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Nokia Launches New E72 Blackberry-Like Smartphone

Finnish manufacturer Nokia has unveiled the E72, the successor to its very popular E71 smartphone, which boasts a QWERTY keyboard à la blackberry.

The new phone will come with a 5-megapixel camera, a welcomed upgrade from the 3.2-megapixel model on the E71, plus an optical navigation pad (called the Optical Navi Key) like the one available on some Samsung models, an integrated compass, A-GPS and a 3.5mm audio port located on the top.

Other improvements includes a 10.2mbps HSDPA connection, Nokia messaging with lifetime license, pre-installed Nokia Maps, WiFi, Quickoffice 5.3 with Microsoft Office 2007 support and a LED flashlight torch, all packed in a 128g Aluminium body that's only 10mm thick.

The E72 still comes with a 2.4-inch display capable of showing 320x240 pixels and runs on a S60 3rd generation platform; Nokia has thrown in a 4GB microSD card to complement the 40MB worth of onboard memory (that's down from 110MB). The microSD card can be upgraded to 16GB.

Judiciously enough, Nokia has added support for Mail for Microsoft Exchange as well as IBM Lotus Notes Traveler for busy business persons and Built-in mobile VPN for convenient intranet access.

Expect the E72 to be available during the third quarter of 2009 for around £300 SIM Free. The E71 Currently sells for £295 at Nokia but you can get it for a mere £20 per month with unlimited text, skype, email and internet from 3 Network (opens in new tab) on a 18 month contract with 200 anytime, any network minutes.

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The E72 is likely to carry the E71's legacy as an aesthetically pleasant, well designed and sturdy workhorse. We've got the old E71 in the office and the only complain we had was about the 2.5mm headphone socket that clearly was something overlooked. This has now been replaced. If 3 Networks can keep down the price, I might just have found my next phone.

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Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.