Manhattan in a Blur – Nokia E75 Review

About 2 weeks ago, I went on a brief 3 night trip to New York, specifically, Manhattan for a work related project.  So, in terms of our GotPassport family, Aye was in Chiang Mai, little Emma in Houston, and I was in New York.  That’s quite a conference call!

This is my second trial phone from Nokia’s WOMWorld, so I took this as an opportunity to test the Nokia E75 business class phone, and only use the phone’s camera to document the weekend trip.  All pics – except that of the phone itself – were taken on the phone’s automatic setting.  My first trial phone was the Nokia 5800 Xpress Music, which was a 3.2″ touchscreen device.  Refer to my mini review of the 5800, and let’s see how the E75 fared by comparison.

Keep in mind that I’m judging this phone on how it handled the rigors of travel:

Likes:

  • Solid, attractive, well constructed phone.
  • It was so nice to have buttons when dialing numbers & texting – and making calling card calls.  Dialing account numbers and PINs when making an international call was easy with this phone.  A touchscreen would have driven me crazy…
  • Microsoft Exchange was excellent! – always synced with email, contacts, and calendar.  I noticed the email was more robust than the 5800, as I had all subfolders synced, not just the inbox.  Still can’t get filtered gmail, but only what is in the INbox.
  • Very nicely designed wired headset, good clarity, and volume control.  I recommend using it in noisy environments as I noticed the volume level paired with regular headphones was not loud enough on the plane.
  • I loaded up the included 4 GB card with music, as well as downloaded podcasts (love podcast feature, great for killing time at the gate or on plane).
  • The screen will still rotate (even home screen) when the phone is rotated, even with qwerty keyboard IN.  Neat.

Dislikes:

  • Probably a personal preference, but I did not like the qwerty keyboard’s smooth flat surface.  I had to pay too much attention looking at the keyboard while texting.
  • The speaker (on both normal and loudspeaker modes) was horrendous.  Callers were unintelligible, and I had to use the headset to have a decent conversation.  I’m hoping that was an anomaly, an issue specific to this phone.
  • Disappointed by the lack of free voice navigation with OVI maps offered on other models.  I miss the surfer dude navi voice!  I believe voice + navi are paid features on E75.
  • Photos were hit and miss at best.  See samples below.

Nokia E75 w/ slide out qwerty keybd

A few highlights of my ever-so-brief trip:

La Guardia's Welcome Sign

As you can see, even with decent lighting, the shot came out blurred.  On a 2.4″ screen + 42 year old eyes, I could not tell that it was blurred on the phone’s screen.

 

Heavy snow on first day

Three group members missed the meeting due to canceled flights. My flight from Houston was fortunate to make it with little delay.  As a Texan, it was great to see SNOW!

That's New York!

Took this shot from the cab. Not bad considering I did not zoom in.

NYPD going nowhere fast

Visit to Ground Zero

Mock-up of New Tower

Times Square in late afternoon

Pleasantly surprised by how well this shot turned out. Not too pleasant about the extreme close up though. Self portrait mirror on phone helped.

hot dog cart

A bit disappointed that all my shots of the ubiquitous street vendors came out blurred.  My first bite of the big apple was a wonderful hot sausage. This chicken ka-bob was a bit dry, perhaps sat on the grill too long.  I still ate it though!

Overall, I had a nice trip.  Made new friends in my profession, had a half-day to walk around Manhattan, take in a few sights, and absorbed the flavor of NYC as much as I could.  My only regret was eating too much of the ‘meeting food’ when I should have gone outside for more street food!

As for the E75, I liked the form factor and email capabilities, but I felt the 5800 was a better travel phone for me (better apps-like desk clock & flash light, games; speakerphone, & larger screen for web surfing).  The 5800 also took more consistent pictures, in my brief experience.

 

 

 

  5 comments for “Manhattan in a Blur – Nokia E75 Review

  1. March 10, 2010 at 16:10

    Glad to see you enjoyed New York, I can’t wait to visit there especially for the food and street vendors. As for your conference call have you had any luck finding a video service that allows for multi-video chat. Skype only works with two for video, but multiple on audio.

  2. drgotpassport
    March 11, 2010 at 03:22

    Hey CA,
    No, haven’t looked into other video conferencing tools, and you’re right skype is audio only for more than 2 callers. Probably a bandwidth issue, not sure.
    yes, check out the NY street vendors, they have more than just hot dogs and pretzels- you can find gyros, ka-bobs, and more. Plan to spend between 42.50-$5.00 per item… not too bad for NYC.

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