Nokia 7900 Prism in-depth review -

Look and feel

Heavier than the 7500, but also slimmer, more discreet-looking and altogether a classier affair. It's weighted well so it feels good to hold. The demure diamond pattern on the front and back of the phone looks good and because the casing is made of matt- painted aluminium rather than plastic, it offers a more elegant effect - and accounts for the extra weight.

Features

As with the 7500 Prism, the camera on the 7900 is two megapixels, but the overall feature set is stronger. This is a 3G device, with a second VGA camera on the front of the phone for video calls. The OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) screen, is bright, colourful and pin-sharp, and the phone is big on music. There's no memory card slot, but if your needs are modest this won't be a problem as there's a generous 1 GB of storage space. That's enough for more than 200 tracks. So it won't replace your iPod, but it'll while away those tiresome commutes.

Performance

The camera is 2 megapixels - more or less standard on most phones that aren't positioned as camera replacements - and works well. There are options to choose between landscape and portrait shots (though this merely switches the orientation of the onscreen writing rather than affecting photo settings). There are effects available, such as the curious but entertaining ‘False colours' which turns blues green, greens yellow and beige colours become pink. Its use is unclear, but it looks funky.

Battery life

A stronger battery than that on the 7500 Prism, and you won't need to keep a charger in your pocket, That said, it's still no Sony Ericsson.

 Nokia 7900 Prism Review -
4

Review by Sunetra Chakravati,12/12/2011 3:50:12 PM

8

out of 10

Performance

8

out of 5

Look and feel

10

out of 5

Ease of use

6

out of 5

Features

6

out of 5

Battery life

Pros:

More than the 7500, the 7900 has a stylish and discreet design that looks impressive and feels good to the touch.

Cons:

There's no way to expand the memory beyond the (decent) 1GB supplied, and there?s no FM radio.

The stylish Nokia 7900 Prism

It's heavier than the 7500, slimmer, more discreet-looking and altogether a classier affair. A touch taller, the same width but much thinner than the 7500, the 7900 is the 7500's cuter, catwalk-strutting sibling. It's weighted well so it feels good to hold. The demure diamond pattern on the front and back of the phone looks good and because the casing is made of matt- painted aluminium rather than plastic, it's a more elegant effect - and accounts for the extra weight.


Here, the keys have no visible numbering on them which might make it tricky to dial until you've touched the keypad. Touch the Call End button and the backlight gently fades up so you then know where you are - looking at the blank keys doesn't give you a clue. In fact, though it's not troublesome, the smaller keys on this keypad aren't quite as easy to dial as the 7500.

Superior Nokia 7900 Prism

In most other respects, however, this phone is clearly the 7500 made subtler and more stylish, and if you have the choice, this is the better phone both in looks and brains. For a start, it's a 3G phone, with a VGA camera for video calls built very discreetly into the front of the handset.


The screen is about the same size but is entirely flat, unlike the 7500's ridged model. And because it's an OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) screen, it's bright, colourful and pin-sharp.


One of the neatest customisations is the light colour. Choose from a palette of 49 colours, click select and the keypad backlight changes to the selected shade. It's a neat trick, easily set and changed as often as you fancy a change. Like the classy Nokia 8600 Luna there are lights on the top edge of the handset which fade up and down while the phone is on standby - and are the only hint that the phone's switched on. The colour of these lights matches the keypad colour you've picked.

The Nokia 7900 Prism jukebox

This phone is big on music. There's no memory card slot, but if your needs are modest this won't be a problem as there's a generous 1 gigabyte of storage space. That's enough for more than 200 tracks. So it won't replace your iPod, but it'll while away those tiresome commutes.


The camera is 2 megapixels - more or less standard on most phones that aren't positioned as camera replacements - and works well. There are options to choose between landscape and portrait shots (though this merely switches the orientation of the onscreen writing rather than affecting photo settings). There are effects available, such as the curious but entertaining ‘False colours' which turns blues green, greens yellow and beige colours become pink. Its use is unclear, but it looks funky.


In many other ways it's very similar to the 7500. The cute, diamond-shaped joypad that replaces the joystick on the other phone is easy to use and has the same direction shortcuts for calendar, camera, new text message and contacts.


And in one significant way it's inferior to its brother. Unlike pretty much every other high-end Nokia, there's no FM radio on board the 7900, which is a puzzling omission.


The phone runs on Nokia's Series 40 operating system which means it's as easy to use and accessible as Nokia handsets always are but lacks the more sophisticated programs possible on Series 60 models. No problem, there's no way you'd want this as a smartphone, it's clearly aimed as a fashion handset.


Verdict on the Nokia 7900 Prism

And in those terms, it's efficient and highly desirable, with decent specifications (FM radio apart) and excellent onboard memory, and a great look and feel that make it a pleasure to use.