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Nokia E72 review

Niall Magennis




  • Recommended by TR

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Nokia E72
  • Nokia E72
  • Nokia E72
  • Nokia E72
  • Nokia E72
  • Nokia E72
  • Nokia E72
  • Nokia E72


Our Score:


The Nokia E71 is one of the highest scoring phones that Trusted Reviews has ever had in for test. Upon its release we fawned over its brilliant keyboard, top notch messaging features and impressive battery life. Nokia has taken an age to get around to producing a follow up, but now that the E72 has finally arrived is it a worthy successor to the original?

The E72 doesn’t look all that different to its predecessor and thankfully at just 10mm thick it’s still impressive svelte. However, this time around Nokia has upped the style quota by adding some sexy chrome trim around the edge of the handset and kitting it out with a metal battery cover with etched vertical lines that not only make the phone easy to grip, but also add an upmarket feel. It also feels very solid and gives you the confidence that it’ll stand up to the knocks and scrapes of life on the road.

There are some other tweaks here and there. The headphone jack has been upgraded from a 2.5mm connector to a standard 3.5mm jack and moved from the side to the top of the phone. And while the handset still has a Nokia mini charging port, it can now also be charged via the microUSB port, although using this does mean it takes a bit longer to top up with juice.

One of the best things about the E71 was its superb keyboard and thankfully Nokia hasn’t messed around with it too much. The excellent bubble-style keys look and feel very similar to the original and the four line layout remains. However, the size of the space bar has been reduced from four key widths to two to make room for two additional keys on the bottom row of the keyboard. We didn’t find the reduced size of the space bar to be an issue and the two extra keys are useful as they lead to less double button pressing. So we’re happy to report that it remains one of the best mobile phone keyboards around and in our opinion even trumps the keyboards you’ll find on Blackberry handsets.

Above the QWERTY keyboard, the layout of the function keys (which give you direct access to things like the calendar, address book and inbox) has changed little, but on the D-pad there is one important addition. The centre of the D-pad is now home to an optical joystick that lets you navigate through menus purely by swiping your finger across it. However, we didn’t find it all that easy to use. It’s recessed slightly into the centre of the D-pad which makes it a bit tricky to smoothly glide your finger across it. In fact we often found it was faster to just use the clickable part of the D-pad to move around the web browser and menus.

Sadly Nokia hasn’t really updated the handset’s 2.36in screen. As with the E71 it is a non-touch display with a resolution of 320x240. This is a bit lacklustre compared to the high resolution screens we’re used to seeing on today’s touchscreen phones and is some way off the Blackberry Bold 9700 or even the Blackberry Bold 9000 when it comes to sharpness. Nevertheless it is bright and can show 16million colours, so images and videos still look pretty impressive. However, the small size and low res are noticeable when you’re viewing web pages in the phone’s otherwise impressive browser. The limited space means you usually find yourself having to do a lot of scrolling around to navigate even relatively basic pages.

Carrier pricing updates & information supplied by WhistleOut


March 5, 2010, 5:06 am

I think my thoughts mirror yours exactly, I waited 6 months for this phone to be released only to be massively disappointed by two things. 1 The screen resolution is ridiculous for a phone that is competing against the blackberry market. 2 The price of this phone on contract is above the HTC Hero and all but the top-end blackberry.

I think I'm going to stick it out and go with the HTC Legend...it looks, dare I say it, Legendary!


March 5, 2010, 5:57 am

I had one of these for a while and absolutely loved it, if it wasn't for my dislike of QWERTY keypads on phones I probably would have stuck with it. You're right though - it's not a massive leap up from the E71; like the E51 - E52 jump too, but I still think it deserves a recommendation on being a great phone...even if you are 5 months behind the curve in reviewing this handset since launch!


March 5, 2010, 8:30 am

i had an e71, the only thing that stopped me upgrading to the e72 was the 320x240 screen res.

why do nokia put ARM 11 600 MHz processors in their newer non touch phones (e72,e55,6720,5630) and ARM 11 434 MHz processors in their touch screen phones? seems a crazy thing to do.


March 5, 2010, 2:05 pm

why make a review on a product that's 5months old?


March 5, 2010, 3:18 pm

@Angelino: Because people will still be buying it and want to read about it. We can't cover every phone as soon as its out so we have to catch up later on.


March 5, 2010, 3:27 pm

We use Nokia E71 & E72 at work - have quite a few. The E72 is lethargic (in Vodafone livery) when compared to the E71 - menus are so slow to respond. In every case each user has asked for an alternative device. Mail For Exchange on the E72 is a disaster! Stay well clear!


March 5, 2010, 10:59 pm

The speed issue where it fades between menus is really bad on the E72. It takes 3 seconds to open an email up. Quicker than an E75 mind you...

The E71, E75 and E72 used are generic Nokia phones not network supplied. As PaulW states the E71 is a much quicker phone.

I really don't get how Nokia can release such poorly debugged software.


March 6, 2010, 5:32 am

Ok Ed.

Btw didn't mean to sound so negative before.

Just so you know, Im a frequent visitor and I appreciate the time you guys spent on giving us reviews and news


March 6, 2010, 9:13 am

Following on from the E71 was always going to be a tough act to follow and it seems Nokia have failed with this handset just as they did with that other Nokia classic the 6310i.


March 6, 2010, 9:08 pm

@ffrankmccaffery - What are you referring to to state that the 6310i was a 'failure'? Are you nuts? That is the best handset Nokia has ever made and a big improvement over the 6210 and 6310 - it is tri-band, has good bluetooth implementation, massive battery life and is as hard to kill as a cockroach. Amazing phone.


March 6, 2010, 11:47 pm

@lifethroughalens: My apologies I forgot to proof-read my earlier post. I should have been referring to Nokia's failure to develop a successor to the 6310i just as they've failed to advance on the E71 with this handset. And you don't need to extoll the virtues of the 6310i, I still have one sitting in my pocket even now and knocking against the underside of my laptop as I type this.


March 7, 2010, 5:34 pm

The E72 is slow because Nokia doesn't allow us to disable the animation. Mostly because the iRubbish users/reviewers keep lambasting Nokia devices for being too functional and not pretty enough, so...

Although the low screen resolution has led to me ditching the E72 for an N900 (my grievances about the TR review aside)


Really? Over here in tropical Singapore BlackBerries are retardedly expensive (more than twice the cost of E72?) and in my 'long' life I can count the number of BB's I've seen in one hand. Heck, I've spotted more E72's than ALL BB's!


March 7, 2010, 6:35 pm

@@ffrankmccaffery, Ah-ha, I see what you meant now...I think I misread the meaning of your post, excuse me. I am finally selling my last 6310i - a 6700 classic has taken it's place after many years of service :)


March 7, 2010, 10:13 pm


Yeah I can get pretty much any blackberry on an unlimited phone/text/data package for £25 a month, or the top of the range one for £30...standard business offer not even cash back or anything dodgy. I dislike the blackberry thing though...too many people have the same one and I like having a different phone. HTC Legend here I come :)


March 8, 2010, 2:56 pm

E72 = 500 for Brand new

BB Bold 9700 = $900 for Brand new

WTF?! + BB's are worthless without a BB plan, so that makes it even more ridiculous.


March 8, 2010, 6:37 pm

Yeah tell me about it but here T-Mobile have really good unlimited unlimited BB plans, they advertise in the Metro every day :) If I could have got an E72 on that plan I would snap it up in a second lol.

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