Nokia E71’s smartphone bowled us over with its potent mix of business and multimedia features, but can its slider sibling follow suit?
With Nokia’s new Eseries duo blurring the boundaries between business and pleasure we’re starting to find it hard to distinguish between this ‘Enterprise’ range and its powerful multimedia Nseries cousins.
The E71 at least marks out its business territory with a QWERTY keyboard but its younger bro, the E66 slider, could quite easily switch allegiance and no one would bat an eyelid.
As successor to the popular E65, this Series 60 smartie does give a few clues to its business background – front shortcut keys to PIM functions being one – but its feature line up of built-in Wi-Fi, A-GPS, HSDPA and a 3.2megapixel snapper would easily pass the Nseries entrance exam. In fact, it could only really be failed for its non-support for N-Gage gaming and lack of Carl Zeiss optics.
Its impressive rap sheet is identical to the E71, and the E66 has been treated to the same cosmetic upgrade. Stainless steel rear panelling and front metallic trim give it a classy feel, although its mirrored façade is easily blemished with finger smears.
The E66 is a little trimmer than its predecessor at 13mm and has some added heft. Otherwise the slider action is still smooth but springy and it’s incredibly simple to use with a sizeable keypad that’s easy on the thumbs. A more powerful processor also makes it zippier to navigate.
There are a few differences from the E71. Accelerometer motion sensors auto-rotate the screen so you can view pictures, web pages or use the phone in landscape mode. And the E66 also borrows the 8800 Arte’s boardroom friendly technique of killing a ringtone but not the call by placing the phone face down.
Unlike the E71, the E66 is afforded its own side camera shutter key and we noticed its autofocus is a little sharper.
Video capture also goes beyond the call of duty with its slick VGA-quality footage at 22fps falling just short of the N95 benchmark. The sharp, bright 2.4in screen is a good size for most mobile activities, although when it comes to using the Nokia Maps 2.0 for navigation, it’s better suited to walking rather than in car use.
?Whether it wears the E or Nseries badge of honour the E66 takes tough business and multimedia demands in its stride. If you’re eyeing up this or the E71, your decision boils down to whether you crave a QWERTY keyboard or not. Whichever way you go, you won’t be disappointed.
Nokia E66 review
It looks unassuming and understated but this is the best smartphone slider around