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I have had my Nokia E52 since April last year and use it for business on the Vodafone network. The phone came free with the tariff my company chose. I have experienced no problems using the phone so far. Overall I generally enjoy using the phone and its many features make it a flexible tool especially for business use.
The phone is a good size, neither too big or small and feels well balanced so you feel comfortable holding and using it.
It is about 11.5cms (long) x 5cms (wide) x 10cms (deep) and weighs just under 100g. The screen feels like the right size for the size of the phone and is very good quality, with nice bright sharp image clarity and fantastic colours. While the Nokia website claims it has automatic portrait/landscape orientation this is not quite true. (This is when you turn an iPhone for example and the screen automatically rotates to the correct way up). It does do this when you are using the camera, but that is about all.
The look and feel of the phone are that it is a classy device. It looks and feels solid and well built and the keys and central navigation button are very well designed and respond accurately. Using the keys to type long messages such as emails is very good with good predictive text input - although I still haven't learned if you can manually edit the dictionary it uses.
The menu system is not altogether unfamiliar if you have owned a Nokia recently. It seems nicely and logically laid out, and common actions like viewing files, or changing to Silent mode are easy to achieve quickly. Sometimes the screen displays status updates when you do certain things, such as "USB Synchronising" and it is trying to inform you that the task you wanted to do has been achieved. I actually find these notices quite annoying as they are slow to disappear. There is a progress bar indicator for most activities that you do, which thinking about it, means that there is usually some kind of delay in most of the actions you perform - although not long enough to be a problem usually.
There is a 3.2 Megapixel camera for video (mp4 format) and photos (jpg format). There is no optical zoom, only a pathetic digital zoom of x4, but image quality is fairly good. The built in LED flash works really well, and has Red-eye reduction mode if you need it. You can also adjust the camera setting for sunny or cloudy days which does make a difference. You are best to turn the phone on its side to take photos because it has a dedicated camera button which is a nice feature. (Don't turn it sideways for videos as these cannot be easily rotated when viewing on a PC).
You can store lots of media such as photos/videos/mp3's via the micro SD slot. I have a 2Gb micro SD card in my E52 and I store several of my favourite music albums for when I am travelling as well as a couple of TV shows that I like to watch (in mp4 format). I also use my phones camera to take snaps as reminders of places I travel of business and use the phone to upload them to Facebook. The sound quality is very good - you wouldn't want to listen to it for too long without headphones though, as let's face it - not many phones have great speakeres for this kind of use. But you can hear definite bass when listening to songs. The weakness in the way it sounds is too much treble/hiss - it makes cymbals sound like the main instrument on most songs which is quite annoying. However, none of this is an issue if you use headphones (the supplied ones feel very cheap and have rigid cables that I hated, so use your own headphones), and the quality of sound is then very good. The volume controls are nice and handy on the side exactly where they should be. The player itself is easily controlled and responsive, and the phone synchronises itself with the software that accompanies the phone when you connect it a PC/laptop via a USB cable. I have Microsoft ActiveSync installed for this purpose as it works really well without any intervention . The USB Cable also provides charge to the phone which is useful. The videos play back in RealPlayer which is included on the phone when it ships. RealPlayer is ideal for this use - simple, fast and reliable. It is also easy to take calls while listening to music or watching video as the phone puts the media on hold while you respond and then resumes automatically afterwards.
You can also store Word, Excel and PowerPoint files on the phone, as well as PDF's, as it has its own software to be able to open these. I struggled a bit with editing in Excel, so don't buy this phone for that purpose! But otherwise it works really well for light viewing these kind of files - it is no replacement for using a netbook or desktop computer for this task.
There is a Traveller application installed on the phone which is very useful. You can go the World Clock tab and enter the Cities that you routinely deal with or travel to so that have their times as well as your home time at your fingertips. You can also use a Flight Assistant that allows you to sign up for receiving status updates on flights. There is also a currency converter with real-time updates using the web connection. You can even enter your travel itinerary and have it automatically create reminders in the phones calender. There is also a Weather page which is pretty accurate. I have used these features a few times and they have all worked perfectly - I cannot fault them. But if you want to use them, make sure you have included web content in your plan.
The phone does have a GPS application as well, which it uses to make all these features localised to your current position, and goes further by having OVI Maps and an application to help you find landmarks nearby.
You can also use the inbuilt Windows Live Messenger to keep in touch for free, which is another great feature as you only need a free Hotmail account to use this.
A feature that I also like very much is that you can change the appearance of the phone depending on whether you are using it for business or for personal use. This again is achieved very simply from the main screen options.
The E52 has a slightly annoying feature with charging. When you try to charge it when it is almost drained completely, it does not seem to register that you have plugged in the power. You have to turn it off to get it to start charging properly. This does mean that you are not tempted to use it until it has regained some power, but there have been more than one occassion when I was talking and heard the audible battery signal start, and when I connected the power lead it still died on me. Having said that, battery life on the E52 is outstanding. I use mine only for about 1 hour a day, and a single full charge will last me more than a week without the phone going off once. Even when talking for longer the battery seems very efficient. The website claims that this phone has up to 8 hours talk time. I haven't tested that, but I have used the phone for at least 4 hours one day during several meetings, and the phone still had enough charge to last me another couple of days casual use. Compared to other phones I have used this is fantastic!
I have connected my E52 to my work Outlook mailbox so that I always receive important emails no matter where I go. It works very well, and only took one minute to set this up once I had the details required, (which was just your Active Directory name and server address and password which can be obtained from your IT department or Internet Service Provider). I had to create a lock code for the phone when I set up the connection to Outlook as it was required by my network administrator - the phone told me this was the case and again this was very easy to setup and use. This automatically links to your Outlook calendar so that if you have reminders set, you get a notification come up on the phone - you will never miss another appointment again!
The phone is Quad Band and I have used it with no problems in the US and in France, as well at home. The phone doesn't seem to suffer from low signal issues, even in areas where another phone on the same network has intermittent or poor signal, so I can only assume it uses an improved type of signal detection.
I guess the phone, lacks the coolness of the iPhone, and is more of a modern day equivalent to something like the good old Nokia 3210 that everyone seemed to have back in the year 2000 - albeit a bang up-to-date version with many great apps and features as standard.
I would recommend this phone for business users, but maybe the cool factor would steer a personal user away...
Nokia's E-Series phones tend to be an exiting but practical business device, and the E52 fits into this category perfectly.
It's a phone that looks exciting on the surface, but it is more impressive when you look more closely at what it is actually capable of.
The Nokia E52 is an S60 smartphone with a 2.4 inch 240x 320 pixel display, inluding a 3.2 mega pixel camera with autofocus and flash.
The E72 is also complete with 3G, wifi, a multi-media player, FM radio, micro SD expandable memory, bluetooth and the standard 3.5mm headphone jack.
Infact the E52 is almost completely identical to the E55 apart from the more traditional keypad.
Delve a little deeper, and some of the E52's strengths become apparent. the large 1500 mili amp battery gives you up to 6 hours talk time and 18 days standby on 3G. And a whopping 8 hours talktime and a 28 days standby on GSM.
Then theres the handsets HSDPA support with maximum dowload speed at up to 10 mega-bits per second. Plus HSUPA uploads of up to 2 mega-bits per second. Of course your carrier will need to support those speeds.
When I recieved the E52 in late 2009 for review I could not believe in the entire 10 days user test I did it did not need a charge once.
As some of you know who read my review, part of the user test I do is internet browsing at lunchtimes, about 20 minutes a day I would say. Combine that over 9 of the 10 days that I used the web that is an astonishing 3 hours web browsing without re-charging the battery, plus the countless emails I must have sent throughout my work-day.
So as I said, great value for money here, compact device with pretty much everything you could need apart from the updated optical pad as seen on the latest e-series addition, the E72, and on most new Blackberry phones released at the same time in late '09.
User interface: 8/10
Email: 6/10 - (no qwerty)
Battery Life : 10/10!!!
I bought an E52 about a month ago, its a completely different layout from the Nokias that i am used too! Even the keys used to lock the phone have been changed and being a business phone it is generally quite different.
The E52 seems to struggle at times and is quite a slow phone even when brand new. Then it started freezing, so the battery would have to be take out to reset it. This is really annoying and started to happen alot.
Next the number 6 key stopped working after only 3 weeks of use. I hardly send any texts so this is a bit pathetic.
The good points about the phone! Battery life was very good, talk quality was good and i did like it once i was used to it.
I have always had Nokias and every time I upgrade the phone is worse than the last, Nokia really have lost their way.