May 3, 2011

Nokia C7, The Software Talk Part 2

The Nokia C7 Software Talk Part 1 started with the operating system as a whole, touch experience, messaging, web and social connectivity. Part 2 will tackle the rest of the software side and my concluding thoughts. Click here for the Part 1 backtrack.

Music and Audio

Like the rest of the Symbian^3 devices, Nokia C7’s Audio player plays top of the line music but unlike the Nokia N7 or E7, the phone is supplied with a regular earphone which could be easily be distinguished against the crisp, clear and dip sound of an ear bud type headphone. It works fine though, the loudness is decent with the Stereo Widening and Bass Booster. Much better of you paired it with ear bud headphone.

Stereo Speakers was not that loud and it’s not the loudest among the phones that I tried. Let say my old Nokia 6233 is even louder and bass dipper. Music Player supports MP3, WMA, WAV and AAC+ files.

Music Menu is top notch, it is one among the best feature of the phone. Opening the music application unveils the music menu which lists down songs by album and artist. Scrolling through the album by artist menu implements a combination of a very smooth interface and fast album cover side swipe with added cool 3D effect. User could also access songs by genre or playlist or directly shuffle all songs on the list.

Opening the music file brings out a music player panel that has a striking huge album cover on top with regular size music controls on the bottom. I’m a huge fan of these feature, it fully utilizes the screen size making it very pleasing to look at. In this panel, you can access several options to shuffle play, repeat play by song, album or playlist, access song details, share ito everyone via FM transmitter, access equalizer and settings among others.

The Radio player was a typical among Nokia phones, lively and interactive. It has RDS which is capable of getting information via internet including time, station identification and program information. Visual radio effects make the experience enjoyable and as a norm, can only be played with a headset inserted.

There were only a few phones with FM transmitter at the moment, a cool feature that can only be enjoyed by a few. It gives users a way to share music in a fun way like when you’re in a car or when your peers were a few meters away.

Video Playback

The video player on the Nokia C7 is no less than the best in the market at the moment, it works perfectly well on every possible video codecs that exist at the moment. DivX, Xvid, WMV, H.264, H.263, RV, 3GPP, MP4 files etc, the phone plays them all flawlessly because its platform embedded unlike other operating system that needs a third application software to do so which could result to hangs, video to audio discrepancies among other problems. A fast processor from other competing phones cannot resolve the issue because it’s a compatibility issue particularly on Android phones.

Unlike the music menu, there were no big improvements seen on the video menu, no side swipe mechanism, 3D effects whatsoever, only additional shortcut widgets for Ovi Stores video clips and youTube. The last video watch was also a welcome addition except that it won’t continue on the last clip you’ve watched but instead play the video from the start. Thought video forward and playback is a breeze handling skips in an instant, thanks to the fast processor on board, I still prefer the automatic playback.

The Web TV is a prominent feature in the entertainment realm, it features links and personalized page to famous video sites such as CNN, National Geographic, E Online and Paramount Movie Teasers. More applications can be downloaded and installed in Ovi Store. There is no such thing as boring times with the phone, it just gives you unlimited video entertainment.

Camera and Video Recorder

One of the biggest asset of the phone compared to the rest of its competitors in the mid-range market is its camera capability, it has an 8MP optics with 3264 x 2448 pixels, fixed focus EDoF and dual LED flash, wide angle lens, geo-tagging and face detection. It is no less than the best camera specs to have ever been incorporated to a mobilephone in aforementioned market bracket.

The resulting images, quite pleasing photographs, the wide angle lens works covers more view than the usual, the higher pixel density could produce bigger image size, fixed focus EDoF gives quick snap shoot, dual LED flash illuminates dark areas and provides light when taking videos in the dark. Some disadvantage of the camera specs, EDof cannot take macro (close) shoots and the image comes out less colorful.

The phone also have editing features, users can add effects and tones that can be readily access. Other add-on includes the Ovi’s Panorama Mode and an option to add tags on the photo. Direct link to Share Online is still visible as well as an option to print directly to a kiosk.

Video capability of the phone is the front runner among mobile phones at the moment. It supports 720p HD quality video with 25 frames per second unlike any other phone in the market to date. The video has a fast frame rate with auto adjust focus depending on the subjects distance. I also love the way it rendered color saturation and auto tuning of contrast and brightness depending on areas condition.

The video editing feature of the phone is perfectly timely especially now that video sharing sites such as youTube is very popular. Users will now be able to make mini movies on the go and will encourage creativity in coming up with the best impromptu videos to show to their friends and to the world. For bloggers like me, this is a perfect application of use since interesting stories and video features cannot sometimes wait to be shared or showed. Though the options of the video are limited at the moment but it’s a good start and must be further develop.

Photo and Video Browser has its own folder in the gallery menu. This makes browsing of photos and videos easy and fast. Photo viewing is very delightful with a smooth image transition and pinch to zoom. Missing are the 3D effects which can easily be achieve with updates.


The Nokia C7 has no less than the Broadcom BCM2727 GPU a VideoCore III Multimedia Engine with dedicated 3D Graphics HW Accelerator with making the phone a powerful gaming device. The phone has two FREE full games in tow, Ovi Maps Challenge and Climate Mission, both fun and addicting games created exclusively for Nokia. There were tons of free games on Ovi Store though, LITE versions of the graphic-rich Need for Speed Shift of Galaxy on Fire, both games handled impressively well, the widely famous Angry Birds among others. No lags, no broken graphics, initial fast response times, whatsoever, just smooth sailing fun all throughout.

Ovi Maps Challenge

Climate Mission

Nokia Services

This is why Nokia is miles above from the rest of the competition, it has the following services that only other manufacturers can dream of. The potent combination of the following makes Nokia a stand out since these services were had become an integral part of smart mobility.

Ovi Maps

The Nokia C7 is fully equip with no less than a Free full map and navigation software with walk and drive guiding system, a service that you need to buy with a renewable license per year if you’re using phones from others manufacturer’s. Who wouldn’t want an application that would guide you to your destination wherever you may be in the world.

Ovi Store

Nokia announced recently that the Ovi Store have now reach 5million downloads a day of its more 40thousand active applications, huge numbers from a humble start roughly two years ago. No doubt to its success since the store had evolved into a user friendly, informative and intelligent source of mobilephone applications. This is where users get to access everything they need to customized there phone to taste. Download everything you need from Business, Entertainment, Music, News and Info, Photo and video, Reference, Social Networks, Sports and Utilities applications, Games from the top developers, Audio and Videos and ringtones, themes and wallpapers to further personalize you phone.

What I like most about the store was its ability to identify the applications that you might want at a given time or place. The unlimited access also to 40thousand applications and counting makes daily discovery exciting.

Ovi Mail

There were many existing eMail services that exist at the moment, Ovi Mail offers a distinct service that is fully customized to any Nokia email capable phones. What I like best on this service that leads me to give up Yahoo and Gmail, I’m SPAM less! Maybe spammers have not found out a way yet to crack Ovi Mail but at least I don’t have to worry about it at the moment. It also implies that

Ovi Contacts

This unique service of Nokia allows you to access your web sync contacts in any pc anywhere you are in the world. Let say you left your phone at home or lost it somewhere else and want to do a very important call and you’re not carrying with your laptop where you back up your phone contents including phonebook, with Ovi Contacts, all you need is any pc with internet connectivity and you’re all set. Syncing your current phone contacts to the service is as easy as ABC.

Concluding Thoughts

The Nokia C7 is the fiercest competitor in the mid-range market, it’s got the looks, the charm and the right elements that makes it a a runaway winner. For instance if you are looking for the most fashionable, only the Nokia C7 gives you the finesse of true style and form. If you are looking for the widest and most vibrant screen, Nokia C7 fits. If you’re looking for a decent camera, Nokia C7 gives you and 8MP with dual LED flash. If you’re looking for a total entertainment package, the phone could satisfy all your cravings playing the most important video or music codec’s. If you’re looking for a great touchscreen device, the phone gives you a decent experience. If you need the best map and navigation, the phone has the best via Ovi Maps, etc.

In other words, the phone could answer everything you need in a modern touchscreen device at the same time you get enjoy top notch add on services that only Nokia could deliver, what can a buyer needs more? Critics complains about the phones user interface being primitive against iPhone or Android but there missing the advancements made by Symbian in this front and how Nokia compensate its shortcoming by providing more on other aspects. In fact, the upcoming Symbian Ana software will address this so its a win-win situation for buyers. Besides, a mobilephone doesn’t only evolved on operating system alone, every component is very important.

Looking back at the whole picture, the Nokia C7 has a very good hardware, very capable software and a formidable support system. It is the best value midrange phone in the market, no more, no less!


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