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Phones.com » Cell Phones » Review of the Nokia E51

The Nokia E51 is another sleek and stylish business handset from Nokia's wide range of business devices known as the E-Series. The candy-bar E51 promises a slim profile, nevertheless powerful functionality is built into the phone with no compromises.

Look, Design, Feel (/10)

The Nokia E51 obviously looks like a twin of the Nokia E50. In looks and feel, it keeps the elegance of its elder sibling. The E51 weighs a 100 grams, and is very compact at a volume of 61 cc. One of the slimmest in E-series, the E51 is just 12 mm thick, while its measurements are 114.8 mm x 46 mm. The phone scores high in the handling department, because of the solid feel and great ergonomics. A metallic rear panel definitely added to the overall feel of the business device. We still have to confess the E51 likes your fingerprints. Nokia was strategic in that they included a fine wipe cloth in the package. Sunlight legibility of the QVGA display was praiseworthy. The ambient light sensor was a dependable addition too. The E51 has a new set of controls on its tactile keypad. Nokia has labelled most of the traditional symbian keys in a new fashion. The five-way D-pad was surrounded by two softkeys, four new keys for Menu, Calendar, Contacts and Messaging; a Clear key, and the Call and End buttons. Usability of the keypad is no issue, but we missed the usual "edit" (pencil) key, whose function is now handled by the hash key. The asterisk key also provided the Bluetooth switching functionality on the E51, which could be a convenience for some. What we really loved though is actually typing out e-mail on the well-built keypad of this elegant business device.

Features (/10)

We have to say the Nokia E51 is ground up desiged to be a feature-rich package. The device is targeted toward business users of course. You can be sure the E51 packs in everything you expect from a high-end smartphone, while having some appeal for the multimedia enthusiasts. E51 boasts of a highly capable ARM 11 processor (369 MHz), 96 MBs of SDRAM, and 130 MB of internal storage. Memory can be expanded through SDHC cards currently available in up to 16 GB capacities. The phone is powered by the Symbian S60 3.1 (Feature Pack 1) UI. There's a lot of business support, with voice commands, integrated Text-to-Speech engine and the quick key access. The Nokia search application is doing a great job. There's a shortcut key on the left, providing quick access to voice recording. The good news is, Feature Pack 1 proved to be quite fast in terms of response and user-friendliness. This means the E51 is in a league of its own, ahead of the older E-series devices. Coming to the multimedia features, the Nokia E51 performs modestly with a Visual Radio, a 2 MP camera with no Flash or autofocus, a good E-series music player and the RealPlayer. We are glad however the powerful Symbian platform can offer much more with Third-party apps. Playing videos on the bright 16M color-capable display was pleasant. The phone has stereo speakers, and a 2.5 mm audio jack commonly found on most Nokia phones.

Connectivity (/10)

This is where the Nokia E51 truly shines. As a business communicator, the E51 is ready to provide you with connectivity to anything, anywhere. We really appreciate the Quadband GSM and HSDPA 850/2100 capabilities of this phone. The E51 is capable of EDGE/GPRS Class 32 and HSDPA 3.6 Mbps. On the local connectivity front, the phone is equipped with everything from Infrared to VoIP over Wi-Fi. There's IRDA, Bluetooth 2.0 A2DP, WLAN 802.11 b/g with VoIP capabilities. The phone can also function as a tethered modem with HSDPA or EDGE, and a mass storage device with USB 2.0.

Performance (/10)

Nokia have probably improved the original E50 into the better (best?) E51, so they came up with a different battery to serve the purpose. Nokia E51 uses a 1070 mAh Li-ion with 310 hours of standby and about 4.5 hours of talk time. This doesn't compare with the E50's mammoth 8-hour talk time, but remember the days of 2G are over? The newer features onboard are power-hungry enough and suck the juice out quickly. We can still expect the E51 to last a three days on calls-and-text-only basis.

Value for Money (/10)

One thing that will pursuade you to buy the E51 is it's price! The low pricetag on the E51's box doesn't mean it performs little. This device is a blow-off for those obsessed with business. If you can't afford the likes of the E71, or don't need the "pocket-heavy" features such as GPS or QWERTY keypad thrown into your face, this tiny yet heavyweight champion is for you. It knows what it does, and does it reliably indeed, without being heavy on your wallet.


+ Powerful processor and lots of memory support

+ Sleek and ergonomic design

+ Quadband GSM and HSDPA

+ Best connectivity

+ Very affordable

+ Great for business


- No GPS or QWERTY key support

- Office software bundled is little

- No USB charging

- Bad multimedia

- Side-keys are hard to press


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Style: 7.7
Technology: 7.8
Efficiency: 7.7

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