10 Reasons The Nokia E5 Is The Best Affordable Social Smartphone

Nowadays, it is easy to get lost in a discussion about raw power, stellar hardware specs, and the high-end smartphone market. But what many websites and analytics forget is that the vast majority of people, worldwide, want a decent mobile that can help them in their everyday life without punching a ginormous hole in their savings account. The Nokia E5 is one of the latest smartphones that falls into the affordable category, while still managing to cram enough features to appeal to the most social nutcase amongst us. Here are 10 reasons the E5 is a perfect social smartphone.

Admit it or not, the social butterfly lifestyle comes with a pre-requisite: texting, emailing, connecting, tweeting, IM’ing, posting, commenting,… and a lot of typing is required on almost every level. A decent qwerty like the one found on the E5 is a godsend for such cases, with nice tactile feedback, large keys, and even predictive text on the software side of things.

2. Facebook
We’ve already talked about the Facebook integration of contacts between the Nokia Contacts on your phone and your Facebook Friends that the E5 & C5 offer. It gets the latest status and profile pictures of the contacts and lets you always stay on top of your peeps without manually checking Facebook every few minutes. The standalone Facebook application also shows you your friends walls, images, lets you upload and tag new photos, view your timeline, comment and like your friend’s status, call or SMS them without quitting the app.

3. Contacts Homescreen
The E5 brings the improved standby screen that people fell in love with on the Nokia 5800 XM. This lets you assign 20 contacts with pictures to your homescreen, so you can easily call or message them, as well as view a log of your latest joint communications, and follow one of their RSS feeds.

4. Ovi Contacts
If your contacts are available on Ovi chat or on Google chat, you can add them to the Ovi Contacts application and connect them to the Contacts you have in your phone book. You can then easily see who is online while going through your contacts, chat with them, share your music or location with them, as well as keep on top of it all with notifications on the standby screen.

5. Nokia Messaging Chat
If Ovi Contacts isn’t enough, another application is preloaded on the E5, entitled Chat. This lets you sign in to Ovi, Google, Yahoo and Windows Live’s chat services, and communicate with your friends through IM.

6. Nokia Messaging Email
Another preloaded essential on the E5 is Nokia Messaging Email which allows you to sign in to your Gmail, Hotmail, Ovi, Yahoo… and many more email services, with multiple inboxes, HTML view, push service, folder support, and much more. With homescreen notification, this is a great email client to stay on top of all of your communications.

7. Share Online
By itself, Share Online isn’t much, but combine it with the stellar all-in-one Pixelpipe plugin or the specific Furtiv plugins, and you can upload any image, video, or audio from the E5 to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, AudioBoo, Picasa, Flickr, Blip.Tv, Vimeo, Twitpic, Twitvid… the list just goes on and on.

Image courtesy of Furtiv

8. Ovi Maps
The E5 is one of the newest Nokia devices that come with the free worldwide Ovi Maps navigation software preinstalled. With Ovi Maps, you can share your location on Facebook, send your location’s coordinate to your friends so they can meet you, or input any address where you’re meeting your social contacts and navigate to it walking or driving.

9. Hardware
You might start wondering why Hardware is on this list, but when you consider than the E5 packs a 600Mhz processor and 256MB of RAM, you see that it’s one of a limited breed of handsets who can take a beating and come back victorious: it’s fast for all tasks and doesn’t slow or bug down when many apps are open in the background. With the optimized 1200mAh battery, you’re guaranteed to still have a few battery bars left for that midnight party you were planning to attend even if you exhausted it all day. And the 5MP camera with EDoF, while not stellar, is good enough for most situations, plus the images and videos size is also small and hence fast to upload online or share via bluetooth. Add to that fact that the E5 looks nice, especially in the blue variant I’m totting, and it’s almost a royal flush in terms of hardware for the social butterfly.

10. Ovi Store
The E5 comes with Ovi Store pre-installed, letting you download more social apps like the previously mentioned Pixelpipe or Furtiv plugins, but also Nimbuzz, Fring, Socially, Gravity, Google Maps with Latitude and many more.

If those 10 reasons aren’t enough, the E5 runs on S60 3rd Edition Feature Pack 2, Nokia’s tried-and-true platform. That means that the software is mature, stable, and all applications run somehow better than on Nokia’s touchscreen S60 5th devices. Even Nokia’s homebaked apps, like Ovi Contacts, Nokia Messaging Chat and Email, are more responsive and faster.

What do you think of the E5? Have you bought one or are you considering it? Do you think it’s a viable smartphone option for a social person, amongst the slew of full QWERTYs and big touchscreens, especially given its price?