- Good keypad
- Strong connectivity
- No GPS
- Poor app support
- Resistive touchscreen
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Smartphones are no longer special. Smartphones are the norm, but while "always-connected" skills are expected as standard these days, not everyone has got used to the touchscreen operation that tends to come with them. Enter the Nokia X3-02 Touch and Type, a semi-smart phone with a 2.4in touchscreen and a keypad, optimised for typing rather than just keying-in numbers.
The Nokia X3 Touch and Type is the X-series alternative to the Nokia C3-01, the first Nokia phone to offer this hybrid of touch and keypad-based input. Typical of the X series, it's edgier-looking than its C-series cousin. There are some curves - the phone's back is contoured for comfort in your palm and the top and bottom of the phone's front are curved so that the body doesn't look too imposing - but sharp lines are the order of the day here.
We find little to dislike about the phone's looks. Its four-button-wide keypad is unusual, but the five shades the Nokia X3-02 is available in do a good job of tailoring the handset for different audiences. The black finish looks thoroughly business-like, while we can easily imagine the two pink-hued editions in the hands of teenage text-a-holics.
We've been testing the slightly-pearlescent white version of the Nokia X3-02, which sits in a friendly middle-ground between these two camps. It's not all-white - there's a silver brushed metal battery cover that significantly boosts this phone's feeling of build solidity. At 77g, this is one seriously light phone, but thanks to the metal backplate it doesn't feel like a budget weakling. It's a good thing too, because at around Â£90 on a pre-pay plan, it's no ultra-budget phone.
The spec list doesn't disappoint at this price point. The Nokia X3-02 is equipped with Wi-Fi, speedy HSPA mobile internet and a 5-megapixel camera. Is this really a smartphone though? It runs Symbian S40 v8, traditionally thought-of as a feature phone OS, but at this late point in its life it can just about do most of the things a "full" smartphone OS can do.
This "best of both worlds" approach is what Nokia has strived for in this phone. Its physical buttons offer a life line for those still unsure of going full-touchscreen, and we appreciate the dimensions of its petite and slim 9.6mm body. That's just 0.3mm thicker than the iPhone 4, which only has to fit in one front button, not the 16 seen here- including four handy soft key shortcuts.
On top of the phone there are 3.5mm headphone, micro USB and proprietary Nokia charging ports. The X3-02 can be charged over USB as well as the Nokia jack, but charging is slower than with Nokia's adapter, which we suppose is of import to some people (most smartphones seem to manage with just microUSB, though).
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