Product Type: Nokia Smartphone
Newest Review: ... which is awesome for an unlocked phone for its price. There is also a stylus provided along with the phone which is kind of outdated w... more
A high quality and great value smart phone
Member Name: Benjammar
Date: 22/08/10, updated on 24/08/10 (258 review reads)
Advantages: Easy to use, good value for money, lots of content
Disadvantages: No Wi-Fi, not as advanced as other smart phones
I bought the Nokia 5230 from carphone warehouse. I bought it for £89 on T mobile and had to pay the automatic £10 top up to begin with. So in all it's cost me £100 but the phone was readily unlocked so all I had to do was slot my sim card in. Buying this phone sim free can cost £130-£140 depending on where you go and on pay as you go it can vary from £80-£110 depending on which company you sign up with. The phone can be obtained free if you sign up for a contract with any of the major phone companies (O2, orange, Vodafone etc). Monthly contracts start at about £15 a month but can go up if you have improved contracts. All together it's a fairly cheap phone; for a £100 I've got a lot for my money. In the box came a sat nav holder for your car, a pair of headphones, an extra back cover, a wrist strap with stylus and the phone already had a 2GB memory card built in. The phone also came with 24 months warranty.
What you get
The Nokia 5230 is a touchscreen smart phone. It has built in 3G, Bluetooth and data transfer (Internet). It however hasn't got Wi-Fi. I'm pretty sure there's a more expensive version of the phone which has Wi-Fi included however I didn't feel the need for this. The 5230 comes with Ovi maps which is a neat GPS system as well Real Player. Other additions are a 2 Megapixel camera/video camera and a few decent games. The camera is of a decent quality and the video is pretty smooth and clear. The built in games were a roller coaster game, DJ mix tour, rock n blocks and pro golf 2010. These are all a lot of fun and more can be bought from the Ovi store. The battery life is typically good for a nokia phone. You should be able to go 3-4 days without turning it off before needing to charge it again. You can get about 7+ hours of call time too. Connection speeds to the internet are pretty decent; you shouldn't be waiting around too long for pages to load and downloads are pretty nippy. You can still however continue to use the phone whilst downloads happen in the background
The phone is pretty slick looking. It's available in black or pink so naturally being a bloke I went for black. It's not quite as snazzy looking as an iphone but it's definitely one of the better looking phones out there. It's plain and simple but cool because of this. The phone is a little bit bigger and heavier than other phones on the market. This is by no means a bad thing. Personally for me I want a phone to feel sturdy so that I can hold it firmly. It's not bulky or heavy but not slim and light like other smart phones out there. For me this is the right balance and it is pleasant to hold and use but not too bulky to fit in your pocket. The screen is very long but not as wide as other smart phones. However I've never felt restricted by it being a little bit thinner this way. The only negative I can comment on about the screen is that I've already noticed some small scratches. I happen to keep my phone and keys in the same pocket which wasn't an issue with my old (rubbish) phone however now I've got to be more careful where I keep this phone.
The 5230 only has a few buttons. There are 3 main buttons located on the front for accepting/rejecting a call as well as the main menu button. All the texting is done on screen. Other buttons include a media button on the side which automatically takes you to the camera/video function. The lock button is a slide bar on the slide which is easy to use to unlock and lock your phone. There's also a volume button on the side as well as a power button on top to complete the phone. The sim card and memory card slot into the side of the phone which means you don't always have to take the battery out to change them. Headphones, USB and power cables all attach into the top. So far I've had no problems with plugging any cables into the phone or removing the battery.
The interface is very user friendly. The home screen has 4 shortcuts; facebook, messages, ovi maps and the ovi store. There are also options for viewing/adding contacts as well as the normal telephone. I've also added my Hotmail email account so the home page. It's pretty customizable so you can have what you want on here. You can have your most used contacts on your home page for ease of access whilst when you play songs/videos a mini menu will appear so you don't have to go back to the media centre.
The menu is a little bit daunting at first but after a couple of hours of use it quickly becomes very familiar. All the usual aspects of a phone are here and are clearly listed (Calendar, contacts, phone log, internet, gallery, music. Settings, apps etc). It can be a little bit fiddly at first adjusting what you want but you'll soon get the hang of things. The only difficult I've had is using Ovi related systems. All new nokia phones are linked to ovi.com which requires you to set up accounts and download a lot of stuff. At the moment I don't have unlimited data transfer so I'm not 100% sure when it's charging me to do certain things. Until my contract updates at the beginning I haven't properly explored the full wealth of content available in the Ovi store. I have however downloaded the Ovi music player for my computer to transfer music between PC and phone and this was very easy to do. So for now I'm sort of leaving all the fun bits alone but there are tonnes of pictures, songs, backgrounds, apps, games and fun bits to be downloaded from the Ovi store (And a lot for free!)
However the rest of the phone is a breeze to use. Whether its adding people, playing songs, taking pictures, writing messages or making calls it's all very simple. The manual is nice and detailed and runs through all the basics you need to know. It doesn't quite cover all of the Ovi stuff so you'll need to suss this stuff out yourself. The most impressive thing about this phone is the touch screen itself. It's very responsive and I've had no problems with it what so ever. Writing messages in traditional text format or a qwerty keyboard is very easy and I've had no problems adjusting to using a touch screen (This is my first). The phone can be used vertically or horizontally and the sensor that detects which way up you're holding it is very reliable. Sometimes it switches by accident but simply lifting the phone forward changes it back. I personally prefer it vertically (As well as standard texting) but the horizontal interface is just as easy to use too. The phone vibrates a tiny amount every time you touch a button which is a very useful addition. It just confirms you're pressing the button and makes using the phone much easier.
All together this is a very good phone at a very good price. It's very easy to use and has lots of handy features to go with it. It's not as powerful as the high tech smart phones (iphone, blackberry etc) and doesn't have Wi fi but for those who want an up to date phone without breaking the bank the Nokia 5230 is perfect. The ovi store/system is a little bit confusing to begin with but once you get into it and spend some time playing about it all comes clear. Ovi maps is a very handy tool and considering it's free it's incredibly useful. Just make sure you have unlimited data transfer with this phone otherwise you'll be missing out on a lot of handy features
Summary: For those who don't want to fork out for an expensive smart phone the 5230 is perfect