Nokia E7 review: Open for business

GSMArena team, 02 March 2011.

Connectivity is has it all

Nokia spared no expense when it comes to the connectivity of the Nokia E7.

For starters, all kinds of network connectivity options are at your disposal - GPRS, EDGE and 3G with HSPA (10.2 Mbps HSDPA and 2.0 Mbps HSUPA). The GSM/EDGE networking comes in quad-band flavor and the 3G covers all the five bands available worldwide – 850/900/1700/1900/2100 MHz.

Bluetooth connectivity is version 3.0 with stereo support and there's a WirelessN-enabled Wi-Fi radio.

USB is version 2.0, with the standard microUSB port capable of charging the phones besides transferring data. We already covered the USB on-the-go functionality and we were very pleased with it – it worked much better than when we tested the N8.

A miniHDMI port rounds off the wired connectivity and there’s a miniHDMI to normal HDMI provided in the box.

Web browser is frustrating to use

Unfortunately, Symbian^3 didn’t deliver the browser overhaul that the platform needs desperately. Despite the added multi-touch and FlashLite 4.0 support, the E7 can just watch helplessly as the Android speeds away.

Update, 24.08.2011: We installed Symbian Anna, which does offer a better browser. Check out our impressions over here.

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The Symbian^3 web browser is functional but its UI needs polishing

To give you an idea of how bad the situation is, the web browser won’t let you open a new tab unless you hit a pop-up link. Entering an URL is as bad as it used to be (you enter text in a separate window), but that’s offset somewhat by the physical keyboard.

Still, the Nokia E7 browser has good page rendering and offers some nice features such as different font sizes (5 options), auto fill-in of web forms and a password manager. Double tapping on a chunk of text zooms it in on screen, but the text doesn't auto fit to the smaller viewport and you still need to scroll sideways.

The Find-on-page feature enables keyword search. The visual history is a nice bonus that can help you find a page you've visited more easily. There's also a popup blocker.

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Going landscape • Watching a Flash video at 240p

The Flash Lite 4.0 support is enough for playing flash videos, but YouTube plays only 240p videos so you might as well be using the mobile site. Also, Flash games don’t work so it seems like a good idea to use the option to switch Flash off to cut down on loading times and save some yourself some data traffic.

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Digging deeper into the settings menu

Office document editor is capable but has poor UI

The Nokia E7 comes with an Office document editor out of the box (Quickoffice). It has plenty of features and it even doubles as a file manager. The Recent files option is the fastest way to go back to some of the documents you’ve worked on lately.

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Quickoffice comes preinstalled • it works as a file manager too

Quickoffice can view and edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents. The viewers work pretty fast and they support pinch zooming.

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Viewing Office docs

Editors have plenty of features – advanced formatting, editing tables, full list of Excel functions and so on, but their menu/submenu based interface is less than user friendly and while it’s not a deal-breaker, it certainly detracts from the ease of use.

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Editing Word and Excel docs with Quickoffice

The PowerPoint editor was the worst offender here – it can’t edit when you zoom in and once you do start editing, you need several clicks just to change the text in a label.

Editing documents is generally fast enough unless you’re working on an Office 2007 doc, which slows things down to an unusable level.

As for the file managing functions of Quickoffice, it’s not better than the standard File browser and we did notice slight (but annoying) lag when scrolling.

For viewing PDF files, there’s the standard Adobe app, which works sluggishly and lacks pinch-zooming support.

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The Adobe PDF viewer

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