Nokia C3 Review : Specs, Price, Photos, Verdict

As you all know, Nokia C3 is one of the most talked about phones on TP -- and for good reason; From the very time I saw it in the flesh back in April, I just knew this phone would be an instant hit when it reaches our shores.

nokia c3 review

Here's TechPinas' Quick Review of Nokia C3


Nokia C3 the is first Series 40 handset to don the Nokia E-series-esque full QWERTY thumb-type keypad trait. Made specifically for messaging – C3 comes with instant access to every user's favorite Social Networking, Chat and Email accounts courtesy of Nokia Messaging.

But it doesn’t end there. C3 users can also enjoy Ovi Chat, Ovi Mail and conversational SMS chat; allowing them to manage the chatter from their preferred contacts. Aside from keeping users in touch via its phone functions, Nokia C3 also boasts Wi-Fi connectivity support, a 2 MegaPixel camera, a 2.4-inch screen and a microSD card slot that supports to 8GB.

Nokia C3 is already available in the Philippines with a suggested retail price of Php 7,295. It comes in a variety of colors including Hot Pink, Slate Grey and Golden White.

In true TechPinas fashion, let's do the panels --

Top panel shows the 3.5mm headset jack and the charger slot;
nokia c3 review

Front panel, of course, has the 2.4 inches 320 x 240 pixels TFT screen. Above that, we have the earpiece and below, we can see the metallic navigation knob, the call and drop keys, two chrome buttons that you can personalize, select and back keys and the full QWERTY thumb-type keypad;
nokia c3 review

Left panel shows the microUSB port and the microSD card slot -- both covered by flaps of plastic. Near the bottom, you will see one of the pair of buttons you need to press when opening the metallic back case;
nokia c3 review

At the back panel, you will see the speaker for playing music without headset, the 2MP camera without flash and the metallic case that covers the battery;
nokia c3 review

Right panel has the lanyard loop at the bottom and the other button that you need to press to open the back case;
nokia c3 review

Bottom panel flaunts nothing but the mic pinhole
nokia c3 review

TP Verdict on Design, Construction and Keypad Quality:

Considering its very affordable price tag, Nokia C3's design identity and construction are surprisingly top notch. (Then again, it's Nokia.) The phones feels very solid in the hand and it doesn't flex at all when you hold it tightly. Tapered edges make the handset look sexier while chrome accents on the earpiece & the navigation keys as well as the metallic back case give C3 a sophisticated finish.

nokia c3 review

Nokia C3's QWERTY keypad is a joy to use. The keys are quite plump and feedback is great. You know how some QWERTY phones have keys that are stubborn or plain hard to press? C3's not like that at all. In fact, its keys even have that spring-y feedback when you press them.

Operating System

Nokia C3 runs (Symbian) Series 40, which is - in essence - a messaging-centric operating system.

nokia c3 review

And for what it is, it actually does its functions well. Series 40 is very easy to use -- I can't imagine anyone ever having a problem navigating it. Sending text messages and managing them are a total breeze. Also, you can customize the homepage to make essentials (like Inbox, Camera, Wifi, etc) more accessible.

Now, is Series 40 a smartphone OS? Hardly so. As such, it'd be unfair to expect it to perform like S60 in terms of internet features and running applications among other things.

Social Networking, Email and Chat - Nokia C3's Greatest Strengths

Putting aside its stellar form factor, perhaps the coolest thing about Nokia C3 is that it allows users to easily connect to Facebook and Twitter, access their Email account and chat with friends using either Wifi connection or Nokia Messaging.

nokia c3 review

To log-in to either Facebook or Twitter, all you have to do is to click on Communities Tab on the Homepage and enter your username and password on the boxes provided.

nokia c3 review

Nokia C3 allows users to read Facebook and Twitter updates from friends and loved ones and to post their own updates and upload images.

Here's how a Facebook update posted using Nokia C3 looks like on the actual site:

Get that green Ovi badge when you post updates using Nokia Messaging feature of Nokia C3. Cool, eh?

and here's the one for Twitter:

Email is also accessible via the homepage. All you have to do is to click on the @ sign to log-in to your account. Nokia C3 supports a variety of email providers including Gmail, Yahoo and Hotmail. I tried to access one of my Gmail accounts using the phone and the experience was great. The interface is simple and easy to use. Again, I don't think anyone will have a problem using it.

The same thing can be said about the Chat feature, which is likewise accessible from the homescreen (lower right corner).


Nokia C3 ships with pre-installed games, which include Block'd, Bounce Tales, Diamond Rush and Sudoku. All of these games are hardly specs-demanding but are nonetheless enjoyable. My favorite of the bunch is Bounce Tales --

nokia c3 review

Bounce Tales is a sequel to the original Nokia Bounce game. It is a vector-based 2D platformer, where the player controls and uses a red ball to solve puzzles, collect pick items and avoid various hazards and obstacles.

Internet Connectivity and Web Browsing Experience

While Nokia C3 allows you to connect to the internet, you can't really expect it to deliver great web-browsing experience like what an E-series or N-series Nokia phone can give. At most, web-browsing experience on Nokia C3 - even via Opera Mini - is just alright. I'd give it a 75/100 mark (, which is not bad at all considering that C3 is a messaging-centric device and is hardly a full-powered smartphone like any of the N-series releases).

Imaging and Video Capture

Like Web-browsing, photo and video capture feature is hardly in the list of strengths of Nokia C3. That's how it is.

Overall, photos and videos taken using Nokia C3 are just alright if you're using them for MMS or for showing Facebook friends where you are or who you are with.

Music Player and Audio Quality

Nokia C3's music player offers a decent feature set. It can sort songs by album, artist and genre and works with various file types, including AAC, MP3, AAC+, eAAC+, WMA and AMR-NB. A2DP profile is supported, allowing the use of Bluetooth earphones.

Audio quality is an area where Nokia handsets seems to excel recently. Fortunately, Nokia C3 is no exception; providing laudably clean audio output.

TP Verdict:

Nokia C3, I believe, is already a hit in the Philippines - and clearly, for good reason;
It's affordable and it offers more than what you would expect it to give.

For around Php 7,000, you get a phone with an amazing form-factor (looks svelte and expensive), has a great keypad, allows you to connect to Facebook and Twitter and to access your email on the go and lets you browse the web. If that isn't true value for your money, I seriously don't know what is.

All things considered, I'm inclined to give Nokia C3 9 out of 10 five-pointed stars.