Review: Nokia 7705 Twist
Huey Lewis would be disappointed in me, but not the Twist. I'm not hip to be square, I guess. Phones like the Twist just aren't for me. The Twist resembles a make-up case more than it does a phone. In fact, it would be easy to mistake one for the other.
The Twist is compact and features shiny surfaces all over. It is smooth, and feels pretty good in the hand, though it's a bit heavy for its small size. Pockets are no problem for the Twist. It'll worm its way into pretty much any pocket you care to shove it into. When open, it feels solid, balanced and comfortable.
The front face of the Twist has a decent sized display. Under it is a D-pad. The D-pad feels excellent. For my money, it's one of the best D-pads from Nokia in recent memory. All the directions feel good and have satisfying travel and feedback. It's easily found and just works. The soft keys to the left and right of the D-pad are touch-sensitive. They were very responsive and I didn't experience too many instances where I needed to re-press the buttons. In the lower left corner of the Twist's front fascia is a larger touch-sensitive key that serves as the back/clear function. There are no send/end keys on the front face of the Twist when it is closed.
To the right of the D-pad is the hinge that allows the Twist to, well, er, Twist. What's novel is that the hinge is actually a hole. You can see through the Twist. Not a lot of phones have holes in them like that. The hinge is super solid. It feels exceptionally well designed and manufactured. I felt no weakness in the hinge at all. The top half of the Twist will rotate open with just a little bit of pressure from your thumb. It is spring-loaded and will pop open once you get it past a certain point. Same goes for closing it, it will spring shut, too.
Opened, users have access to the full QWERTY keyboard. This is, perhaps, the best keyboard ever made by Nokia. The odd shape of the Twist gives the phone the right amount of width to comfortably fit a QWERTY keyboard in that's not too wide and not too narrow. The keys themselves are all covered in a soft-touch material that prevents your thumbs from slipping all over the keyboard. The keys are well spaced, and have the perfect amount of travel and feedback. The top row of keys is filled with shortcuts to the messaging, music, browser, voice commands speakerphone and camera apps. The Twist's keyboard easily bests the N97, the N97 Mini, the N900 and, yes, even the E71. It's simply more usable. Well done, Nokia.
When open, the back of the top portion of the Twist doubles as a mirror, which really underscores the make-up kit appeal of the Twist.
The microUSB charge/data port is on the left side of the phone. It's easy to open, but the hatch is placed a little too close to the port itself, forcing uses to squeeze the cable into the port. Below that is the volume toggle. The toggle is easy to find and use, and has good travel and feedback in both directions. The microSD card slot is on the right side of the phone. No problems there, it works well. There is a 2.5mm headset jack below that, which means most stereo music headphones won't work without an adapter.
The battery cover comes off no problem, but you won't really need to remove it unless you're going to replace it with one of the colored covers that comes in the box.
In sum, if you don't mind the odd form factor, the Twist is one well-put-together phone.