Nokia 1209 mobile phone

A basic and very cheap Nokia mobile phone.

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Nokia 1209
  • Nokia 1209
  • Nokia 1209
  • Nokia 1209
  • Expert Rating

    2.75 / 5

Pros

  • Cheap, compact, flashlight

Cons

  • Tiny display, first row of keys too close to controls, no Bluetooth

Bottom Line

The Nokia 1209 is a basic mobile phone that makes calls and sends text messages. It does the job, but don't expect any more than the bare necessities, aside from a handy flashlight and a ring tone composer.

Would you buy this?

One of the most basic handsets we've ever reviewed, Nokia's 1209 is a budget, entry-level mobile phone that only does the bare minimum. This compact handset is easy to use and cheap as chips, but it is only recommended if you're purely interested in making calls and sending text messages.

The Nokia 1209 mobile phone is quite thick for an entry-level handset with minimal features, but it balances the ledger by being not being particularly wide and very light. Despite the size, the Nokia 1209's keypad is large and easy to use, though the 1, 2 and 3 keys are a little too close to the answer/end call keys for our liking; it's too easy to accidentally bump them when trying to send a text message or dial a phone number. The Nokia 1209 is largely constructed of plastic, but it feels reliable and solid considering its low price. There is no creaking or evidence of poor craftsmanship.

Using the Nokia 1209 is easy enough thanks to its straightforward user interface, but there are two issues that affect use of this mobile. Firstly, the display is narrow, so it only shows a few lines of text. For example, when scrolling through phonebook entries the Nokia 1209 can only display two numbers on the screen at a time, even if you only choose to display the contact's name rather than both the name and number. The screen also has poor viewing angles and is difficult to see in direct sunlight, making it uncomfortable to use outdoors on bright days and under fluorescent lighting indoors. The controls also take some time adjusting to: a four-way navigational pad is used instead of the more common five-way version. The left selection key is used to choose items in the menu.

The key features of the Nokia 1209 according to Nokia's Web site are the "premium exterior and colourful vibrant screen". We wouldn't particularly classify these as features, but there isn't much else to speak of. The Nokia 1209 offers text messaging with T9 predictive text input (but no MMS or e-mail capabilities), a basic phonebook and call register, and a few handy PIM functions such as an alarm clock, reminders, calculator, converter, countdown timer, calendar and stopwatch. The flashlight at the top of the handset — activated by holding up on the directional pad — and the polyphonic ring tone composer are nice inclusions.

Call quality is solid, but not outstanding. Volume could have been a little louder, and it is difficult to hear with any background noise. Thankfully, our callers didn't complain about the outgoing sound, which suggests the microphone is of good quality.

Struggling for Christmas presents this year? Check out our Christmas Gift Guide for some top tech suggestions and more.

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