Nokia c3

The Nokia C3 does not claim to be an all-singing, all-dancing, bells and whistles handset, and for under £100 you really can't expect it to do a great deal that's fancy.

Accepting that, it does seem to have a split personality. The chassis is really very nice – worthy of a handset that costs more than it does and with a superb mini QWERTY keyboard that some makers of more expensive handsets would do well to emulate.

On the other hand, much of the software is truly basic. The Twitter and Facebook apps we like, but the rest is fairly uninspiring.

Furthermore, without a 3G connection, the Nokia C3 is seriously hamstrung. We do like the fact that Wi-Fi is here, though.

We liked

Really well-designed mini QWERTY keyboard that makes typing at speed a dream. Tweeters, texters and fans of Facebook ought to find it a dream to use.

There is a nice main screen which is very open to customisation and which can display lots of useful information including live Facebook or Twitter updates.

We disliked

Symbian S40 really ought to be retired as an operating system in favour of S60. It just feels too cut-down and lacking in features to be much fun to use.

There are several areas in which the software lets things down. For example an FM radio with just seven presets, and a convoluted way of adding contacts to the handset.

With no 3G, the handset is not ideal for fans of social media or mobile Internet access.

The screen is really too small for media rich activities, and web browsing in particular is quite painful.

Verdict

You may come to the Nokia C3 expecting a lot more than the phone actually delivers. Its solid hardware design and good keyboard and buttons lead you to think this is a handset with a lot on offer.

But you'll find that when you actually start using it on an everyday basis the phone lets you down - although with the budget price tag you can't really expect much more.