The key positioning and construction is generally positive. A huge D-pad is flanked by Clear and Nokia Menu keys. Call and End keys and two softmenu keys are large and easy to hit accurately. Beneath them and centrally located is the four-pointed star shaped Navigator key. Press this and Nokia Maps immediately fires up, the key becomes backlit with blue, and you enter navigation mode.
Open the slide and the number pad is accessible. Its keys are as large as the available area allows, and responsive to use. Texting at speed should not present many problems.
The screen is relatively large at 2.4 inches across the diagonal and its 320 x 240 pixels are no surprise. It needs to be sharp and bright to compete with dedicated sat-nav systems but, here, the screen is only a partial success.
It did perform quite well outdoors but in direct sunlight, readability does suffer. If you want to use this handset for in-vehicle or pedestrian navigation and want to see the on-screen maps clearly, hope that it is not an especially sunny day.
The integrated GPS with A-GPS support works alongside a pre-loaded copy of Nokia Maps software. The handset comes with a 1GB microSD card that has local maps pre-installed. Less than 200MB of storage was occupied on my review sample card leaving you plenty of space for your own data. This alone won’t give you point-to-point navigation but the phone does come complete with 6-months subscription to Nokia’s point-to-point navigation service.
The HSDPA connection to 3.6Mbps is good for Web browsing and Nokia’s own browser copes well with websites. A menu option flips the Web browser into wide format – I couldn’t make the phone’s built in accelerometer do this for me, though it was a little flakey all round in my review sample. There is also, incidentally, what Nokia calls ‘turning control’. You can silence an incoming call or snooze an alarm simply by turning the phone face down. Not original, but potentially handy.