Home > Previews > Brief look at the new Nokia C3-01 ‘Touch and Type’

Brief look at the new Nokia C3-01 ‘Touch and Type’

September 29, 2010

Confusing names aside, the new  Nokia C3 is the second handset in Nokia’s  Touch and Type family. Along with the Nokia X3, these two Series S40 based feature phones offer a no-nonsense user interface and lightweight design for those who doesn’t necessarily need the extended functionality (and complexity) of smartphones.

At first glance, you might say the C3 is just a more reserved version of the X3, and, for the most part, you’ll be right.  But there are still some subtle differences to be found, so let’s have a closer look…

Size and weight : Both phones can be considered compact and slim, with a barely noticeable weight in hand. Still, the Nokia X3 pushes the limits even further by having a thinner, although a bit wider, body. Oh, and it’s lighter too.

Nokia C3 vs X3

100 g vs 78 g

111 x 47.5 x 11 mm  vs 106.2 x 48.4 x 9.6. mm

Screen. Both phones utilize a 2.4 inch resistive touch screen with 240 x 320 pixels (QVGA TFT) resolution, ensuring a relatively sharp picture for it’s physical size. The represented color pallet of the screen also looks decent, although with no surprises. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to test it’s sunlight legibility. Naturally, the working experience with the Nokia C3 touchscreen proved to be  as enjoyable as with the X3, and I initially had problems discerning whether it’s a capacitive or a resistive screen. As I mentioned in my X3 preview, the S40 interface has been modified with larger icons and other UI elements to compensate the limited screen size.

Keypad. This one is quite obvious. The Nokia C3 comes with a traditionally arranged keypad with horizontal bars between each row of the keys for increased typing comfort. The X3, on the other hand, has a 4×4 grid keypad that has additional multimedia and messaging shortcut keys in the top row. The downside? There’s virtually nothing that separates keys in either direction, and only a slight slope at the bottom of each key helps to improve the situation. Still, the keys on both devices are generously sized and offer great tactile feedback, but it’s worth noting again here, that the few extra keys have made the X3 into an entirely different kind of animal.

Other input elements: The Nokia C3 comes with dedicated camera and lock key that are sadly missing on the X3. Removed to keep the design seamless, no doubt.

Battery: Here’s where the Nokia C3 justifies the few mm more it has under it’s belt in comparison to the X3. The C3 comes with a 1050 mAh Li-ion battery against 860 mAh Li-Ion battery on the X3. I wouldn’t worry about it too much though, as the power consumption should be nowhere as close as on the smartphones. Charging on both phones is possible using the 2 mm port and also via microUSB.

Internal memory: According to Nokia site,  there’s no memory card included in the retail package, so this might really hurt:  there’s 30 MB of  internal memory available to the Nokia C3 user vs 50 Mb on the X3. Both are disturbingly low numbers, and storing anything more than a few camera photos and apps is, of course, out of question.

Camera: Both have a 5 Mpix, extended depth of focus (EDOF) cameras with accompanying LED flash. So yes, it’s basically fixed focus, albeit with some minor improvements. I suspect the overall performance will be quite similar to that of Nokia E5, but your guess is as good as mine at this point.

Connectivity: The Touch and Type series phones are pretty much on par with modern connectivity standards like 3G, HSDPA and Bluetooth (v2.1), but also packing support for WLAN networks. The only thing that’s really missing from the lot is the GPS functionality, but isn’t that a bit too much to ask for here?

Take a look at the brief but nevertheless interesting demo of the Nokia C3, recorded directly from Nokia World 2010:

With all that in mind, which device would you prefer? The stylish and ultra-slim Nokia X3-01, or the more classic looking C3-01? Choices…

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