We were impressed with the excellent battery performance of the Nokia 6303 Classic, which should tick another essential requirement for its target audience.
Nokia estimates optimum battery life between charges of up to 450 hours standby or 7 hours talktime. We managed between 4 and 5 days with our average levels of phone usage (though with limited music playing).
The lack of power-sapping high-end features may have some part to play in this, but it will satisfy anyone looking for a reliable, long-running handset
The 6303 Classic's organiser functionality includes all the usual tools - calendar, to-do list, alarm clock, notes, calculator, countdown timer and stopwatch, plus a voice recorder in the Media menu. There are a couple of convertor functions, too, slipped into the Applications folder.
These are all no-nonsense applications that do their various jobs in unfussy Nokia fashion. The calendar, for instance, displays the month and any notes relating to a date beneath, giving a quick view of what you've got planned.
One additional entry into the organiser line-up is Nokia's Maps software. No GPS gadgetry is built in to the 6303 Classic, although you can hook it up to an optional GPS module if you want positioning services on the phone.
As it is, Maps doesn't offer approximate cellsite-triangulated positioning a la Google Maps on other manufacturers' non-GPS phones. You can, however, look up route planning information, get maps onscreen and search for addresses.
Mapping information for the whole of the UK and Ireland is stored on the 1GB MicroSD card supplied, so you don't have to rack up data charges every time you use this service. Maps are well detailed in this software version, and route planning is quick and appears accurate.
However, without some sort of automatic location finding gadgetry (either GPS or cellsite-based), it feels limited and not particularly compelling to use. It may be a useful software addition, but for casual map-lookers it lacks that whip-it-out-and-see-where-you-are immediacy and easy-to-use feel of other devices.
The Nokia 6303 Classic is equipped with Bluetooth 2.0, and comes supplied with a USB cable, enabling it to be hooked up to a PC via its microUSB port. Syncing with a PC is supported using Nokia PC Suite software, although none is supplied in-box.
There's no Wi-Fi or 3G high-speed connectivity; the 6303 Classic is a tri-band (GSM900/1800/1900) GPRS and EDGE enabled device, so provides a sedate browsing and downloading experience.
Nokia's Ovi service is naturally supported on this phone. An Ovi Share app enables you to upload and share content such as images, video and music (albeit slowly), and from the Download! app – which enables you to find apps to add to your phone - you can download Nokia's Ovi Store application, providing access to additional content, apps and services.
The phone's Flickr client enables you to connect to your account, and upload images in a simple way – though slow data rates can be tiresome. Nokia has also provisioned the 6303 Classic with half a dozen games – Bounce Tales, Brain Champion City Bloxx, Sudoku Tetris Pop and The SIMS 3.