Following in the footsteps of its bigger, older brother, the Nokia N97 mini sports new homescreen widgets and a host of usability improvements. While the N97 mini still packs 8GB of storage, a 3.2-inch touchscreen, and full QWERTY keyboard into its 14.2mm thin frame, it's also the first Nokia device to offer Lifecasting with Ovi--a new partnership with Facebook that enables users to update their Facebook status directly from the device’s homescreen. It doesn't stop there though, as location details can also be updated, enabling a whole new level of social sharing and communication. The N97 mini is based on the same tilt display design of its N97 big brother, but is built into a smaller body complete with new design touches. With the ability to completely customize the homescreen, users will be able to make their N97 mini truly unique. The 3.2-inch touchscreen opens up a new world of software improvements including flick scrolling, and a range of new experiences including new homescreen widgets. What's more, the software updates are available for existing N97 devices. The Nokia N97 mini works seamlessly with Ovi Store where users can add new applications, widgets, ringtones and other content to their device. It also sports Ovi Maps and comes with integrated A-GPS and compass along with with voice navigation for driving or walking. Over 155,000 points of interest are also available through Lonely Planet guides and restaurants through Michelin Guides
Designed for the needs of Internet-savvy mobile phone users who are also conscious of style, the Nokia N97 Mini takes everything that was great about its full-sized N97 predecessor and shrinks its size by almost a half-ounce, and shaves its thin profile by 12 percent. Like it's bigger sibling, the N97 Mini includes a full QWERTY keyboard that flips open at an angle for optimal viewing, as well as a touch-enabled 3.2-inch display for easy navigation through the phone's customizable home screen.
The N97 Mini's face slides open at an ergonomic angle for easy viewing while typing on the full QWERTY keyboard.
Capture high-resolution photos and DVD-quality video using the 5-megapixel digital camera.
With integrated GPS sensor and the newest edition of Ovi Maps (full version pre-loaded on this phone or available as a free download from nokia.com/maps), you'll enjoy all essential car and pedestrian navigation features, and the ability to use navigation features even when not connected to a cellular network--great for extending battery life and saving on international roaming charges. Features include turn-by-turn voice guidance, over 6,000 3D landmarks in over 200 cities for quick recognition of the landscape around you, access to Lonely Planet travel guides, and detailed maps for over 180 countries (see more details below). You'll also be able to keep moving in the right direction with the integrated electronic compass.
And the N97 Mini comes with a Nokia Navigation Accessory Kit, which includes a mobile charger and Nokia mobile holder with easy mount that enables you to mount the N97 Mini to your dash or window.
The N97 Mini includes 8 GB of on-board storage and is expandable via optional microSD memory cards (up to 16 GB in size). It also includes integrated Wi-Fi connectivity (802.11b/g) for accessing open networks at work, home, and on the road from a variety of wireless hotspots. You'll also be able to connect to a wide choice of peripherals--including stereo headphones--using the Bluetooth 2.0 with Enahnced Data Rate (EDR) capabilities.
The 5-megapixel camera offers high-quality Carl Zeiss optics, 16:9 and DVD-quality video capture, and support for services like Share on Ovi for immediate sharing over HSDPA and WLAN. Other features include an easily customizable home screen, access to both personal and corporate e-mail, Quickoffice document viewers, TV-out capability for displaying photos and videos on external televisions, stereo FM radio, USB 2.0 connectivity, and up to 7.17 hours of GSM talk time (4 hours when using 3G networks).
Unlocked Phone This unlocked cell phone can be used with a GSM network service provider, and it offers quad-band connectivity (850/900/1800/1900 MHz). It does not come with a SIM card, and it requires that you provide a SIM card for usage with your selected service provider. This phone comes with a full manufacturer's warranty.
Additionally, this phone can be paired with 850/1900 MHz UMTS/HSDPA 3G networks in the United States (as well as 900/2100 MHz 3G networks found around the world, including in Europe and Asia). When paired with a compatible 3G network, you'll enjoy a high-speed connection offering a variety of feature-rich wireless services--from data connectivity to your office to multimedia streaming, and take advantage of simultaneous voice and data services. In areas not served by a 3G network, you'll continue to receive data service via the EDGE network (depending on network compatibility).
Note that the downloading of maps, games, music, and videos, and uploading of images and videos, involves transferring large amounts of data. Your service provider may charge for the data transmission, and the availability of particular services and features may vary by carrier.
Fast 3G connectivity via 850/900/1900/2100 MHz bands (HSDPA)
Quad-band GSM connectivity for global voice roaming
Gorgeously colorful 3.2-inch touch-enabled display with 640 x 360-pixel resolution and support for up to 16.7 million colors. The resistive touch screen includes haptic feedback so you know when you've pressed a key or onscreen menu, brightness control, an ambient light detector, and an orientation sensor that effortlessly switches from portrait to landscape viewing.
Personalize your home screen with widgets that bring live feeds from social networks, news agencies, and weather services. Add bookmarks and contact shortcuts to your home screen so that your favorite Web pages and friends are just a tap away.
Full QWERTY keyboard flips open from the left side, and the display pivots to up to a 35-degree angle for easier reading of the screen while you're typing.
Integrated GPS receiver with free Ovi Maps enables you to find your route quickly and easily, whether walking or driving. Use the Walk pedestrian navigation to find your way, or the voice-guided Drive navigation to find the best route. (Learn more)
Built-in compass keeps you pointing in the right direction and the map adapts to point the same way you do
5-megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics with up to 14x digital zoom, dual LED flash, auto-focus, and Cover Flow viewing of photos with finger motions.
Capture DVD-quality videos (640 x 480; VGA) in a widescreen 16:9 aspect ratio at 30 frames per second (fps). Other features include MPEG4/3GPP formats, up to a 90-minute clip length, video stabilization, scene settings, and video light.
Upload your photos and videos to Ovi Share and share them online with friends and family.
Secondary camera on front for video calls (QCIF resolution)
8 GB internal memory
Memory expansion via microSD card slot with support for optional cards up to 16 GB in size.
Wi-Fi networking (802.11b/g) for accessing home and corporate networks as well as hotspots while on the go.
Bluetooth connectivity (version 2.1) includes profiles for communication headset, hands-free car kits, and the A2DP Bluetooth profile--enabling you to wirelessly stream your music to a pair of compatible Bluetooth stereo headphones or speaker dock. If your laptop is Bluetooth enabled, you can connect wirelessly and enjoy dial-up networking (DUN profile); note that additional charges may be applicable.
SMS and MMS messaging
Organizer tools including calendar, to-do list, notes, clock, converter, and voice recorder
Airplane mode allows you to listen to music while the cellular connectivity is turned off
Supports e-mail accounts from more than a thousand ISPs (SMTP, IMAP4, POP3), as well as Gmail, Yahoo! mail, and Hotmail. People who use Microsoft Exchange at work can access their email using the Mail for Exchange mobile email client, which comes pre-loaded (an Exchange email account is required and your Exchange Administrator must have enabled your account for synchronization).
Document viewer compatible with attachments like Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and PDF files.
Digital audio player compatible with MP3, WMA, AAC, eAAC, and eAAC+ formats. Control your music with just a touch by adding the media player widget to the home screen.
Stereo FM radio with RDS capabilities
Vital Statistics The Nokia N97 Mini weighs 4.87 ounces and measures 4.45 x 2.07 x 0.56 inches. Its 1200 mAh lithium-ion battery is rated at up to 7.17 hours of GSM talk time (4 hours on 3G networks), and up to 320 hours (13+ days) of standby time. It runs on the 850/900/1800/1900 MHz GSM/GPRS/EDGE frequencies, plus 850/900/1900/2100 3G networks (HSDPA).
What's in the Box Nokia N97 Mini handset, Nokia Navigation Accessory Kit (mobile charger DC-6, mobile holder CR-117, holder easy mount HH-20), rechargeable battery (BL-4D), charger (AC-10U), connectivity cable (CA-101), wired headset (AD-54, HS-45), cleaning cloth, quick start guide
Nokia now offers its Ovi Maps Walk and Drive navigation application free across the globe. Drivers receive turn-by-turn voice guidance including lane assistance, traffic information (in 10 countries including the U.S.), and safety camera and speed warnings, while pedestrians will be guided on shortcuts through parks and pedestrian-only zones in over 100 cities across the globe. And unlike other mobile navigation mapping solutions, Ovi Maps works offline--no cellular service is required.
Lonely Planet guide.
With the new Ovi Maps for mobile you get for free:
Maps for over 180 countries and free map updates
Drive and Walk navigation available in over 70 countries with real-time voice guidance
My Position enables you to find your current location easier and faster than ever.
New one box search for quicker access to finding places and addresses.
Save your favorite places and routes, then synchronize them with your Ovi account over the air.
Car navigation with voice and visual instructions, lane assistance and speed limit information. Now also with text-to-speech voice guidance.
Pedestrian navigation with routing through pedestrian zones and shortcuts, pathways through parks and buildings, stairways and plazas. Now with text-to-speech voice guidance.
Get real-time weather information including a 5-day forecast, for your current or any location found via search.
Lonely Planet and Michelin offer you dynamic access to the best and most relevant editorial travel content for over 1000 destinations. Find thousands of listings for sights, restaurants, hotels, shops, nightlife, and more. Look these places up on the map and get to them with Walk and Drive navigation.
Discover the events happening near your location on the map or any place found via search.
Share your location on Facebook--where you are, what you are up to, and finish with a photo.
No Hidden Costs The new version of Ovi Maps comes with all the maps and high-end, car grade navigation features you need for free, and is yours to keep for the life of the smartphone. No additional licenses are needed for extra countries, regions, or services like traffic information and city guides. Data charges from network operators may apply.
Voice Guidance and Traffic Information Turn-by-turn, voice guided navigation comes free for both drivers and pedestrians. For drivers this includes lane assistance, traffic information, safety camera, and speed warnings. For pedestrians, this includes shortcuts through parks and pedestrian-only zones for over 100 cities around the world, as well as 6,000 3D landmarks in over 200 cities to help you find exactly where you are.
Unique Hybrid Technology Ovi Maps is built on an advanced technology called hybrid vector maps. Vector maps are high quality but less data intensive and allow you to continue to navigate even if you lose your network connection. This means that maps downloaded or updated across a network connection are about half the size of bulky bitmaps used by other mobile map providers. The hybrid technology ensures that, unlike other providers, any downloaded map data is stored on the device for future use.
No Network Connection Required When Navigating Avoid expensive, battery-draining network connections with Nokia's unique hybrid technology. Maps can be pre-loaded on to your Nokia smartphone so you can set Ovi Maps to offline mode, saving battery power, and the navigation system will still work. This is particularly useful for those worried about data connection costs when travelling abroad, or when you are travelling through areas with little or no network coverage.
Best Global Coverage You take your mobile with you wherever you go in the world so, as standard, voice guided navigation for both pedestrians and drivers is available for 74 countries in 46 different languages, and there are maps for over 180 countries. This gives you the best maps with the largest global coverage for free.
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January 9 2010: I amended the review to add some details about a couple problems I've had with the phone, slowdowns which lead to lockups and twice it suffered a system crash that leads to wiping out the phone's memory. I devoted a lot of the amended review to a hassle I had with Nokia's customer service. I realize that's unfair and irrelevant to the review of the phone, so I removed it.
Although it says I bought the phone from Amazon I actually bought it direct from Nokia. I canceled the Amazon order when I thought they had the wrong color. I'm sorry that happened because buying it from Amazon would have been a better experience. (another edit: since installing the new firmware, any stability issues the phone had seem to have been solved)
My original review:
The quality of the materials and the fit/finish & construction is the first thing I noticed, taking this out of the box. It has nice surfaces everywhere, a shiny steel bezel on the front and highlights around the bottom section, a matte black (brownish) metal finish on the bottom with a steel battery door and camera lens bezel. The battery door latches securely (and easily) unlike any phone I've ever owned. The phone feels heavy in a high quality way. It fits in your hand in a way that makes it feel much thinner than you would expect from the measurements. The flare at the bottom makes it feel more secure in your hand. The raised lens bezel makes it easy to avoid inadvertently using the camera lens as a finger grip.
so many pros... -- Touchscreen is very responsive and has kinetic scrolling and it's easy to stop the screen without accidentally launching something. -- Browser is full screen and looks great.Read more ›
I'm a gadget nut, with a particular affinity for Nokia and Symbian, which I find far more robust and user friendly than many of the other options out there. I've used a number of Nokia E-series products, and returned to my E71 again and again - like many people, I think it's one of the best smart phones ever made. Nonetheless, I recently tried the N97 (twice). I returned the first one - it was clearly not ready for prime time. The second time around was better, because the firmware was more evolved; however, the phone was just too big for me, particularly after using the E71.
When the N97 mini became available, I was initially put off by the negative reviews, including those that made it seem like less than the n97, but for about the same cost. I'm glad I ignored those reviews. This is a phenomenal phone, starting with the phone. In my opinion, Nokia is matched only by Blackberry when it comes to signal strength and call quality, and I don't understand why professional reviews just gloss over the phone capability - for me, it's one of the most important features of a phone. The home screen is highly modifiable - something that was a deal killer for me re: iPhone (I don't want to know that I have an email; I want to be able to see the email itself without having to dig down through four menus). The web browser is snappy and excellent. The size is perfect. Build quality far exceeds that of the N97, and is on par with the E71. The touch screen is very responsive - I've read a lot about resistive vs. capacitive; however, I was never comfortable with the iPhone but feel that mini works very well.
If you're on AT&T and are bemoaning the fact that you can't get a decent Android phone, then get this. You'll be happy you did.Read more ›
I have had this phone for a little over a week now and am quite happy with the results so far. Before I begin though, I feel like a few caveats are in order. 1) If you are expecting an Apple iPhone UI experience in terms of simplicity and whistles and bells, you will be disappointed with the OS employed by this smartphone (Symbian S60 5th Edition). 2) You definitely need a data plan to get full use of this phone - preferable through AT&T to take advantage of 3g speed. 3) This phone uses resistive touch screen technology - as such, it is not as sensitive as that used in many commercial touch screen smartphones on the market in the US. If you're coming from that background, you'll find this a little difficult to get used to. That said, if you live in a colder environment, you'll be able to use this phone while wearing gloves.
With that out of the way, here are the impressions I have:
1) This is a well-built phone with nice use of metals and higher quality plastics. It feels great in the hand - solid and compact. There is no creaking whatsoever (you can't even tell straight up that the phone has a keyboard) and the hinge seems durable and well designed - time will tell. On the negative side, I have noticed that there is a little light leak coming from a couple of the keys and the camera key also feels a little stiff.
2) I found the keyboard to be tactile and I was able to adapt to it pretty quickly. There is enough space between the keys to make typing a relatively accurate experience. The space key is slightly offset which may throw some people.
3) The overall feel of the OS is pretty zippy. Coming from a Nokia N95 8gb, I am definitely experiencing a speed increase in menu transitions and application load times.Read more ›