Espousing a rounded outline, the Nokia 701 partly reminds us of the C7. The smartphone offers a premium feel. It does not feel like its build is plastic, but rather it is more metallic. If you would close your eyes and hold it in your hand, it would feel like you were holding on an HTC handset. Nonetheless, its chassis is not unibody, unlike what HTC has been implementing on its recent smartphone models. By and large, the 701 has a solid constitution.
In front, the 701 has a 3.5-inch screen that is covered with a Gorilla glass panel. Similar to the top-end N9, the 701 employs Nokia’s ClearBlack display, which makes the handset’s UI decently legible even under bright illumination. Above the display shows the speaker grille and the front-facing VGA camera. Meanwhile, the Menu button, flanked by the Call and End buttons, occupies the space below the screen.
The right side is teeming with several buttons. There is the button for activating the handset’s voice command feature, alongside with the volume/zoom adjustment keys. There is the lock/unlock switch. And lastly, there is the shutter button for the camera. While the right side is a busy spot, the left side is almost bare and is solely occupied by a charging port. The top side contains the power switch, 3.5mm A/V port, and the micro USB slot that works both as a data dock and a charging port. The bottom side has a slot where a lanyard can be inserted.
The 701’s rear side reveals its 8-megapixel camera that comes with a dual LED flash. The camera is sandwiched by two additional grilles for the speaker. Near the base of the handset’s backside is a latch that serves as a virtually effortless means to remove the metal back cover. Once the back cover is removed, you will see inside that the SIM card slot is not obscured by the phone’s battery module. Nonetheless, inserting or replacing a SIM card will still require the smartphone to reboot. What is hidden beneath the battery module is the slot for the micro SD card.