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Nokia 5070 review: Nokia 5070

Nokia's 5070 is a cheap and chunky handset, sporting large buttons that are ideal for everyday tasks like texting. The menu systems are easy to navigate and you can use infrared to transfer files to and from a laptop. Call quality is also clean and clear

Frank Lewis
3 min read

The 5070 is a no frills handset from Nokia aimed at those looking for a budget phone that's easy to use.


Nokia 5070

The Good

Large buttons; easy to use; good call quality.

The Bad

Relatively short battery life; rubbish camera; poor screen.

The Bottom Line

The Nokia 5070 is easy to use and has good call quality, but the screen is poor and its battery life is relatively short. It might be a bargain, but we still reckon you'll get more for your money elsewhere

Its candybar design might be fairly traditional, but it's spiced up nicely by a bright and cheerful colour scheme. The phone is available for free on contract or for around £70 SIM-free.

The 5070 isn't exactly a wonder of design, but it's certainly not offensive to the eye. It's available in either red or blue and the bright colours make the slightly boxy design much more appealing. The other advantage of its chunkier size is that it sports quite large buttons that are ideal for texting.

The phone is built around the older Nokia Series 40 operating system, which is quite basic, but very easy to use. It's a cinch to perform normal everyday tasks like adding names and numbers to the contacts book, checking your call log and setting an alarm time on the clock.

There isn't much in the way of frills on the 5070, but you do get infrared support for transferring files to and from a laptop. Nokia also ships the handset with a pair of stereo headphones which you have to attach to the phone when you want to listen to the built in FM tuner. The headphones also have an in-line microphone and call answer button so they double as a hands-free kit.

The phone's call quality was very good, thanks to the clean sound from the speaker and mic and we had no complaints about its reception either. It also has a speakerphone mode that you can switch on for hands-free calling and which is loud enough to use in all but the noisiest of environments.

The 5070's camera is extremely basic. It has a pixel resolution of just 640x480, so there's no point in trying to print out snaps from it, as they'll look ridiculously blocky. And while it does have a micro mirror for self portraits, it doesn't have a flash so it's no use in low light. In fact, even when shooting indoors during the day, pictures look very grainy. As well as the stills mode, the camera can be switched to record video. However, the frame rate is extremely low and videos descend into a blocky mess when there's much movement on the screen.

Another problem is the phone's display. It uses older CSTN technology and as a result colours tend to have a washed out appearance and text can look blurry at times. The display also suffers from screen-lag, which is especially noticeable when using it as the viewfinder for the camera.

Although many people will appreciate the larger buttons and chunkier feel of the phone, the extra bulk does give the handset an out-dated feel. Next to low cost, slim-line phones like the Sagem my150X, it looks distinctly old fashioned. And whereas most bulkier handsets hide a larger battery to provide longer talk time, that's not the case here. The 5070 only offers around three hours 30 minutes of talk time.

Naturally the handset's connectivity is also quite limited and the lack of Bluetooth means it can't be used with wireless headsets or car kits.

The 5070 is easy to use and has good call quality, but its screen is poor and its range of features is very limited. It may have a low price tag -- around £70 SIM-free or free on contract -- but the truth is that there are better handsets around for the money, including several different models from Nokia.

Edited by Jason Jenkins
Additional editing by Jon Squire