Although initially known more for their candy-style handsets, Finnish manufacturer Nokia has become more synonymous with slide design mobile phones in the last few years, thanks to its 6000 series. With its recently released 6500 Slide Ė which is being sold alongside the 6500 Classic as a phone that gets back to basics Ė Nokia has again raised the bar when it comes to design. Unfortunately, this time itís more style than substance.
First, the good news Ė with the 6500 Slide, Nokia has once again raised the bar when it comes to how a mobile phone should look. With its sleek design Ė stainless steel finished off with discreet rubber strips for a better grip Ė itís certainly one of the most attractive slide design phones on the market. The sliding feature itself is extremely well handled, with a smooth motion thatís controlled by a two-way spring.
This clever design continues with how the features are laid out externally Ė for instance, the microSD expansion slot is found beneath the battery cover, as with so many other models. However, the difference here is that you donít actually have to remove the battery as well if you want to upgrade your card. Speaking of which, thereís a micro-USB port at the top of the handset, so connecting to other media outlets is a lot simpler than many of the Nokia 6500ís competitors.
Feature-wise, although itís no slouch the 6500 does disappoint in a few areas. For example, if youíre using a Java application such as a game or piece of office software, you canít do both simultaneously Ė you need to exit one and then start the other one. Whilst this isnít a major disaster, it does mean that using the phoneís features can feel as if youíve been short-changed.
Apart from that, though, the features on offer here are pretty good for what is essentially a fairly basic handset. Multimedia is especially looked after Ė with a combined music player and video player that is essentially an all-round multimedia player, the 6500 doesnít disappoint. With a graphic equalizer allowing you to tailor your tastes in sound, it offers excellent quality, especially through a decent set of headphones.
Picture quality on the camera is also pretty good, in no small way due to the fact that Nokia has allowed the 6500 to use the Carl Zeiss optic software usually found on its N-series range of phones. With its 3.2mega-pixel having a display quality of 2048x1536 pixels on still images and an equally strong 640x480 display on video playback, images are more than acceptable.
Unfortunately for Nokia, thatís where the praise for the 6500 ends. Even if itís not the most expensive of phones to buy, some of the features that are missing here can be found on less expensive phones elsewhere. For instance, thereís no backlight feature, so the screen can look slightly washed out when outdoors. The slide function also fails to auto-lock the handset, which can be extremely annoying when keys are other features are used by mistake. Thereís also no auto-focus option when using the video feature.
This is a shame, as overall the Nokia 6500 is a decent enough phone Ė it looks good, call quality is decent and battery life more than acceptable at 13 days on standby, and 6 hours talk time. If only Nokia had ironed out the small faults that are on display here, they could have had another strong handset to speak of. As it is, itís merely an average one.
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