The Nokia E52 comes in as a top of the line feature phone with a bold, slim exterior look. This is a phone that is set to take on the business world and come out on top because the Nokia E52 is a smartphone from Nokia which builds on the past successes of the Nokia E-series line of business phones. The Nokia E52, which was released in July of 2009, comes with a sleek looking chassis with a modern appeal and a coat of a range of colors that are fitting enough to match any business executive’s style and persona. The Nokia E52 may not boast elegant touch related features but it makes its own stand as far as design goes.
Design (4 out of 5)
Out of the box, the Nokia E52 comes in a coat of many colors which include metallic grey aluminium, golden aluminium, graphite grey and black. This Nokia E-Series smartphone has a slim build factor that measures in at 116 x 49 x 9.9 mm and weighs just 98g.
The front panel of the Nokia E52 is fitted with a TFT display that has a 16M colors capability and measures 2.4 inches in height with a resolution of 240 x 320 pixels. Above the display is a panel that houses the ear piece for regular phone calls, a sensor and the secondary video camera for video calling features.
Below the display there is the softkey panel which is the usual custom with other Nokia E-Series phones. The softkey panel houses the left and the right softkey buttons which are separated by the five-way scroll key popularly known as the the D-pad. Also on either side of the D-pad there are the four shortcut keys which serve to access the Home screen, the calendar and organizer, messaging and address book respectively. Below all that is the call accept/call make button and the call end button on either side.
Right under the softkey panel is the Standard Number Pad with the embedded alphabetic keys. There is no full QWERTY keyboard on the Nokia E52.
Turning to the right of the phone, there is not much there to see other than three buttons. The two buttons at the top that control the volume of the headphones and the external speaker and below that there is the dedicated camera function button. The left side of the Nokia E52 features a single port reserved for plugging in the microUSB cable.
Turning to the top of the phone, there is a slot for the 3.5mm standard stereo audio jack and right next to it there is the standby/power off button. The bottom of the phone has the plug for connecting the phone charger.
The back side of the phone houses the battery compartment and above that is the 3.2MP camera with the self portrait mirror and the external speaker right next to it. That’s it as far as the design of the Nokia E52 goes.
User Interface (3 out of 5)
The User Interface on the Nokia E52 is based on the classic Symbian OS 9.2, Series 60 v3.2. This means it has a simple navigation model and does not offer too much in terms of visual effects and certainly nothing that measures up to other phone models like the iPhone and top Android smartphones. The Nokia E52 does have an accelerometer sensor for auto-rotate detection and that is all as far as advanced features of the user interface go.
The home screen on the Nokia E52 is fitted with basic display features which include the clock, message alerts, battery meter, network availability, Bluetooth alert and the data connectivity type notices.
Also spread across the display is the shortcut bar which holds up to six shortcut icons which you can have customized to be able to launch your favorite applications with a single click of the D-pad center button. Below the shortcut bar is a list of alerts for organizer entries, tasks and email messages. This area also serves as the primary display for media being listened to.
Going into the menu gives you access to the standard menu grid which can also be customized to display as a list of icons. From the menu you have single or maximum of two levels to launch your application by clicking on any of the application icons.
The Nokia E52 User Interface allows for customization of themes, some of which are available on the phone while others can be downloaded.
Features (3 out of 5)
Based on the features that come with the Nokia E52 it would seem to me that this phone is geared mostly towards giving users a performance boost rather than adding the latest visuals that are in the market today.
For starters, the Nokia E52 comes with the super fast ARM 11 600 MHz processor which is one of the best processors found on Nokia phones today. There is 60MB internal memory with external memory in the form of microSD with a capacity of up to 16GB.
When it comes to data connectivity the Nokia E52 supports GPRS, EDGE, 3G HSDPA up to 10.2 Mbps, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g with UPnP & DLNA technology, Bluetooth v2.0 and microUSB. This Nokia phone also has a camera that is capable of 3.2 MP at a resolution of 2048x1536 pixels with enhanced fixed focus. The primary camera on the Nokia E52 also supports VGA Video recording at 15fps.
As for multimedia features, the Nokia E52 supports Nokia’s N-Gage gaming platform, it also comes with a Stereo FM radio with RDS. Other multimedia features include a sound recorder, a MP3/WMA/WAV/RA/AAC/M4A music player and a WMV/RV/MP4/3GP video player all which can be accessed via the external speaker or the standard 3.5 mm audio jack.
Some of the applications bundled on the Nokia E52 include a document editor for Word, Excel, PowerPoint and PDF and include support for MS Office 2007 via free update. There is also a photo editor, a full XHTML browser and Flash Lite 3.0.
Nokia has also included a GPS receiver with A-GPS support the comes with pre-installed Nokia Maps 3.0 and a digital compass.
Performance (5 out of 5)
The Nokia E52 has outstanding performance mainly attributable to its ARM 11 600 MHz processor. The OS user interface is quite responsive and there is no evidence of application hangs and freezes. The phone takes a few seconds to boot up and get a fix on the phone network. The Nokia E52 holds its strength when taking advantage of the multitasking abilities of the Symbian OS. The Nokia E52 did not record any noticeable drop in performance when running multiple apps such as music and surfing the Internet using the HTML browser.
GPS and the digital compass are quite responsive and reliable and this is a great tool to use as your motor vehicle Sat-Nav.
The sound is quite clear on the Nokia E52 when listening to the external speaker as well as the headphones. It offers great call quality even in areas where the network coverage meter is low. The battery on the Nokia E52 is quite good as it was able able to serve a couple of days with above average usage without needing a recharge. The Nokia E52 has an official talk time of 8hrs and a standby time of 672hrs. Assuming the phone is idle.
The camera on the Nokia E52 is not at all that great in that I found it hard to get the best quality photos out of the phone. The photo editor does not offer much help in improving the quality either. All in all I would say the Nokia E52 meets a great performance benchmark.
Verdict (4 out of 5)
The Nokia E52 is a phone that is worth having. It is stylish, slim enough to quietly fit in your pocket and to handle with confidence. It has a unique selection of colors to choose from and comes with a super fast processor. Though not a phone for play, with N-gage, the Nokia E52 can keep you covered through commute times. If games are not your thing then you can access your audio files, listen to Podcasts or surf the Internet or track your location with the built-in GPS features. For business users, this phone is great as you have access to all your emails, calls, and office documents. All this comes at a relatively modest price of around £180. This phone is worth every penny.