Back in April I reviewed Nokia’s 6300 and was impressed with its simplicity, clean lines and usability. Now comes the 3110 classic, a tri-band handset with GPRS, EDGE and HSCSD. As I wrote this review the 3110 classic was available on Orange from free. None of the other major operators were listing it, but check when you read this for wider availability.
As the ‘classic’ in its name implies this is another attempt by Nokia at a straightforward, no-nonsense mobile phone. It takes much of what was good about the 6300 and builds it into a handset with a basic set of specifications that are sometimes below what the 6300 offered, sometimes above it.
That isn’t to say this handset isn’t without its surprises. The FM radio, for example, is a very welcome feature in a budget phone, and one that that Nokia should build into every mobile it produces. As soon as it came out of the box this looked like a handset I could live with. Styled in black with a couple of silver flourishes it is understated and not the kind of phone that shouts ‘steal me!’ whenever it is brought out for use. Sized at 108.5 mm tall, x 45.7mm wide and 15.6 mm thick it feels comfortable in the hand and at 87g it is no problem for the pocket.
Nokia has decided to prioritise the keys over the display and the latter is pretty small. I measured it at 1.7 inches corner to corner. Its 128 x 160 pixels are pretty rudimentary and the screen doesn’t have the definition that many other handsets offer. The 262,000 colours are welcome though, and the screen is bright enough to read outdoors.
Immediately beneath the screen enclosed in a lozenge shape are some familiar buttons. A navigation ring with central select button sits in the middle. The button itself is huge, the ring smaller but raised nicely from its surroundings so that using it is very easy. To its left and right are selection keys and Call and End keys. Those keys aren’t especially large, but the number keys are by comparison, massive. Usefully, the number keys are backlight, brilliant white when in use. Side keys don’t amount to much. There are volume controls on the upper right edge and that’s it.
All in all the screen/keys compromise may please the stubby fingered but irritate those who like screen intensive activities like web browsing, though having said that using the browser is not much fun.
Now, just like the 6300 I mentioned earlier, the 3110 classic runs Symbian’s S40 operating system. What this means is that while you don’t get the amazing range of applications and capabilities built in that S60 handsets offer there may be enough here to keep you happy.
Besides what I’ve already mentioned, Bluetooth and infra red are built in, there is a calendar, a todo list manager, an alarm clock, a notes application, calculator, timer, stopwatch and voice recorder. The messaging centre includes POP email support, and this handset plays music.
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