Product Type: Nokia mobile phones
Newest Review: ... recommend the Nokia 2630. It is very slim, - barely a centimetre thick - and the handset measures about 4.5 x 10.5 centimetres. The numb... more
Cheap and cheerful telephony
Member Name: Mildew82
Advantages: Easy to use, nice array of functions
Disadvantages: Not the best battery life, adequate but not great camera facilities
So I decided that the time may have finally come for a new phone. My friends/advisors wanted me to go for one with all the latest apps with an amazing camera, internal GPS, a touch-screen, the ability to make a freshly brewed cup of tea but I'm one of those technologically stubborn people that just want my phone to be able to phone other phones and maybe also to send them text messages. Plus since I have the uncanny knack of destroying most electrical equipment I purchase within one year of said purchase I always go for the cheap and cheerful option in any buying decision.
Since I was more than happy with the Nokia 6070 as it had all the functionality I could ever want I went looking for as similar a phone as I could find which came easily in the Nokia 2630 guise. In fact it was almost identical to the Nokia 6070, but with a much more streamlined appearance aka less like a brick and in a much sexier black colour - a much more aesthetically pleasing phone.
The Nokia 2630 has TFT (thin film transistor) screen which can display up to 65,000 colours which does make for a bright and clear screen which, whilst they will never be award winning, means wallpaper, screensavers, photos and video clips look quite good when viewed on the phone. There are a good array of wallpapers and ring tones to choose from (as you'd expect all the ring tones are all much more irritating than the last) but at least you have the opportunity to download your own.
You can buy this phone SIM free and unlocked from between £50-£65 I imagine so you can stick in your old SIM card, but I paid £29.99 for one that came with a Vodafone Pay as You Go package (and a whole £1 of credit already on there - how exciting). This package was a simple one where calls cost 20p a minute at all times and texts cost 10p. I'm sure this is a terrible deal for people that use their phones a lot but I only ever phone people in emergencies and text most of the time so it works out better for me than a contract would. I see now you can get this same deal for £24.99 so that's £5 I've lost that I could have spent on 500 penny sweets - damn.
For me the battery life is a bit of a let down on this phone. I could easily go a week on my old phone before it started to beep annoyingly to inform me of its imminent death. But this one, even without much activity seems to only last about 3 whole days. I've read other reviews that comment that it does last a good week if used sparingly so maybe I just got a slightly dodgy one. Still it is not really all that hard to plug in your phone to charge for an hour or so every now and then as long as you're not absent minded and rubbish like me so it shouldn't really be that much of an issue.
The Nokia 2630 has a nice array of useful functions on top of just the ability to make calls and text which does give it value for money. Adding names to the address book is very simple, although I found it easier for myself to enter my contacts' first name into the surname section and vice versa as I generally search through first names and not surnames. Texting is just as easy as on any phone with the option to use predictive or non-predictive texting depending on your preference.
You can access the camera by going through the menu under Media, or pressing a convenient button on the bottom right hand side of the phone. Then it's just a case of holding the phone up to what you want to capture and hitting the main button. If your photography skills are as good as mine it will give you the chance to delete straight away and go back into camera mode to try again.
Just by hitting the options button you can swap over from camera mode to video mode which will capture sound as well and apparently you can record a clip for up to 2 mins and 5 secs although I suspect this will take up a lot of your allotted memory. For both these formats there is also the option to zoom up to 4x closer with a moving bar which moves forward in 7 steps so you can get your preferred distance just right.
You can change your quality settings from basic, normal and high and also the picture size from 160x120, 320x240 and 640x480. For me the picture quality for both photos and video recordings is adequate but really not that good, so if you want a really high quality picture or video footage for something beyond recreational use then this is not the piece of equipment to use but it's good for a bit of fun!
The Nokia 2630 comes with a wired headset which when plugged into your phone acts as an antenna so the FM radio will not function without it. The radio is easy to turn on either by holding down the * button, selecting the Go to menu, or under the Media menu. You can get the phone to autosearch for stations for you, or you can manually search or type the frequency of a station if you know it, and then you can also save these frequencies to make it easier to tune into them the next time around.
You can listen to the radio through your headset or you can switch it to loudspeaker so it comes out loud and clear through your phone to annoy everyone around you with what is likely to be the warbling of Cheryl Cole or something equally painful. Apologies to any Cheryl Cole fans out there. Thankfully even the loudest setting won't break any sound barriers so there's no danger of being arrested for noise pollution.
You can get actually very clear reception, but the phone has to remain fairly static as the reception is very easily lost, so it's not ideal to listen to if you're travelling like me on the train. If you're likely to be in one place though then you should be able to keep good reception and get full radio satisfaction.
If you buy this phone with a Vodafone package you will have access to Vodafone Live!. This is simple to access through the Web menu or just by pressing the top right button which will connect you instantly. This will allow you to browse the web through the Vodafone Live! homepage which has a lot of quick links to click on to get such things as news, sports, film, music, facebook, celebrity gossip updates or you can enter specific sites that you want to go to. You can also set bookmarks to make your surfing experience that bit quicker.
For me this is actually a painful experience - you have to wait absolutely ages for pages to open and it's quite a tiny screen to view things on so there would be a lot better phone out there that would be much better suited for connecting to the internet. I normally only use this if I want to find something out urgently.
* Bluetooth - an easy way to share your files between mobiles or with you PC / any other Bluetooth device. You can set your phone to permanently visible, temporarily visible or hidden.
* Call Logs - keeps a log of all calls, missed calls, received calls, dialled numbers, message recipients.
* Voice Recorder - Allows you to record sound for up to a minute a clip. The closer to the phone you get the better quality of the sound recording.
* Alarm Clock / Timer / Stopwatch
* Games - free games include Phantom Spider where as a pilot you must fight the army of the Evil Tarantula; Snake; Sudoku and some Demos that will try to hook you in and make you pay later of PAC-MAN, Platinum Solitaire and Tetris.
* Converter - gives converters for Temperature, Currency, Cooking, Weight, Length, Area and Volume.
* Expense Manager - helps you managed your budget by allowing you to writ plans and run daily and monthly overview.
My Final Thoughts
The Nokia 2630 is a sleek, stream-lined and very easy to use phone. With a very well organised menu and some nice shortcut keys navigating your way around couldn't be easier. The camera and video recorder are good but not great and for the price you pay you get a lot of cool extras which can come in very handy, such as the calendar, calculator or converter. This phone will probably suit people who just want the basics out of their phone and don't care about the latest apps and gismos.
Summary: A handy and easy to use phone for people that only want the basics
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