Nokia C3-01 Touch and Type review: The missing link

The missing link

GSMArena team, 22 December 2010.

A familiar phonebook

The phonebook of the Nokia C3-01 will store about 2000 contacts depending on the fields you use, which isn’t as good as unlimited storage but should do for 99% of the users out there. You can set the phonebook to display contacts from the phone memory, SIM memory or both.

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The phonebook can be searched by gradual typing

Adding a contact is simple and straightforward – the phone asks for number, first and last name and that’s it. When you need to add other details you can always go back and edit the contact.

Each contact can be assigned a variety of fields but the phone numbers are limited to 5. First names are separated from last names, eliminating problems, which may occur with synchronization. You can assign ringtones to each contact.

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Some of the available fields when editing a contact

Contacts display as a list of names with thumbs. There’s kinetic scrolling but isn’t nearly as fluid as on some of the more recent S60 touch phones. When a contact is selected shortcuts are available to make a call, send text, view conversations, etc. You can view the contact’s details or add new ones too. Tapping and holding on a contact reveals extra options such as Edit, Delete, Move or Copy.


The reception on the Nokia C3-01 was consistently good and in-call sound was crisp and clear. The lack of smart dialing was not surprising for an S40 device. There’s no voice dialing either, nor the Voice Clarity sound enhancement feature many other S40 phones have.

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Calling Dexter on Nokia C3-01

We carried out our traditional loudspeaker test to find out the Nokia C3-01 is a Good performer. You can find more details about our test, as well as the results of all other tested handsets here..

Speakerphone testVoice, dBPink noise/ Music, dBRinging phone, dBOverall score
Apple iPhone 465.1 66.260.3Below Average
Nokia C568.565.673.5Average
Nokia 5530 XpressMusic70.669.775.7Good
Nokia X3-0275.166.675.7Good
Nokia C3-0173.966.677.7Good
LG KM570 Cookie Gig75.169.582.7Very Good
Nokia 6700 slide75.5 65.882.7Very Good
Nokia X280.275.784.7Excellent

Good messaging

The messaging department is certainly up to the task. The Nokia C3-01 is capable of handling all the common message types including SMS, MMS, as well as flash and audio messages and there’s easy email setup, too.

The keyboard on the C3-01 is up to the task and will please the heavy texters out there. This time Nokia chose the classic layout, so you want need extra time to adjust. Conversations view mode is here too (that’s the threaded message feature) and in fact Conversations replaces the regular Inbox.

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Nokia C3-01 messaging app

The editor is well organized and you won’t spend too much time finding your way around. Nokia has added four new virtual controls due to the lack of D-pad – two arrow keys, letter case switch and symbols. Of course you can tap to move the cursor wherever you want, but you’ll still need those two arrows for precise positioning. The symbol and letter case features are also available from the numpad, so there is no real need of them on the screen.

When composing the message there’s a character counter and message part counter available and when you’re done you pick the recipient from the contacts list, the recently used numbers, the call log or contact groups. You can have a favorite contact too (just one).

And of course, you can enter the number manually if it’s not on any of those lists.

The email client does pretty well to meet most user needs. It works with POP3, SMTP, and IMAP4 protocols and supports multiple email accounts. The email client supports SSL, which enables it to handle a Gmail account for example.

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The email client is pretty good

Setting up the email client was extremely easy. It just required an email address and entering and confirming the password – the Nokia C3-01 took care of the rest.

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