Having designed a new display, Nokia has also been forced to install a completely new font type. It seemed to me that the common bold profile is not really suitable; the problem is, however, somewhere else: the text in the middle of the status line is by few pixels higher than the functions of the context keys - a detail I mind. As for the text messages, I am sure that many users will appreciate the biggest font size available. Even though it allows for displaying four lines at the same time only, it is really clear-cut.
Although it is minor issue, I kept noticing the problem: the Menu sign is placed a bit higher than the references on the sides
Except for one detail the keypad is identical to the one of the 6230 model. The new keypad is easier to control. Even though I have never had problems with clicking the whole button, I know some users were complaining about it. Nevertheless, when easing this button on the new model I sometimes have just the same feeling as with the old 6230 model: it feels as if the button has been stuck onto the base and is coming unstuck now - all that accompanied by a typical sound.
As for the frequent asked question, whether the new cover with an independent centered button will match the old Nokia 6230, I cannot answer it yet. I do not have the old phone at my command and what's more - when we were preparing its review we did not take a picture of the cover's inside, so that we can compare it now. Anyway, Nokia could have modified the cover a bit.
The keys are made of solid plastic and are just brilliant. The middle column is twice as wide as the side columns, but it does not disturb the controlling at all.
The keys' distribution has not changed. Under the display there are two functional keys. The left one is reserved for the Go to Menu with frequently used functions. The configuration can be changed by the user. As for the right one, it allows for selecting a quick choice among 27 functions.
A piece of news is the option for assigning functions to each direction of the main button. This was not possible before, but today you can choose out of 27 functions or leave the button unused.
Proper Go to Menu • assigning functions to the different directions
The voice control is another option enabling quick selection. Unfortunately, there are only seven functions available, which are sometimes possible to further divide into several additional items. An interesting function is the sound indication of the status of the net coverage and the battery. The only way to invoke this function is by voice: you can tell what the phone's actual status is by the number of the beeps it answers with.
Voice managing setup
Instead of the green and the red receivers' symbols, there are only commas on the phone, but the keys themselves have not changed their functions. By pressing the green one you can also get to the list with the recent calls. Nokia has slightly modified the outlook of the screen, which displays the calls overview, so if you happen to miss more calls from the same caller, their number gets displayed on the same line, next to the caller.
The keys backlighting is shaded in blue and is quite poorly distributed. It is strongest under the zero (which starts the WAP browser, BTW). Then there is a break, after which all the rest of the keys get backlighted. The keypad is possible to either hand-lock, or lock automatically after a certain preset period. What's more, you have the option to set up the phone to require a safety code before unlocking the keypad.
On the left side of the phone there is a relatively poorly designed rocker key, which allows for call loudness setup. By pressing and holding its bottom part when in a stand-by mode you will activate the voice control, whereas its upper part serves as a Push to talk button. On the phone's right side is only the loud speaker slot, the invisible infrared port and - at its top - the big switch-off button combined with a ringing profiles selector. The bottom part of the phone is occupied by the Pop-Port connector and the charger outlet.
On the back side are the camera lens and the lock for removing the back cover. I have already mentioned the effort this last action requires - an unease compensated by the cover firmness. Equipped with a standard Li-Ion type battery of 850 mAh capacity the phone is said to make it through up to 300 hours in a stand-by mode or 300 minutes of calling. As you can see, the details match the parameters of the 6230 model. However we are not familiar with the phone's real performance when in everyday use. As for the charging, it is fast and is usually accomplished within an hour and a half.
The back cover would not be necessary to remove at all but for the memory card hidden under the battery. Nokia 6230i uses MMC type memory cards; a 32 MB card is delivered with the standard package. If you decide to use the phone as an MP3 player, you will have to buy a bigger capacity card.
I tried to load songs into the phone using infrared port and Bluetooth. However, in order to establish a cable connection I had to first install PC Suite. The result was an extremely slow, hence useless process. An improvement is the new USB Mass Storage function, due to which the memory card appears in the computer as another hard drive shortly after the cable connection has been established, without the necessity of special controls installation. This way however the built-in memory is not possible to access.