Nokia E6 Review

Since the Nokia E71 came out several years ago, I’ve been a huge fan of the Finnish company’s full qwerty handsets. They’ve continued that same legacy and after 3 years, we still see the same signature with the E6. Read our full review of the Nokia E6 below.

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Very little has actually changed on the design of the Nokia E6 when you compare it to its predecessor. The hardware specs has improved a lot but a first look at the device by an untrained eye will definitely confuse them in a lineup together with the E71 and the E72.

The handset has a pretty solid body construction, built with a combination of metal back-plating and hard polymer. The power button is found at the top end, along with the 3.5mm audio port and a compartment for a microSD card slot, for easy access.

The micro-USB port is hidden on the left side while the volume control is on the right side along with a dedicated button for voice commands and a screen-lock slider.

The Nokia E6 sports a full qwerty keypad and a touch screen allowing you to navigate using the physical D-pad and the display, depending on the need. On the first few days of use, you might get confused with navigation because you switch between the buttons on the touch panel-like uni-button of sorts, the D-pad and the screen but you’ll soon get the hang of it.

The E6 is one of the very few breed of Nokia handsets that they’d often refer to as “Touch & Type” although they didn’t really put this label on the E6, much like the E7 (don’t really know what qualifies a Nokia handset to carry the Touch & Type suffix).

The shortcut buttons (Home, Contacts, Message & Calendar) are now part of the touch panel uni-button to give it a clean, clutter-free and more polished look (I still prefer the physical buttons on the E72 though).

The solid metal back-plating gives the E6 a more solid design and construction. The 8MP camera is raised a bit, along with the dual-LED flash and speakers. This also makes the E6 a bit heavy for its size, which coud be good or bad, depending on where you’re coming from.

The Nokia E6 now comes with the new Symbian Anna, a more streamlined fork of the Symbian OS line-up. You get four scrollable homescreens you can customize with icons, shortcuts and widgets. The OS is more fluid, organized and functional compared to other previous Symbian variants. The UI works well for full touchscreen, full qwerty or a combination of both, just like the E6.

The camera on the Nokia E6 has an 8-megapixel sensor. However, it’s fixed-focused and not autofocus so half of the time, your photos will be out of focus or blurred. It’s only good when your subjects are at certain distance. Close-up shots will mostly be un-usable though. It’s also a bit lacking in color saturation.

Sample photos take with the Nokia E6. Click on images to see larger version.

The E6 can record video up to 720p. It’s decent but a bit grainy at full screen. Still, for a business phone, it’s a much welcome upgrade.

As for apps, you have the Ovi store for that and there’s practically thousands of apps available there for you to download for free or for minimal cost. One of the two Nokia E6 review units I have has Joikuspot pre-installed from the Ovi store. I remember this 3G tethering software as my most favorite app way before Android and iOS were even popular.

The Nokia E6 has pretty good specs for its class. It’s not the fastest in terms of CPU clock-speed but it does the job really well. The basic phone functions like SMS and calls are pretty easy and fast to access and use (the shortcuts on the touch panel helps). Launching apps takes a bit of time (like 3-5 seconds) but that seems to be normal for most of Nokia handsets.

Nokia E6 specs:
680MHz ARM 11 processor
2.46-inch display @ 640×480 pixels
8GB internal storage
up to 32GB microSD
HSDPA 10.2Mbps, HSUPA 2.0Mbps
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n
Bluetooth 3.0 w/ A2DP
USB On-the-go support
8MP fixed-focus w/ dual-LED flash
720p@25fps video recording
2D/3D Graphics HW Accelerator with OpenVG1.1 and OpenGL ES 2.0
FM Radio tuner
Li-Ion 1500 mAh
Symbian Anna OS

Battery life is very good. I am able to get between 3 to 4 days of normal use on a single full charge — that’s with light browsing over 3G and a little gaming (Fruit Ninja fro Ovi). Nokia phones of this form factor normally get really good battery life, compared to most other smartphones that normally do between 1 to 2 days only.

The Nokia E6 will definitely find it hard to squeeze itself into a more crowded space today, compared to a few years ago. It’s practically in the same category as the Samsung Galaxy Pro, HTC Chacha and the BlackBerry Bold 9700. Long-time Nokia loyalists will definitely love it but will surely have a hard time convincing new users considering the alternatives int he market vis-a-vis the price point.

The Nokia E6 still has its charm — that familiar full qwerty keyboard, elegant yet business-style design, great battery life and a very dependable handset.

The Nokia E6 has a suggested retail price of only Php17,820 but you can get it in some stores for as low as Php16,000.

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Avatar for Abe Olandres

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech with over 20 years of experience in the technology industry. He is one of the pioneers of blogging in the country and considered by many as the Father of Tech Blogging in the Philippines. He is also a technology consultant, a tech columnist with several national publications, resource speaker and mentor/advisor to several start-up companies.

30 Responses

  1. Avatar for Frontline Commando 2 Frontline Commando 2 says:

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  2. Avatar for benson benson says:

    We all have different things on our minds. Technical devices might work fine for Mr. A, but bad for Mr. B.
    Such is life

  3. Avatar for benson benson says:

    E6 is on my mind, no doubt- i’m getting it :)

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