The N79’s music playback also impressed. The sound was nice and loud through the stereo speakers on the upper and lower right edge of the phone, and the battery managed close to 10 hours of continuous play. When using the phone everyday I found that a daily charge was required to compensate for use of the GPS, Wi-Fi and HSDPA.
There is a 3.5mm headset jack exactly where it should be on the top edge of the phone and the headset itself is two-piece, so you can use your own favourite cans and benefit from hands-free.
There is 50MB of internal memory and a side-mounted microSD card slot pre-populated with a 4GB card. Unfortunately my card caused an I/O error (it was unreadable) but hopefully that was a one-off glitch. There is an FM radio and an FM transmitter and this handset supports the Nokia Music Store.
As well as having music downloads on tap this is an N-gage phone so you can download games to it. But it doesn’t have dedicated gaming keys like some of the other N-series handsets.
There is a GPS receiver built-in and Nokia Maps is pre-installed. Nokia’s web browser takes advantage of the accelerometer and can readily be flipped into landscape mode by turning the handset round. As typical, there’s a calculator, calendar, PDF reader, unit converter, notes taker and QuickOffice for reading Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents. However, you need to buy a license if you want to create them too.
If I were after an new N-series mobile and could bear to part with the SIM-free money, this is what I’d opt for. Less bulky than the current crop of dual sliders, the N79 offers lots of goodies in a pocket-friendly shell. I also like the (admittedly gimmicky) automatic theme changing as you swap backplates, and battery life is good.