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Nokia C3, C6, E5 launch: More social networking for the masses

You know what we need more of in the world? Phones with social networking features – you just don’t see them around. NOT. Every phone and its brother seems to be positioned as the second coming of social networking these days, and Nokia isn’t really pushing the boat out with its three latest offerings.

The cheap and cheerful C3 comes in at around £80 and is the first C-Series handset to allow you to update social networks directly from the homescreen. The handset also features a physical Qwerty keyboard for tapping those messages and emails, and a 2.4-inch rich colour screen. With Wi-Fi connectivity and a 2-megapixel camera you can be uploading those hilarious photos on-the-go or simply save them using the storage card slot which can house up to 8GB. On its way to Europe within the next couple of months, you’ll be able to pick up the budget C3 handset in gold and white, slate grey or hot pink (pictured above left).

Running Symbian, the N97 Mini-esque C6 has a larger 3.2-inch touchscreen as well as the physical slide-out Qwerty keyboard (pictured above middle). Unfortunately, as we suspected, it lacks the lovely angled slider that we were big fans of on the N97 Mini. It does feature a 5-megapixel camera with auto-focus and a flash, the handset also has the full Ovi Maps with free walk and drive navigation, as well as access to the Ovi Store. Out later this quarter, the C6 will be available for around £200.

Last but not least, the Nokia E5 – one for the business person in your life perhaps (pictured above right). Like the illegitimate lovechild of a BlackBerry Bold and a Nokia E72, the Symbian-based E5 mixes a range of business applications with personal music, networking and entertainment apps. It’s a little cheaper than the other business-focused E-Series handsets and will come in a range of colours. The E5 is scheduled for release in the third quarter of this year for around £160.

There’s nothing to write home about based on the specs of these new Nokias, and whether the social networking and messaging features really have been improved remains to be seen. Still, if social networking functionality is your one pre-requisite when buying a new handset, you’ve got a dearth of Nokias to choose from now and those physical Qwerty keyboards, our typing tool of choice, are a welcome inclusion.