Review: Nokia C3-01 Touch & Type
The C3 has a 2.4-inch touch display with 240 x 320 pixels. Though the resolution is a notch or two lower than I'd like it to be, it does a fine job with the smaller screen size. Most images, text and graphics appear smooth and free of jagged edges. You can tell the display is resistive, however, as it has that slight haze to it . The haze didn't affect brightness, though. It was plenty visible indoors and survived indirect sunlight fairly well.
The C3 isn't being sold directly by U.S. carriers, but it supports AT&T's 3G bands. That said, it was an absolute signal hound. Either Nokia rigged the signal indicator to always display 5 bars of service, or the C3 has the most amazing antenna ever built. No matter what I did with the C3, almost always showed 5 bars. Where the C3 did fluctuate was in the type of network connection. It bounced between 3.5G, 3G and even EDGE a couple of times (though all with 5 bars). Odd behavior. In practical terms, the C3 never missed a call. Calls always went through on the first try, and it never dropped any calls. Data speeds were unreliable, though.
Phone call quality ranged from stellar to muddy. I'd say about two-thirds of calls were crystal clear, without any sort of digital sound or noise. The other third were mediocre to poor. Connection type had no discernible impact here. I got good calls and bad calls on 3.5G, 3G and EDGE. The earpiece speaker provided a sufficient level of volume for quiet to moderately noisy environments, but it's not strong enough for the loudest places. I had trouble hearing conversations in a crowded shopping mall, windy sidewalk, and noisy coffee shop. The ringer alerts were loud enough so that they won't be missed, but only if you set them at the maximum volume. Using a medium setting might result in some missed calls. The vibrate alert was of average strength. I'd have preferred it offer a bit more kick. The volume of the speakerphone was outstanding, and the quality was excellent.
The C3 is yet another Nokia device with excellent battery life. It easily lasted three days with power to spare, even with the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios active at all times. A solid amount of voice calls, messaging and Web surfing appeared to have no impact on the C3's battery life. About the only thing that directly affected the battery was using the camera's flash. With that thing snapping away, you might expect to see reduced battery life. Otherwise, you're good to go for a weekend getaway sans charger.