
As you can see from the preview of the box, Nokia E6-00 comes in three different set of colors. Good old black, the favorite white and the new spice silver.
The Nokia E6-00 model with us happened to be one of the sweetest one i.e.; the white one, obviously along with the accessories in white.
Doesn’t it look like the same old Nokia E72 box? In comparison to Nokia E71/E72,though there is no leather pouch to go along with it, the similarities will also start fading once we see the device in more detail.
While USB cable is the familiar CA-179, Nokia Wh-207 headsets are new, though the model number variation seems to be due to white color only. The travel charger shipped along is the AC-15E as expected with Symbian^3 devices.
Even if the promos look otherwise, Nokia E6-00 feels like all the goodness of E-Series portrait QWERTY devices combined. The large space bar placed in center, free space in bottom for the support, removal of optical navi wheel after user complaints and front covered with glass all over… it screams premium. Somewhere it reminds you of the front glassy build of Nokia N86.
Let’s go through a rough unboxing of the device.
(Apologies for the video quality.)
Nokia E6-00: The Hardware design
The smooth back and the curves lend it a premium look, and the metallic build reassures of it being a solid built device.
A slight protrusion (lesser than N8 though) Camera surface on the back is engraved with ’8 MPix’, its a tradition Nokia started with the E72 of providing high quality cameras to their business users. Even though the camera tech is EDoF but capabilities like 720p recordings makes quite competitive with cameras on other business phones.
The 8MP camera unit is the same as we’ve seen on the rest of Symbian devices like Nokia C7 or E7. Dual LED that can be used as video light too or even torch with loud speakers on the same protruding panel.
The bottom side has a 2mm charger port (a relief for old users) . The build is certainly not uni-body and we have detachable battery here, but it still gives you a uni-body feel.
The top of the device is a little bit different from typical Nokia devices w.r.t. Memory Card slot position. You are recommended to grow your nails if you are planning to buy one. Rest are the standard 3.5mm audio jack and the power switch. The top is the only portion where they’ve used plastic which seems of a premium quality. Opening the back cover and the micro usb or the card slot is a little difficult and could have been better.
The right side lacks a camera or gallery key, but is still crowded with volume key, voice key and lock switch. Lock switch is a new addition.
With Nokia E6-00, we are in for the same E-Series keyboard, we always been in love with. Well spaced keys and a bigger space bar in the center. The typing gets the real wings (Sliders never do the same job). Though some may not like the placement of the six keys (Call/ End, Home, Calender, Message and contacts) under the glass at the same level as it confuses you sometimes.
Isn’t it lovely that you took interest in the device even before I had mentioned about it having to do anything with touch? Yes.. along with the front camera and light sensor, ambient sensor seems necessary now. Also you can see the big earpiece now defunct with E-Series devices.
Nokia E6-00: The specs
- GSM Frequency: Pentaband GSM 850/900/1800/1900 MHz, UMTS 850/900/1700/1900/2100 MHz, HSDPA 10.2 Mbps, HSUPA 2 Mbps
- Dimensions: 115.5 x 59 x 10.5 mm, 87 cc; 133 g (weighs similar to Nokia E5)
- Display: 2.46-inch 16M-color VGA TFT LCD capacitive touchscreen. The pixel density beats iPhone Retina display (Okay, its so because of the small screen size )
- Memory: 8GB storage memory, 1GB ROM, hot-swappable microSD card slot (up to 32GB), 350 mb Internal memory
- OS: Symbian Anna OS (will cover in a snap via a video overview)
- CPU: ARM 1176 680 MHz processor, Broadcom BCM2727 GPU; 256 MB RAM (Same CPU/GPU as N8/E7/C7)
- Camera: 8 megapixel fixed-focus camera with dual-LED flash, geo-tagging; 720p video recording@25fps
- Connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth v3.0 with A2DP, microUSB port with USB on-the-go, 3.5mm audio jack, GPS receiver with A-GPS
- Misc: Accelerometer, Stereo FM radio with RDS, Flash support in the web browser, proximity sensor, Battery: 1500 mAh Li-Ion battery
As you can see, this is definitely the hardware specs that Nokia E72/71 users craved for since long.
Nokia E6-00: The touch Screen and Symbian Anna
Admit it, when it comes to typing on phones, then one always prefers HW portrait QWERTY than touch screen keyboard or horizontal sliding keyboard. Its just that the touch phenomenon been throwing off such a magic spell that many felt giving up on productivity over the joy of using touch. So even Nokia has entered the space where others attempted with a lower resolution screen with not so many optimizations and failed miserably. So it will be interesting to see what happens to E6-00 which has tried to optimize the experience with its Anna update. See some of the features in the video below!
So this was a quick overview of Symbian Anna and Touch screen of Nokia E6-00. Its so less about Nokia E6-00 even now and the same joy could be felt only after actually using it.
Nokia E6-00: The pricing
While Nokia definitely is trying to up the ante in Asia, Nokia India really dropped a bomb when they announced the pricing for the Nokia E6-00. Priced at 17, 999/-for a pre-order and expected on-the-road price of around Rs 16500, many will definitely find a successor for their last E-Series device… what do you think?
With inputs from Tassavur Shaikh