Thursday, 24 November 2011

Nokia X3-02 - Many Reasons to Buy One

Neat features and an attractive price, is it for real?
When the X3-02 came to India, little did we know that Nokia would have a good feature phone to offer. The price looked attractive at first glance, but does it have something more to offer than the regular features that you can find in many mobile phones in that price bracket? We gave the X3-02 a swing and here’s what we found out.
Nice and lightweight
Nice and lightweight

Design and Build Quality
Nokia has not gone out of the way when designing the X3-02. The handset has a conventional candy bar design and the overall white finish, with a nice dash of black on the bezel surrounding the screen and the silver back plate, makes the X3-02 a really neat looking mobile. The phone looks pretty sleek with the thickness resembling that of a 100-page book and the X3-02 is also pretty light to carry around. The X3-02 has been built really well and although it feels quite light, it sure looks like it can survive a couple of falls!
Unconventional keypad
Unconventional keypad

Below the 2.4-inch TFT Resistive touchscreen are the keys for call answer and call end, along with two dedicated keys for messaging and music respectively. Nokia took a slight change of direction while placing the T9 keys this time and has eliminated the last row which has the *, 0 and # keys and brought them to the right. While it looks different, users who are more familiar with the conventional placement might feel a little out of place. The keys on the right need some getting used to and that’s something that we did not appreciate. 

Otherwise, the rest of the buttons like the volume rocker and the lock key on the right, or even the mini-USB port, 3.5 mm audio jack and charging port on the top are all well placed and easy to use.

To conclude with the design and build quality, the X3-02 has a good look and feel and only the unconventional placement of keys brings it down a notch.
The X3-02 runs on the Symbian S 40 version 5 platform which in a general sense is pretty average. However, while you cannot compare it to smartphone operating systems like Android or iOS, it certainly does the job for this phone. The touchscreen, although of the resistive type, responds admirably and there’s no lag in the user interface. While there was one instance when the X3-02 hung, it performed well the rest (and most) of the time.
Neat features and an attractive price, is it for real?
Neat features and an attractive price, is it for real?

The homescreen is customizable, where the user can add three quick shortcuts. Plus, there’s a quick launch bar at the bottom of the screen which is also customizable. So users have a wide range of options to select their most used applications and put those on the homescreen for faster access. 

There was one small glitch which I felt was a little irritating. While making calls, if the phone’s vibration feedback is on, you’ll constantly feel the vibrations as your cheek touches the screen. However, you can turn that off from the settings menu. 

The one feature that we liked the most (almost the whole Tech2 team would agree to this) was that the X3-02 performs really well in the music department. While bundled earphones are best avoided in most cases, the pair of earphones that Nokia has bundled with the X3-02 are very serviceable. The phone supports MP3, WAV and WMA music formats which it plays well and even without any equalizer settings, the sound quality is worlds better than what you would expect. The heaviness of the bass is quite prominent and the mids and highs sound great as well.
Great music features
Great music features

You cannot really expect much from the small 2.4-inch TFT screen in terms of video capability. However, the X3-02 plays XviD, H.263, H.264 and MP4 video formats. We tried playing 360p and 480p H.264 videos but they did not run at all. To sum up the video playback, the X3-02 doesn’t support many formats and even if they do, not at all resolutions. 

The X3-02 has one pre-loaded game called Climate Mission and users can also download games and apps from the Ovi Store. Plus, the handset also comes with a pre-loaded app called Shazam. For those who are not familiar with it, Shazam is music identification service where you play a track through the microphone and the app gives all the information of the song to the user. 

The X3-02 has almost all the connectivity features like 3G, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.1. While we did not test the 3G features of the phone, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth worked absolutely fine. We transferred a 100 MB file through the mini-USB port which took about 20 seconds. There’s a Facebook application pre-loaded in the phone so it’s easy for users to access their favorite social networking site. The handset is also EDGE and GPRS enabled and browsing the internet through the in-built Opera Mini browser is pretty neat. 

Miscellaneous Features
There’s nothing new in the extra features of the X3-02 and many users who have previously used Nokia handsets will be pretty accustomed to the in-built World Clock, Stopwatch, Calendar, Calculator and more. Also, applications like the To-do list, Notes and Voice Recorder are pretty handy. Again, users can always download more apps from the Ovi Store as per their requirement. 

The 5 Megapixel camera is no small talk and the picture below will tell you that this camera delivers some crisp images with good detail and colours. While that is pretty obvious for outdoor images, indoor images are a tad lower in terms of image quality.
Good outdoor shots
Good outdoor shots (click for native resolution)

The camera also records videos at a resolution of 640 x 480 pixels at 15 fps, which is quite average.
Average indoor images
Average indoor images (click for native resolution)

Battery Life
The X3-02’s battery life is pretty good as well, where you can talk for about 2 hours, message time and again and also play some music. At the end of it all, the phone does last for a good duration.
Well placed ports
Well placed ports

The Nokia X3-02 is priced at Rs. 8,404 (MOP) which is very attractive for such a handset. Now what really matters here is that the phone scores well in almost every area. Sure, it takes some getting used to the new keypad format, but after a while you’re bound to fall in love with it. It’s very important to note that Symbian is not really the OS of the future, so if you are looking for more of apps and features, Android, Windows Phone 7 and even iOS makes more sense than Symbian. However, if you’re looking for a no-nonsense, value for money mobile phone that has a good music player and comes in handy for a few pictures; the X3-02 should be your next buy!

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