Nokia 700 review: Agent seven double-oh

GSMArena team, 31 October 2011.
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Efficient phonebook

The Nokia 700 comes with a very capable phonebook, which can easily be synced with your Exchange account. Symbian has been offering users virtually unlimited phonebook capacity and excellent contact management for quite some time and now the Belle update continues the tradition.

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The Nokia 700 phonebook

Contacts can be ordered by first or last name. You can also set whether the contacts from the SIM card, the phone memory and the service numbers will get displayed.

Selecting some of your contacts as favorites moves them to the top of the list.

Editing a contact offers a great variety of preset fields and you can replicate each of them as many times as you like. You can assign personal ringtones and videos to individual contacts. If you prefer, you may group your contacts and give each group a specific ringtone.

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Editing a contact's details

A really nice touch when editing a contact is the option to enter their address by locating it on a map.

The social network integration includes Facebook and Twitter, which should be fine for the vast majority of users. You can see the latest status update right from the contact info - or at least the first three lines of it. A tap on it brings you to a new screen where you can read the whole message and you get options to view the sender's profile and more updates . That takes a few seconds though as the Social app needs to load first.

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Checking out Dexter's Facebook profile through the phonebook

Telephony

Reception on the Nokia 700 is good and we didn’t experience dropped calls. There’s an extra microphone for active noise-cancellation. Voice dialing is available on the Nokia 700 and gets activated by pressing and holding the call key. It is fully speaker-independent and as far as we can tell performs greatly, recognizing all the names we threw at it. In noisier environments though, its effectiveness might suffer.

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The in-call screen

Smart dialing is also enabled - you just punch in a few letters from the desired contact’s name and select it from the list that comes up to initiate a call. There's speed dial too on the virtual dial pad. The final option for starting a call is via the shortcuts you can place on your homescreen.

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The 700 comes with pretty well tuned voice dialing • You can also use smart dialing

The Nokia 700 has the neat accelerometer-based feature that lets you mute the ringer by turning the phone face down. That same turn-to-mute trick also works for snoozing your alarm.

Thanks to the proximity sensor the screen is automatically disabled during a call.

The Nokia 700 took our traditional loudspeaker test scored a Below Average mark - worse than the C7 - and it might result in some missed calls. More info on the test, as well as other results can be found here.

Speakerphone testVoice, dBPink noise/ Music, dBRinging phone, dBOverall score
Sony Ericsson Xperia ray64.661.666.9Below Average
Nokia 70163.158.766.3Below Average
Nokia 70062.558.574.8Below Average
Google Nexus S68.166.3 69.3Average
HTC Sensation66.566.678.3Good
Nokia X766.761.880.7Good
Sony Ericsson XPERIA Arc66.166.378.0Good
HTC Incredible S66.566.176.7Good
Nokia N875.866.282.7Very Good
HTC Gratia73.273.683.5Excellent

Messaging complete

All your incoming messages arrive in a shared inbox and by default are displayed in threads. You can use the old inbox too if you like.

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The Nokia 700 messaging app uses threaded view by default • Old-school inbox

The Nokia 700 relies on a shared editor for all the types of messages. Stuff like a character counter in SMS goes without saying. Insert some multimedia content and the message is automatically transformed into an MMS. In that case, the character counter turns into a data counter showing kilobytes.

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Sending Dee Dee a message

The Nokia 700 automatically set up our Gmail account in no time, complete with Exchange Active Sync configuration. Usually, all you need is to enter a username and a password and you will be good to go. A few settings had to be entered manually for the Active Sync setup.

Multiple email accounts and various security protocols are supported, so you can bet almost any mail service will run trouble-free on your Nokia 700.

Messages can be sorted by various filters such as date, sender, subject, priority or even by attachments, search is enabled as well.

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The email client

The email client can be set to automatically check mail at a given interval. For that you get two separate settings: syncing frequency and peak and off-peak sync times.

There is also support for attachments, signatures and basically everything you would normally need.

QWERTY keyboards and split screen

Since Anna, the Symbian portrait QWERTY keyboard has split screen support, meaning the top half of the screen is left for the app, while the bottom part is for the keyboard.

The keys on the portrait QWERTY are a small and it doesn't get that much better in landscape on the narrow 3.2" screen.

Anyway, you can activate word prediction, which will guess the word you're trying to type and show a small popup with the word you actually typed, in case you're trying to enter something like a user name or an URL.

This eliminates the annoying situation of taking you out of the app and into a text edit screen and then back to the app (entering URLs in the browser and using the URL autocomplete was the most painful example). Also, you no longer have to change orientation just to use the QWERTY keyboard, which was a major nuisance.

Still, it's not perfect - several apps continue to use the old text edit screen, obscuring the app even though we were using the portrait QWERTY. The Nokia store app is an example of where that happens, which was a little disappointing.

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The portrait and landscape QWERTY keyboards

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