Nokia E65 review: Business beauty

Ivo Mareček, 23 April 2007.

Always on the move

Many Symbian users will have difficulties imaging a main display without references to favorite programs or overview of tasks, or main events from the calendar. References to functions and programs can be modified from the settings, just like functions assigned to the two context keys beneath the display. Beneath the icons there is a dynamic task list.

Besides missed calls, received messages, oncoming events in the calendar, the number of pending tasks, and running music files, Nokia E65 can also alert you of newly received email messages or SIM card available services. The active mode could even include a list of the last items of a given type. There is also a useful Wi-Fi indication bar; if clicked on, the system starts to automatically check interface for available Wi-Fi networks.

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Settings • active stand-by mode • searching for WLAN  

The active stand-by mode preferences are configurable from the Settings menu. Along with the above mentioned folder in the active mode here you can also set which modules should or should not appear on the main display so that space is best made use of. For the moment it seems that it is only possible to work with modules delivered together with the OS. Nonetheless, we expect that user-configuration of the stand-by display through third party applications will be available in near future.

Menu is visualized in two standard ways: 3 x 4 icons or as a 6-item list. Menus are cyclic, that is, they do not finish at the display end, but roll back to the next item in line or column. You could also move by using shortcut keys, where key location on the keypad corresponds to icon location in the matrix or in the list.

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The menu in a matrix format • as a list • user-configurable application

Preset tools are ordered in thematic folders, while newly installed programs are organized in a folder called „Installations“. Each item can be picked up and moved somewhere else, into a different folder or be renamed. If an item is not part of the system, it could even be deleted.

It works everywhere

According to the legends on the retail package Nokia E65 distributed on the market is quad-band, that is, it can be used in all GSM networks supporting 850/900/1800/1900 MHz bands. You should also be able to communicate in the 3G networks WCDMA 2100 or via VoIP (Internet).

Call quality is standard, even though in particular moments it would not have been bad if volume levels both of earphones and speaker had been higher. On the other hand, there were also moments when the opposite part was excessively loud. Apparently, the reason for such a difference stays with the opposite side, not with Nokia E65 itself. The phone, however, features another rather unusual problem: constant peeping in the earphone, which remains present no matter whether you call or not, whether the display is activated or not, etc. It is not a big deal, but yet it deteriorates the entire impression of the phone. It might quite well be a defect in a tester model.

If you do not want or cannot hold in hand the Nokia E65 when calling, employ the single-earphone handsfree from the retail package. Music from a single earphone? Forget about it: first you will be considered technologic barbarians; and second: the sound quality reproduced by the earphone serves for nothing more but calls.

We guess our reference to 3G networks evoke notion of video calls in many of you. Since Nokia E65 lacks a front cover camera for transmitting caller images, however, the only applicable option here is one-way video calls, that is, Nokia E65 can receive the video of the other party, but can not send video.

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Call settings • automatic SMS • image in a video call • VoIP can get automatically deactivated

It is possible to silence the ringtone of incoming calls, reject calls by sending the caller a preset excusing SMS, or accept them and start to record the conversation. Unfortunately, Nokia has not learned its lesson… the duration of the voice recorder has not been extended and continues to be a mere 1 minute.

Received, missed, and dialed calls are stored in independent folders inside the Call register. Information about calls’ date and time is available too. In case that you have made more than one call to the same number or received more than one call from identical number, these only appear once with the date and the time of the last try. From the Call register settings you could also select storing period for all registered events or make ongoing call duration become visible on the display.

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Call register • last calls • call duration • data register

Straight from the Call register you can make a call, send a SMS or a MMS, or save a number into the phonebook. The register also indexes call duration and transferred data. In the latter case, however, it is not enough to simply press the green key from the stand-by; applications are run from the main menu. This way you are provided access to a detailed overview of what exactly has been done with the phone: single (and repeated) calls and data connections. The Call register can be organized by connection type or even by a specific phone number.

Millions of contacts

The phonebook uses shared memory, which means it can fit in an unlimited number of contacts and perhaps even an infinite amount of phone numbers for each contact. Along with first and last name each entry can also contain: company, position, nickname, foot-note, mobile numbers, land numbers, video call numbers, Internet numbers, fax numbers, pagers, Push-to-talk addresses, emails, web sites, notes, street addresses, and birth date. Each entry can be assigned an infinite amount of numbers, 50 for example.

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Editing a contact • phonebook menu • details • label modification

The phonebook is accessed from the menu through a shortcut from the stand-by display, or via the new key mentioned earlier, located top right from the main four-way control key. Searching is performed by gradually typing the first letters of the respective name. Entered letters are compared to the initials of both first and last names no matter which one of them is set as primary.

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Voice dialing speaker: settings

All names in the phonebook can be voice-dialed. It is not necessary that you record a name tag of your own as Nokia E65 recognizes any voice. The phone presents two preset speakers: Martin and Ellen. When you press the respective key and pronounce the name of the person you are to call, the phone first visualizes them, then reads out their name with an automatic voice, and finally dials the number assigned as default. Shortcut keys to particular numbers in the phonebook are user-configurable too.