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Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Review - Part 1

26th January 2009

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 Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Review Introduction

The Nokia 5800 XpressMusic is Nokia's first current generation touchscreen phone, featuring a 3.2" display, 3.5G data, WiFi, GPS, a TV out port and a built-in accelerometer.

It's a little on the expensive side in the UK at the moment, retailing at around £350 for a SIM-free version, but prices should soon head down to European levels of about €330 (£260), and the 5800 XpressMusic is free on most decent contracts.

Is it any good? Well, yes. There's a lot to like about the 5800, but it does have a few flaws.

Nokia 5800 XpressMusic: Out of the box

The first thing that you will notice with the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic is just how much is fitted into the relatively small box. If you're interesting in unboxing pictures, then we have a full set here: Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Unboxing.

 Nokia 5800 XpressMusic box contents

Unlike some cheaper phones in the Nokia lineup, the 5800 XpressMusic includes everything you might need, including a carry case, 8 GB memory card, spare stylus, USB cable, TV out cable, wired headset and a lanyard. There's a small stand in the carry case bag, which enables the 5800 to be used easily on a desk.

 Nokia 5800 XpressMusic It's a fairly plain looking device, despite some attempts at styling. It doesn't look as sexy as the iPhone, but on the other hand it does look like a Nokia and it's quite a pleasant, understated design.

The 3.2" 640 x 360 pixel screen is very crisp and clear when used indoors. Outside it does struggle a little with daylight conditions. It's a touch-sensitive panel which can be used either with the supplied stylus (which slides neatly into the back of the phone), or by using a finger.

Haptic feedback is used in the display - so when you click something, the phone vibrates. This seems like a good idea on paper, but in practice it is a bit annoying. Strangely, the screen vibrates slightly when you drag the stylus across it. Initially, we thought that there was grit or dirt on the display until we realised that it was just the screen vibrating slightly.

It's a remarkably compact device - the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic is almost the same size as a normal mobile phone, we have compared it here with the Nokia N73.

The 5800 is about 20% lighter than the iPhone and it has a 20% smaller "footprint" too. Because it's no larger than a typical N-series phone, the Nokia 5800 should fit easily into a pocket or bag. The 3.2" display on the 5800 is smaller than the 3.5" panel on the Apple iPhone, but the 5800 has a much higher resolution.

While it lacks the "wow factor" of some other rival handsets, our first impressions of the 5800 were favourable.

 

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