Nokia Astound (Unlocked Quadband) Smartphone
Nokia makes beautiful hardware, and the Astound is gorgeous. It's made of smooth metal, classy plastic, and expensive-looking glass, and has a bit of the air of a fashion object. At 4.6 ounces it's solid but not too heavy, and at a well-rounded 4.6 by 2.2 by 0.4 inches (HWD) it fits very easily in your hand. The 3.5-inch, 640-by-360 touch screen looks a little bit dim indoors, but works unusually well outdoors in sunlight. On the right-hand side of the handset, there's a useful hardware lock switch, a dedicated Camera button, and Volume buttons. has an unusual radio setup: an HSPA 10.2 radio with quad-band EDGE and 850/900/AWS/2100MHz 3G support. The speed is between 3G and 4G (although it feels slower because of the slow Web browser) and the radio works well on T-Mobile's and foreign networks, but won't work well on AT&T, since it doesn't hit 1900 MHz 3G. The phone also connects to 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, and works as a wired modem for your laptop, with the right service plan. The Astound runs the latest version of the Symbian^3 OS, which Nokia aims to essentially abandon in favor of Windows Phone 7 within the next few years. The company has sketched out some upcoming software updates and insists that development goes on, but it's hard to reconcile. Symbian^3 has some good features, most notably excellent multitasking, but I find it more difficult to use than other smartphone OSes; the menu layout just isn't intuitive for people who don't already have Symbian phones. Several times reviewing Symbian phones, I've needed help figuring out how to do basic tasks, like replace home screen widgets or make the mapping program create a route between two points. I'm not a cell phone or smartphone beginner.
- Nokia Astound (Unlocked Quadband) Smartphone
- User Manual
- USB Cable
- Battery Charger