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Nokia 500 Review

Nokia 500

Posted: , by Daniel P.



Nokia 500 Review
Call quality in the Nokia 500 is very good, with loud voices in the earpiece without any notable distortion, while on the receiving end they said we sounded clear and with good volume. There is no dedicated microphone for noise-cancellation, so the surrounding noise could be heard as well while we were talking.

The manufacturer is advertising the comparatively wimpy 5 hours of talk time in 3G mode. The battery is good for 5 hours and 15 minutes of video playback as well, as per manufacturer's specs.


Overall, the world’s largest phone maker by volume has trimmed specs from the right places to arrive to its new entry-level Symbian star, the Nokia 500. The lack of LED flash and the basic video capture capabilities of the 5MP camera module seem to be the main victims that fell in the quest for a low-end pricing. Others, like less RAM and smaller battery we can live with, as they don’t affect usability that much – besides, the update to Symbian Belle will speed the interface up significantly.

On the other hand, we have a well-built affordable handset with nice soft-touch plastic grip and comfortable to hold shape, whose 3.2” display sports a pretty high 229ppi pixel density, making text easier to read while surfing with the basic default browser.

When we add the hardwired DivX/Xvid codecs support in the video player, and, above all, the free offline voice-guided navigation in most countries worldwide, the Nokia 500 seems poised to succeed in the footsteps of the 5800 XpressMusic, which sold millions around the globe.

The Nokia 500 would reign superior over the entry-level bada handsets of Samsung, for example, and cheap Androids like the Samsung Galaxy Y can only threaten it with the quantity of apps in Android Market, which, however, is a pretty formidable advantage. There is not much else you can buy with similar capabilities to the Nokia 500 in the $200 ballpark without a contract.

Software version of the review unit: 010.029

Nokia 500 Video Review:


  • Cheap but capable handset with pleasant design
  • Above average pixel density makes text crisp and easier to read
  • Hardwired DivX/Xvid video playback


  • Video capture with 15fps only
  • No camera flash
  • Symbian Anna is sluggish compared to Belle
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posted on 05 Oct 2011, 08:16 3

1. box (unregistered)

This might be the phone to tide me between the 5230 Nuron and either the Ace WP7 or the Symbian flagship, hopefully something higher-spec'd than the 701, whichever comes with a contract first

posted on 05 Oct 2011, 13:06

4. heulboje (unregistered)

A good looking (stylish) device which is going to satisfy everybody who wants to call/message around and perhaps wants to play around with his cellphone during a boring train journey...

Well done IMHO

posted on 06 Oct 2011, 02:13

5. Shiv179 (unregistered)

"It still has 256MB of RAM like the 2010 generation, and it shows when you are installing apps, for example – the progress bar doesn’t fly as quick as on the Nokia 701 with its 512MB"
So you are saying that installing apps is slower because of half the RAM?
Installing apps faster means having more RAM?
Are you serious?

posted on 06 Oct 2011, 09:25

6. Daniel.P (Posts: 108; Member since: 14 Jul 2011)

Fixed, thanks for the heads up :-)

posted on 14 Dec 2011, 20:30

7. kikiansyah (Posts: 1; Member since: 14 Dec 2011)

The Nokia 500 is the mass production of the new Nokia Symbian line, as it has the lowest specs out of the bunch announced in time for the holiday shopping craze. With that said, it’s no slouch, as it sports a decent display with 229ppi pixel density, 5MP camera and a 1GHz processor, based, however, on the older ARM 11 architecture

The Finns have skimped on things like an LED flash, and the internal memory – the handset has only 2GB - to keep costs down. The Nokia 500 ships with Symbian Anna unlike the rest of the new kids on the Symbian block, but is expected to receive a Belle upgrade further down the road.

An affordable handset from Nokia with decent specs and some colorful battery covers thrown in to keep things exciting is usually a Finnish recipe for success among teens and in emerging markets, but is that the case with the Nokia 500? Read on our review to find out…

Nokia 500 Review

Nokia 500 Review
What's in the box:

One Nokia 500 handset
Two extra swappable battery covers in different colors
Wall charger
MicroUSB cable
Stereo headset with microphone
Manual and warranty leaflets


The Nokia 500 is a true candybar phone with its narrow rectangular front, but turn it on its face to review the 5MP camera and the speaker grill, and a nice curved back is revealed. The tapered form and soft-touch plastic finish of the battery cover, plus the fact that the handset is chubby at 0.55” (14.1mm), make it very comfortable to hold and operate with one hand.

posted on 05 Jan 2012, 02:21

8. coolkid12130 (Posts: 3; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)


posted on 05 Jan 2012, 02:22

9. coolkid12130 (Posts: 3; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)

it has a small screen and it doesn't run on android.
android is way better

posted on 14 Feb 2012, 09:09

10. 1djmdosi (Posts: 1; Member since: 14 Feb 2012)

smart gadget bt slow downloader with no flash camera,,,bt smart indeed

posted on 06 Mar 2012, 09:46

11. celicnaruza21 (Posts: 1; Member since: 06 Mar 2012)

Hello all. I just bought this smart phone for 135 euros in Serbia (full equip, In store not with agreement.). I just tested some important features that were pain back in N97's ^3 symbian , Like dvix,crashes,UI(User Interface) and much more. I have 6 generations of Nokias . This is best phone i ever bought and its really cheap. I only dont like 256mb of RAM but 1ghz single core procesor makes surfing,gaming,browsing files switching trought open apps beautifull. I just got update from Anna to Belle and its working perfect. Belle os is like Android-Symbian system and it works perfectly . This phone is really preatty and its light. For 135 Euros(in Serbia) u get Dvix Player ,Web Browser via W-lan Photo 5mpx, 2gb of storage and much more... This is really god phone for average users that do not rape Hardware .

posted on 23 Mar 2012, 06:13

12. ddak12 (Posts: 1; Member since: 23 Mar 2012)


posted on 27 May 2012, 17:49

13. r3alqwerty (Posts: 1; Member since: 27 May 2012)

Hello. Tell me please, if the phone has lags or slows down when trying to open and read text file over 1000+ pages or .pdf about 10-20 mb? Using quickoffice or other reader apps.

posted on 09 Dec 2012, 04:32

15. jassibhalla02 (Posts: 3; Member since: 06 Dec 2012)

i have it..and use pdf and word files often..
size of the file does not matter.., if u zoom in, which one has to to read, navigation between pages does gets slower..open a 1000 page file or 2 page file., doesnt matter..

posted on 09 Dec 2012, 04:29

14. jassibhalla02 (Posts: 3; Member since: 06 Dec 2012)

i have it..yes, RAM is low.., everything else is upto the mark...upgraded to Belle Refresh, got new widgets,Microsoft Mobile Office 2010 can be installed., ..got space on SkyDrive after installing Microsoft One Note..
decent camera..pre-installed angry birds....and other apps..
got extended warranty upto 2014...
budget phone..u wont regret buying at this price range..better than samsung galaxy lower models..

posted on 03 Jul 2013, 05:57

16. samjony01 (Posts: 1; Member since: 03 Jul 2013)

Nokia 500 is latest mobile and feature is is advance from other mobile and app are very wonderful purchase as soon as possiable
Animation Notes

posted on 27 Jan 2014, 19:22

17. SmartNick009 (Posts: 1; Member since: 27 Jan 2014)

One of the Worst phone models I have ever used in the history of cellphone,it get used to stuck every time I used to open any application used in Nokia 500.You can't even adjust microSD Memory Card Chip Used in Nokia 500 Memory slot.Least but not true that this phone has some uncool features that it has no touch-pad to text or type the text messaging.You feel like breaking this phone into pieces.This phone is frusfrating to use.

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Nokia 500

Nokia 500

OS: Symbian Belle Anna
view full specs
PhoneArena rating:
Display3.2 inches, 360 x 640 pixels (229 ppi) TFT
Camera5 megapixels
Single core, 1000 MHz, ARM11 processor
0.25 GB RAM
Size4.38 x 2.12 x 0.56 inches
(111.3 x 53.8 x 14.1 mm)
3.28 oz  (93 g)
Battery1110 mAh, 7 hours talk time

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