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Nokia Asha 302 QWERTY keypad hands-on

Published by Stephen Ebert March 23, 2012

Nokia Asha 302 QWERTY keypad hands-on

Published by Stephen Ebert March 23, 2012

The Nokia Asha 302 joins the growing band of new Series 40 handsets designed for those that love to keep in touch and use social networks on a budget. One of its standout features is its QWERTY keypad. Where would a messaging phone be without it? Here we take a look at how it performs, in our Nokia Asha 302 QWERTY keypad hands-on.

Nokia Asha 302 unboxing review

Just like the Nokia Asha 201 we recently reviewed, the Nokia Asha 302 is another entry-level Series 40 handset that doesn’t quite pack in the features of top-end smartphones, but combines all you need to keep in touch.

Shortcuts to WhatsApp instant messenger, integration with social networks and a full QWERTY keypad see the Nokia Asha 302 well-equipped for doing so.

Speaking of which, lets take a look at that keypad. The first thing we noticed when laying our hands on it was just how much better it feels compared to the Nokia Asha 201. The keys are plastic, but have an almost slightly rubbery texture to them, helping you to keep a grip when texting, especially when you’re in a hurry and on  the move.

The keys are also slightly larger than those on the Asha 201, giving you that little more room to type. You’ll find Enter keys, a backspace button and the usual symbols. A tab button lets you select between symbols, numbers and letters. In some cases holding down on a letter make a number appear.

It’s all very intuitive, and doesn’t take long at all to get used to. You’ll manage to type messages quicker than you would on an alpha numeric or small touchscreen device, but it isn’t without its flaws.

During one-handed texting, typing is nimble, except when you have to reach to the other end of the keypad. If you’re right handed, reaching for the backspace key with your thumb can be a pain. Literally.

Two-handed texting brings its own problems. The keypad feels cramped. Our biggest complaint though is that the keys are too solid. We’d like a bit more spring, especially on the spacebar, which we feel is raised a little too much. A slight downwards slope to fit our thumbs would make all the difference.

It hardly hampers the experience enough to discount the Nokia Asha 302 altogether. In short bursts the keyboard is perfectly useable. We just think those with smaller hands will appreciate it a lot more.

Check out our Nokia Asha 302 keyboard review photo gallery:

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