CTIA Fall 2006
Nokia fessed up to the E62 some time ago, and it was a poorly kept secret at best that the device would launch on Cingular, the only real question left to answer was when. Yesterday the two companies answered that and let everyone know the E62 would go on sale before the end of this month.
Once the E62 was announced, then both companies revealed how closely they worked together on this project. Cingular basically hand picked which hardware and software features from the E61 would be inculded in this smartphone. Cingular wanted to bring out a QWERTY phone that was affordable enough and simple enough to appeal to a broader range of people. Cingular executives admitted they chose to leave out features like 3G and Wi-Fi to keep costs down. They also asked Nokia to drop their Pop-Port connector from the E62 and use mini-USB instead.
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But Cingular also added a few bits to the E62 as well. We knew the smartphone had a "My Own" key which serves as a shortcut to 5 applications the users can choose. The interface for it looks very similar to the media key on Nseries devices. It also has a version of Oz IM - a multi-IM client which can do Yahoo!, MSN and AIM. The E62 includes email software for syncing to Good, Blackberry, Exchange Server, and Cingular Xpress mail.
The E50 trades the E62's keyboard for a 1.3 Megapixel camera, but otherwise the two match nearly spec for spec (the E50 has a Micro SD slot not Mini SD). However the E50 doesn't look like a smartphone at all.
It is shockingly thin and actually rather small. It looks like a classic Nokia candybar - almost like an 6310 because of its rounded top, curved face, and clean thin form. Compared to Nokia's other Eseries phones, which are squarish and clunky, the E50 looks positively sexy.
They keys of the E50 feel large and nice, making it comfortable to tap out a reply to an email on the keypad, even though it would probably be shorter than one written on the E62. The QVGA screen is much smaller than the E62s, which makes it look much sharper - much like how the N80 / E70 screen looks even though that screen is much higher resolution.
The E50 is not for sale yet, but should be out this year. No American carrier has officially placed it on their roster yet, but considering it has all the same specs as the E62, Cingular could choose to pick it up if the E62 sells well. Maybe even T-Mobile will dabble in S60. At the very least, Nokia will offer it in their flagship stores and online.
On-the-scene coverage of CTIA Wireless 2006. Exclusive photos and hot info from Las Vegas.
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