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Review Nokia 3300

Standard kit:

  • Phone
  • Stereo handsfree
  • Data adapter (DKU-2, USB)
  • Cable to record sounds from peripherals
  • User's guide
  • card, 64 MB
  • Charger
  • CD with software

Nokia 3300, live pictures

Nokia 3300 is the next attempt to revive idea of a hybrid of cellular telephone and musical player, for the first time this match we saw in Nokia 5510. The previous attempt was unsuccessful, the device was too bulky; price was too high for young users who would like to purchase it. So, the model was removed from production without excessive sensation, though at the end of life cycle it cost quite good money.

Creating Nokia 3300 developers have tried to take into account the previous experience and have offered few new solutions. The new device is based on the 40 platform, that at once allows to say that the phone has a standard set of features, and also small dimensions. The handset became convenient in response of dimensions; it can be carried both on a belt, and in a pocket of a shirt or jeans. The weight also is not too great for the phone of this class (125 g), but it is larger that an average weight of modern handsets.

The handset is available in two colors: Orange and Dark Blue. Interchangeable covers are available in Green and Light Blue.

All controlling units of the phone are located across. For example, the screen allocates in the center of the phone, and direction keys are on each side of it. The screen of this model is standard, it displays up to 4096 colors and has resolution of 128128 pixels. Up to 5 lines of the text, tips to the soft keys use and menu header can be displayed on it. It is impossible to tell something special about the screen, its typical for all last models from Nokia.

Four-directional navigation key is placed to the left of the screen. It is rather convenient, also it fulfils control functions of player, if you peer into denotations on it you will see tags of playing that are familiar on musical devices, winds forwards and back, stops. Just nearby there is a separate key to record broadcasts. If you press it in the mode when radio is not switched off, you could see an appropriate warning. Under the screen there are two doubled comfortable software - keys. To the right of the screen you can see the block of alphanumerical keys; their design is similar to what it was possible to see in Nokia 7250 (some keys are joined in one wavy vertical number). Separate key rows are located closely to each other; keys are small on size that causes discomfort while pressing. In this model we see an example of how attractiveness wins ergonomics, focused on design developers forgot about functionality. It is impossible to approve that the keyboard is unconditional at all, but to you cant name it convenient as well. In any case you should get used to such keys order. The keys have white backlighting. All the characters are almost not visible because the font is too small.

The other collision is connected with general layout of all keys, here is also a topic for discussion. So, to enter a menu press keys under the screen, and to scroll it - use the navigation key at the left. Time is required to adapt to such organization. After a little practice you get used to make all these operations by one finger of the left hand, but first time it is extremely inconvenient, get confused. When you type messages or text, you also use only one hand as buttons are located closely too each other and concentrated to the right of the screen. Probably, initially it was supposed, that the typing would be realized by the thumb of the right hand as it is free when you hold the device. If you have big hands that are typical for men, such way of typing is unsuccessful. A malicious joke has played the general size of the phone; it became small and has not allowed making keys larger. Developers shouldve spread them. On the other hand, its not convenient to hold the phone with two hands, and type the text simultaneously. We recommend you first to try the keyboard of Nokia 3300, and already then think about purchasing.

In the localized versions (for example, Russian), there are not only characters of the Latin alphabet, but also the second language on the keyboard. In this case there is an impression of density, the font is too small (remember about keys size), separate characters merge. As in conditions of artificial lighting, and in the street denotations are visible not so clearly, even only the English characters (without the second layout) are not always readable.

At the right end face of the device the power-on button allocates, in standby mode it is possible to replace profiles with its help. On the side surface which allocates further from the user, there is a standard Pop-Port connector, in particular, the stereo handsfree that goes in the package is connected to it. On the distant surface, exactly it user sees, when carries the device in a holster, there are two keys. At the left you can see the button with an image of treble clef, it is used for fast handling of musical possibilities of the device. On the right there is a button of volume level, and its executed from dark semi permeable plastic. Such type of plastic was always applied in windows covering the IR-port. In this phone the key is used only to adjust volume level, as the handset doesnt have IrDA function.

If you open a battery cover that makes equally third of the case and settles down in the middle, you will see the battery. The standard lithium-ion battery of 720 MAh capacity (BLD-3) is used in this model. According to the manufacturer the battery can provide about 200 hours in standby mode, up to hours in talk mode and up to 11 hours in music playing mode. In reality (German T-Mobile network) the device worked about 4 days in case of 30 minutes of talking, 25 minutes of other functions use, and also up to three hours of music listening. The heavy use of musical opportunities (5 hours of music listening, up to 20 minutes of talking) resulted that the device worked about 2 days. On the whole the operating time for this model is rather satisfactory, it was possible to expect the worse results, but it has not taken place. Basically the device is comparable with other phones on a platform 40, not only by functions, but also on the battery life. You need up to 2 hours to recharge the battery.

In Moscow (Beeline network) the phone operated about 2 days in case of active use (3 hours of listening to the radio, up to 40 minutes of talking, up to 20 minutes of other applications use).

There is a standard holder for SIM-card under the battery. Near it one can see MMC-card slot. A card on 64 Mb is included in the standard delivery kit. It is possible to record up to 2 hours of music on it.

Menu

The organization of the menu is similar to other Nokias phones. Fast shortcut numbers navigation is available. Icons of the main menu were revised, they became nicer. We won't stop on all opportunities of the device, they are perfectly described in reviews Nokia 7210, Nokia 6610, here well tell only about the main differences.

At first sight, all innovations are connected with the presence of musical player, and also that the device supports record of broadcasts. Radio is absolutely the same as in Nokia 7210/6610, there are no differences. But during listening, it is enough to press one key and the record will begin, later you can choose the recorded file and listen to it using headphones or speakerphone. The first what disappoints - the absence of record time and memory space indicators.

There are about 4333 KB of free space in the phone; total memory pool is 5 Mb. The part of it is occupied by standard pictures, ringtones, and Java-applications (Bounce, Triple Pop, Converter II). The record can be saved in the phones memory, and on the MMC-card. To highlight gaming capabilities of the phone, developers add DJ game. Your mission is to go around the city and learn to become a DJ. Your prize is a party in the best club of the city.

A new item connected with player was appeared in the phone settings. You can adjust type of sounding (POP, Rock etc.), balance left and right (there was no such function before), up to 5 equalizers. There are little settings, but all of them are clear and simple.

Presence of the broadcasts records opportunity allowed hoping for presence of full voice memo function, which would allow recording enough long conversations. Unfortunately, it was impossible to find out such function in our sample. On the other hand, voice commands have appeared here, it is possible to adjust switching of radio channels using them, turn on/off the radio, change profiles and so on. Voice tags (up to 10) are available in phonebook.

The most interesting function - BackUp&Restore is located in Extra menu. Earlier it was not presented in phones of such class. Here you can mark those items that demand archiving (phonebook, calendar, messages, schedule, received files), and then save them on MMC-card. Further all the information from the card can be restored without serious consequences. Keep in mind that identical records are not rewritable that makes process of archiving fast enough.

Unfortunately, there are no opportunities to manage card content. So, you record musical files from PC (for example, files in format or mp3-files), and then you can listen to them. It is possible to place any files in the card memory and transfer them from PC to PC. The main thing is not to forget to take along an USB-cable. Most todays OS recognize the phone as an extra disk and there is no need to install extra drivers or software. Nokia Audio Manager is included in the standard kit. It allows creating playback lists, choosing melodies and transferring them to the handset. But this software is not very necessary.

It is possible to record about 1 hour of music in mp-3 format or 2 hours in AAC-format on one standard card (64 Mb).

Any file from the memory card, not only a melody from the phone memory can be used as a ringing tone (TrueTones technology). In particular, it is very convenient to install mp3-melodies, even if they are long. It allows you to have a unique ringer.

In the device there is an automatic keyguide. Actually that is all about its features.

Impressions

It is possible to speak, both with the help of handsfree, and in usual mode, in the second case the sound in dynamic is rich. Despite of the devices made by Nokia and based on platform 40, this handset is equipped with more powerful loudspeaker. You can not only speak but even listen to the music using speakerphone function.

Although the phone has not ordinary shape, you can hold it with one hand easily. Its difficult to input text messages, the keyboard is not too comfortable, and as a whole you need time to get used to all control keys. Concerning reception quality, Nokia 3300 is a typical representative of Nokia phones; there are no problems with communication. You can speak not using handsfree either. Data adapter, included in the standard delivery kit, cant be used as a cable to transfer data, so, it is not possible to use the handset as a GPRS modem.

Among the shortcomings we can pay attention to not good connection of the phone and handsfree. After some period of time it will get loose.

Price for this phone is about 320-330 USD, and soon it will decrease to 280-300 USD. In view of that the phone is positioned as youth, it could quite become claimed by the certain group of users. It is impossible to expect high sales, they will be at level of Nokia 5100, not higher. The basic obstacles for popularity of this model in the market are: inconvenient control buttons, absence of a wide range of color solutions, and also general limitation of demand for hybrid devices. In any case, Nokia 3300 will be the unique offer in this segment of the market and remain those for a long time.

SAR-level of this phone is 0.77 W/kg (the other method - 2W/kg).

Eldar Murtazin (eldar@mobile-review.com)
Translated by Andreas von Horn (andreas@mobile-review.com);
Maria Sennikova (maria@mobile-review.com)

Published — 21 August 2003

Have something to add?! Write us... eldar@mobile-review.com

 

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