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    10 Reviews
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    • More +
      17.05.2011 17:30

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      Great phone that fulfil my needs

      I am (actually my wife) using Nokia 6288 from the past 5 years. I bought it in Bangkok.
      Guess What? It has Thai words on the keypad. What a local taste by Nokia.
      It is a very good phone. We are enjoying good moments with it.
      It has good audio with the speaker uniquely placed in the right side of the phone.
      You can choose by using headset or phone speaker to enjoy the MP3 files with almost same quality.
      The video recording quality is acceptable (added with the strength of its flash).
      And the picture made is OK.

      The storage I put is 1 GB and works very well.
      I can open and dig the folders with no problem.

      It goes without saying that Nokia UI is very user friendly. eventhough these days it will be quite boring.
      But if you love simplicity. Nokia is the answer.
      And, very good battery life.

      The shape is very good. Although as other slide phone, it has weakness on its hinge.
      And the flexible cable.
      I've replaced the flexible cable twice now.
      And when it comes to flexible cable, it has further problem : the display.
      I also have the display replaced once.

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      15.01.2009 14:39
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      Nokia's worst phone ever!

      The worst mistake of my life!! I got this phone on a 3 contract after drowning my last PAYG phone. To start will all was well the phone looked good and I have to say the lady in the shop really sold it to me as she had one. I thought the camera was good, the menu was easy to use although the only doubt I had at the time was it felt very light and very 'plasticy'
      The features it had were good such as the camera which took good photos, it had good video play back, a good music player and good storage for contacts and messages etc.
      My boyfriend decided he liked the phone and decided he would join 3 and go on the same contract thus to get the same phone. My sister also did the same as for the contract we got the Nokia seemed to be the best phone on offer.

      After 4 months my boyfriend started having problems with his phone. The screen started going fuzzy and breaking up. He got the screen replaced only to encounter the same problem again. He then lost faith in the phone all together and switched back to his old one.
      Mine and my sisters on the other hand were having a great time with ours no problems whatsoever.
      However after about 8 months mine started playing up I d slide the phone open and it would switch off then on again. The screen would start going fuzzy. A while after this started happening the screen would start going completely blank and would only be visible when closed which made it very hard to text on in the end I gave up and changed phones. Then my sisters did exactly the same around a month ago except hers went blank completely making it totally useless.

      I would not recommend at all!
      Crap build quality, Can get slow when opening programs, doesn't hold as many contacts as first told.

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      16.10.2008 00:52
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      Great phone easy to use

      I got this phone as part of a package from 3, which included 500 mins. the phone contains an awful lot of extra features in the main menus and with 3 you get free access to msn messenger which is fantastic on the big screen. The screan is great, probably the best feature on the phone. When your taking photographs its really usefull as you can see every detail on the picture that your taking.
      The phone is like a brick but its not very heavy, it slides up for access to the keys and you can lock the keypad easily however it unlocks extreamly easily too.
      I have a talk 500 contract and the microphone had failed a couple of times where ive had to send it away to be repaired as the person i was calling couldnt hear me. Thats been the only problem that ive had, overall im very happy with this phone its easy to use and reliable.

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      06.09.2008 22:26
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      A great little phone

      My Life was saved by my 6288. I switched to the 6288 on a £12 a month deal with 3 because it was cheap and cheerful and I needed a new phone (my PAYG phone died). It does everything you would expect from a 3g phone; video calls, still and video camera, multi media texting, music bits and the usual organiser stuff. My 3 yr old loves to talk to mummy on video calls and the keypad is easy to text on.

      However, what really saved my life is the internet capabilities. I recently went on holiday and found myself with no wireless node to hook in to. I had Discomgoogolation and the only thing that kept me sane (apart from red wine) was that I had downloaded Y! Go and could check my email and I could quite happily go onto Facebook on the phone browser.

      All in all it's a lovely little phone that does everthing I need.

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      30.08.2008 12:20
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      Brilliant for a phone you want for a little bit more than the basics.

      Although this phone is a little chunky in comparison to a lot of other phones around at the moment, it really does it's job well and slides smoothly up and down (which i am addicted to doing whilst i am bored and it still hasn't broken).

      I have had this phone since christmas 2007 and i have had no problem with it apart from when i take the memory card out and only this is a minor issue. When i take the mini SD card out all the settings seem to go crazy but this might be because some of the media is on the memory card.

      The menu is clean and easy to use and also if you get bored of the style of the menus etc. you can get themes which you can download from the internet. Some of them are very nice and are much more appealing than the original.

      Connection to the computer via USB can sometimes be quite annoying and it is just easier to use a memory card reader rather than having to use the dreadful nokia software which is laggy.

      When i first got this phone, i found that i would accidentally ring people when it was in my bag (much to their amusement, listening in on my conversations) but i found it was solved when i locked the keypad.

      The sound is not great on the phone and could be a lot louder but it is ok. The radio is cool and clear but you need an attachment for it to work.

      The bluetooth on this phone is EXTREMELY fast. I tested it out between some other phones which were my friends and mine downloaded the same file, quicker!

      The camera is hit and miss because sometimes i can take excellent lovely pictures but other times the pictures are quite blurry...

      So, overall if you want a nice phone which is quite chunky but easy to text on then this is it.

      I got my phone from the 3 store and was originally on 3 but i changed my network to blyk (after i unlocked it) a few months ago which is a lot better and you save lots of money!

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      26.08.2008 18:19
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      This should have been a lot better from Nokia, Smaller too!

      I have had one of these mobiles for about a year now and I can't really recommend it. I had very few choices when renewing my contract so I just picked this one, I thought to myself "it's just a phone" but now I wished I had gone for a flip phone.
      My first problem might sound a little silly but I have a job sliding my phone open with one hand I don't know whether it's because my hands are a bit on the small side but I look a bit of an idiot whenever I go to answer my phone. Secondly the phone is quite thick and chunky so it can't be put into the pocket of your jeans very easily or without you looking stupid.
      Those are my issues with its design; the rest such as screen size etc and button size are fine.
      My other problems are due to the fact that after 2 months the screen on my phone went all-weird. I hadn't dropped it or anything like that, but it just stopped working and though the phone came on I couldn't see anything. As I didn't have insurance I thought there was nothing I could do so I used a spare one. After a while I decided to speak to three, they arranged collection and believe it or not repaired it in two days and returned it to me Free of charge.

      Also the battery life is practically non-existent but I have heard that this is a common flaw.
      Even the camera quality at 2 mega pixels is grainy and quite bad especially when I compare it to my older LG phone with only 1.3 Mega pixels.

      In all I couldn't recommend it, but three were good.

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        10.08.2008 16:55
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        A great phone with hosts of features.

        I love this phone. I have previously had a motorola SLVR and a Sony Ericsson W810. This phone, alough a little on the large size, has a host of features which are extremely user-friendly. The keypad is large enough to be able to used with one hand when texting, unlike some of the newer Nokia's on the market. The slider has withstood 2 years of use and is atill good as new. The only issue I had was with the camera malfunctionning however Vodafone replaced the camera parts for free and gave me a replacement phone for a week so no qualms there! You can browse the internet and download games and ringtones if that is what you are interested in. This is a great phone and I have resisted getting an upgrade this year because I love it so much. I hope to get the N95 soon and hope I will love it just as much.

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          27.11.2007 10:01
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          A superficially attractive phone that doesn't live up to its potential

          Recently I have ended my working career (I was going to say working life but I seem to be busier now than I have ever been) and so have had to face the inconveniences of not having all of those things you take for granted, which are provided by your employer. Not the least of these is a mobile phone. I couldn't believe how naked I felt without one in my pocket. I've been using one for over twenty years but have never had to pay a penny towards the running costs, with the exception of the Chancellor's rake-off via tax benefits.

          As they have been company supplied phones I've never had the choice of which make or model to use nor which service provider. They have variously operated on O2's and Vodafone's networks and the actual phones themselves have normally been quite basic, various Nokia models. The last two phones have been the Nokia 3310e and most recently the ultra basic Nokia 6021. Both did the required job of enabling communications to be maintained but neither had anything as useful as a camera nor did they provide access to email on the move.

          The Requirement
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          My choice of phone and service provider was one that I considered carefully. My usage was always going to be very much lower than it had been whilst working so a Pay Monthly deal didn't sound like a good choice. I also had to decide on a phone. The Pay-as-you-Go deals don't normally offer as wide a choice of phones as the Pay Monthly ones and the cost for the phone is always significantly higher. The service providers offset the phone cost against the assurance of a regular income from Pay Monthly customers, an income that they cannot guarantee from Pay-as-you-Go.

          As the phone was to be for more than just the basic use I had made of the company one, I was looking for something that gave me the sort of facilities that would make my retirement enjoyable and productive. I anticipate spending time visiting places I've not had a real chance to go on the past so something to make journeys a more pleasant experience would be ideal. I also wanted to be able to access the Web whilst out and about, so as to enable me to get any information I might need on the move.

          I the past I have also continued to make use of a "proper" diary as well. Year after year I have bought the same diary, it's a slim-style page-a-day one that I can only get from Smith's (their own brand). This is because I wanted one that easily fit the inside jacket pocket whilst providing plenty of space to write all my notes and appointments.

          I do have a digital camera, in fact I now have a couple, an old Fujifilm FinPix S3000 that I reviewed here some time ago and a new Sanyo Xacti VPC-C6 which was presented to me by my company as a twenty years long-service award; nice of them considering I left a couple of months later! However, I don't always have it with me so it would be good to have at least something to take that picture you just have to capture.

          So, ideally I wanted a phone with a camera, music and media players, GPS navigation, organiser and Wi-fi access, as well as the usual phone functions.

          There was one other requirement. It had to be a Nokia.

          The reason is not that I feel that Nokias are better than other brands. The reason is that I have in my car a hands-free phone unit (the BHF-3; I've reviewed that here as well, although it's no longer made) and therefore needed a phone that fitted it. That means one with a Nokia PopPort connection so inevitably, even amongst Nokia phones, the choice would be limited. Nokia seem to change their connection types on their phones as often as the executives change their socks. Clearly a nice little earner for Nokia but a pain in the **** for their customers.

          The Service Provider
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          The phoned I first identified as meeting most of my requirements was the Nokia E65. This is a very neat phone and, although it does have Wi-fi access, doesn't have built in GPS navigation. I also found it not to be on offer with any providers. I would have been limited to buying it myself at an un-discounted price and then getting a SIM only contract.

          Eventually I decided to go about the problem a different way. I looked first at the various service providers and identified the best call charges deals available. Most seem to charge an exorbitant amount for calls to other networks, which is a problem for me as most of my calls would be likely to be to family and they all have different suppliers; my wife is on Vodafone, my daughter on Orange, my father-in-law on O2, my mother-in-law in T-Mobile and my son on 3.

          Eventually identified T-Mobile as appearing to offer the best deal at 15p/min/text across the board but I also spoke to the 3 store in my local Superdrug store and was told that, whilst the charges to other networks were then 30p/min, on the 17th October 2007 they were adopting the flat 12p/min/text charge plan. This made them better than T-Mobile.

          So, which phone to go with the package? I had a look at the Nokia 6151, which had many of the features for which I was looking and which 3 were supplying for £80. Right next to it was the Nokia 6288. It looked great and appeared to have much better features. I assumed it would be a lot more but the salesman told me it was just £100; for an extra £20 I would get a better phone although not with all of the features I wanted. However, by now I had accepted that that would be like seeking the Holy Grail. So, I signed up.

          The Design
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          The Nokia 6288 is one of Nokia's slide phones, like the currently very popular but very much more expensive N95. However, the slide only moves one way and exposes the numeric keyboard, not dedicated media player controls. Closed there is just main screen and the selection and navigation buttons and, above the screen, in the middle the earpiece and to the left, a small camera dedicated to video calling. This isn't the main camera. The earpiece also doubles as a loudspeaker. The phone comes in a choice of a black or a white casing.

          The screen is exposed and so care will need to be taken to ensure that it doesn't get scratched. It isn't touch sensitive so can't be used to control the activities of the phone. The aspect of the screen is a little over standard 4x3 but isn't quite "widescreen". It's officially rated at 320x240 and 262,144 colours. Small but bigger than most standard mobile phone screens, the quality of the picture is quite acceptable. I took a picture of a woodland path near where I live with the built-in camera and set it as my wallpaper and the result is very good.

          Below the screen are the main function buttons but no number-pad. That's on the section that slides out. The main functions consist of the left and right selection keys immediately below the screen, which work according to the corresponding functions that appear at the bottom of the screen. There is a third selection key and that is the one in the middle of the navigation ring. It has a dot on it. If there is a third function at the bottom of the screen, and there usually is - Menu - then this key selects it. This key also doubles as the general purpose "OK" or "Enter" key. It is quite small and it is easy to press the navigation ring instead by mistake. I usually resort to pressing it with my thumbnail.

          The Navigation Ring surrounds the middle key and can be depressed in four directions, up, down, left and right. You use it to move the cursor around the menu or up and down lists. Each direction can also have a pre-programmed function from the main screen and some though not all of these functions can be personalised. Indeed, many of the functions of the selection as well as the navigation keys can be changed. Unfortunately the ones you would probably want to change, you can't!

          The bottom two keys are the normal ones for making or answering a call and for terminating a call. The phone can also be set up to answer a call simply by opening the slide and to terminate it by closing it. That's the way I have it set up and the way I find most convenient. Of course, the keys could all get pressed by mistake when the phone is in your pocket so I have selected the option to lock the keyboard when out of use. When you close the slide the middle key corresponds to the word "Lock" at the bottom of the screen but if you don't select it then, you can also program the left selection key to action "Lock keys" at any time. Simply opening the slide unlocks the keys.

          On the right-hand side are two controls, the volume control, which as doubles as the digital zoom for the camera, and the camera shutter button. On the left-hand side is the infra-red emitter for linking up to a computer. Below that is the "push-to-talk" button if you are using that service. Below that is the cover for the external memory card slot. The 6288 accepts MiniSD cards. A 64meg card is supplied but that won't hold very much. I've bought a 2Gig one, which is the largest capacity it will take.

          At the top of the casing is the on/off button and at the bottom the PopPort and the recharger socket. The recharger socket it the mini one so most old Nokia chargers with the larger plug won't fit it. On the back of the casing is the main, 2 megapixel camera and below it a small mirror for lining up the camera to take a picture of yourself, with our without friend. As designed you cannot see the main screen when doing this. Below the camera lens is a small flash but this is a bit weedy so don't rely on it throwing a light very far.

          Apart from the mains recharger (no recharger for the car is supplied as a part of the package), you will also get the Nokia HS-23 headset. The bad news is that the only connection for the 6288 is the PopPort so, unless you buy a PopPort adaptor to convert it to a standard headphone minijack, you'll only be able to use the supplied headphones. The good news is that the HS-23 headphones are actually pretty good. In addition, the headset doubles as a hands-free for the phone.

          The headphones are stereo because two of the built-in functions of the phone are a music player, which supports MP3, MP4 and Apple's AAC format music files and an FM radio, which is actually quite good. There is also a media player for playing videos. I'll get to all of these in a bit more detail later as there are flaws here in the operation of the 6288 which are stupid or just down-right annoying.

          The silver block in the middle of the cable has a rocker button on the side acts as a volume control when the phone is in your pocket and the Nokia logo on the front is actually a button that enables you to skip to the next track on the music player and also allows you answer an incoming call. Pretty much, in use, you can leave the actual phone in your pocket. The earpieces are the standard sized earbuds and, from my recent reviews you will remember my problems with these. I am getting a new PodFitKit (see the review) to enable them to stay in my ears. In fact the problem isn't as bad as with others of this sort as the HS-23 has a cord that goes around the back of your neck to support the weight of the unit, so they are less likely to fall out.

          The Features
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          On switching on the phone you initially get just a white background with the Nokia logo. The next screen depends upon whether or not you have set a PIN code to protect the phone from unauthorised use. If you have then you are asked to supply it and here is where you have to slide the two halves of the phone apart for the first time. On the now exposed, illuminated number-pad you enter your PIN, press the middle key.

          The phone now completes switching on, with the usual Nokia "joining hands" logo followed, in my case, by the 3 screen saver. This appears very jerkily and stuttery, which doesn't look very professional and is actually a symptom of a major problem with the 6288 which I will get around to later. You are now presented with the home screen and by default it will likely be in "Active stanby" mode. Whether in Active standby or not, at the top of the screen on the left you get, with 3, the 3G logo, as this is the service 3 provides. Next to it is a four bar signal strength indicator followed by a battery charge indicator. Next is a G symbol to indicate if a 3G service is actually available. Lastly, on the next line down is the current service provider's name, once again, 3 in my case.

          On the right of the screen at the top is likely to be the time, if you have set the phone up to show it. There is, however, no date shown. Here we come to the first of many flaws in the 6288. I mentioned that the screen's standard display is "Active standby". In this mode the screen displays the status of the Music Player and the Radio. In addition, at the bottom of the screen you can have a text note of your choice, which you can use as a reminder, for instance.

          Now, why you would want to have the Radio and Music Player functions in Active standby is anyone's guess. I believe that you are supposed to be able to change them to whatever you like. The User Manual clearly states that there should be "Personalise" and "Organise" options for "My active standby" but there aren't! All you can do is switch it off and on. I have reported this to Nokia but without a satisfactory resolution. I'll get to my opinion of the quality of Nokia's support later. However, this may be down to 3 as this is a 3 version of the 6288 and so in some respects is non-standard.

          So, that's what you see. If you want to have the date displayed on the screen as well, there is a "Show date" option in the Date and Time settings. When I tried it it had no effect whatsoever. Whether it was off or on, no date was shown. I pursued this with Nokia support but it was another Nokia user on one of the forums that pointed me in the right direct. He told me to switch off Active standby. I did and suddenly the date was displayed, exactly where the Music Player and Radio status had been displayed. So, although there is no mention of this gotcha in the User Manual (why would they highlight their mistakes after all?) you cannot have the date display and Active standby at the same time.

          This is just incompetent programming; in 37 years in the IT industry I've seen enough of it to know. There is no reason at all why it should be like this; there is more than enough room on the screen to have both functions available at the same time. In my case I've programmed the Navigation keys to quickly switch Active standby off and on but it shouldn't have to be necessary.

          Even here there's yet another gotcha but this one is down to 3 not Nokia. It turns out that the version of the software on the 6288 is modified by 3. For some unfathomable reason they have decided to lock down some functions. One of these that that have modified is the Navigation keys. Only one of the Navigation key "directions" is programmable; the other three are default and unchangeable.

          One of them is already Enable Active standby. It's the Up key. However, it can only be used to switch Active standby on. Once it is on, pressing it again doesn't switch it off, it moves the cursor between the three on-screen functions - the note, the radio and the music player. So, if you set the Down key to Set Active standby you now have two keys for Active standby, one which will toggle on/off and one which is then pretty well useless, but fixed, and all because nobody gave more than a cursory thought to the design!

          The Functions
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          First and foremost, it's a phone, and in that respect the 6288 does a good job. I have had no problems making or receiving calls. The Contacts Phone Book follows pretty much the standard design with the ability to associate a specific picture and ring-tone with any entry, so you know even before you answer who is calling. You can add lots of other details as well, such as birthday, for which you can get it to give you a reminder, email address, physical address, different phone numbers and so on. Even as a simple address book it does a pretty competent job.

          The only real negative is the voice command calling feature. Unlike other phones, if you activate the ability to initiate a call by voice command, there is no capability to record the name yourself for a voice match. The phone constructs its own voice command based on the name on the address book. You can play it back and it sounds pretty "mechanical", like a very old impression of a computer voice. Consequently it will come as no surprise that matching what you say with what it expects is a fairly hit-and-miss affair. For example, I said "Home" and it interpreted this as "Thomas Day"!

          The Camera
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~
          There are two cameras. The main one is on the back and is used for normal camera functions. The second one is on the screen side and is only used for video calling. I haven't tried that yet so cannot comment on how good it is.

          The main camera is 2 megapixels and so is better than the ultra basic ones that appeared in the first camera phones but nowhere near as good as a dedicated digital camera. The only zoom is digital and the picture quality degrades badly if you use it so I wouldn't recommend it. If you decide to try it, the zoom is operated by the volume control.

          The phone has a dedicated camera shutter button and pressing activates the camera function. When switched on the picture you are about to take is seen on the screen in landscape mode. On the right of the screen imposed on to the picture are the functions that correspond to the three selection keys, Exit, Capture and Options. I'm not sure why they bothered to put Capture there as it hides part of the picture and in any case you would use the dedicated shutter button, not the selection key!

          The camera can take both stills and video and the default is stills. The default picture size is 1600x1200 pixels but this can be changed all the way down to 160x120, with the resultant affect on file size. The quality of the picture can also be altered from High down to Basic. Basic also gives a smaller file size but very grainy quality. You can also have a "Night" mode and there is a small flash that is really only good enough for close-ups. Pictures are saved as JPEGs.

          You can also take video with sound and these are saved in 3GP format. I'll talk a bit more about 3GP format later. As with stills, various recording qualities can be selected with the defaults being "Normal" quality and 176x144 picture size, but you can go up as far as 640x480 although the phones screen size is only half this. I suppose it depends upon where you expect to play the video back what size you will choose. The size will, as with stills, affect the file size.

          You can also choose where to save all of these. The default is the phone's own limited free memory, around 8Mbs. If you want to make serious use of the camera and music player then an additional memory card is essential.

          The Media Player
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          Once you have taken your pictures or videos you will want to review them and if you do this on the phone then you will use the Media Player to do so. You can also use the Media Player to play back other pictures or video files that you may have recorded elsewhere. Where pictures are concerned this poses no problems. You can either resize them to suit the phone screen size, wise in order to avoid wasting memory space, or else leave them asis.

          For videos there is a serious problem. The phone is very, very fussy about the format of video files you may want to replay on the phone. I took a pretty standard 640x480 MP4 video (remember the phone itself provides a 640x480 format) with a Sanyo Xacti digital camera but it simply wouldn't replay properly when transferred to the phone. The picture stuttered and jerked although the sound played OK.

          Although in theory the camera's Media Player supports these formats, in practice there is really only one format it supports satisfactorily and that it the format in which it shoots its own videos - 3GP. 3GP is a lightweight MP4 variant that is used by mobile phone service providers for streamed video. So long as you convert a video to this format before storing it on the phone it will play OK. The problem is carrying out the conversion. There are a number of tools out there that purport to convert videos to 3GP format but I have only found one - Wondershare - which I reviewed recently, that does a decent job.

          What is really annoying about the Media Player when playing videos fullscreen in landscape mode is that the function names activated by the selection keys can still be seen imposed on top of the picture. This is perhaps not too much a problem with stills but is really naff where videos are concerned! What is even more annoying is that the Pause function is associated with the middle selection key whilst nothing at all is associated with the left selection key (which would be at the bottom of the screen in landscape mode), where it would be out of the way of the picture. More c**p computer programming!

          The Music Player
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          With 2Gig of space available on a plug-in memory card, you're going to want to use some of it to carry around your favourite music, that's for sure. I've got around half my memory card filled with my favourite album tracks, over 300 at the last count. The quality of the playback via the supplied earphones is really quite good, even without the modification of the fitting via another PodFitKit, for which I am still awaiting delivery.

          You can simply load up you MP3s asis but doing so via the Nokia PC Suite, as I do, also gives you the opportunity, should you choose, to convert the file formats to Apple's AAC and this I have chosen to do. The resultant file size reduces a little but, in my opinion, the sound quality actually improves. However, the name associated with the track appears to be that derived from the ID tag rather than the file name and the style is taken from there as well.

          The Music Player can be selected from Media on the Main Menu or, as previously mentioned, in Active Standby mode, directly from the main screen. You can also go the other way about it and go to the Gallery from the Menu and there select where the music is stored, in my case on the Memory Card under Music. Here your music is likely stored in a more logical order. I have mine under Artist and Album. Here, all the tracks are stored and you can fire off the Music Player simply by clicking Open on a track. However, this track is all that will be played; there seems to be no way to play all tracks from an album this way.

          If instead you start off by selecting the Music Player rather than the music then you will find that the tracks are not ordered. They simply appear as a numbered list. From options you can select Track List but, if you want to play a sequential set of tracks you have no option but to laboriously scroll down the list until you find what you want. Pick your first track and the Music Player will then continue playing from there.

          Both the Media Player and the Music Player provide options to play either through the earphones or through the earpiece of the phone, which doubles as the loudspeaker. The sound level through the speaker is perfectly adequate for normal use though not exactly at ghetto-blaster levels.

          FM Radio
          ~~~~~~~~~~
          OK, I know that DAB is now the thing, not FM but FM will still be around for some time yet. It is a useful facility to have, to enable you, for instance, to keep up with the news.

          The FM radio facility enables you to search for and store stations although it isn't so clever as to be able to be able to work out for itself from the radio data the name of the stations it finds. You have to enter that manually when you save the stations into the list. The reception quality is good and it will certainly be good enough for radio on the move.

          One really bizarre thing though is that, like the Media and Music Players, you can elect to play the station through the speaker. However, unlike the Music and Media Players you can't do so unless the earphones are connected! If you choose to play the radio through the loudspeaker and then detach the headphones you get a message "Connect an enhancement" and the sound stops until you plug them back in again! I can only assume that the phone uses the wires of the headset as an aerial, either that or it's more c**p programming, which should come as no surprise by now.

          Organiser
          ~~~~~~~~~~~
          The Organiser comes with all of the features you would expect; Alarm Clock, Calendar, To-do Lists, Notes, a Calculator, a Countdown Timer and a Stopwatch. All of them work pretty much as you would expect and the Calendar, To-do Lists and Notes have enabled me to abandon a paper diary after twenty years. It's quite liberating

          If I have a complaint about the Calendar it is that there appears to be no way of linking a detailed Note with a Calendar entry and the "Remind about" field in the calendar entry is fairly limited in size. Still I have found it adequate so far. I put a star after the "Remind about" entry to remind me that there is a Note of the same name that should be read as well.

          Applications
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          You can add additional applications to the phone but it only comes with a limited number as standard. The applications are divided into Games and Collections. The only game you get is "Who wants to be a Millionaire"!

          The Collections are all other types of applications and here you get two as found. Converter II enables you to convert values between Imperial and Metric measures such as Inches and Centimetres and Pounds and Kilograms and also to convert between different currencies. For this you have to set the currency exchange rate yourself though. It isn't clever enough to retrieve the latest rate from the Internet.

          The other supplied application is a World Clock, which does pretty much what it says on the tin. It even has the familiar night-time shadow over the map of the World.

          As I said, you can also add your own applications but there are limitations. The phone only supports Java applications. Now, this should be a good thing as, in theory at least, Java applications are portable. An application should work on any phone that supports Java but the reality is something quite different.

          One application I really wanted to add to the phone was a PDF reader. As standard, the phone does not support PDF files. This is a big bugbear because you quite often want to have information such as railway or bus timetables on the phone and mostly these are available in PDF format. I found a software company called Zesium (www.zesium.com), which supplies an application called MobilePDF and has a version that it advertises as supporting the Nokia 6280, the predecessor of the 6288. However, when you try to install it using the Nokia PC Suite Application Installer, although it appears to install on the phone, when you try to launch it you get a message "Application not supported".

          I've had to get around this problem by capturing the information as screenshots and then creating a JPEG picture. That way I can use the Zoom feature of the Media Player to zoom in on the detail. However, this is only a pragmatic, not an ideal solution.

          Now, it's not as though it isn't possible to install applications on the 6288. I installed one called Mobile Gmaps and that works. So, it would seem that compatibility with the 6288 is something of a hit-and-miss affair.

          The Internet
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          Planet 3 is 3's built-in Internet access portal on the 6288. It is accessed via the right selection key. This is not customisable. It's one more of the alterations that 3 has made to the 6288 software that restricts the functionality you would otherwise get with this phone.

          Internet access is in any case somewhat limited and less attractive than might otherwise be the case. The only browser incorporated with the 6288 is a WAP browser so you don't even get proper web browsing, even though other Nokia phones with identical screen dimensions manage to incorporate at the very least the Opera mini-browser. In true WAP tradition the screen can only be used in portrait orientation whereas true browser tend to rotate the display to landscape.

          As I am on pay-as-you-go I am disinclined to use the Internet, such as it is, on the 6288 anyway, primarily due to the cost. I do use some of the free Internet functions provided by Planet 3 though, including the ability to check my outstanding credit balance. That's about as far as it goes though.

          Conclusions
          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          So, that's about it. What we have here is a phone that doesn't really live up to its potential. The hardware side is reasonable enough but the phone is mostly let down by the software although not all of this can be laid at the door of Nokia. Some of the shortcomings are the responsibility of 3 in locking down functionality that would otherwise be available and desirable.

          But there is no doubt that the main problem is the software platform that Nokia has chosen to deploy on this phone. The 6288 is a Symbian OS based phone. For their phones based on this operating system Nokia has two development platforms for their User Interfaces, the older S40 and the more recent S60. The S60 interface seems to be the one used for the E and N series phones. The 6288, despite being a relatively new phone, is based upon the S40 interface and herein lies the heart of the problem.

          I question Nokia's commitment to the continued development of the S40 interface. I even question their support of the existing level of software. The dead give-away is that if you go onto the Nokia Developer Forum website, where software developers for the Nokia products gather, there is a link for reporting bugs in the base software platform. It clearly states that this way of advising Nokia of bugs that need fixing is ONLY to be used for the S60 interface. Nowhere will you find anywhere were Nokia provides a method for reporting bugs in the S40 interface. You can only suppose that they really don't want to know and don't really care.

          Bugs? What bugs!

          But even if the phone's functions all worked satisfactorily it would still be hampered by the tinkering that 3 has carried out to the User Interface that prevents certain desirable features and functions being used. I have not had a satisfactory explanation from the 3 Help Desk as to why 3 considers it necessary to do this in the first place. I have asked them to look at releasing control of the locked down functions. I'm not holding my breath!

          Comments

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          • More +
            04.09.2007 23:01

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            • Reliability

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            Fantastic Phone.

            I got this phone recently on the £15 a month texter deal with 3. It's a fantastic phone with lots of features you'll never use but is very easy and comfy to use. I was very worried about the shiny black cover getting scratched as well as the large screen (which is fantastic when taking pictures) but so far there is only one dull oint on the black on the back cover and 0 scratches!

            The camera is 2 Mega pixels and does exactly what it says, I'd personally avoid using the digital zoom and use a program on your PC later for it to help the quality (6"x4" is the best you can get with 2 MP).

            Though this phone is quite large I have to say it doesn't weigh much, the size is mostly due to the screen and battery (which lasts forever if you don't use msn!)

            Overall a very good phone, I love it to bits.

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          • More +
            19.01.2007 18:14
            Very helpful
            (Rating)
            4 Comments

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            A long awaited phone just wasn't worth the wait.

            BIT OF A LET DOWN....

            I'm comparing this phone with a the 6230i from which I upgraded, and I have used Nokia's for the past 8 years.

            The immediate differences:

            -Phone book holds 500 not the quoted 1000+ on the vodafone website.

            -The predictive 'word suggestion' has been removed, shame.

            -The 3D car game controls freeze upon execution of the game (no biggie).

            It's probably going to be these issues that will make try a N93 instead. It's a shame as it was a great deal of hassle to get this phone and it's been 18 months since I got the 6230i which, although boring to most, did it's job very well. I added to this functionality by installing a 1GB memory card. The 6288 uses a micro SD card so it's not interchangable.

            In order to migrate I used the nokia software, incidentally the PC Suite provided with the 6288 is dated around Mid 2006 - this would suggest it's had quite a few problems and recalls, a local Vodafone shop confirmed this.

            NOW FOR THE GOOD NEWS:

            -One feature I do like is the Active Standby screen, this provides you with information relating to the calendar, notes and status of the radio and music players (slightly odd, as you should know whether they're on!). It also has shortcuts which can be interchanged for many other functions much like the 'go to' button which thankfully hasn't been removed. The only minor downside to this is that it looks like an after thought as the resolution/sharpness of the text is a bit poor.

            -The main navigation button feels and responds in a much easier way compared to the 6230i.

            -I like that you can operate the phone without exposing the keyboard - convenient for receiving calls or browsing information in the calendar or text messages.

            -Audio quality for making calls is very good.

            -The use of the camera is very easy, a button on the side allows instant photos and for a 2MP camera, the quality is very good (note standard settings are used by default).

            -The keypad is very easy to use, although that 'clear' button (top right) is a lot further away than a 6230i.

            -Temporary Bluetooth visibility is a good idea, allows you to be 'unhidden' for 2 minutes or so.

            -The screen

            A BIT OF BAD NEWS LEFT...

            -I'm not too impressed with the one pixel wide reception indicator as unlike the past solid blocks to display signal strength, these are slightly difficult to see, even for young eyes.

            -The mains charger has a smaller diameter plug fitting into the phone, so you won't be able to use your previous charger.

            -creating new text messages is a hassle due to the new layout. This is minor but to compare phones to the 6230i a slight irritation. It relates mainly to how you have to retrieve a contact numbers' mobile number.

            -For what is supposed to be a newer phone, it takes as long if not longer to access a small 512MB card compared to 1GB installed in a 6230i.

            -Any performance advantage is practically omitted due to the big screen.

            -Migrating contacts loses information if you use the 'restore' option in the PC Suite. Images and groups associated or lost and postal addresses are lost.

            -To use up more memory / performance they have programmed extended voice tag function. This means in theory you no longer need to use voice tags as it can say the names in your phone book already. Now I have some foreign friends and it has no clue how to say they're name, more over it's restrictive for those with strong regional accents.

            -You only have a restricted amount of dial tones to suitably embarrass you in public...or make you look like a 'cool' 8 year old.

            CONCLUSION:

            Nokia have excelled at original thinking, but sadly aren't prepared to iron out problems or look at what they have got and improve it. They remind me of a small child - more interested in starting a new lego house than improving the one they've already built...

            I'M GOING OFF ON ONE NOW...:

            I would hope one day that they would consider existing Nokia users rather than trying to attract new customers, making it easier to upgrade, instead of a pain. The best way to advertise is through the end user, i.e. If I tell my friends how great my phone is AND show them, it's far better and easier than them going through some overly flashed website. I really can imagine employee's at Nokia in the design department being whipped until they can think of some random and pointless function for a phone.

            Comments

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          • Product Details

            The Nokia 6288 is a 3G slide phone that adds high-quality video playing capabilities to its mix of features. With real-time video sharing and video ringtones, the Nokia 6288 is designed to take full advantage of the benefits of 3G technology.

            The compact slide phone device is bundled with a 512 MB memory card making it ideal for watching favorite video clips on its bright QVGA, 262, 144 color display (320x240 pixels). Outfitted with a 2-megapixel and a VGA camera, the Nokia 6288 makes it easy to share videos and participate in two-way video calls.

            The Nokia 6288 also includes dedicated camera and zoom buttons making it even more convenient to record a video or snap a picture of family and friends. Videos taken with the Nokia 6288 can be edited then sent via MMS and email, while Bluetooth technology lets you print pictures directly to any compatible picture printer.