Nokia C5-03 review

Reviews Editor 16:57, 9 Feb 2011

We review the Nokia C5-03, an S60 device that is yet to see the magic wand of Symbian^3 touch it

Small and light, Wi-Fi, Reasonably good specs
Resistive touchscreen, Symbian OS is outdated, Not much internal storage
Not a bad handset, just a long way behind the times

We review the Nokia C5-03, an S60 device that is yet to see the magic wand of Symbian^3 touch it

Nokia has a range of operating system flavours in its grasp at the moment, with touch versions of S40 and S60 doing the rounds as well as the shiny and new ^3. They all share a similar look and feel that is distinctively Symbian, distinctively Nokia. Add in Nokia’s rather odd naming system for handsets these days, and we wouldn’t be surprised if many end users aren’t a mite confused.

So, let’s state at the outset that the Nokia C5-03 is not related to the Nokia C5. The C5 is a candybar handset we reviewed back in June last year. The C5-03 runs S60 5th edition – the touch screened version, and is an all-screen, small format handset.

We’ve never really been fans of this particular Operating System – having commented before that it feels like non touch S60 with touch bolted on, rather than an OS developed for touch from the bottom up, and we stick with that view here although there do seem to have been some tweaks taking away single and double tap confusion.

The Nokia C5-03 packs a fairly good range of specifications. HSDPA runs to 10.2Mbps download and 2Mbps upload. There is Wi-Fi and A-GPS. Ovi Maps delivers free turn by turn navigation. There’s 40MB of internal memory and a microSD card slot on the right side under backplate containing a 2GB card. You can hotswap cards, but the backplate is quite flimsy and you’ll need to take care not to snap it.

There is a 5-megapixel camera with no flash so taking shots indoors in dull conditions is a bit of a challenge. Video is limited to 640x352 pixels.

It’s not a disastrous set of specifications for a handset at this price. But niggling away every time we say that is the fact that there are some pretty good Android handsets to be had that will give you change from that price, such as the Samsung Galaxy Europa (around £130 as we write), or the Orange San Francisco (£99 on prepay). And if you take the Android route you get so much that the Nokia C5-03 can’t provide in the way of third party apps.

Still, let’s get on with looking at the Nokia C5-03. This is a very pocket friendly phone measuring 105.8x51x13.8mm and it does a limbo well under the 100g bar by weighing in at 93g. The backplate may be a tad flimsy, but the remainder of the chassis is solid – it didn’t twist and flex in our hands as we applied pressure.


Typical Price From fre on contract
UK Launch October 2010
Network T-Mobile, Vodafone
Frequency Quadband
Phone Style Touchscreen candybar
Thickness 13.8mm
Length 105.8mm
Width 51mm
Weight 93g
Built-in Memory 40MB
Additional Memory microSD card up to 16GB
High-speed Data HSDPA
Connectivity Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
Screen Size 360x640 pixels, 3.2-inches
Screen Colours 16 million
Camera Yes
Designer Lens No
Camera Resolution 5-megapixel
Zoom No
Flash No
Video Resolution VGA@15fps
Ringtones Yes
Music Player Yes
Music Formats MP3/WAV/еAAC+/WMA
Radio Yes
Speaker Yes
Video Calling No
Internet Yes
Browser WAP 2.0/xHTML, HTML, RSS feeds
Games Yes

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