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Nokia 8800 Carbon Arte - Nokia 8800 Carbon Arte

By Sandra Vogel



Our Score:


Still, there is no denying that the 8800 Carbon Arte itself is beautifully put together. The stainless steel outer casing of this slider is lovely to look at and lovely to hold. The rounded edges add a touch of class and the grey/black carbon fibre patterning on the front below the screen and on the back is a design is pleasing to the eye.

Tall and thin is the order of the day with measurements of 109mm tall, 45.6mm wide and 14.6mm thick when closed, growing to about 133mm with the slide opened.

The metal elements to the casing do add to the phone's weight, though, and it feels like more than the 150g Nokia quotes for it. At least the weight distribution has been well thought out as the 8800 Carbon Arte doesn't feel top or bottom heavy with the slide opened. There is no ledge to grab with a thumb to open the slide so you will inevitably leave fingermarks on the screen.

The rest of the user ergonomics are fine. The D-pad is fairly large and its raised rim makes navigation easy. The Call and End buttons and softkeys are on flat panels and they were easy to use accurately. The number pad keys are a little narrow but they are nicely shaped with a raised lower edge to help with accuracy and there's no problem with hitting the bottom row thanks to a bar of unused space between that row and the bottom of the slide.

The OLED screen measures just two inches. Its 320 x 240 pixels are clear enough indoors but the screen isn't as readable as it could be outdoors in bright sunlight.

This is a tri-band handset with 3G. There is no front camera for two-way video calling and no HSDPA so data speeds aren't as fast as they could be. Web browsing seemed reasonable for speed during testing, but the small screen let things down as it will for other data-rich tasks. At least Opera Mini was pre-installed to help the screen along a bit as far as the Internet is concerned.

There is no Wi-Fi, GPS or accelerometer, all of which I would expect as standard in a phone costing as much as this one does. The S40 operating system includes a fair few goodies but is not up to the capabilities of S60. Many people will probably find it fine, but advanced users will want more.

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Zero 1

March 13, 2009, 4:49 am

who will actually buy this??? its like the vertu i have never seen anyone with one of them before

Sean Groarke

March 13, 2009, 10:39 am

This is a S6600 slider with a frock on. My wife changed her mobile the other day and got a S6600 for 1 Euro. If only I'd read this review first, I could have spent loads of Euros more on one of these!! Ah well.

Now I *know*, from past correspondence, it's an iffy subject around these parts, but forgive me: how does this phone get 5/10 for value? Please, just talk me through it... How?


March 13, 2009, 11:24 am

I often find your phone reviews quite bizarre but to give this phone a value of 5/10 is comical! Come on, just hit it with a 1 or 2!

Having worked for one of the big mobile phone companies (in I.T. support, not in the stores), the take-up on the Nokia 8xxx series isn't as low as you think, but the people end up paying about 𧶲 plus a 㿏p/m 18 month contract which in itself is a lot of money for such a basic phone.


March 13, 2009, 12:11 pm


I've never met anyone with a Vertu either, but I did see someone buying one in Selfridges once. Looked about 16. I suspect we don't move in the same circles as people with these handsets!


March 13, 2009, 12:27 pm

Ultimately the materials used to construct this phone are expensive so the phone's going to be expensive. So without any obvious alternatives offering the same build quality for less money it's hard to be too critical in terms of value.


March 13, 2009, 4:34 pm

For that kind of money I expect to be able to shave with it too - especially since it looks like my dad's old Braun.

I really think manufacturers have missed a trick here.


March 13, 2009, 5:58 pm

"So without any obvious alternatives offering the same build quality for less money it's hard to be too critical in terms of value"

Haha, Ed...I have to say it, but that's a *really* weak argument!

You know this phone should have got a 2 or 3 out of 10 for value, in the current financial situation the 5/10 mark just seems even more silly (Sorry Sandra, your reviews are great!)...ٟ,100 for a basic steel & carbon Nokia (carbon fibre is not *that* expensive to produce any more) - King George might be interested.



March 13, 2009, 9:14 pm

I'd have given it a 2 ;) But then again you guys already know my hatred of such things: http://www.trustedreviews.c...

Daniel 7

March 14, 2009, 11:29 am

Sandra, I think you missed the point here. The 8800 Carbon Arte is not about the biggest feature list, and it's not even about 'value for money' in the traditional sense. It's aimed at people for whom status is more important than features or price; the kind of person who has a Mont Blanc briefcase, a Breitling watch and who drives a BMW 335i Convertible. In other words, somebody who earns considerably more than the average, but not yet a millionaire (then they'll want a Vertu).

I found it interesting to note that several reviewers have referred to this phone as a 'midrange' model - midrange as in somewhere between consumer handsets (everything from the Nokia 1650 to the N97) and the Vertu handsets costing many thousands.

That's the target market, and when you realise that it starts to make a lot more sense.


March 16, 2009, 1:48 pm

I think your comments have pretty much highlighted precisely why Sandra has scored this phone as such. On the one hand your knowledgeable techy consumer will just see this as a waste of money (i.e. the majority of you so far) whereas someone that cares less about such things but likes 'nice' devices will be quite happy with it as it saves them spending many thousands on something likte a Vertu (i.e. the point Daniel wa making). Sandra could've sided with either argument but has instead kept a relatively balanced view.

Sean Groarke

March 16, 2009, 6:22 pm

I know I shouldn't take the bait, but I will... It's just that this really bugs me. 'Ed', your defence of the value for money rating is nonsense! Maybe we should call this site "AveragedReviews" instead? With only a slight change to your argument you could show that *everything* should be receive a 5/10 rating for value.

I sympathise, as such a rating will always be somewhat subjective, but in that case one should just bite the bullet and be that: subjective. Yes, qualify it ("I'd give it 1/10 for value, but those with vast amounts of money might give it 5/10" - although that seems pretty self-evident) but tell us what you think, not some artificial, meaningless (to both ends of the spectrum) arithmetic mean. Please.

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