Friday, September 16, 2005

the Nokia 6620

At long last, here are my thoughts on the Nokia 6620.

First of all, the phone sound quality is about the same as my old 3595. I think that's the function of the cell towers near my apartment. I've had some long conversations on it and they sound fine to me. No one has complained about the sound at the other end, unlike my old Treo 600, so I think it's a winner there. After all, if it doesn't work well as a phone, it doesn't look good for the device's other features. Also, the speakerphone is convenient, although it's a little tinny. But it's fine for listening to a conference call or enduring hold music.

I love the 6620's camera. I realize the cell phone cameras are a goofy toy, and that the quality of the photos leaves much to be desired, but it's fun to take quick pictures with it. I'm not ditching my digital camera (in fact, I'm about to buy a new camera) but it's cool to have this one along as well for quick photos on the spur of the moment. I will have to remember to bring along my old phone anytime I'm going somewhere where I can't bring a cameraphone.

The other major function I use is the PDA one: storing my contacts, notes, and maybe calendar items. I exported my old contact list from the Palm Desktop, imported it into Outlook on my home PC, then installed the Nokia PC Suite and used a Bluetooth adapter to synch my contacts with the phone. It's a bit unwieldy to scroll through 150 contacts when I'm looking for a number, so I've been using the keypad to narrow it down. I have to list people first name first, otherwise contacts look like "Smith John" instead of "John Smith." That makes it harder to scroll through the list to find someone.

I've sent a few text messages with the phone, but my fingers don't like the shortcomings of typing text on a numeric keypad.
I'm really used to the Blackberry thumb keyboard when typing on a mobile device. Even though it's possible to send and receive e-mail on the 6620, I'm not going to ditch my Blackberry anytime soon. The phone is capable of web surfing, but I haven't tried it since I don't have a data plan from Cingular right now. Maybe when I get out of my contract next year I'll add data in a new plan.

I like the little joystick for navigating the menus and scrolling through text. Newer versions of the phone have a rocker pad which is probably easier on the thumb over the long term, but the joystick will do.

I don't like the ringtones on this phone. In fact, they suck. The only musical one is the "Nokia tune," also known as that dinky waltz that every Nokia phone plays. The rest are sound effects or beeps. I've set mine to "desk phone" which is about as boring an actual ring as the phone has, but it's better than anything else on it. I'd like to get a better ringtone, but I'm philosophically and financially opposed to paying $2 for a 15-second song clip from Cingular, when I could get a complete song on iTunes for $1. I'm disappointed the phone doesn't play MP3 ringtones, as I'd love to rock out with "Inna Gadda Davidda" every time someone calls me. I also don't like that the phone comes with trial versions of all of its games. You can only play them twice and then you have to buy a license to keep playing. Most of them are dumb, but the graphics are cool. I downloaded a free version of Tetris for Nokia phones but it nearly crashed the phone so I deleted it. It's probably for the best that I don't have any decent games on this phone. I'm already tempting fate on the subway by carrying my MP3 player in my hand instead of my bag and reading e-mails on my Blackberry. If I whipped out the Nokia and started playing games I think I'd definitely get mugged, even at rush hour.

Last, the look and feel of the phone is great. It's a little shorter and wider than the 3595, and maybe a little heavier. But it doesn't feel any bigger in my pocket than the 3595 does. The color screen is just beautiful, and my cameraphone shots look fine on it. I don't notice the quality dropoff until I look at the pictures on my PC. I'm a little worried about scratching the camera lens in my pocket but considering the overall photo quality it wouldn't make much difference.

So for what I paid, I have a phone that looks like a phone, sounds good, and keeps track of my contacts. I'm happy with it and it should get me through to next summer when I can figure out my next cell phone move.

No comments: