Review: Nokia C2-00; Dual-SIM For African Market

In this era of mobile technology booming in Africa and Dual SIM phones becoming the preferred choice in most African countries; mobile phone manufacturing giant; Nokia also stepped into...

In this era of mobile technology booming in Africa and Dual SIM phones becoming the preferred choice in most African countries; mobile phone manufacturing giant; Nokia also stepped into the market with their latest Nokia C2-00 (GSM+GSM).
The Nokia C2-00 seems like a mid-range phone from the nineties at first, but this modest handset actually makes a lot of sense, and use. Being a dual-SIM, dual-standby phone is the obvious highlight: you can have two active phone lines in the same device.

Nokia C2-00 Language Options


The phone offers superior experience to any other dual-SIM phone on the market right now, remembering the settings for up to five different SIM cards without no compromise. Dual-Standby and Dual-SIM phones allow users to choose which SIM card to use for phone calls, messages and other functions, and switch between them easily from SIM to SIM.
The ‘Dual-Standby’ function means that you can always receive notification of phone calls and messages on each account – rather than having to switch your SIM cards on and off. The Nokia C2-00 dual SIM phone offers 19.2 days standby time, with 5.75 hours talk time.
Upon starting, you’ll find 4 different language options: English, Kiswahili, Deutsch and Francais on the phone which gives the user the option of choosing the language of choice. This feature alone makes me believe, this phone is made specifically for the Eastern African market.
 
Nokia C2-00 comes with Bluetooth, a microSD slot, a multimedia player, FM radio, VGA resolution camera, a 3.5mm audio connector, and in addition the standard sales package includes a Nokia WH-102 stereo wired headset (photo below)

Unboxing of the Nokia C2-00


The display is a basic 1.8″ 128 x 160 pixel panel, and network support is limited to dual-band GSM with GPRS data only, and the operating system is Series 40 rather than anything fancy.
The clever part with the C2-00 is the dual-SIM capability. Both SIMs are active at the same time, so it really is like having two phones at once as either SIM can receive calls and the user can decide which SIM to use when dialing out.
There’s no hiding that the Nokia C2-00 is a cheap phone – the camera is as basic as they get, but instead of putting fancy disguises; Nokia went ahead and added some features which makes the C2-00 even more helpful and cooler. Here’s what you get after buying the C2-00:

  • Entry level dual-SIM, dual-standby phone with decent features
  • Dual-band GSM/EDGE connectivity
  • Hot-swappable second SIM
  • 1.8? 65K-color 128×160 TFT display
  • Series 40 UI, 6th edition
  • Fixed-focus VGA camera
  • Nokia Messaging and Ovi Chat
  • Stereo FM radio with RDS; broadcast recording (in some markets)
  • Bluetooth 2.1 (with EDR)
  • Standard microUSB port
  • microSD card slot (32GB supported)
  • 3.5mm audio jack

Here are some of the dual-SIM functionalities of the C2-00:

  • Pop in a second SIM in the external slot anytime (either ON or OFF state) and the phone automatically recognizes it.
  • You can choose to have the phone ask you which SIM to use every time you send an SMS or you can set a default SIM to use automatically.
  • Each SMS message is appended by the name of the carrier and the SIM used. If you resend a failed SMS, you can also pick another SIM to send it.
  •  Both SIM uses the same Inbox (that’s why they append the name and SIM number on each SMS to differentiate).
  •  The phone remembers up to 5 SIMs so your settings will remain intact even if you swap around more than 2 SIM cards.

There’s only one little hiccup I encountered with this hot-swap strategy — you can’t use the external SIM slot as the solitary SIM. You will need the to use the internal SIM tray first before you can use the external slot.

For a suggested retail price of around GHc200.00; the C2-00 is actually a little more expensive than all other brands with the same dual-SIM functionality.

Where Nokia really excels is the brand-recognition, solid build and quality control and an excellent service warranty. I guess that’s what a lot of people are looking for when they want to part with their hard-earned money.

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Award-winning Ghanaian technology blogger, Mac-Jordan shares insights and stories on African innovations, digital marketing, startups, tech entrepreneurs and helpful tips for starter entrepreneurs. Get in touch: mj@macjordangh.com or text: +233(0)544335582.

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