Nokia Asha 300
A simple and affordable phone
Not many consumers want a phone that looks like something made a couple of years ago. They mostly prefer smartphones and what such devices have to offer. But then there are some users who still love simpler and affordable phones which nonetheless deliver good performance. Nokia is not as successful as it once was. But it kept its head high and went on its own road. The latest device to come from the Finnish manufacturer is the Asha 300. It is a phone that will certainly not let you down. And it costs under €100. We tested it and offer our readers the following review.
The Asha 300 is part of a new series made by Nokia. This is in no way a device where looks are the most important factor. The frame is made only of plastic. Which will annoy some buyers and leave others indifferent, since they are not interested in design so much as in the phone’s price and performance. Speaking of which, we dropped the Asha 300 several times and each time it remained scratch-free. How many of today’s smartphones can do that? But this phone is not heavy. It only weighs 85g. Its 112.8 mm x 49.5 mm x 12.7 mm make it very compact indeed.
The newest Nokia phone has a screen which measures 2.4″. Its greatest assets are the TFT and resistive features. The quality of what we got to see on this kind of display is not phenomenal. But it certainly isn’t hard to read the text. Except when you take it outside, since this touchscreen is not anti-reflective. But other than this con, the screen gives very good haptic feedback. Images look bright and the resolution is a QVGA type.
Under the screen sits a keypad. So if you are not a fan of what the iPhone 4S offers, you can always turn to this kind of phone and press some physical buttons for a change. The buttons fortunately feature backlight. And they are not at all difficult to press. We had issues with the ones for Lock and Volume, though, because they were really stiff. Despite this being a non-QWERTY phone, composing a message works like a charm.
The interface uses Series 40 software, the same as what the Asha 303 employs. It’s all good. Navigation is very easy and you get to do quite a lot with this UI. And it offers one novelty: an updated slide-to-unlock lockscreen.
The web browser dealt with Internet pages in a professional manner. Even with the more complex ones.
The features sported by the Asha 300 are all the same as on every other phone these days. There is nothing fancy going on here.
The quality of the device’s loudspeaker was very good in tests. Reception, too, was exceptional. Sound quality did not disappoint. Voices were clear. But, despite that, the volume did not work as we hoped it would. We turned it all the way up, and yet we couldn’t hear our friend loud enough.
The 5MP camera you can use for snapping pics and recording videos is kind of so-so. Clips look fairly OK. Shadows in pics will feature plenty of noise on the one hand. But photos taken when there is plenty of light look good.
Listening to music was a delightful experience. Without plugging in headphones, that is. Because once we did that for this reiew, things changed to the worse. So it’s best to avoid using them.
The Nokia Asha 300 is the kind of phone which is aimed at people who want simplicity, but good performance.