Nokia 5530 XpressMusic review

How does Nokia's budget touchscreen phone compare?

The Nokia 5530 XpressMusic
The Nokia 5530 XpressMusic

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We're massively disappointed whenever a decent phone comes along that doesn't have 3G, as the internet experience is nearly always compromised as a result. Yes, we know it conserves battery life, cuts down on cost and so on, and so on... we just don't see how you can have a full HTML browser with only GPRS surfing. It's horrible trying to do anything other than look at the mobile web.

Although to be fair, studies have shown that most people spend 90 per cent of their time browsing the web in the home or at work - and with Wi-Fi on board browsing moves from Ford Fiesta speeds to Lamborghini Diablo levels.

Nokia 5530 xpressmusic internet

But you try uploading a picture you've just taken to Flickr (as Nokia loves you to do) when you've only got a 2G connection to play with - and don't try and tell us that people upload to Flickr primarily in Wi-Fi zones, as the main point of the functionality is to create a photo feed when out and about.

The resistive touchscreen isn't the best for browsing either, as several times we had to swipe again to make the 5530 XpressMusic do what we wanted it to in the first place (ie scroll down the page).

However, it would also often click on a link rather than scroll, or more annoyingly has a habit of zooming in thinking you've tapped twice on the screen. The smart-fit technology that allows you to view text on whichever size screen you've chosen is pretty good though, meaning the mobile internet experience is definitely passable.

Nokia 5530 xpressmusic

The buttons to help you navigate through the browser are nice and easy to press thanks to the 5th edition upgrade to the S60 interface, but going full screen either involves waiting a very long time or heading through the menus, when there should be a simple button to do it for you.

We like the ability to view multiple windows as well, although switching between them can be a little bit difficult, as you have to trek through two menu options and then select another simply to close a window. On other Nokia handsets, you could simply press the 'cancel' button and it went away, and we miss that option.

However, the accelerometer allows you to easily switch between the landscape and portrait modes, and the 5530 XpressMusic has a decent ability to re-format the pages, which makes the whole process seem pretty slick.

Gareth Beavis
Formerly Global Editor in Chief

Gareth has been part of the consumer technology world in a career spanning three decades. He started life as a staff writer on the fledgling TechRadar, and has grown with the site (primarily as phones, tablets and wearables editor) until becoming Global Editor in Chief in 2018. Gareth has written over 4,000 articles for TechRadar, has contributed expert insight to a number of other publications, chaired panels on zeitgeist technologies, presented at the Gadget Show Live as well as representing the brand on TV and radio for multiple channels including Sky, BBC, ITV and Al-Jazeera. Passionate about fitness, he can bore anyone rigid about stress management, sleep tracking, heart rate variance as well as bemoaning something about the latest iPhone, Galaxy or OLED TV.