Expert Review of Nokia Asha 210 Black
The Finnish mobile major Nokia has recently come out with the newest addition to its Asha series of handsets named Nokia Asha 210. Nokia is aiming this handset at the budget-conscious customer who wants to enjoy all kinds of social networks including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and wants to stay constantly in touch with all his friends using WhatsApp. The device measures 111.5mm x 60mm x 11.8mm and weighs 99.5gm. It sports a 2.4-inch LCD transmissive QVGA display at 320 x 240pixel resolution along with a pretty decent aspect ratio of 4:3 and pixel density of 169ppi. The Nokia Asha 210 offers dual SIM support (GSM + GSM) and runs on Nokia Series 40 platform. While it comes with just 64MB of internal memory, you can always use a microSD card to expand its external memory capacity up to a maximum of 32GB. The phone also comes with 32MB of RAM, which is obviously insufficient.
The device also sports a 2MP primary camera that is capable of shooting pictures at 1600 x 1200 pixels along with video-recording (QCIF@10fps). The connectivity features aboard Nokia Asha 210 include Class 32 GPRS/EDGE, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g, Bluetooth v2.1 with EDR, and microUSB 2.0. The Asha 210 is the world’s first phone with a dedicated WhatsApp button. You can also programme this shortcut key to take you to Facebook, Twitter or the Nokia Xpress web browser in the Settings menu. Nokia has packed in a powerful 1200mAh Li-Ion battery that gives an impressive talk time of 12 hours on 2G and 40 hours of continuous music playback. The Nokia Asha 210 is available in Black, Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and White color options.
User Interface and UI functionality
Nokia Asha 210 features a 2.4-inch LCD transmissive QVGA display with 320 x 240pixel resolution and 169ppi pixel density. The display has an aspect ratio of 4:3, which is decent for a small display. The Nokia Asha 210 runs on the new Series 40 UI for all non-touchscreen Asha phones. The icons retain their Symbian-like looks and a shortcut row has been added below to take you to your frequently used applications. Above the shortcut row, there are widgets for quick access to the FM radio and music apps.
There is also a widget for the SIM Manager app that displays the signal status for both active SIMs. The SIM Manager app lets you choose the default SIM for data, calls, texts, etc. The SIM card slot is hot-swappable so you can easily remove and replace SIM cards without having to turn off the phone. Probably the most notable UI feature on Asha 210 is the programmable shortcut key to the trackpad’s left, which is set to WhatsApp by default, but can be changed to Facebook, Twitter or even the Nokia Xpress web browser.
The music app is capable of playing various popular formats including MP3, WMA, AAC, and WAV. DRM support is also included for OMA DRM 2. Other audio features include audio streaming, audio equalizer, and loudness. The video app is capable of playing several formats including MP4, AVI, ASF, M4V and 3GP. Nokia has also pre-loaded several video codecs including Windows video, H.263, MPEG-4, and H.264/AVC. There is also an editing feature where you can do basic editing for pictures taken from the camera or from your gallery. FM radio support is also included.
Pictures and Video quality
The lack of LED flash really handicaps the 2MP primary camera aboard Nokia 210. Therefore, the image quality takes a hit and videos can be recorded only at low resolution (176 x 144pixel) QCIF quality @ 10fps, which is useless. If you look at the pictures, the reds are off and there is an abundance of noise. However, detail is fine for 2MP and the high dynamic range is pretty good. Also, the images are all good on the white balance front. Inspite of the lack of a front-facing secondary camera, there is a self-portrait feature that uses voice-guided instructions to help you get a decent self-portrait to be used as your profile picture on Facebook, Whatsapp, etc.
Nokia Asha 210 comes with Class 32 GPRS/EDGE support along with Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g connectivity. There is no support for 3G or LTE and neither any support for Wi-Fi Hotspot. Nokia has preloaded its Xpress web browser, which it claims, reduces data consumption by up to 90 percent.
Internal and External Memory
Nokia Asha 210 comes with 64MB of internal memory, which is obviously very inadequate for any realistic storage purposes. However, you can use a microSD card to expand external memory up to 32GB. There is 32MB of RAM, which is very inadequate for any heavy usage.
Applications and Gaming
Nokia Asha 210 includes support for several Java-based games including Fifa 13 and Bejeweled. Other preloaded apps include YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, and Nokia Life.
Nokia Asha 210 is powered by a Li-ion 1200mAh BL-4U battery that gives up to 12 hours of talk time on 2G networks. Nokia also claims that the device gives music playback time up to 40 hours.
Nokia Asha 210 offers dual-SIM support in the following ranges: GSM 850/1900- RM-926 and GSM 900/1800- RM-925. The device uses only Mini SIM. Data connectivity is given in Class 32 GPRS and EDGE along with Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g connectivity.
Nokia is also offering a unique sharing feature called Slam that lets you quickly share all your contacts, pictures, and videos with other Bluetooth-enabled handsets. Slam does not require you to set-up anything or pair devices, which is very convenient.
Nokia Asha 210 is a great product at its price-range. With its QWERTY keypad and easy social-networking options, it is mainly aimed at the heavy texters social media-addicts. However, while comparing Asha 210 with other competitors like Samsung’s Rex and Micromax Bolt A51, Asha 210 pales in comparison. It is clear that Asha 210’s rivals manage to pack in a lot more goodies without driving up the price significantly. The Samsung Rex and Micromax Bolt A51 both come with bigger 3.5-inch displays that dwarf the 2.4-inch display onboard Asha 210. Also, Samsung Rex comes with a better 3.15MP camera which is able to take pictures of better quality, which Asha 210’s 2MP camera is incapable of.
Samsung Rex offers more talktime that is, 15 hours on 2G as compared to 12 hours on Asha 210. However, Asha 210 does offer better talk time than Bolt A51, which offers only 4.5 hours. However, Bolt A51 runs on Android 2.3 Gingerbread, which the other two do not, so it pulls up ahead in the competition since Android offers infinitely better personalization and multimedia features compared to the other platforms. Overall, Asha 210 is a mediocre phone and one might want to check out other budget handsets in the market before making a final decision.