Nokia 5030 XpressRadio Vintage Mobile Phone Review – One of A Kind

Nokia 5030 Review: Released in 2009, the Nokia 5030 XpressRadio represented a slight brand change under Nokia. By this age, MP3 and mobile phones had already had a great pairing with one another, with phones really doubling up as portable MP3 players as soon as memory cards became available. The Sony Ericsson appropriation of the ‘Walkman’ brand was something that got them ahead in this regard.

By this time Nokia had begun to advertise their music capabilities by introducing the ‘XpressMusic’ range, phones which could ‘specialise’ in playing music by the addition of apps, microSD cards and standard/Bluetooth microphone jacks, as opposed to the inconvenient POP-port seen in earlier incarnations. This despite many of the phones (especially the top-end) featuring all of these functions.

The Nokia 5030 was the only phone to be branded under a slightly different term: XpressRadio, which given the name contained a radio, but like its other cousins on the music side, this was nothing special and a radio tuner was something seen in phones as early on as the Nokia 8310.

Full specifications here.

Some might say the XpressRadio was a little different as the FM tuner was integrated and thus did not need the headphones to work: a boon for those wanting an ad-hoc music player, but this too was not an exclusive feature with other phones such as the Nokia 3300 having the speaker function. By the time its successor, the Nokia 5130 came around, the XpressRadio brand had reverted to XpressMusic.

Nokia 5030 Review Pros:

Integrated antenna and speaker: The phone got around some of the limitations of earlier models by placing the antenna on board, and having a well-performing speaker on the back of the phone, making it ideal for those who wanted the functionality at work.

Dedicated music buttons: In common with the rest of the series, the phone had dedicated music buttons on the side to skip tracks/stations, making it much easier to use for music.

Familiar OS: The operating system was largely unchanged outside of the hardware differences, and was the standard Nokia operating system.

Low Price: The phone was designed to sit under the rest of the XpressMusic range and above the basic range, which meant a fairly cheap price.

Nokia 5030 Review Cons:

Music limited to radio only: With no card slot on board (which could easily have been possible), the music capability was radio only, as there was only 8MB of memory on board.

Sparse features: There were also few other features on this phone: no Bluetooth, internet or camera. Despite appearances it had much more in common with the very basic models rather than the more expensive music phones.

Tinny Keypad: A new type of keypad was used with a flat surface with no raised buttons. Given the small size of the phone this made it difficult to operate.

Future Prospects and Current Pricing:

There may be some rarity value in that this was the only radio version produced and it was easily outsold by other versions which were released, notably the Nokia 5800. However, the model is not a premium one and with the radio tag being rather gimmicky, it is hard to see this picking up premium prices.

Where can I get one?

Both Ebay and Amazon have second-hand and refurbished models.

Interested in more phones? See a list of phones I own here.


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