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Nokia N97 review

3.4/10 AVG.
RATING



3.4/10
Informr score
The Nokia N97 currently has an Informr score of 3.4 out of 10. This score is based on our evaluation of 9 sources including reviews from users and the web's most trusted critics.


Operating system
Symbian
Processor
434 MHz
Screen Size
3.5"
Camera
5+ MP


What the Critics Are Saying...


Nokia Phone Blog

The original N97 wasn’t worth the price of admission. Now that the price has dropped to more reasonable levels, you may be considering picking it up. Here’s the problem: the N97 is a sort of jack-of-all-trades, master of none. It’s got the touch interface, physical keyboard, high-p...

- ang, Nokia Phone Blog
Softpedia

I wanted to like Nokia N97, I have tried to find something new and innovative that could make me buy one, but I simply couldn't find a strong reason to do it. There are other communication solutions that offer more than Nokia N97 and for a much reasonable price. My impression is that the Finnish gia...

- Cosmin Vasile, Softpedia
PhoneDog

I wish I could have found more positive things to say about this device. I'm sure fans will not be happy with this review, but the simple truth is that the Nokia N97 is the most unusable phone I have ever held to date. I was notified on my second run with the phone (I gave up on it the first time ar...

- John Walton, PhoneDog
MobileBurn

The Nokia N97 is the flagship smartphone in the world's premier cell phone manufacturer's multimedia product line. Its large 3.5-inch 360x640 pixel resolution touchscreen display, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, and impressive 1500mAh battery make for an awesome productivity combination. Multimedia is we...

- Ricky Cadden, MobileBurn
Phone Scoop

Nokia's N Series phones are not known for their tiny stature. The N95, N96 and E91 are all the spiritual predecessors of the N97, and it carries forward the large, bulky form of those phones. It is thick. It is heavy. It is one big phone (or a very small laptop, depending on your point of view).The...

- Eric M. Zeman, Phone Scoop


Prices (Where to Buy)




Common Questions


Nokia released the N97 on December 2, 2008.


We've got you covered! Download a free PDF copy of the Nokia N97 user manual here.


Nokia backs up the N97 with a 1 Year parts & labour warranty.


If your N97 has problems and is still within its warranty period, you could contact Nokia support or the retailer you purchased the phone from. You'll find Nokia's contact information here. If your phone is off warranty and needs repair for a physical problem such as a broken screen or bad battery, you should visit an authorized service centre or a local phone repair shop. You can also connect with others in The Informr Community Forum to find and share answers to questions.



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Quick view

Screen Size
3.5"

The Nokia N97's screen size is 3.5 inches with x pixels resolution.

Processor
434 MHz

There is a ARM11 434 MHz processor (CPU).

OS

The phone runs on proprietary operating system firmware.

Camera
5+ MP

You can take photos or capture video with the phone's onboard 5+ megapixel camera.

There is also a secondary front facing camera useful for video chat and self portraits.

Storage
32 GB

Internal memory is 32 GB. An external, MicroSD (up to 16 GB) expansion slot is available for increased storage capacity.

Battery
1500mAh

The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 1500 mAh battery. Nokia's performance ratings are 18 days standby time, 400 minutes.

Nokia N97 Specs

Overview
Release date December 2, 2008
Regions available USA, Canada
Networks
GSM:
850/900/1800/1900 MHz
UMTS:
900/1900/2100 MHz
Data:
GPRS, EDGE, HSDPA
SIM card Yes
Dual SIM No
Operating System

Compare Symbian Smartphones

Processor ARM11 434 MHz
Internal Storage 32 GB
RAM 128 MB
ROM 256 MB
Digital compass No
Flightmode No
Hearing Aid Compatible Yes
TTY/TDD Yes
Noise Cancellation No
SAR Head: 0.66 W/kg
Languages No
Manufacturer Warranty 1 Year
Accessories Included AC Charger, Data Cable, Headset, Manual, Standard Battery
Power & battery
Type Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
Battery Capacity 1500 mAh
Removable Battery Yes
Wireless Charging No
Fast Charging No
Video Playback Time Unknown
Internet Use (Wi-Fi) Unknown
Internet Use (Celluar) Unknown
Talk Time Up to: 400 minutes
Standby Time Up to: 18 days
Physical Characteristics
Design type Slider
Multi-Use Smart Phone / PDA Yes
Colors Black, White
Dimensions [H x W x D] 11.7 x 5.5 x 1.6 cm (4.6 x 2.2 x 0.6 in)
Weight 150 grams
Water Resistant / Waterproof Unknown
Rugged design No
IP Rating No
Antenna Type Internal
Changeable Faceplates No
Display / Screen
Type Color
Technology LCD (TFT)
Colors 16.7 million
Resolution x pixels
Pixel density Unknown
Size 3.5 inches
3D No
Secondary Display No
Graphics Yes
Themes Yes
Backlit Illumination Yes
Zoom / Magnification No
Screen Orientation Lock No
Multi-Touch No
Fingerprint-Resistant Coating No
Additional Display Features -
Input / Navigation
Sleep / Wake Key No
Home Key No
Mute Key No
Input Type QWERTY
Navigation Type D-pad, Touchscreen
Predictive Text Entry T9
Physical keyboard No
Voicemail Key Yes
Any Key Answer No
Voice Commands Yes
Keypad/Screen Lock No
External Volume Control Yes
External Media Playback Controls No
Fingerprint Sensor No
Call Management
Wi-Fi Calling No
Voice over LTE (VoLTE) No
Contact List Capacity Depends on system memory
Multiple Numbers Per Contact Unknown
Contact Groups No
Auto Answer No
Voice Activated Dialing Yes
Photo Caller ID Yes
Web / Email / Messaging
Web Browser Yes
Email Client Yes
Email Protocols POP3, IMAP, SMTP, Microsoft Exchange, Lotus Domino
Additional Email Features -
Messaging SMS, EMS, MMS, AIM, MSN
Push-to-talk (PTT) Yes
Connectivity
USB Yes
USB OTG Support No
Infrared No
Bluetooth Yes
Bluetooth Profiles No
Bluetooth Audio Codecs SBC
WiFi 802.11 b/g
WiFi Encryption Unknown
Mobile Hotspot No
WiMAX No
Memory Expansion Slot Yes
Expansion Slot Info MicroSD (up to 16 GB)
PC Synchronization Yes
TV Out Yes
DLNA Support No
NFC No
UMA Support Yes
Data Tethering Compatibility Yes
Java Applications Yes
Brew Applications No
ECML / Digital Wallet No
PictBridge Yes
Camera
Main Camera
Aperture
Unknown
Resolution
5+ megapixels
Dual lens
No
Zoom
Yes
Flash
Yes (LED)
Additional Rear Camera Info
Auto focus, Geotagging, Self-timer
Video Recording Formats
H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4, WMV, RealVideo
Video Recording Parameters
Front Camera
Zoom
Additional Front Camera Info
No
Video Recording Parameters
Audio / Video
Audio Playback Yes
Audio Formats MP3, eAAC+, eAAC, AAC, WAV
Radio Yes
Video Playback Yes
Video Playback Formats H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4, WMV, RealVideo
Mobile TV No
Streaming Video No
External Speakers No
Headset Jack Other / proprietary
Custom Ringtones No
Vibration Alert Yes
Downloadable Ringtones Yes
Ringtone Composer No
Ringer ID Yes
Haptic Feedback Vibration No
Speakerphone Yes
Apps
To-Do / Task List Yes
Calendar Yes
World Clock Yes
Alarm Yes
Stop Watch No
Timer Yes
Calculator Yes
Currency Converter Yes
Document Viewer Yes
Viewable document types BMP, DOC, GIF, HTML, JPG, PPT, RTF, TXT, XLS
Weather No
Stocks No
Maps Yes
NotePad Yes
Voice Memos / Recorder Yes
Games Downloadable
Apps No ()
Included Software / Apps -
More
Additional comments -
Related Links Manual (PDF)
Nokia N97 Reviews
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Critic Reviews


Nokia Phone Blog

The N97 isn’t a bad phone at all, it could just be a heck of a lot better

from Nokia Phone Blog

The original N97 wasn’t worth the price of admission. Now that the price has dropped to more reasonable levels, you may be considering picking it up. Here’s the problem: the N97 is a sort of jack-of-all-trades, master of none. It’s got the touch interface, physical keyboard, hig...More

The original N97 wasn’t worth the price of admission. Now that the price has dropped to more reasonable levels, you may be considering picking it up. Here’s the problem: the N97 is a sort of jack-of-all-trades, master of none. It’s got the touch interface, physical keyboard, high-powered camera, WebKit-based browser, but none of these things are done particularly well. They’re just kind of okay.

Read full review

Less

Softpedia

The innovative design, impressive display, low battery

from Softpedia

I wanted to like Nokia N97, I have tried to find something new and innovative that could make me buy one, but I simply couldn't find a strong reason to do it. There are other communication solutions that offer more than Nokia N97 and for a much reasonable price. My impression is that the Finnish giant launched another "unfinished" product, which became obsolete right at launch. Technology advances fast and it appears that Nokia simply cannot keep the pace with its rivals...

More

I wanted to like Nokia N97, I have tried to find something new and innovative that could make me buy one, but I simply couldn't find a strong reason to do it. There are other communication solutions that offer more than Nokia N97 and for a much reasonable price. My impression is that the Finnish giant launched another "unfinished" product, which became obsolete right at launch. Technology advances fast and it appears that Nokia simply cannot keep the pace with its rivals.

The Good

Well, there are some good things even in a bad phone, so Nokia N97 still has its good parts. These are the impressive display, the full QWERTY keyboard, HSDPA and Wi-Fi technologies, plus the built-in GPS receiver (with three months of free voice guidance). Also, the 5-megapixel camera is superior to most cameras of the same kind. The music player and the 3.5mm jack port are exceptional as well.

The Bad

The battery is so low that it will drain way too fast if you use the phone to talk too much. Such a big display would've made a nice addition if you had had a good browser or an eye-candy UI. Symbian OS 9.4 with S60 5th Edition UI cannot be compared to the iPhone's UI or Android. The lack of some free business tools like document readers is another letdown.

Read full review

Less

PhoneDog

Cool slider form-factor but maddeningly glitchy software

from PhoneDog

I wish I could have found more positive things to say about this device. I'm sure fans will not be happy with this review, but the simple truth is that the Nokia N97 is the most unusable phone I have ever held to date. I was notified on my second run with the phone (I gave up on it the first time...More

I wish I could have found more positive things to say about this device. I'm sure fans will not be happy with this review, but the simple truth is that the Nokia N97 is the most unusable phone I have ever held to date. I was notified on my second run with the phone (I gave up on it the first time around) that a major software update was available. After hassling with the Windows-only updater and more low battery issues, I finally accomplished the update. I saw no practical improvement.

Read full review

Less

MobileBurn

The flagship smartphone with a slide-out QWERTY keyboard, impressive battery

from MobileBurn

The Nokia N97 is the flagship smartphone in the world's premier cell phone manufacturer's multimedia product line. Its large 3.5-inch 360x640 pixel resolution touchscreen display, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, and impressive 1500mAh battery make for an awesome productivity combination. Multimedia is well-covered by the whopping 32GB of internal storage and microSD card slot, and the phone's 5 megapixel autofocus camera does a great job of capturing the moment. Unfortunately, the pitiful amount of RAM and single-core processor make the N97 slower than its other Nseries counterparts, which is noticeable when you try to multitask. Also, its firmware feels half-baked, with frequent freezes and numerous bugs.

The phone is built like a tank, though, with a high-quality fit and finish and sturdy sliding hinge. After a few more firmware upgrades, the N97 will be a force to be reckoned with, but for now, it's only decent. We at MobileBurn.com give the Nokia N97 a 'Recommended' rating, possibly upgraded with future firmware updates....

More

The Nokia N97 is the flagship smartphone in the world's premier cell phone manufacturer's multimedia product line. Its large 3.5-inch 360x640 pixel resolution touchscreen display, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, and impressive 1500mAh battery make for an awesome productivity combination. Multimedia is well-covered by the whopping 32GB of internal storage and microSD card slot, and the phone's 5 megapixel autofocus camera does a great job of capturing the moment. Unfortunately, the pitiful amount of RAM and single-core processor make the N97 slower than its other Nseries counterparts, which is noticeable when you try to multitask. Also, its firmware feels half-baked, with frequent freezes and numerous bugs.

The phone is built like a tank, though, with a high-quality fit and finish and sturdy sliding hinge. After a few more firmware upgrades, the N97 will be a force to be reckoned with, but for now, it's only decent. We at MobileBurn.com give the Nokia N97 a 'Recommended' rating, possibly upgraded with future firmware updates.

Read full review

Less

Phone Scoop

Not a cheap phone with a lot of powerful tools

from Phone Scoop

Nokia's N Series phones are not known for their tiny stature. The N95, N96 and E91 are all the spiritual predecessors of the N97, and it carries forward the large, bulky form of those phones. It is thick. It is heavy. It is one big phone (or a very small laptop, depending on your point of view).<...More

Nokia's N Series phones are not known for their tiny stature. The N95, N96 and E91 are all the spiritual predecessors of the N97, and it carries forward the large, bulky form of those phones. It is thick. It is heavy. It is one big phone (or a very small laptop, depending on your point of view).

The fit, finish and materials of the N97 don't live up to the $700 price tag. Truth be told, I'd be ticked off if I paid $700 for this phone, at least as far as the hardware is concerned. The plastics are thin and feel cheap. The battery cover feels downright flimsy. There are odd gaps where the two halves of the phone meet. Frankly, I am stunned at the poor craftsmanship. Nokia can do better.

Read full review

Less

BGR

Nokia`s flagship device

from BGR

Nokia tried really hard here, but to be honest, speaking from my personal opinion, the second I saw the N97 announcement I skipped right over it in my head. I’m the biggest N95-4 fan you’ll find — but S60 5th Edition with a resistive screen, horrible keyboard and horrible naviga...More

Nokia tried really hard here, but to be honest, speaking from my personal opinion, the second I saw the N97 announcement I skipped right over it in my head. I’m the biggest N95-4 fan you’ll find — but S60 5th Edition with a resistive screen, horrible keyboard and horrible navigational buttons? No thank you. The problem with the Nokia N97 is — and please don’t take this the wrong way — that this exact phone could have been launched 2 years ago and no one would have blinked. What other phone can you take out of it’s current place, drop back two years, and have no one question where it came from? Take the Palm Pre for better or worse, and bring it back to 2007. People would have heart attacks. What about the iPhone? Well, you know how that turned out. BlackBerry Storm? People would have broken through glass to get it. But, no one really would care about the N97 and that, besides not being a device we enjoyed using, is the larger issue. Nokia has lost its place in the sun when looking at the consumer smartphone market and until they get back on track, RIM, Apple, Windows Mobile, Palm and Android are going to continue eating more and more of their lunch.

Read full review

Less

Dial-a-Phone

The Nokia N97 is designed to serve the needs of the person who wants full multimedia features from their mobile phone experience

from Dial-a-Phone

When it comes down to it, the Nokia N97 is a solid phone that offers a lot of great features that people want from their mobile phones today. People are seeking a full multimedia phone experience that includes complete Internet access and they’re going to get that from the Nokia N97. With the inclusion of bonus features like document viewing and mobile VoIP via Skype, this phone really does have a lot to offer. However, the high price and the competition in the market from other comparable touchscreen smartphones could make it so that the Nokia N97 doesn’t do as well as originally anticipated when the phone was first announced back in December....

More

When it comes down to it, the Nokia N97 is a solid phone that offers a lot of great features that people want from their mobile phones today. People are seeking a full multimedia phone experience that includes complete Internet access and they’re going to get that from the Nokia N97. With the inclusion of bonus features like document viewing and mobile VoIP via Skype, this phone really does have a lot to offer. However, the high price and the competition in the market from other comparable touchscreen smartphones could make it so that the Nokia N97 doesn’t do as well as originally anticipated when the phone was first announced back in December.

We also recommend checking out Mobile-Phones-UKs Nokia N97 review and if you still want a third opinion Recommended Buys also has a great Nokia N97 review.

Read full review

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User Reviews


It is a phone loaded with usefull apps which are all useless because of small ram

I have given up, tried all the forum advice I could find and send it in to vodacom for sorting out the software, but end up not being able to read sms because of no ram space. My next phone will be the I-phone, end of storey.

i hate these phone

very bad phone

Nokia N97 Videos