Nokia x7

Nokia's X7 shows off Anna, an update to Symbian that Nokia must hope is more endearing than version^3 was. It packs that into a neat chassis and combines it with a 4-inch screen. Sounds like a great media handset, then.

But the screen resolution is low, at 640 x 360, and while this doesn't show the cracks as much as you might think, it is far from perfect.

Then there are the subtle things such as a chassis design that lets you think there are four speakers, only to let you down with just two.

And Anna itself, while an improvement over ^3, doesn't blow us away. It might look nicer, and have a better menu structure, but it still suffers from old Symbian problems such as nested menus.

Finally, we found ourselves waiting at times for apps to start running and for video to catch up after pauses. The 680MHz processor might just not be quite up to the job being asked of it here.

We liked

We know we've disrespected the screen resolution, fo'sho', but the quality of the Nokia X7 display for many purposes is good enough - just not the high quality we've seen from the iPhone 4, HTC Sensation or Samsung Galaxy S2.

The overall hardware design is appealing. It's just that little bit quirky and different from the norm, and of course, like most Nokias, battery life is good and can offer two days' decent use.

We disliked

Nokia x7

The lack of built-in storage in the Nokia X7 is mean. OK, Nokia provides an 8GB microSD card, but really, we'd have liked 8GB inside too, particularly because this handset is touted as one that's good for media playback, and media needs plenty of storage space.

The caddy system for swapping microSD cards is fiddly to use.

For a handset with such a large screen, we're surprised at the relatively low screen resolution and lack of DLNA.

And as we've mentioned before, Nokia really needs to work on its Facebook and Twitter integration.Please, Nokia, sort this out as soon as possible.

And while we're impressed with the improvements to the internet browser, the Anna update still doesn't bring Symbian in line with Safari or the Android efforts.

Verdict

Nokia x7

There are nice things we can say about the Nokia X7. It has good hardware design, a basically pleasing screen and good battery life. And Symbian Anna is a step in the right direction.

But we just aren't sure where Anna is headed in the long term, and that alone could make the Nokia X7 a blind alley. And it doesn't do anything supremely well.

If you are a Nokia fan and want a top quality camera you should be looking at the Nokia N8.

If you want a superb physical keyboard, then the Nokia E7 is worth your attention.

Great social networking integration? Go Android instead, with something such as the HTC Sensation.

With those bases covered, it's tricky to see precisely where the Nokia X7 fits in.