Nokia 3650

Nokia 3650

Summary: This advanced and feature-rich mobile is let down by a quirky circular keypad. Even so, the 3650’s innovative features outweigh its stylistic oddities.

  • Editors' rating:
  • User rating:
  • RRP:


  • Great range of applications, including digital stills and video capture
  • removable storage
  • usable menu structure.


  • Relatively bulky
  • no USB connection
  • memory card located under battery
  • circular keypad makes for awkward SMS entry.

Nokia's tri-band, GPRS- and Bluetooth-equipped 3650 succeeds the innovative 7650. Its most visible feature is a circular keypad -- a stylistic departure that could have limited appeal. However, the 3650's most popular feature will undoubtedly be its stills and video multimedia messaging capability.

Design & features
Nokia’s designers have taken a bold step with the Symbian-based 3650, hoping that it will appeal to buyers seeking advanced applications in an unusual form factor. Nokia isn’t the only manufacturer to offer camera phones with a circular keypad, as Siemens’ new MC60 offers a different interpretation on the circular theme. Aside from the keypad, the most noteworthy feature is the VGA-resolution camera on the back, which supports both still and video image capture. The 128-by-96-pixel video is limited to approximately 15 seconds and a file size of 96KB. In our tests, video recording lasted a minimum of 11 seconds and a maximum of 18 seconds. The 4,096-colour screen displays the still and video images well enough for MMS, but image quality is distinctly fuzzy. Video is captured in MPEG-4 format, and there’s a built in a RealOne player. To configure the video recorder application for audio you have go to Nokia’s site and download the 7.49MB Nokia 3650 Multimedia Player exe file. Note that the 3650 connects to your PC either through infrared or Bluetooth: there’s no USB cable connection, which would have been useful. Build quality is a bit wobbly: the rear ‘Xpress-on’ cover housing the battery, SIM card and 16MB MMC card feels less than secure. The alphanumeric buttons on the circular keypad are backlit in blue and have a sizeable gap between them, and also wobble; however, a good four-way navigation button with centre click and a usefully located lower central main menu button help to ameliorate the awkward design. By today’s standards the 3650 is bulky and heavy at 57mm by 130mm by 26mm and 130g. It’ll certainly make its presence felt in your pocket.

In use, the first thing you notice is the time it takes to power up -- about 30 seconds all told, if you use a password. Access to all applications, other than direct dialling or the two user-defined soft-key applications, is via the lower central button within the ring of numbers. You can choose either grid view, which stacks the menu options three to a line, or list view with one per line. Texting one-handed with the 3650 will be challenging for anything other than the shortest of messages, unless you’re blessed with ultra-nimble thumbs. The device feels top heavy, so you need to balance the phone as well as bend your thumb somewhat unnaturally. Despite these shortcomings, you do adapt quickly to the circular design. When capturing still images, your options are limited to Standard format, Portrait (which crops the sides) and Night for lower light levels -- however, with no flash don’t expect too much. Video operation is relatively fast and effective, with no lengthy lag thanks to the 3650’s ARM processor. There’s 3.4MB of internal memory for phone numbers, messages and photos plus 16MB on the external MMC card, so you shouldn’t run out of storage. You can easily associate images with your contacts, the relevant picture appearing when you receive a call. You can play captured video in the built-in video application or in the bundled RealOne player, which can also be used for playing downloaded video clips. Playback via RealOne player is of a higher quality. Battery life is claimed to be 200 hours of standby time and up to 4 hours of talk time. In our tests, there was still plenty of juice left in the Li-ion battery after a couple of days’ heavy use of all applications. The Bluetooth application worked smoothly when paired with Nokia’s Wireless Car Kit: after the initial setup, the 3650 was automatically recognised and could then be used hands-free without any further configuration.

The 3650 stands out as a large mobile in a world of shrinking handsets. Keen video MMS users may not mind, but the 3650 could be too chunky for many regular users, and the circular keypad may also deter. However, this phone scores highly thanks to its outstanding functionality, and it’s generally a pleasure to use.


Dimensions (W x H x D) 570x260x1300 mm
Weight 130 g
OS & software
Software included Phone book; calendar; to-do list; Nokia Multimedia Player; RealOne Player; games
Synchronisation software PC Suite; SyncML
Processor & memory
RAM 3.4 MB
Native resolution 176x208 pixels
Ports no
Slots Yes
Messaging & data
Email protocols POP3
Messaging services SMS
Standby time 200 h
Talk time 4 h


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Topics: Mobility, Hardware, Reviews

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  • 9.5

  • 9.0

    With the Symbian platform your your disposal, there are endless possibilities to add more software and enhance features to suit you, including playing MP3 and games, as well as excellent WAP browsing with the Opera browser. I see this as a start of a beautiful friendship. P.S. It can do everything a Sony Ericsson P800 can, apart from the touch screen.
  • 9.5

  • 9.5

  • 9.5

  • 4.5

    Where other phone makers are designing their phones to be smaller with more features and better graphics and sound quality, Nokia is going backward. Getting bulkier and the designs lack innovation.
  • 8.5

    I bought my 3650 soon after it was released on the market and was amazed with the features it had to offer. I found the size of the handset erganomic for me as i have relatively big hands, however people with smaller hands may find it a challenge. I was slightly disappointed by the way the phone kept on displaying the "memory Full" warning sign everytime i tried to enlarge a picture, even though i had 6mb of space left! The internet also caused the handset to freeze at times and seese to operate due to an "erro". Dipite these flaws the 3650 is still my favourate phone and look forward to purchasing its older brother the 6600 later on this month.
  • 10.0

    There's is a lot to say about this phone, but I just going to mention the things that I make use of and that I think are just wonderful!

    * POP3 email. fuction perfect!
    *With Opera Browser, I get the full power of the Internet, and I mean the full Internet! Here is where I spend 85% of my time in the phone.
    *In clear light the camera is excellent, good quality good colours, and the ability to send the picture instantly through your P0P3 email to any email address in the Internet makes this phone worth every penny.

    I love this phone -- as you can see, I can't see myself without it. In the other hand I wish Nokia would've put 8 or 10MB of memory, instead of 4 in the phone. I appraciate the memory card, even though some software that I found requires the free memory in the phone to run, not in the memory card.

    But it is a great phone, I strongly recomend it!
  • 8.7

    After using my 3650 for the last 4 months I like almost everything about it. The phone functions are easy to use with a few nice little touches, such as being able to associate a thumbnail pic with your numbers. The calendar with its alarms has been invaluable for reminding me of impending birthdays and appointments. Taking pictures and videos is great unless you're after quality. Keeping notes, playing games and more besides mean that I now never go anywhere without it!

    I would have liked an easier way to connect to a PC, but the MMC slot means you can copy some stuff using a card reader.

    I think this deserves a nine out of ten.
  • 9.5

    The phone is just excellent. It has very powerful software and hardware, and its price cannot be beaten!
  • 10.0

  • 9.5

  • 10.0

  • 6.0

    Unreliable, but feature packed, too large in this ultra micro-lite mobile world.

    Amazing features, has a strong fan-base, but when it came to upgrade, I said goodbye.
  • 9.0