Nokia 7500 Prism review: Daring difference

GSMArena team, 20 September 2007.
Pages: 1234»

Tags: Nokia, S40

It's been a long time since we last held such an unusual phone in our hands. Nokia 7500 Prism is so much different from all other mobile devices in terms of design. With its dazzling geometric patterns and distinctive triangular keys, the Prism is one of the most striking phones announced recently. Keeping a low profile is one thing this device can't do. Anyway, stay with us for the good and bad of it.

Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500
Nokia 7500 official photos

Key features:

  • One of a kind design
  • Typical s40 quick interface
  • More than decent music performance with good equalizers
  • Richer than usual preloaded content
  • Keypad is comfortable, despite its unusual look
  • Exchangeable accents to freshen up the phone's looks

Main disadvantages:

  • Mediocre camera
  • No hot-swap capability for the memory card
  • The display lacks brightness
  • Inadequate battery life
  • Price tag too high for the offered functionality
  • Joystick needs time getting used to
  • Fingerprint magnet

Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500
Nokia 7500 - two distinctive edge go through the front panel from end to end

Nokia 7500 has been in the limelight since the very day it appeared on the Chinese website of the Finnish company. With the angular design and a price tag befitting far greater functionality, there is no doubt that this is a love-it-or-hate-it phone. A mere glance at the specification sheets is enough to convince us that Nokia 6300 offers almost the same set of features at a significantly lower price. Shiny plastic and diamond-like shapes on the outside, we are yet to see if its performance is diamond-hard.

Out-of-the-box

The contents of the package are downright mid level. Alongside a 512 MB microSD memory card, there's a wired stereo handsfree. The earphones aren't as good as the ones found in Nokia 5700, but still produce decent quality sound. Sadly, we found no adapter for the microSD card (making it compatible with standard SD card-readers), nor a USB cable. The DC charger was there but we were disappointed to find out that this phone was using the Nokia AC-3X charger, instead of the AC-5 we found in the Nokia 5700 box. The typical retail package also includes an artificial leather wrist strap, a pouch and two exchangeable color accents. The color accents are very easy to replace and make a surprisingly big difference refreshing the phone's looks. A manual and a booklet highlighting the Nokia 7500 most important features complete the box contents. We should once again make a note here that part of the content of the retail package is market dependant and will probably vary by country or vendor.

Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500
Box is in the golden mean in terms of content

Triangular plastic

Nokia 7500 Prism is dressed in black and has a body made of plastic with only a few metal details. Except for parts of the back and the sides, where matt plastic was used, most of the handset's body is shiny, which sadly makes fingerprints an inevitable burden. The device stands at 109 x 44 x 14 mm with a volume of 70 cc and weight of mere 83 g. Overall the construction quality is good and there were no creaks or other disturbing sounds during our test. It does feel good in hand but cleaning your Nokia 7500 is a fulltime job, as every touch on the shiny plastic results in a fingerprint.

Nokia 7500 Prism is so much different from all other mobile devices in terms of design. With its dazzling geometric patterns and distinctive triangular keys, the Prism is one of the most striking phones announced recently.

Starting to inspect the phone exterior, you will find the speaker positioned right above the display. A tiny metal ornament is placed right above it serving a purely decorative purpose. The 2.0" display itself is basically what you would expect in a phone in this price range.

Nokia 7500
The speaker execls with sound quality

Topside you'll find the on/off key, which is slightly sunk to prevent accidental presses. It is enclosed in a thin metal circle and is the only control on this part of Nokia 7500. The top, like the sides, is made of matt black plastic except for the metal framing that goes around the phone and the exchangeable accent. The accents themselves are plastic framework elements of different color, which are inserted under the phone's back panel.

Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500
The on/off key is surrounded by a thin metal ring

The left side is probably the easiest to describe, as it holds no functional elements at all. The bottom side is much more crowded. It houses the eyelet for a attaching a neck or a wrist strap. Right next to it is the charger plug. Further on to the right you will find the 2.5mm audio jack and the USB slot. Nokia 7500 supports microSD cards, which is nice as those are quite well-spread. So are USB cables by the way, and Nokia must have figured that users are quite likely to have one. As we already mentioned, there's no USB cable in the retail package.

Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500
The left side has no functional elements • a whole bunch of apertures is to be found at the bottom of Nokia 7500 - USB slot, 2.5mm audio jack, DC charger plug and the wrist strap eyelet

The right side of the phone is where the dedicated camera key is placed. Above it, is the dual volume control key and that is all there is to notice regarding the functionality of this part of Nokia 7500. A great flaw of Nokia 7500 is the lack of hot swap memory card slot. To us it's rather outdated to have to turn off the phone every time you take out or insert the memory card, but apparently not to the phone's designers.

Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500
Right side is where the dedicated camera key and the volume rocker is placed

The back of the phone is covered with asymmetrical patterns of shiny plastic while the rest of it, as already mentioned, is finished in matt plastic, which may not be as nice looking but deals with fingerprints a whole lot better. The Nokia logo is engraved on the lower half and the camera and the LED flash are located in the upper half. The flash window is also triangular to match the shape, which dominates the phone's design.

Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500
Most of the stylish back panel is covered by asymmetrical patterns • The camera and the flash also exercise angular forms • Next to them is the speakerphone

To get to the battery, the back cover is removed by lifting, starting from the top until you reach the bottom where a triangular button ought to be pushed to fully release the panel. Under the cover is the BL-4B battery and of course the currently chosen color accent goes around the rim. The BL-4B battery is one our greatest disappointments with this phone. Under heavy-duty usage, it was able to last roughly about a day. Our guess is that if you use the phone mostly for talking and do not make too many calls, you will have to charge it every 36 or 48 hours at the most. We could have probably lived with that one if the phone was really feature-packed or at least the display was large enough and of superior quality, but unfortunately neither of those excuses works with this handset.

Nokia 7500 Nokia 7500
The phone thorn to pieces • The BL-4B battery is inadequate

Taking the battery away you will notice the SIM card slot and the microSD card slot. The latter has the lock system, which Nokia usually uses for the SIM cards. We do find it a very nice idea but it's not nearly enough to removing the bad impression from not having a hot-swap slot.

Nokia 7500
No hot swap memory card for Nokia 7500 • At least there is a 512 MB card included in the retail package

Next Page »

Pages: 1234»

 
Reviews > Nokia 7500 Prism review: Daring difference