Nokia 603 Review



Here is the FoneArena Review of the Nokia 603. It was announced last October and went on sale in India in December 2011. The Nokia 603 was introduced instead of Nokia 600 that was announced at an event in Hong Kong in August along with the other NFC-enabled 1GHz phones, Nokia 700 and 701. It comes with Nokia Belle OS on-board, with the latest Nokia Belle FP1 update that started rolling out last week, it is much faster and has lot of new features. Let’s get into the complete review.

Box Contents

  • Nokia AC-10 MicroUSB Charger
  • Nokia Connectivity Cable CA-179
  • Nokia Stereo Headset WH-207
  • User Guide

Nokia 603 Specifications

  • 3.5-inch (360×640 Pixels) TFT ClearBlack Capacitive Touch screen Display
  • 1GHz processor
  • 5 MP full focus camera with 720p HD video recording at 30 fps
  • 12.7mm thick and weighs 109.6g
  • 512 MB RAM, 2 GB user memory that is expandable up to 32GB with Micro SD
  • 3G (HSDPA 14.4 Mbps; HSUPA 5.76 Mbps), Bluetooth 3.0, WiFi 802.11b/g/n, NFC Support
  • 1300 mAh battery

Hardware

The 3.5-inch ClearBlack Display is bright and the content is clearly visible even under bright sunlight. The size of the phone is perfect, that is easy is hold for operating the phone using single hand.


There are three hardware buttons for calls, menu and end/power off below the display.


The ear piece is at the top with Nokia branding below that.


The Camera key is at the left, which is hard to press since it is very small.

The Volume rocker is at the top left.


The lock/unlock key, 3.5mm headphone jack and Micro USB port are at the top.


There is a 5MP camera at the back without flash. The back is smooth with Nokia branding in the middle.


The speaker grill is at the bottom with Nokia 603 branding below that.


The Phone is sleek at just 12.7mm.


The back cover is tough to open, since there is no provision to pull it out easily. When you open the back cover, you can see the 1300 mAh battery. The Micro SIM card slot is at the top and the MicroSD card is on the right side. There are NFC points above the camera that gets connected to the back cover. You can also see the NFC branding on the back cover.

Camera

The phone has 5MP Full Focus camera without flash. The camera quality is decent in daylight. You can just pinch or expand to change the image capture size from 5MP (4:3 aspect ratio) or 3MP (16:9 aspect ratio). There are different modes including Automatic, Custom, Portrait, Landscape, Night and Night Portrait. It also has Face detection, Self-time, exposure and you can also change the color tones. There are similar to the other Symbian phones.

Here are some camera samples for you to check out.

It is also capable of recording videos at 720p video resolution at 30 fps, and the features in the video cam settings are similar to the image settings. There is low light mode that adjusts the light accordingly while recording a video indoor in low light and option for video stabilization in the settings.

Here is the 720p HD video sample

Software

The latest Belle OS is fast, and with the FP1 update the phone is even faster. The Home screen is simple that lets you add widgets, with the FP1, there are 20 more widgets for you to add to the home screen. You can add 6 Home screens which was 3 in Anna OS.

You can press the hold the screen to add a widget, shortcut or change a wallpaper, you can also change it from the home screen menu which also lets you add another home screen.

The Menu has a list of apps, which you can arrange according to your choice manually or in alphabetical order. You can also view the apps in list view and create and new folder to move the apps in them.

The Multitasking view is better in the latest update, which eliminates borders.

Apps


There are a lot of pre-installed apps such as Adobe Reader, Shazam, CNN Video, Nokia Maps and there are latest Nokia apps such as Nokia Drive, Guides, Weather and Public Transport. The utility apps include, Files, Recorder, Calculator, Note and Dictionary.

There are Facebook and Twitter icons which is integrated into Social app. You can always download more apps from the Nokia Store. You can also download free games such as Angry birds, Gangstar Rio Demo and more. The games are faster with the 1GHz processor and Graphics Hardware Accelerator.

Multimedia

The phone has Music Player and Stereo FM Radio with RDS. It can play a range of audio files including, AAC, AMR, MP3, MIDI, WAV, WMA. The Media Player can play 3GPP formats (H.263), AVI, Flash Video, MKV, MPEG-4 and WMV 9. It supports 720p video playback at 25 fps.

Connectivity

The phone has Bluetooth 3.0 with Bluetooth Stereo Audio, Micro USB port , NFC support that lets you share pictures and content between other NFC enabled Nokia Phones and Nokia Play 360 speaker easily. It also USB OTG 1.3 support but you need to buy the USB OTG cable separately. There is also mobile data tracker to track the data used.

Conclusion

The Nokia 603 is a decent device for the price and the new Belle OS along with the FP1 update has some nice features. The Battery life is good, that lasts for 2 days with average use like few calls, messages, few hours of audio playback and FM Radio. The lack of camera flash and fixed focus camera are disappointing but the 720p video recording is a plus.

Pros

  • Solid build quality
  • Good Battery life
  • Decent camera quality despite fixed focus
  • 720p video recording
  • USB On the Go (OTG) support

Cons

  • No camera flash
  • Fixed focus camera
  • microSIM

Author: Srivatsan Sridhar

Srivatsan Sridhar is a Mobile Technology Enthusiast who is passionate about Mobile phones and Mobile apps. He uses the phones he reviews as his main phone. You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram