Nokia E5 smartphone
Nokia E5 review: A QWERTY-equipped smartphone for business and leisure
- Oodles of inbuilt apps, good build quality, zippy interface, QWERTY keyboard works a treat
- Screen is a bit on the small side, fixed-focus camera is too basic
The Nokia E5 smartphone attempts to bridge the divide between the business and consumer markets. In this it is largely successful, although the 2.36in display may be an issue for some.
Price$ 329.00 (AUD)
The Nokia E5 is an HSDPA-capable smartphone designed for business and leisure in equal measure. [You're a poet and you didn't know it. -- Ed.] Equipped with a QWERTY keyboard, a 5-megapixel camera, an inbuilt GPS, a 3.5mm headphone jack, dual home screens, plus a host of preinstalled business and entertainment apps, the Nokia E5 strikes a good balance between work and play.
[Compare the Nokia E5 to other smartphone reviews on PC World.]
On the downside, its screen is a bit on the small side, which makes Internet browsing a chore. The inbuilt camera could also do with some improvements. Nonetheless, if you require a smartphone for both professional and personal use (and don't mind a small screen), the Nokia E5 is an enticing proposition.
Nokia E5: Design
Unlike most consumer-friendly smartphones, such as the HTC Desire HD, LG Optimus 7 and Motorola Milestone XT701, the Nokia E5 does not come with a touchscreen interface. Instead, it sticks to a QWERTY keyboard, which takes up around half of the E5's front.
The lack of a touchscreen may not be a problem for some, but the reduction in screen size certainly will be. Simply put, the 2.36in display is far too small for effective Web browsing and/or video playback. To be fair, this is a fault that many mobile phones suffer from, but it does makes the Nokia E5 feel a bit outdated when compared to its full-screen brethren. (If you don't like touchscreens but want the luxury of a larger display, try the Nokia E7 smartphone — it has a slide-out keyboard.)
With dimensions of 115x58.9x12.8mm, the Nokia E5 is pretty compact for a candy bar smartphone. The black-and-silver finish is quite swish looking, while still remaining suitable for professionals. (If you'd prefer something slightly splashier, white, brown, and sky blue variants are also available.) Despite its slim size, the Nokia E5 has a reassuringly solid feel. The metallic backplate is an attractive touch, while also providing protection from knocks and drops.
Curiously, the Nokia E5 has no side buttons, with the exception of a volume rocker and a release for the backplate. Instead, all controls are relegated to the keyboard, which requires you to learn a few key shortcuts.
Nokia E5: Handling
We were very impressed by the Nokia E5's QWERTY keyboard — throughout testing, the keys remained responsive and comfortable to use. That said, those with short fingernails or thick thumbs will need a little practice before they start typing like a pro.
As mentioned, the 2.36in display isn't ideal for video viewing, but it does get the job done. Images are reasonably sharp and viewing angles are quite good too. We found it difficult to see in direct sunlight, but the same thing could be said of most mobile phones. All in all, we think the display is acceptable for the asking price: we just wish it was a little bigger.
One thing that did impress us about the Nokia E5 was the lack of lag or slowdown. Even with several applications running at once, the Symbian operating system remained fast and responsive. If you're the type of phone user who frequently multitasks, this is a huge plus.
Speaker volume, meanwhile, is more than acceptable: we experienced no difficulties hearing phone calls in busy outdoor environments.
Nokia E5: Features and connectivity
The Nokia E5 smartphone comes equipped with a swathe of useful tools and applications, including Quickoffice Premium, Ovi Maps (which works in conjunction with the inbuilt GPS receiver), Vligo (which lets you to control your phone via vocal commands) and a voice recorder. In addition, dedicated apps for Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, YouTube and Live Messenger are preinstalled on the device. Wi-Fi (802.11b and g), Bluetooth and HSDPA connectivity are also naturally included.
Like most E-series smartphones, the Nokia E5 comes with two switchable home screens, dubbed Business and Personal. You can edit a number of settings in each mode, including enabled applications, notifications and themes, and then toggle between the two. The familiar Symbian interface lacks the polish of many alternatives, but it's easy enough to use. The level of customisation on offer is really quite impressive: whether you prefer a traditional grid-style menu or a scrolling horseshoe arrangement, there'll be an option to suit your needs.
For e-mail, the Nokia E5 comes preloaded with Nokia Messaging. Setting up a personal e-mail account, such as Gmail, Yahoo! or Windows Live mail, is a simple matter of entering your username and password.
Like all good camera phones, the Nokia E5 comes equipped with an inbuilt flash which provides coverage of around one metre. Handily, it also doubles as a flashlight for when you drop your keys in the dark. Unfortunately, the camera itself is a little underwhelming, with no manual options to speak of. It also has a fixed-focused lens, which means it cannot adjust focus on the fly. As you can imagine, this results in some fuzzy photos; particularly when it comes to Macro shots or extreme close-ups.
For connectivity, the Nokia E5 comes with a mini-USB port, a 3.5mm microphone jack, a plug to charge the battery and a MicroSD card slot. The 3.5mm jack and MicroSD slot will be especially prized by music fans: it means you can load the device with up to 32GB of songs and not compromise on sound quality (provided you have a good pair of headphones). The inbuilt music player does a good job of handling your tunes and an FM radio is also included.
Become a fan of GoodGearGuide on Facebook
Follow GoodGearGuide on Twitter: @GoodGearGuide
Stay up to date with the latest reviews. Sign up to [[xref: http://www.goodgearguide.com.au/user/register| GoodGearGuide’s Gear Daily newsletters| Register for GoodGearGuide’s Gear Daily newsletters]]
Join the newsletter!
Ballistix Tactical Tracer RGB 3000
Cartier Calibre de Cartier Diver Watch
Bang and Olufsen Beoplay A9 Speaker
Apple iMac Pro
Ballistix Sport AT
Samsung QLED 8K TV
Toys for Boys
Oregon Pro WMR500 Weather Station
Little Bits DROID Inventor Kit
Tivoli PAL BT
Osmo Coding Awbie Game
ESET Internet Security
Nix Pro Colour Sensor
ESET Cyber Security Pro for Mac
ESET Smart Security Premium
Naztech Xtra Drive Mini + 256GB microSD Card
Ultimate Ears Wonderboom Bluetooth Speaker
Ikea RIGGAD work lamp with wireless charging
TimeFlip Magnet Simple Time Tracking Device
SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3
Microsoft Office enables your business to perform better
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Oppo R17 Pro review: Oppo's thriftiest flagship yet drives a hard bargain
- 2 Nokia 7.1 review: A modest and modern mid-tier option
- 3 Tenda Nova MW6 review: A gateway drug for mesh Wi-Fi
- 4 Huawei Mate 20 Pro review: Expensive, but probably the best phone you can buy right now
- 5 Apple iPhone XS review: Astonishment at a price
Latest News Articles
- Vivo Nex Dual Display Release Date, Price, Specs and More
- Samsung Galaxy A8s Release Date, Price, Specs and More
- Wizards of the Coast invest $10 million into MTG: Arena esports
- PC World 2018 Editor's Choice Awards Nominees Announced
- Sony Xperia XZ4 Release Date, Price, Specs and More
PCW Evaluation Team
Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications
I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)
It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!
The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.
I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.
If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.
- PC World 2018 Editor's Choice Awards
- Huawei Mate 20 Pro review: Full, in-depth, Australian review
- Razer Phone 2 review: One for the fans
- Everything you need to know about Smart TVs
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?