Slightly slimmer than its predecessor, the Nokia 6600 Slide boasts a glossy steel skin that feels great in the hand. The sliding mechanism proves to be a smooth transition.
Despite its relatively small build, the Nokia 6600 Slide sports a 3.2-megapixel camera, Nokia Maps, 3G, a 16-million colour display and a novel way of silencing an incoming call – tap the front of the screen twice.
The central navigation pad proved a tad problematic with the occasional miss-hit occurring. With the standard Series 40 menu interface, finding your way around the Nokia 660 Slide proved straightforward and responsive.
The 3G internet speeds are acceptable without being revolutionary, though the built-in accelerometer works a treat. The camera is also capable of taking some decent snaps, while keen gamers should be kept amused with six onboard games.
Though the battery life is adequate, it’s a little disappointing that talktime has decreased from the 6500 Slide.
Review by Sunetra Chakravati,12/12/2011 3:52:36 PM
Look and feel
Ease of use
The Nokia 6600 Slide has a sleek, classy look and is a pocketable size. Like most Nokia?s it is also speedily responsive.
The direction pad is awkward and the charging connection is disappointing.
Last year’s 6500 came in two versions, the slender Classic and the chunkier Slide. Add 100 to the number and check out this year’s model – not quite size zero but the Slide has certainly been on a diet. And it’s still a contender for the catwalk – black is the new black. It’ll turn heads not only because of its compact size but also because of its eye-catching glossy steel skin. It feels good because of the metal, too, even down to the aluminium direction pad, and it’s nice to use because the slide mechanism is skilfully balanced and the compact keys are just big enough to use.
Thankfully, the look of the 6600 Slide bears no resemblance to the original Nokia 6600 – a phone that was as wide as this one is svelte, like an oval with the ends flattened and with curvy keys and a big joystick in the middle. How times change.
Squeezing a lot into a tiny space is the keynote of this phone. You need to look closely to see the front camera for voice calling, but it’s there (whether you’ll ever use it for video calls is another matter). It is also impressive that Nokia has squeezed four GSM antennae and two 3G antennae into this tiny casing, not to mention the FM radio aerial too. The 3G isn’t the whizziest HSDPA data speed but it’s not really a phone where you’ll want to be displaying detailed web pages – the 2.2-inch screen wouldn’t do it justice. There’s the Opera Mini browser so you can surf the net. Just don’t expect it to be comfortable. Even though it’s metal-clad, the phone is light at just 110g. And although there wasn’t room for GPS, Nokia’s Maps program is on board. However, this is no match for the Maps program on the iPhone, even prior to its GPS-enabled 3G version, partly because the 2.2-inch screen is not big enough for easy map reading. You could connect a GPS device by Bluetooth – Nokia makes one that will do the job – but this seems like a faff.
The phone’s screen is bright and colourful, not least because it’s a 16-million colour display and has decent resolution for its size – 240x320 pixels.
Funky features include a gentle way to reject a call. Tap the screen twice and the incoming ringtone is muted – handy if the phone rings in a meeting but you don’t want to red-button the caller. Instead, they’ll simply think you’re not near the phone as it continues ringing at their end. Some phones, like Nokia’s 8800 Sapphire and the HTC Touch Diamond, offer the same function but is achieved by turning the phone face down, which is more poetic.
Similarly, if you tap the phone’s screen twice in standby, the phone tells you the time and buzzes twice. It’s a tiny detail but typical of what makes the phone enjoyable to use. The same tapping quells an alarm and these effects are achieved using an accelerometer, just like on the Sony Ericsson K850i where the phone knows which way up it is.
The front of the 6600 when the slide is closed is pleasingly spare. Beneath the screen is a direction pad and two rocker buttons – the top half acts as a soft key for the function described on the screen above, and the bottom half starts or ends a call.
The central, square direction pad is black with a neat turquoise edging. It uses a simple array of shortcuts – down for contacts, left for messaging, right for calendar and up for camera. Like many direction pads that also have a central push-in button, it’s sometimes easy to mis-press it, which is annoying.
The camera is a decent 3.2-megapixel resolution, with features like sepia and negative effects, and it can also shoot video. What’s more, although there’s only a regular LED flash (i.e no Xenon), the camera has auto-focus – a real step up from the fixed-focus of many phone snappers.
Our handset came with a whopping six games on board, including Snake 3 and Sudoku. Rally 3D was a basic racer where the main fun seemed to stem from the haptic response that told you when you careered off the road.
Nokia’s chargers have changed little over the past few years, and when the current thinner one replaced the larger round charger, Nokia thoughtfully included a connector to bridge the gap. However, the 6600 Slide uses the charger found on relatively few of its handsets. It’s almost a mini-USB connector, but not quite. This is disappointing as not only do older chargers not work, a regular USB cable doesn’t fit either.
The menus are the standard Series 40 icons – nothing surprising here apart from the Maps icon that is not common, but as usual with Nokia non-smartphones, it’s speedily responsive. The contacts list doesn’t spring into life as quickly as on some Nokias but it still beats most other brands out there. Handy if you’re in a desperate hurry to phone a friend.
The 6600 Slide includes Nokia’s Music Player, although you’ll need a memory card to use it as the internal memory is tiny at just 18MB.
Music is important on a phone like this, and it’s definitely a device to be seen with, whether you’re listening to your tracks or not. Still, it’s much more capable than it seems at first glance, and won’t be restricted just to those looking for a decent evening-out phone. And if size matters to you, it’s a real winner.