Nokia X2-01 review: Loads of attitude

GSMArena team, 2 February 2011.
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Tags: Nokia, S40

Unboxing, design and construction

The Nokia X2-01 comes in a plain cardboard box. Other than the phone itself, you’ll get the typical basic accessories: a charger and the good old one-piece handsfree that ends on a 3.5mm audio jack. There is no USB cable or microSD card enclosed in an attempt to keep the price down.

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The Nokia X2-01 retail package

The Nokia X2-01 is only the second QWERTY messenger feature phone by Nokia after the C3. The first thing to note is an obvious return to the XpressMusic styling. It feels the phone could’ve been more compact – though we wouldn’t call it too big or cumbersome. The QWERTY messenger stands at 119.4 x 59.8 x 14.3 mm. The all-plastic handset weighs 113 grams and it is perfectly balanced for both single and two-handed use.

Although the X2-01 could’ve been slimmer, it seems designed to perfectly fit in your hand. The curved back (taking after the Sony Ericsson’s human curvature as seen in the Aspen) feels nice and secure in hand even though the plastic surface doesn’t allow a good enough grip.

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Nokia X2-01

The four-row keyboard and the 2.4" landscape QVGA display take up almost the entire front of the handset. The screen has decent contrast and commendable sunlight legibility.

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X2-01’s display

A spacious navigation deck provides plenty of room for controls arranged around a trademark D-pad. At the outer ends, the Call and End knobs share a flatbed with the soft keys.

In between are the dedicated Music and the Messaging key, which can be assigned a different function each.

All controls are decently sized and quite comfortable to use.

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The QWERTY keyboard and navigation deck

The four-row QWERTY keypad has well defined and reasonably sized keys to rival the excellent typing skills of the E series smartphones. The nicely convex keys are tactile and big enough. The backlighting is impressively sharp and solid – better than on the E71 and the same as on the C3.

You can find various connectivity ports and slots on the X2-01. The microSD slot and the microUSB port are covered by a common rubber lid on the phone’s left side. The two apertures are harder to access but perhaps better protected against dust and moisture.

The exposed 3.5mm audio jack and the charger plug are up top. There is no volume rocker, nor a dedicated camera key.

In honesty though, the camera resolution should be the first thing to worry about. Usually the phones we review use VGA cameras as secondary imaging devices.

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Well-connected: microUSB port, card slot and 3.5 mm audio jack

Rearside are the massive hole of the miserable VGA camera lens and the loudspeaker grill.

Under the back cover lies a 1020 mAh battery that can easily give you more than three days of use considering there’s nothing much to drain power.

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The camera lens and loudspeaker grill at the back • the battery and the SIM bed under the rear cover

The X2-01 price tag is a good enough excuse for the missing functionality but the good thing is there’s been no compromise with the build quality. We can’t complain with ergonomics either – navigation and typing are excellent. There’s a side-mounted memory card slot and a 3.5 mm audio jack – not bad at all for an entry level phone. The good screen sunlight legibility and the great keyboard backlighting are not to be underrated either.

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Nokia X2-01 held in hand

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