The Nokia E66 is a lovely phone all-round, and the operating system – Symbian S60 3.1 – makes it feel extremely nippy to use, but there are areas of concern. The first is the battery, which is a disappointingly low capacity 1,000mAh, bog-standard, lithium-ion unit. On my sample – admittedly not a final production handset – this resulted in a life that extended to around two-and-half days of light use. It’s not the worst I’ve come across in an HSDPA phone, however, and it may improve, of course, when the E66 hits the shelves in mid-July.
Document compatibility is also a bug-bear. There are viewers on the phone for Word, Excel, PowerPoint courtesy of QuickOffice 4.1 (Office 2007 docs, unsurprisingly are not supported in that version), plus there’s support for viewing PDF files, and a ZIP tool, but this is not a licensed version, and you can’t edit those files. I was disappointed to find that, unlike with the firm’s recent N-series of multimedia phones, the E66 lacks a 3.5mm headphone output in favour of a 2.5mm headset connection. This seems to be a common theme with business smartphones these days, but for the life of me I can’t work out why. Business users like to listen to music too, and with a 2GB microSD card sitting in the E66’s expansion slot, it seems an opportunity wasted. And, finally, it’s irritating in a phone that’s likely to spend a lot of time sitting on desks next to PCs and laptops, that you still can’t charge it over USB.
Despite the niggles, I have to say I like the E66. If you do a lot of emailing and messaging while you’re out and about and prefer the convenience of a QWERTY keyboard, then you’re probably better off with the E71 (which we’ll be reviewing very soon).
But for those who prefer a phone to be, well, a phone first and an emailer second, then its combination of sleek design, solid business features and ease of use make it one of the most attractive handsets on the market right now.
Score in detail