Nokia may no longer be the all-powerful king of the mobile world it once was, but its not about to throw in the towel any time soon, if the seemingly endless torrent of mid-range mobiles it releases is anything to go by. Next off the production line is the Nokia 6700 Slide -- priced at £170, it's a next-gen device for those opposed to touchscreens.
We were pretty fond of thewhen we first got our clammy mitts on it way back in July of last year -- this is very similar, but with hinges.
We like the small, yet chunky shape -- at just 4.6cm wide and 9.5cm long it won't be busting the seams of your favourite jeans, and the phone is well laid-out, with the 2.2-inch screen taking up a goodly amount of mobile real-estate.
That screen has a resolution of 320x240 pixels, which makes for a perfectly clear display -- any higher and icons and text would quickly become too tiny to read without a powerful telescope (which would significantly decrease the 6700 Slide's portability). A really nice addition is an ambient light sensor on the phone's front, which will increase or decrease the screen's brightness dependent on how bright it judges your surroundings to be. We found it worked well -- we never found the screen to be underlit, or battery-chompingly bright either.
Sliding out the alpha-numeric keyboard, we're a little disappointed with the small size of the keys -- they're by no means unusable, but we found some of the higher-up keys a little tricky to reach, which meant texting at speed was quite awkward.
The 6700 Slide is running Nokia's own Symbian operating system, which means you'll have access to the the Ovi app store. The interface itself is well designed -- anyone who's used a Nokia phone in the last few years will be familiar with the layout, with a dock along the bottom of the screen for popular tools like email and the Ovi store, and a more detailed menu accessible via a click of the left 'menu' key.
Our only complaint is that the interface is loaded with pop-up warnings and tips, especially when browsing the web, which slightly ruins the experience. The button layout too could be better. As well as a five-way central button, two context-aware menu keys, call and end buttons, there are also 'cancel' and 'home' buttons, which seem slightly superfluous. No task seems to require more than the usual five buttons, so we're slightly baffled as to why these extra keys were included.
Often on these sorts of mobiles, we find there's little consistency from screen to screen in terms of what the buttons do. Luckily that's not the case here -- you won't be stuck hunting for on-screen prompts at every stage. If the right key means 'back' on one screen it's likely to mean 'back' on other screens too.