With so many new handsets sporting touchscreens, fancy user interfaces, or gizmos it is something of a relief to have in my hands this week Nokia's 6700 Classic. There's nothing fancy about this phone at all. Nokia has shot itself in the foot on a couple of counts, but for those looking for a mobile for voice calling and a bit of texting first and other stuff second, this classic candybar handset is quite alluring.
I've generally been a fan of Nokia's approach to the classic candybar, because the company does the basics on such phones well. And the same holds true here. The general design, screen and keyboard are all good - and battery life is smashing.
The phone's ordinary looks do it no harm at all. A 109.8mm tall, 45mm wide and 11.2mm thick it feels comfy in the hand. At 113g it is a little heavier than the lightest of candybars, but not by enough to cause any bother.
The chrome backplate is both a blessing and a curse. Silver shiny metal looks nice. But in the short term it attracts fingerprints like it is going for a world record in that feat, and in the medium and longer term it'll probably attract plenty of scratches.
The front mixes more chrome with plastic and the former's use on the number pad again makes it attractive to fingerprints. The number keys are flat and reasonably easy to use, but fast texters might find the fact that the keys aren't hugely responsive a bit annoying.
The screen is small by modern standards but at 2.2in, it carries its 320 x 240 pixels well. And in between screen and keyboard is a bank of buttons that are bland but serviceable. Call and End and two softkey buttons sit on a flat area surrounding the D-pad, whose silver frame is pre-configured to take you to Calendar, SMS creation, and, via its up and down buttons, through the application shortcuts on the main screen.
It all works well enough, if offering nothing to cause an 'ooh' or 'aah' of surprise or delight. What did cause delight was the battery life. I did my usual rundown test of asking the phone to play music non-stop off a full charge from its speaker and not only was the volume loud through the speaker but the quality was serviceable. The battery delivered music for a solid 12 and a half hours. Nokia says you should get up to five hours talk and 416 hours of standby on GSM. I was still using this phone off its first charge after three days.