Nokia C5, the el cheapo smartphone

By on March 4, 2010
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The Nokia C5 is based on Symbian S60 3rd edition with HSDPA connectivity and a host of messaging and social networking features built in for just AED 700.

No, not el cheapo as in cheap and crappy necessarily but el cheapo as in cheap and very affordable. The just unveiled Nokia C5 will be available in the second quarter of 2010 (including the MEA market) at an expected retail price of just under AED 700.

That doesn’t seem like a dirt-cheap price, you’re thinking, but let’s look at the specs then:

  • S60 3rd edition
  • A host of messaging and social networking features built in
  • HSDPA connectivity (maximum speeds of up to 10.2 Mbps) and HSUPA (uploads of up to 2Mbps)
  • 2.2-inch display
  • 3.2-megapixel camera
  • Free walk and drive navigation courtesy of Ovi Maps
  • Update your Facebook status easily and share your location with Ovi Maps 3.0
  • Nokia Messaging enables you to keep in touch on IM using Google Talk or Windows Live Messenger
  • Storage is the mircoSD variety with support for up to 16GB cards
  • Built in stereo FM radio and 3.5mm AV connector
  • Stereo IHF speaker
  • Measuring just over 12mm thin and 46mm across (and 112mm high)
  • Battery life: up to 12 hours talktime and 26 days standby between charges

That’s quite a bit of stuff packed into a small and cheap package. Sure, it doesn’t have the glorious multi-touch screen of the iPhone and it doesn’t have the snappy performance of the Nexus One but what it does have will make this a must-have phone for thousands of users around the region, I predict. At the AED 700 price, smartphone functionality and especially the social networking and communication functionality now come into range of a whole new customer segment, people who could not previously imagine buying a smartphone because of the price. We will see an army of new smartphone owners take to the streets and IM, Twitter, Facebook, and more on the go, just as a minority of us have been doing already with our iPhones an other smartphones.

And with this announcement by Nokia you can be sure that all the other usual suspects in mobile- and smartphones will follow suite with competitive devices soon.


I write and talk too much about tech. You can find my personal blog at, my radio shows at, and me on Twitter as mnystedt.

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