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slitchfield 15-06-2010 07:58 AM

Nokia E72 - S60's Swiss Army Knife
David Gilson brings the Nokia E72 story right up to date, giving his own review take on the device now that it has received the first two rounds of firmware updates from Nokia. What has been fixed, what's still broken and who can the E72 be recommended for? With links, photos and opinion, this is a definitive summing up of the E72, mid June 2010.

Read on in the full article.

Fred* 15-06-2010 08:16 AM

Torch light?

Great review! I'm not ready to give up my E71, but I appreciate such a good description of what the E72 does.

Question: You say "A welcome function found on the space bar is a torch control, as found with the E71 and E63. From the home screen, if the space bar is held down, it activates the LED camera light, for use as a torch."

I hadn't heard about this feature and it doesn't seem to work on my E71. Just hold down the space bar from the home screen, right? Sounds simple enough. Or is this a market-specific feature, and if so, why?????


UKJeeper 15-06-2010 08:29 AM


Originally Posted by Fred* (Post 468270)
the LED camera light, for use as a torch."

I hadn't heard about this feature and it doesn't seem to work on my E71.

Because you have an E71. The space bar/torch feature is on the E72.

However, there are 3rd party torch applications available through the Ovi Store.

Unregistered 15-06-2010 09:02 AM

the new e5 seems like a nice phone. For me, the ideal upgrade from my e71 would be an n86 screen+camera+BB's optical trackpad with QWERTY. I don't mind a bigger phone at the moment cause the e71's small screen is getting boring.
Last week, I saw some satellite images of 2.4" screens being farmed across the snow fields of Finland.

Unregistered 15-06-2010 11:26 AM

My E71 is my bread and butter, texts emailing and calls yeah remember actually speaking to people, fantastic work horse, as good as the N8 looks no qwerty no deal

deadkenny 15-06-2010 12:45 PM

Nice updated review.

Have to say that with the 031.023 firmware, the thing is a lot more stable, but there are still a lot of bugs and it's frustrating that features are still missing or poorly implemented. Worse is that Nokia releases new versions of software for other phone models (mostly 3rd FP1 and 5th edition) and yet ignore the FP2 models. Nokia Point & Find is a classic example. Available on the E71 yet not on the E72 and no sign it ever will be. The Mail client is also much updated on 5th edition models, and yet on the flagship business emailer, E72, it's not (thanks to the daft decision to integrate the client into the firmware I suspect).

The email client is the biggest annoyance. This should have been the jewel in the crown component of the E72. You buy an E72 for email. It's aimed firmly at the Blackberry market, especially with the push email & Nokia Messaging. Yet the email client is terrible. Clunky and bug ridden with an awful email viewer, and (aside from Mail for Exchange) it doesn't even support Destinations, a core feature of FP2 that all the built in applications should have supported out of the box (never mind the fact it still doesn't support it despite several firmware updates). Nokia's solution to the lack of Destinations was to bundle SmartConnect, but even this was broken in the initial release of 031.023 (there's a patch now available from SmartConnect for those who have already got the broken firmware).

Nokia Messaging was a major hassle for me, taking a lot of calls to Nokia Care to get it fix due to a corrupted account on their side. Looking at the support forums, it's not an isolated incident.

Corruption of the phone requiring a full format hard reset is also fairly easy. In my case, I got the Destinations database corrupted by just using Easy WiFi (similar to SmartConnect). Apparently SC can do the same if you are not careful about where your 'smart' Access Point is defined when applying updates. Once corrupted, the only way to fix it is a hard reset wiping everything out.

Finally, 031.023 has made the GPS even worse. Maps has improved, now with WiFi locating akin to Google's similar service, but the integrated GPS just fails to lock on frequently, and Maps also doesn't make it clear which kind of lock you have got (true GPS, cell position or wifi position). I had a need to direct emergency services to my location and it was showing the cell location and not where I was (despite a vast expanse of clear blue sky and no buildings in sight).

The E72 still looks the part, and mine is holding up pretty well. It's still clunky in certain ways, but runs most apps okay without much error. I don't run into memory issues that some get. If the email client was vastly improved, GPS fixed and a few more bugs fixed, this would be a great phone. However I think it's too late for the E72, and Nokia knows this which is perhaps why it's largely neglected. But then 3rd edition is pretty much a dead platform now anyway, and soon 5th will be in the same boat. Nokia needs to get onto Symbian^4 ASAP, along with MeeGo to get any ground back from competitors.

Unregistered 15-06-2010 03:14 PM

Totally agree mate, is nokia really gonna take on apple and google and soon microsoft in the crowded media centric devices game? Its devices like the e71, e90 etc were nokia can really claim back market share, nobody wants to take on rim but nokia are the ones to do it. By all means build your N8's. But rock solid every day in day out robust handsets is what nokia used to do best.

ps still use my e71 all day everyday nothing around as yet to replace it apart from blackberry.

Unregistered 15-06-2010 04:13 PM

Nice update review. I agree with all the other comments though regarding remaining problems, the worst of which is the email application, which still contains many steps backwards from its predecessor.

1) No destinations support (largely alleviated by smartconnect)
2) Sent messages are stored locally on the phone, not in my imap sent folder (at least when using direct imap).
2) subject lines are sometimes altered when replying (eg anything enclosed in square brackets is omitted).

Very tempted to switch to profimail but find myself persevering with Nokia messaging (for now) because of the home screen integration. Sadly there also seems to be no real way to report the issues to Nokia besides griping on support forums.

I also find a disturbing number of apps are broken in some way, eg Ovi store won't let me search (you can type the search text in but can never submit it); e72 facebook app crashes when entering password, etc. I've seen other people report these same issues so am sure it's not just me. Better quality control needed!

suyogmh 15-06-2010 09:49 PM

Great review
Nice review David, almost same thought as me after using E72 for about 1 month.
I also agree with you about OVI sync application, what is point of creating another app? better give scheduling option in existing thing.
Also I found autofocus thing very tricky, and as some user has mentioned OVI store doesnt let me search :(
Hey one more question, did you get Advanced Call Manager after FW update in E55?
I dont have it in my E52.

Fred* 16-06-2010 05:23 AM


Originally Posted by UKJeeper (Post 468274)
Because you have an E71. The space bar/torch feature is on the E72.

However, there are 3rd party torch applications available through the Ovi Store.

UKJeeper - I was referring to the reviewers comment that "as on the E71 and E63" the E72 also have the space bar torch light. I guess he was in error. Thanks for the clarification.

gab 16-06-2010 09:13 AM

To search for something into Ovi Store you have to enter the text and then hold down the pad until the "search" button turns active...

UKJeeper 16-06-2010 02:45 PM


Originally Posted by Fred* (Post 468361)
UKJeeper - I was referring to the reviewers comment that "as on the E71 and E63" the E72 also have the space bar torch light. I guess he was in error. Thanks for the clarification.

No problem. I did wonder about that myself. :D

davidgilson 16-06-2010 03:50 PM

Thanks for the comments all.

I just wanted to set the record straight on the E-mail client used in FP2, it almost sounds like some of you are using a completely different!

I agree that the lack of Destinations support disappointing, but I don't think it's a show stopping issue.

People who have found their sent mail not saved on their IMAP server must have configuration issues. I've used the FP2 e-mail client on the E55 and E72 with two different IMAP providers and my mail was always saved in the IMAP sent folder.

I'd like to know how people find this worse than the older e-mail clients. The biggest difference of all is the ability to move messages into sub-folders, this is essential for e-mail triage, and the "Inbox Zero" philosophy. Also, access to folders is better, because it isn't taking space away from the message list, and are instead contained in a drop-down folder. I think these factors alone make the FP2 e-mail cilent the better than any other built-in e-mail client seen on S60.

deadkenny 17-06-2010 12:24 PM

The issue with lack of Destinations is a near show stopper to me given I roam between office, home and other locations with the great outdoors in between. Every time I move location I have to go into the email client and change the damn access point!

Destinations provides a great way of prioritising the access points, and it should just be able to swap between them at leisure. In fact it does exactly this with MfE, which is the only part of the client that does support Destinations.

Okay there is SmartConnect, but I've yet to apply the "patch" to fix the broken version they shipped in 031.023. I'm wary of SC anyway after Easy WiFi (similar to SC) bricked my E72, and the Easy WiFi devs said it was largely out of their hands due to the way the Nokia API creates APs (more so that the APs are protected and once corrupted you can't delete them).

The other issues in my opinion are, new users finding Nokia Messaging so confusing (or just not understanding what's going on when they configure their email, or what NM is about), the home screen only allowing notification on two mailboxes, the client viewer being slow to scroll with the optical nav, not rendering HTML by default (or providing an option to do so), downloading attachments doesn't always work, not being able to copy text from a mail, the annoying "feature" of highlighting any number in a mail and assuming it's a phone number (and jumping to that highlight as you scroll), can't view all IMAP folders, no option in NM to poll periodically instead of being always on push, the 'mail' button on the phone just goes to the first mailbox defined when you set up NM, the sent mail issue, no IMAP IDLE support in manually configured mailboxes, NM can't cope with SSL secured IMAP mailboxes or on different ports (despite having the options to configure these), no ability to have more than one MfE config, MfE occassionally gets stuck on 3g/gprs connection when you are in range of WLAN, and only a reboot will drop the connection, and occasional phone lock up issues when viewing mails.

As for the IMAP sent mail issue. I've got numerous mailboxes via known ISPs and my own IMAP server. None of them put the sent mail on the server when sending from the phone. Yes there's a potential issue if the server's sent mail folder is not spelt the same as on the phone, but in some cases it definitely is, but it still stores them locally.

davidgilson 18-06-2010 05:50 AM

By the sounds of it we are talking about different e-mail clients. You're talking about Nokia Messaging, I'm talking about the stand-alone e-mail client that Nokia licenced for all FP2 phones, and it has nothing to do with Nokia Messaging. So I suggest you use that rather than Nokia Messaging.

Phew :)

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