Nokia's 3G phone hits UK, but how 3G is it?

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It doesn’t just look weird. The story surrounding the launch of Nokia’s first 3G phone for the UK is quite bizarre too.

On the plus side the 7600, with its tear-shaped design is certainly one of Nokia’s most iconic phones. It is also massively smaller than most of the 3G phone currently on sale. It should then be a no brainer for 3G network, Three, especially as the company is rumoured to be short of handsets.

As it doesn’t however feature Three’s signature feature, video calling, Three has passed on it. Well sort of it. Instead the 7600 is available from next month exclusively via Carphone Warehouse with a Three 3G contract. However which 3G features it actually boasts is open to question. According to the press release users will be able to watch some video content, like the news and the weather, but not see Three’s premium stuff like Premiership football and MTV music.

Fine, but there appears to be confusion as to what else the phone is able to do. Can it access POP3 e-mail? You can’t on Three’s other phones? What about WAP or even HTML sites? Again Three limits this to a small group of sites. Most important of all can users harness the 3G network to use the phone as a modem to power their laptops delivering broadband to go? Who knows?

So far the Carphone Warehouse has kept quiet. We think it hasn’t even made a decision on some of these points yet. Anyway we hope to have answers next week. There will also be a full review in The Guardian too.

Incidentally the 7600 is very light at 123g, has a 65k colour screen, MP3/AAC player, video camera (capable of capturing and sending clips of up to 2.5 minutes), video download, XHTML web browser, Bluetooth, and Java.

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