The screen is a good size at 2.4in, 320 x 240. It displays up to 16m colours, which is surely enough for anybody, and it's startlingly clear and sharp, with a good sense of depth. It's plenty bright too, and proved to be perfectly legible even in near-direct sunlight with the brightness whacked up full.
Connectivity-wise the E71 has Wi-Fi, Bluetooth with A2DP stereo, USB (replacing the E61's limited Pop-Port) and, unusually these days, an infrared port. There's also a 3.6Mb/s HSDPA connection, though the actual speed will depend on your network and location. Like virtually everything about this phone, the Wi-Fi proved to be painlessly efficient, hooking us up to our network without fuss or complaint.
No Pop-Port here
Web browsing thereafter was a pleasure, with the screen's proportions lending themselves well to web pages. There are options to flip through previous pages and zoom in on page details, though it's limited to between 50 and 125 per cent. You can elect to view pages full screen – handy for streaming video. You can also choose whether or not to allow pop-ups or show pictures, and there's a handy search function to help you find elusive words on screen.
Nokia's Mail For Exchange service offers push email, which certainly puts the E71 in the running for convenience with the BlackBerries of this world. Email was incredibly easy to set up too. All we needed was our email address and password, and we had a POP3 account spraying our inbox with electronic missives in less than a minute.
The phone's very quick in operation. Its 369MHz ARM processor proved to be more than nippy enough to handle everything on the Symbian S60 platform. Even when we had several apps running at once, it just kept pumping.