I continue to review the Nokia E71, this time it is the lighting aspect of the phone that I will concentrate on. In my last post on the E71 I talked about the design aspect of the phone.

I have found the E71 to be very good on this front. The designers over at Nokia have yet again delivered a product which has uniform lighting across the keypad and the screen.

Backlighting:

The backlighting of the screen is brilliant. Just like in the E66, I am using it a notch lower as I find it sufficient for my needs. There is no portion of the screen which feels lit poorly. The sensor does a good job of detecting the need for backlighting. E series designers have learnt from the mistakes of the various N series phones and made sure that they are not repeated with their line. Reading in absolute darkness has never been an issue with the E66 and it is the same here. I would give the E71 a full 10/10 for screen backlighting, not a single flaw out here.

Notification Light:

This feature which is very much absent in the N series phones (I’m sure you know that by now). The E71’s notification light is similar to the E66’s notification light and it can be configured according to the user’s needs. The light will flash every 10 seconds when the phone is in idle mode and every 2 seconds when there is an event (missed call, message, email, MMS). The light is soft and does not disturb the eyes. The E71’s notification light rests within the D-pad just like in the E66. The design of the innards is also the same as it was in the E66. It is good to see that the E71 is similar to E66 in terms of hardware and is different only to the extent of its shape(slider and candybar). Macbook’s LED lights come to my mind when I see the E71. Probably the only thing that separates the E71’s notification light and the E66’s notification light, is that the light spreads to the other buttons in the E66 and the spread in the E71 is very little, I really liked this spread of light. Just for that the E71 loses a few points. I would give the E71 a 9.7/10 in this department.

Keypad Lighting:

The keypad lighting is in white for this handset. The white colour seems to be quite in vogue now days. All the keys are uniformly highlighted across the the handset making it very easy to be read even in pitch darkness. The soft keys and menu buttons are evenly lit. Nobody is going to complain of dimly lit buttons over there. The ‘qwerty’ keypad also is lit very evenly. I found no problems in reading the keys in darkness. Although, the size of the keys is a problem and the feeling that I got when using the E66, is missing here. The volume and record key on the right side of the phone is also illuminated. When it comes to lighting the keypad, the engineers at Nokia have done a great job. The white E71, I feel will offer a better experience over the dark (mocha) E71. So if you have an option between the colours, go for the white E71. Not only does it look very beautiful, but I think it will offer better legibility than even the dark E71. The keypad lighting for the E71 gets a solid 9.5/10.

The bar set by the E66 in this category was very high. It scored a perfect 10 in all the departments of lighting, a hard act to follow up for the E71. The E71 tries to trump the E66 here, and though it can’t quite match the E66, the E71 comes a very close second losing by mere 0.8 points to the E66.

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