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Nokia 9300

Discontinued
8th September 2004

When Nokia announced the Nokia 9500 Communicator back in February, it received generally positive reviews as being an impressive piece of kit. However, at the time many people were concerned about the inclusion of a digital camera (perhaps the start of the camera phone backlash demonstrated in part by the Mitsubishi V301D and Siemens SK65), the inclusion of wireless ethernet and the overall size and weight of the phone.

 Nokia 9300 Closed In other words, the 9500 was a little too much for many people. Both camera phones and wireless network are a distraction and security risk for many businesses, and not all individual users want them in any case. What these customers wanted was something without these features, and if it could be a bit lighter and a lot cheaper then that would be great too.

The Nokia 9300 Communicator addresses many of these concerns, and is probably much closer in spirit to the outgoing Nokia 9210i Communicator. At 167 grams, it's lighter than the 222 gram 9500 and 244 gram 9210i. Measuring 132x51x21 it's substantially smaller than the 9500 and a fair bit smaller than the 9210i too, indeed it's similar to the Nokia 6310i in terms of size. It retains the excellent 640x200 pixel main display in 65,000, QWERTY keyboard and wide clamshell design, and retains the look-and-feel of the 9500 series.

This is a tri-band phone with GPRS, EGDE, HSCSD and Bluetooth. Internal memory is 80 Mb and this can be expanded by using MMC memory cards. Blackberry Connect support will also be available as an option when the 9300 is launched. There will be an 850/1800/1900 GSM version for the Americas, and 900/1800/1900 GSM version for Europe and the rest of the world.

Bundled with the Symbian Series 80 operating system is a set of Microsoft Office compatible applets and a VPN client. The unusually wide screen is great for web browsing and office-based applications, and is probably one of the most practical Smartphone screens around. The Nokia 9300 will play back MP3s, videos and many other multimedia formats.

 Nokia 9300 In terms of price and market segment, the 9300 is broadly comparable with the Sony Ericsson P910i - of course with a radically different physical design, and the 9300 has no camera (but in our view the P910i's camera isn't very good anyway). The more sophisticated model pitches again devices such at the T-Mobile MDA III with it's wireless networking capabilities. We think that it's quite possible that Nokia could expand the range of the Communicator series further, and perhaps come up with a much smaller format unit to compete with the Motorola MPx (Nokia 9100 perhaps?).

One critical question is this - is the Nokia 9300 Communicator a good phone, and will it be good for Nokia's bottom line. Previous Communicator series phones have always underperformed in the marketplace, and Nokia must surely be hoping to get it right with the 9300 and 9500 series. Speculation about the 9300 has been rife for a while, with various leaked specifications and speculation - but by and large the 9300 seems to get a big thumbs up from the business community. Certainly if Nokia develop the Communicator series further, then we feel that they could have a winner on their hands.

Unsubsidised price is in the region of $800/700/450, and the Nokia 9300 should be available from Q1 2005.

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Nokia 9300 Communicator at a glance

Available:

Q1 2005

Network:

Tri-band GSM

Data:

GPRS / EDGE

Screen:

640x200 pixels, 65,000,colours

Camera:

No

Size:

Large wide clameshell
132x51x21mm / 167 grams

Bluetooth:

Yes

Infra-red:

Yes

Polyphonic:

Yes

Java:

Yes

Battery life:

3.5-4 hours talk / 6-8 days standby

 

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