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Nokia 6350 review: Nokia 6350

Nokia 6350

Kent German Former senior managing editor / features
Kent was a senior managing editor at CNET News. A veteran of CNET since 2003, he reviewed the first iPhone and worked in both the London and San Francisco offices. When not working, he's planning his next vacation, walking his dog or watching planes land at the airport (yes, really).
Kent German
4 min read


Nokia 6350

The Good

The Nokia 6350 has a slim, easy-to-use design and good call quality. The feature set includes 3G, GPS, and push-to-talk.

The Bad

The Nokia 6350's photo and video quality are disappointing. The headset jack is 2.5mm.

The Bottom Line

The Nokia 6350 does the job as a phone for voice calls, but it doesn't measure up as a multimedia device.

The Nokia 6350 is the second Nokia handset that AT&T has offered this autumn season. Its feature set is similar to the carrier's Nokia Mural, though it offers a sleeker design. It has everything you need for basic communication, and is a good pick if you're a Nokia fan, but it's not our choice for a multimedia handset. Call quality is decent, though, and the price is affordable.

The 6350 doesn't go out of its way to impress, but it has an attractive design. We like the slim profile, smooth lines, and the soft touch material that covers most of the front and back covers. When open, it forms a smooth arc like most of the Nokia's recent U.S. models. At 3.67 inches by 1.86 inches by 0.68 inch and 3.62 ounces, the 6350 is portable, but it has a comfortable, solid feel in the hand. The 6350 comes in graphite (gray) and red, but the features are the same on both models. According to Nokia, the 6350 is free of harmful materials and 80 percent of its parts can be recycled.

The 6350's external display is only 1.36 inches, but with support for 262,244 colors (160x128 pixels) it's quite sharp for its size. It shows the date, time, battery life, signal strength, and photo caller ID. It also works as a viewfinder for the external display. Above the display is the camera lens, while below are the dedicated music controls--you can use them to activate the music player without opening the phone. On the downside, the keys are a bit small and you'll need to press them firmly.

Nokia describes the dedicated music controls as 'discrete.' We think they're too small.

Completing the exterior of the phone are a volume rocker and a push-to-talk button on the left spine. The controls are tiny, but you can find the rocker by feel when you're on a call. Below them is a 2.5mm headset jack; we'd prefer a standard 3.5mm jack on a phone with a music player. The Micro-USB/charger port is on the phone's right spine and the microSD card slot is behind the battery cover.

The internal display measures 2 inches and supports a rich 16.7 million colors (320x240 pixels). With that resolution we'd expect bright, vibrant colors and sharp graphics, and the 6350 delivers. The Series 40, sixth-edition menu interface is easy to use, and you're offered a decent number of customization options. You can change the font size and home screen font color. You also can add shortcut icons to the home screen.

The navigation array is flush, but spacious. There's a four-way toggle with a central OK button, two soft keys, a shortcut for the browser and GPS feature, a camera shutter, and the Talk and End/power keys. That's a nice assortment, though we'd replace the browser and GPS shortcuts with a speakerphone key and a dedicated back button. You can personalize the toggle with shortcuts. The keypad buttons are also flat, but their spacious design makes dialing and texting easy. They numbers on the keys are large as well, and they have a bright backlighting.

The 6350 has a 1,000-contact phone book with room in each entry for five phone numbers, two e-mails, a street address, a birthday, a formal name and nickname, a company name and job title, and notes. You can save callers to groups and pair them with one of 14 polyphonic ringtones and a photo or video. The SIM card holds an additional 250 contacts.

Essential features include a vibrate mode, a calendar, a to-do list, text and multimedia messaging, a notepad, a calculator, a timer, a stopwatch, and a full duplex speakerphone. On the higher end you'll find speaker-independent voice dialing, instant messaging, a voice recorder, PC syncing, USB mass storage, and support for AT&T's push-to-talk network. You can use the 6350 as a modem and the Bluetooth 2.1 feature includes stereo and file transfer profiles. The handset also offers access to POP3 and IMAP4 e-mail through a Web-based interface, but you'll be typing your messages on the alphanumeric keypad.

As a 3G phone, the 6350 offers the full set of AT&T's wireless broadband multimedia services. You'll find Cellular Video (streaming-video content) and AT&T Mobile Music (wireless song downloads through partners). The experience with the two applications is similar to that on other AT&T phones; both are minimalist in their designs, but the music player supports a wide variety of file formats and it offers features like album art, an equalizer, playlists, shuffle and repeat modes, and an airplane mode. You also get a solid selection of music-related features, such as support for XM Radio, a Music ID app, music videos, and a community section.

Yet, the 6350 doesn't stop there with its Java apps. Beyond the music offerings it has a fair number of titles, some of which are subscription-based. They include The Weather Channel, WikiMobile, Yellowpages Mobile, a unit and currency converter, a world clock, MobiTV, Juice Caster, and Mobile Banking. As the 6350 comes with Assisted GPS, you also can get ="http: reviews.cnet.com="" handheld-software="" telenav-gps-navigator-at="" 4505-3638_7-32136318.html"="">AT&T Navigator and a Where app for local search.

The 6350 doesn't have a flash.

The two-megapixel camera takes pictures in four resolutions and three quality settings. You'll also find a self-timer, a multishot mode, a brightness control, a 4x digital zoom, color effects, and white balance. The camcorder, which offers a similar set of editing options, caps clips for multimedia messages at 42 seconds, but you can shoot longer videos in standard mode. The 6350 has just 52MB of integrated memory for storing your work, so we suggest using a microSD card as backup--the phone can use cards up to 16GB. Photo quality is disappointing, unfortunately. Colors were drab and there was a lot of image noise.

The 6350 has poor photo quality.

You can personalize the 6350 with a selection of wallpaper and display themes. More options and additional ringtones are available from AT&T's Media Mall service using the WAP browser. Gamers can play demo versions of Monopoly Here & Now, Diner Dash 2, Midnight Bowl, and World Poker Tour Hold 'Em 2. The full versions and additional games titles are available for purchase.

We tested the quad-band (GSM 850/900/1800/1900) phone in San Francisco using AT&T service. Call quality was satisfying. The signal was clear and strong, there was no static or interference, and the volume was loud. Occasionally the voices warbled on our end, but it wasn't a big deal. We could hear in most environments and the phone didn't pick up a lot of background noise.

Callers reported good conditions. Most could tell that we were using a cell phone, but they didn't report anything amiss outside of the voice warbling we heard. Automated calling systems could understand us, but it was best when we were in a quiet room. Speakerphone and Bluetooth headset calls were fine as well.

Streaming video quality is unimpressive. There was a lot of pixelation and the audio was slightly out of sync with the video. It wasn't an enjoyable experience, even for short clips. On the bright side, the 3G connection (HSDPA 850/1900/2100) allowed for quick downloads and videos never paused for buffering. Music quality was decent given the external speaker's loud output, but our tunes sounded cleaner over headphones.

The 6350 has a rated battery life of 4.2 hours talk time and 18 days standby time. The tested talk time is slightly less, at 3.5 hours. The promised multimedia times are as follows: 5.4 hours of video playback, 5.58 hours of video recording, 25.3 hours of music playback, and 5.25 hours of gaming. According to FCC radiation tests, the 6350 has a digital SAR of 1.03 watts per kilogram.


Nokia 6350

Score Breakdown

Design 6Features 7Performance 6