Nokia 8800 Gold Arte review: Born with a silver spoon

GSMArena team, 21 April 2009.
Pages: 1234567»

Tags: Nokia, S40

How many phones can you name that would have made sense centuries back? Here's one: the Nokia 8800 Gold Arte. No, we're not talking medieval calling and texting, we're talking gold and leather.

Okay, it may not be solid gold, but it's the next best thing - the Arte is gold plated alright, but it sure looks - better yet, glitters - the part. Gold does not react with air and moisture so even after thousands of years gold artifacts do not loose their luster. Well, that's one thing you get for your dime - everlasting shine.

It's like choosing the interior of a ridiculously expensive car - creme leather, mahogany, you get the picture. Same with Nokia's Arte series - Sapphire, Carbon fiber and now leather and gold.

The color of gold depends on relativistic effects acting on the electrons… nah, no matter how you twist it an 8800 phone will not interest geeks. It is all about exclusive materials, high build quality and most importantly - making you look good.

In terms of technology, it's forged in the same crucible as the Nokia Carbon Arte - OLED screen, 3G, 3 megapixel autofocus camera, 4GB of inbuilt memory and Series 40.

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Nokia 8800 Gold Arte official photos

Key features

  • 18 carat gold-plated body
  • Genuine white leather padding
  • 2" 16M-color OLED display of QVGA resolution
  • 3G support
  • 3 megapixel autofocus camera
  • Full-house retail package with a Bluetooth headset and desk stand
  • Decent battery life
  • Turn-to-mute
  • Tap-for-time
  • 4GB internal memory

Main disadvantages

  • Smallish display with poor sunlight legibility
  • Tri-band only
  • No memory expansion
  • Costs an arm and a leg
  • Below-par camera performance
  • No video calls
  • No Smart dialing
  • No office document viewer
  • No Java multi-tasking

Talking value for money with the Nokia 8800 Gold Arte, or any of its siblings, will make as much sense as attaching an enjoy responsibly message to the Vertu Concierge service. Though the Arte Gold doesn't go as far as the Vertu, exuberance is its very name and the materials and looks certainly hold their own against the luxury models.

Nokia 8800 Gold Arte Nokia 8800 Gold Arte Nokia 8800 Gold Arte Nokia 8800 Gold Arte
Nokia 8800 Gold Arte Nokia 8800 Gold Arte Nokia 8800 Gold Arte Nokia 8800 Gold Arte
Nokia 8800 Gold Arte views

That is not to say it's cheap - save for the Motorola Aura, the Nokia 8800 Gold Arte is the most expensive phone you can buy from a mainstream manufacturer. For the same price, you could buy the Carbon Arte plus a Nokia E71 and still have a little cash left to play with. But then, it is gold-plated and that's very much where your money's going.

Nokia 8800 Arte Nokia 8800 Sapphire Arte Nokia 8800 Carbon Arte
Nokia 8800 Arte • Nokia 8800 Sapphire Arte • Nokia 8800 Carbon Arte

Upgrading a phone from the 8-series is obviously not about enhancing the capabilities - it's about using even more exclusive materials and denying common sense. After all, previous 8-series owners are unlikely to suddenly jump to Symbian or E-series unless they start gold-plating those as well.

By the way, the Gold Arte is probably targeting all of those Luna and Sirocco users who decided to… um… save their cash and skip the Sapphire and Carbon generation and jump at the next big thing. The Gold Arte will also most probably be quite popular among the ladies as well.

Now, Carbon Arte owners will probably want to wait for Diamond Arte or Wooden Arte or whatever comes next (they've already done Titanium).

The sole purpose of the Nokia 8800 Gold Arte is to send subliminal (though not very subtle) messages to everyone around you, not quite in keeping with the Connecting People spirit.

Now, we're about to take a closer look at another Arte handset. Right after this short jump, we'll ooh and ahh over the hardware - for the lack of a better word.

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