The N900 is a fairly thick phone. There’s no denying that. It measures in at 19mm thick which is easily twice as thick as most of the new smartphones out today but still thinner than our previous HTC Touch Pro or most older phones. Because of this, some people may find this device to be too thick for their tastes in today’s ultra-thin smartphone market. We honestly couldn’t find a legitimate reason for the overall thickness of the device as there are many devices out there with a similar feature set that are still much thinner. We believe that this could simply be a result of Nokia not worrying about thickness but rather durability.
The 3.5 inch 800x480 screen is definitely one to enjoy as the pixel density can only be bested by the Apple iPhone 4’s ‘retina’ display. Viewing high resolution images is definitely a joy on this screen. Since the screen is a resistive one, it works well for those who wear gloves or live in colder climates. In our testing, we definitely had no complaints about the resistive display as it was very responsive and acted almost like a capacitive one. Because it was resistive, that meant that we could easily use a pen as a stylus which is useful in business applications when using a calculator and such.
The backlit slide out keyboard itself is very small and only has 3 rows of keys. In addition to that, the spacebar is off center and results in a lot extra m’s instead of spaces. The keys do have a slight bump to them which does make typing a bit easier, but a larger keyboard would have been much more effective. Adding possibly 1 or 2 more rows would be a great improvement.
The volume buttons are located on the top left hand corner when holding the device in landscape and top right hand when in portrait which is the default call making mode. When holding the phone in portrait mode, we found the volume button placement to be perfect for anyone who is right handed or holds their phone with their right hand. The camera button is also well placed and does not cause any issues at all. The simple fact that this phone has a hardware camera button is a huge plus to many in a world where there are ever increasing on screen shutter buttons. In addition to these buttons there is also a slide lock which is located on the right hand side of the device in landscape mode and at the bottom when in portrait. We found this placement a bit tough to deal with when the phone was in portrait mode and would have recommended that maybe Nokia consider moving it elsewhere; possibly to top of the device near the MicroUSB port.View of the N900 from the bottom, note the stylus, headphone jack, slide lock, and speaker.View of the N900 from the top, note the speaker and MicroUSB
One place that we found to be a little trouble was the headphone jack. The placement of the headphone jack was very good and didn’t cause many issues at all. The problem is with it’s design. Many Apple designed headsets are not compatible with the N900 which may cause significant interference once they are plugged in. We found this issue with multiple headsets including the Ultimate Ears TripleFi 10vi headset that we recently tested
. This issue was remedied by simply adding the supplied extension cord from UE even though that meant a loss of headset functionality.
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