Nokia N97 review

Nokia returns to form with a high end smartphone/ mini UMPC

The Nokia N97
The Nokia N97

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As you can imagine on a high resolution widescreen mobile phone, the internet experience was a real pleasure in both portrait and landscape modes, especially using the previously excellent Symbian internet browser.

Using the phone to navigate the web in both 3G and Wi-Fi modes was virtually indistinguishable thanks to the speed of loading, which was doubly impressive when you consider the comparatively slow processor on board beneath the shiny exterior.

The nokia n97

Pages like the BBC mobile website and Wikipedia appeared superbly fast on the screen, and even heavier mobile sites that use a lot of Flash animation in adverts loaded much faster than we were expecting.

The nokia n97

Navigation was also of a similar standard to other phones, with double tapping to zoom in as well as a simple touch-and-scroll method of moving around the pages. And if that wasn't enough for some people, it's also possible to use the D-pad on the QWERTY keyboard to scroll around for accuracy, with the central button used for clicking links.

The nokia n97

It might have been nice to see that central button used as an optical trackpad, like that seen in the Samsung i8510, but it's possible that we're just being greedy in asking for that AND a touchscreen.

However, one of the annoying things about the internet was the inability to reload without going through a whole mess of menus.

In the past with the S60 browser it was possible to simply click and hold anywhere on the screen to bring up a set of quick functions, and despite being able to do so in other applications it's been stripped from this browser.

It's hardly a dealbreaker for a phone with an excellent internet effort, but still it's always confusing when a company removes something useful.

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.