Orange Stockholm review: Orange Stockholm

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Typical Price: £90.00
3 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

3 stars 11 user reviews

The Good Compact size; good price; some useful Orange apps; Wi-Fi and 3G connectivity.

The Bad Some Orange apps are lamentably bad; tiny screen; design looks and feels cheap; under-powered processor.

The Bottom Line The Android-based Orange Stockholm delivers smart-phone power on a budget. You'll have to contend with a small screen and Orange's annoying pre-installed bloatware, though.

6.5 Overall

Following on from the budget  Rio 2 and San Francisco , Orange has launched another low-price smart phone -- the Stockholm. This Android -powered pay as you go challenger is compact and pocket-friendly, but its small screen and unnecessary Orange bloatware are real drawbacks. The Stockholm is available on pay as you go for £90.

Hardware

At 56 by 104 by 13mm, the Stockholm is certainly pocket-sized. It's almost an inch shorter than the Samsung Galaxy S2 , and fits snugly in your palm like a shiny pebble. For those of you that can't stomach the recent craze for big-screen, pocket-bursting smart phones, the Stockholm's diminutive dimensions are likely to be very appealing indeed.

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When placed alongside the Galaxy S2, the Stockholm looks positively tiny.

We're not so keen on the glossy finish, though. It feels rather cheap, and the apparently metallic accent that runs around the edge of the phone is actually made of plastic.

Screen

The Stockholm's tiny size means that its screen is similarly dinky. The phone has a 2.8-inch, 240x320-pixel, capacitive touchscreen similar to that on the Vodafone Smart , but this particular version supports multi-touch gestures.

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Quite why Orange thinks we want two map applications is a mystery, especially when its own version is a pale imitation of Google's.

Unsurprisingly, the size of the screen causes problems when you're reading small text. It's also something of a nightmare to type on, as the on-screen keyboard features minuscule buttons. Big-fingered individuals stay away.

Apps

Orange likes to slather its own applications and branding over each phone it sells, and the Stockholm is no exception. The tweaked Android 2.2 Froyo interface features custom Orange menu icons, as well as a bucketful of widgets and apps.

Many of the apps are little more than bloatware, and will soak up valuable processing power even if they're not in use. Others are slightly more acceptable -- the Orange Gestures app being a perfect example. It allows you to bond certain shapes to applications, allowing you to quickly open them with a quick scribble on the touchscreen.

Bizarrely, Orange has included its own maps application, despite the fact that the peerless Google Maps comes pre-loaded. Such demented duplication of applications wouldn't bother us so much if we had the option to eradicate the offending article, but all of the pre-installed Orange items can't be removed from the Stockholm's app drawer.

Processor

At the core of the Stockholm, you'll find a 528MHz processor, served by 256MB of RAM. This specification isn't likely to set pulses racing in the era of dual-core smart phones, but it's typical of the Stockholm's class.

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