I'm not going to apologise for having had something of a Nokia-fest over the past few weeks. With the N81 8GB and the N95 8GB both appearing hot on each other's heels who can blame me? And now the Nokia-fest continues, not with another N series device, but with a more business focussed E series one. The E51, to be precise.
I was a big fan of the slider E65 when it appeared, and while it had a few problems I did wonder how Nokia would top it with its next release. The E51 is the answer, and it really does look like a great smartphone for the business user and for consumers who want to stay on top of their lives.
This phone packs all its features inside a deceptively basic casing. The silver and black styling of my review sample was not particularly exciting, but good enough. The livery is replicated in bronze and black or black all over, though not all operators are offering all variants.
The phone is quite tall at 114.8mm, though is very thin at 12mm. It is 46mm wide and weighs the magic 100g. It feels really comfortable to hold, and slips into pretty much any pocket without causing trouble. The perhaps excessive height is welcome because it allows for a superb screen, good number pad and large bank of additional buttons. Let's look at those features in turn.
The screen measures two inches corner-to-corner and delivers 320 x 240 pixels. It can display 16 million colours. It isn't huge but it is superbly sharp and clear, and utilises the confined space well. To make even more use of the display area, Nokia's Web browser can be twisted into wide format and there is a text zooming mode which helps you see as much as possible of a page at once.
The number pad keys are all large and shaped so that while they all touch each other they also feel like individual keys. I had no trouble number dialling or texting quickly.