The VGA camera takes pictures in three resolutions (640x480, 320x240, and 160x120) and three quality settings. Other features include a 4x digital zoom, a night mode, a self-timer and a multishot option. It's a slim assortment of offerings, to be sure, but also fitting for a basic phone. Photo quality is pretty bad, unfortunately, even for a VGA camera.
The camcorder lacks editing options, but you can shoot clips with sound in two lengths. Videos meant for multimedia messages are capped at 10 seconds; otherwise, you can shoot for as long as the available memory permits, which is a respectable 32MB.
You can personalize the 1680 with a variety of wallpaper, screensavers, font colors, themes, and alert tones. More options and additional ringtones, are available from T-Mobile's T-Zones service via the WAP 2.0 wireless Web browser. The 1680 comes with demo versions of two games: Pac-Man/Ms. Pac-Man and Midnight Pool. You'll have to buy the full versions for extended play.
We tested the dual-band (GSM 850/1900) Nokia 1680 in San Francisco using T-Mobile service. Call quality was just average. Though the signal was clear and voices sounded natural, the volume is rather low and the phone has a sensitive sweet spot. If you move the phone from your ear just the slightest bit, the sound level drops significantly.
On their end, callers said we sounded good but not great. They could tell we were using a cell phone, and they reported that the 1680 picks up a lot of background noise. But most of the time, we were able to hold a conversation. Speakerphone quality was unremarkable. The audio had a lot of static, and callers had a difficult time hearing us. On the whole, this is a decent phone for occasional callers, but anyone else will find the call quality disappointing.
The 1680 has a rated battery life of 7.6 hours talk time and 17 days of standby time. It has an impressive talk time of 12 hours and 14 minutes. According to FCC radiation tests, the 1680 has a digital SAR of 1.39 watts per kilogram.