Budget handset that boasts an FM radio and a flashlight.
- Price, compact and lightweight, FM radio, headset, flashlight, good call quality
- Spongy controls, poor viewing angle of display, ring tones could be louder
The Vodafone-exclusive Nokia 1650 fills the void if you’re after a cheap as chips phone for basic calls and text. The spongy controls are a drawback, but the included FM radio and flashlight may come in handy.
Price$ 69.00 (AUD)
One of the cheapest Nokia handsets available in the current range, there are no illusions about the aim of this handset — simple talk and text. Offered as one of Vodafone’s prepaid handsets, the 1650 has an FM radio and a flashlight but suffers from poorly designed controls.
The 1650 is a compact and lightweight handset, but feels reasonably well built considering the asking price. A good example of this is the rear battery cover: it’s easy to slide off but holds firmly in place and doesn’t rattle or creak when attached. The 1650 is finished entirely in a matte black plastic, while a gloss black bezel with silver highlights surrounds the display.
The biggest issue with the 1650 is its controls. At first glance, they look acceptable — a soft green backlight accompanies each key to ensure it can be used in dim light, while a simple four-way navigational pad, two selection buttons and answer/end calls keys keeps things tidy and effective. Unfortunately, the buttons have an overly spongy feel, meaning they require a firm press to activate. For messaging, this means a slightly steep leaning curve, and the slight keystroke lag doesn’t help either.
The 1650’s display is small but adequate considering the target market. The screen has a resolution of 128x160 and supports up to 65K colours, though it has poor viewing angles and is difficult to read in direct sunlight. Thankfully, call quality is fairly good, while the hands-free speakerphone also works well and produces reasonable volume.
Features are sparse, but the built-in FM radio is a nice touch considering the price point. Conveniently, holding down the asterisk key for two seconds launches the radio application, though you’ll need to use the included headset as this acts as an FM antenna. The included HS-105 headset also doubles as a hands-free device and features a call handling button and shirt clip built into the cord. The radio offers reasonable but not outstanding quality. Auto-tuning is available by holding down the up button on the navigational pad, while up to 10 presets can be saved and then accessed by scrolling through using the left and right directional buttons or pressing a corresponding number on the keypad.
Other features include a range of PIM (Personal Information Management) functions such as a calculator, converter, a basic spreadsheet application, countdown timer, calendar and a stopwatch. Nokia also bundles a ring tone composer, a Chinese lunar calendar, and a flashlight, which is located at the top of the handset and is useful for finding keyholes at night. The ring tone composer creates polyphonic ring tones, but we found both created and default ring tones could have been a little louder. Perhaps the biggest exclusion is Bluetooth — even on the cheapest of handsets, it should be a standard feature.
Vodafone offers the Nokia 1650 in a Prepay Pack for $69. The pack is worth $219 and includes a handset with a Vodafone SIM card, a $29 Jumbo Cap with $150 credit and the choice of $5, $12 or $25 Vodafone live! & Extras credit to access a range of downloadable content.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: Is the world ready for a 4K phone?
- 2 D-Link Taipan AC3200 Ultra tri-band modem-router review
- 3 Dell XPS 13 (2016) review: Making the very best Ultrabook
- 4 Microsoft Surface Book review: The verdict on Microsoft's first notebook
- 5 Telstra Wi-Fi 4GX Advanced III review: Testing the world's first 600Mbps wireless hotspot
Best Deals on PC World
Latest News Articles
- Intel's Atom architecture to live on despite smartphone chip cancellations
- Galaxy Note 6 rumors hint at IR autofocus, USB-C connectivity, new Snapdragon SoC
- LG shows off a smartphone display panel with integrated fingerprint reader
- Smartphone uptake passes its peak as industry appetite wanes
- Telstra commits $50 million to cut mobile outages
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- CCTechnical ExpertVIC
- CCContract Analyst Programmer (JAVA/J2EE/SQL) 160505/AP/951Asia
- CCOnline Shop Operations Consultant (eCommerce)VIC
- CCSkilled Sitecore / .NET DeveloperNSW
- CCSenior Project Manager - Workforce ManagementVIC
- CCTest Analyst - Contact Centre TechnologiesVIC
- CCAnalyst Programmer (JAVA/Windows Programming) 160422/AP/544Asia
- CCHealthcare Test SpecialistSA
- CCIBM MDM SpecialistVIC
- CCService Desk OperatorACT
- FTDigital Project ManagerVIC
- CCSenior Agile Business AnalystVIC
- CCSenior Project ManagerVIC
- CCOrganisational Change ManagerVIC
- CCBusiness Analyst, Loyalty projectsNSW
- CC.NET Developer (Application production Support)NSW
- CCSenior IT Business AnalystVIC
- CCSystems TrainerVIC
- FTAzure ArchitectQLD
- CCSenior Business Analyst - Data ManagementNSW
- FTSoftware Design Engineer (Embedded Software)SA
- FTDeveloper - OSB/BPELNSW
- CCDesktop Engineer, renewable contractAsia
- CCTechnical WriterACT