Dual SIM based mobile phones have been in the market for quite a while now. First introduced in Chinese or grey markets, these handsets rose to prominence in India gradually especially since these phones offer benefits of two SIMs without compromising the features.
Many organised players have also entered this market with their variants but the devices that Nokia offered under the dual SIM range are gaining popularity owing to its ‘global repute’.
In focus here is the latest touch and type input based dual SIM phone — the Nokia C2-03.
The C2-03 has Nokia’s signature look – the device is made up of plastic but at the back of the display, there is a metal plate to protect it from damage. The edges of the phone have all been rounded to make it feel more comfortable to hold and talk for longer hours as well.
The device sure is lightweight considering it is a slider phone and even while open the slider stays compact and within the palm of the users for easy operation.
The slider quality of the C2-03 is good but makes a loud clunk noise while opening and closing. In the longer run the slider is expected to remain good thanks to the metal rails that have been used in the phone.
The Carbon graphite colour finish of the phone is well complemented by the metallic finish accents at the base, which adds a touch of style to it as well. The glossy band in between the two matte finish layers of the device makes it look good and gives the device an expensive look too.
Overall from the colour schemes, the C2-03 looks great be it in graphite black or white and gold. The flush look of the display with minimalistic set of buttons also enhances the appearance of the device. There are only call connect and disconnect buttons on the front that are also embedded right at the display’s level to make it neat.
###LONGSUBSTART###Display and keypad
It has a big 2.6 inch TFT- LCD display with a QVGA resolution of 240 x 320 pixels. The display reproduces bright and quite colourful images. However, the display features a resistive touch based input system that surely is good but in this era of capacitive touchscreen, it feels a little bit from the house of Flintstones. Overall, the display is not the sweetest ones around and the low pixel density of just 154 PPI shows when you zoom in to pictures for details.
The Keypad of the Nokia C2-03 is great which offers good comfortable typing for the users with its horizontally well spaced out keys and perfect key pitch combination. But, vertically the keys have been a little cramped and thus not suitable for fat fingers. The slide out keypad has a standard 12 key layout with glossy finish given to the keypad as well for good looking.
As we mentioned earlier as well, the device is made up of complete plastic but still it showcases that the Nokia C2-03 has a good build quality that promises that it will last longer. The device itself is sturdy enough to handle quite a few drops and falls and will still be able to survive. We are not sure what affect will a fall have if it falls while its slider open, but surely it will cause some bumps and bruises and maybe some deeper impacts also.
The device is designed to resist dust and for Indian conditions. We saw some scratches on the metal plate at the back of the display which are caused by the dust and dirt scratching against the metal while opening and closing of the slider. In the longer run, it will only go bad but thanks to the metal plate it will not cause any damage to the internals of the Nokia C2-03.
The Nokia C2-03 is a dual SIM based feature phone that allows this phone to be connected to two cellular networks or two different numbers at any given time, but it does not feature a dual SIM standby feature that allows the other SIM to be active while you receive a call on the first. Hopefully, Nokia will provide a solution to this very soon.
The hot swap feature of the Nokia C2-03 makes up for the loss to a great extent, allowing users to change SIMs while using the phone.
The signal quality of this phone is normal and it works flawlessly in most places. The call sound quality both for the speaker and the receiver are good without any distortion or voice quality loss. The microphone positioning of the phone is towards the bottom of the phone. It allows the Nokia C2-03 to catch minimal ambience noise as well thereby providing a basic level of noise isolation.
Ear piece volume, however, could have been a little better than what it is as receiving a call in noisier environments is a pain and you have to really dig the phone in your ear to be able to understand what the other person is saying.
###LONGSUBSTART###S 40 interface and Multimedia
The Nokia C2-03 gets the refreshed touch oriented S40 operating system as its base operating system. The icons and the look and feel of the user interface seems inspired by Symbian Anna and look good as well.
The icons are neatly rendered offering great level of clarity and detail. The swipe feature of the Nokia C2-03 allows users to get through the menu faster. Overall the UI is good and stable but feels a little slow for a touch oriented device. But then again Nokia has done a superb integration on hardware and software it rarely misses out to fulfill any command by the user.
On multimedia front, the Nokia C2-03 impresses with offerings like multi format audio player capable of playing all knows compressed formats including AAC, AAC+, eAAC+, MP3, WMA, AMR-NB. Along with that, the FM radio is a wonderful inclusion that performs flawlessly delivering stereo radio all around the city.
The camera quality of the phone is on a lower side with a 2 megapixel full focus camera that misses out on details. A lacking flash also pulls it down as low light photography is strictly no on this. The video recording with a Qicf resolution at 15 FPS as of today is unacceptable but that is what you get with the Nokia C2-03
One of the biggest advantages of the Nokia C2-03 is its big battery life that has impressed us to the maximum.
The Nokia C2-03 has the same BL 5C battery pack that was in news some years back due to wrong reasons, but the problem has been rectified now and the device performs exceptionally well with this battery. The device offers a decent 5-6 hours of talk time along with additional time being spent on music listening too. Overall the Nokia C2-03 gives a 2-3 days of device usage time with moderate usage with between charges.
The Nokia C2-03 is a nice innovative offering full of features and functionalities but with its own set of flaws as well. But overall it makes as a great communication device with good battery backup. With a price tag of Rs 4,900 the C2-03 is surely not cheap or pocket friendly but the fun of touch and type along with dual Sim is worth the price being asked for.