Home > Nokia, Nseries > MobileBurn’s Full Nokia N8 Review – “best camera phone ever”

MobileBurn’s Full Nokia N8 Review – “best camera phone ever”

On the weekend we saw Michael Oryl’s video review of the Nokia N8. Here’s the more detailed in depth text review from MobileBurn (USA).

Echoing IntoMobile’s sentiments, Michael agrees that the N8 has the best camera on any smartphone – the best camera phone ever.

+ve = Best camera ever, gorgeous hardware design, good battery life, great data speeds

-ve = Mediocre browser, touchscreen issues, UI feels slow at times, weak text input options

If you are a Symbian or Nokia S60 fan, your day has come. The Nokia N8 is the best Symbian device to have ever been sold. It has a great hardware design, good software capabilities, and the most usable touch interface ever offered on Symbian, thanks to the phone’s new Symbian^3 smartphone operating system.

  • Battery life pretty awesome – full screen brightness, wifi on – still lasting 2 days with light use, which Michael adds should be a day of heavy use
  • “When it comes to hardware design, the Nokia N8 pretty much has it all.”
  • “the phone’s camera is responsible for nothing but big, cheesy smiles. In short, the N8 has the best camera available on a smartphone today.”
  • S^3 is worlds apart from S^1 on N97 and N97 mini – no comparison, but still left unimpressed – menu feeling dated.
  • 5 of 5 scoreHardware

    3 of 5 scoreUsability

    5 of 5 scoreCalling / Data

    4 of 5 scoreMessaging

    3 of 5 scoreApps / App Store

    3 of 5 scoreBrowser

    5 of 5 scoreCamera

    4 of 5 scoreMusic

    4 of 5 scoreBattery

    3 of 5 scoreReviewer Spin

    Via MobileBurn thanks to alex68 for the heads up!

    1. gruik
      October 6, 2010 at 10:02 am

      We all know now that N8 is a good camaraphone. But for the others who doesn’t use the camera there some important lacks (according to the review).
      Web browser seems to be a martydom, keyboard too etc. I hope Nokia will correct these lacks in the next update.

    2. Nocare
      October 6, 2010 at 10:22 am

      It is possible that we can see multitouch on virtual qwerty keyboard? Can we still type very fast on n8 qwerty without multitouch on keyboard?

      Hlope to see ovi browser, new ovi maps in next fiemware update

      i still want nokia internet radio and fm radio recording

      Why there are so many important things missing

    3. R420R
      October 6, 2010 at 11:13 am


    4. Roger Johnson
      October 6, 2010 at 12:05 pm

      GUYS. How many times does it need to be said: N8 is about to get a whole new, amazing browser, possibly even this month, otherwise soon after. No problem!

      Other negative points from this review:
      “touchscreen issues” – most of this is deliberate design by the Symbian team to avoid accidental touches. This could easily get tweaked in future.
      “UI feels slow at times” – doesn’t agree with many other reviews I’ve seen, and I think just needs tweaked transitions to mask it, like you see on other iPhones and Android which are not actually faster, just appear so.
      “weak text input options” – could be slightly better, and this will be fixed.

      So all of these will be fixed in a firmware update.

      • October 6, 2010 at 6:11 pm

        No, you are wrong about the touchscreen issues I faced. I wasn’t talking about the slow swiping, which could be intentional (though I doubt it since the button is just as slow), but rather to the fact that I would often tap on an on-screen button and get no response from the phone.

        I’m not the only one who found the device’s speed to be inconsistent, either. In fact, my comments were mild compared to some, like those from PhoneScoop.com.

    5. 6kle
      October 6, 2010 at 12:47 pm

      In quite a few reviews they test all the programs and just leave them running on the background instead of closing them when done. Then not surprisingly with all that stuff running on the background they find some “lag” when using the phone.

      I can easily make my powerful desktop computer lag by running lots of programs at the same time and this is a mobile device. I guess they don’t know that Symbian has real multitasking instead of the iOS “multitasking” that really just stops the programs from running at the background when you launch something new.

      With Symbian you are supposed to close the applications that you don’t want running on the background, and no, and pressing the menu button won’t do that.

      • October 6, 2010 at 6:17 pm

        I disagree with your assessment of what users are expected to do in terms of memory management. If properly exiting an application were the expected course of action for applications, it would need to be more obvious as to how it’s done, not requiring the user to open up menus to do so. Symbian closes apps when it needs the resources. If it doesn’t close them before the phone gets to the point of slowing down, that is not the user’s fault. Allowing the user to manually close apps is nice, but the OS should be able to survive on its own w/o the user doing so. Symbian^3’s new task manager is there to allow the user to easily switch between apps. Closing them is secondary, just as on previous versions of Symbian.

        In my case, I often closed out apps because I’m that kind of guy, but Joe Consumer isn’t that kind of guy. The average person isn’t going to manage RAM for the phone, he is going to expect the phone to just work.

        • alex68
          October 6, 2010 at 6:37 pm

          No offence.

          Here I agree with 6kle.

          A powerful desktop computer can lag by running lots of programs at the same time and the user is expected to monitor and manage the reasonable resources usage for their usability of computing power. The answer has been they have to learn.

          Why here it would be different for mobile users or the other way how computer users do to guarantee the best usability of their computing power in question?

          • alex68
            October 6, 2010 at 6:50 pm

            BTW, N8 has a tool for monitoring resource usage as well.

    6. alex68
      October 6, 2010 at 1:52 pm

      Review by telegraph.
      Plus in N8 (no need to mention camera, everyone with average IQ should not have difficulty in judging it):
      1. battery life
      2. email push

    7. October 6, 2010 at 5:22 pm

      yup the camera is excellent.really the best camera in nokia phones

    8. October 6, 2010 at 6:20 pm

      Just wanted to say that I did a little dance when I opened the box and saw the orange N8. Just such a beautiful phone, and so many other sites for boring gray versions. If you get this phone, it needs to be in a bright, showy color.

      • chfyfx
        October 6, 2010 at 7:38 pm

        great review, thanks. let’s hope Nokia will fix the browser and keyboard.

      • alex68
        October 6, 2010 at 9:07 pm

        My thanks from me. It is so far the most professional and honest review by American tech media.

      • chfyfx
        October 7, 2010 at 1:14 am

        hold on… did you only give 3 stars in the end?… come on, break free..

        • October 7, 2010 at 7:32 pm

          No, that was the nudge factor. It allows us to bump the calculated score up or down a bit. I did neither, and let the score stay as calculated.

          • chfyfx
            October 8, 2010 at 1:53 am

            dude, you’ve got 3 3stars, 3 4stars, 3 5stars, how did you get the average of 3 star…

            • October 17, 2010 at 5:58 am

              Great question, isn’t it? No serious faults, almost every negative was either personal preference or in comparison to another device, which is always out of context.

              I’ve been meaning to write an article on something for a while and the MB review with all the comments, gives me great material. 🙂

    9. October 6, 2010 at 7:17 pm

      The most accurate and rounded N8 review so far, great job MB!

    10. October 7, 2010 at 7:42 pm

      Michael Oryl :

      Just wanted to say that I did a little dance when I opened the box and saw the orange N8. Just such a beautiful phone, and so many other sites for boring gray versions. If you get this phone, it needs to be in a bright, showy color.

      Hey Boss 🙂 Thanks for dropping by, and great review 😀

      You have me stumped now. I did want the “boring” classic black. Hmmmm. Decisions, decisions. Bright showy colours or conservative. >_< Ah well it's still not on sale here, have plenty of time to decide.

    11. Bob
      November 28, 2010 at 4:01 am

      One thing that I would really like Nokia to add through Firmware is the ability to use the volume buttons as the exposure compensation button in the camera.

      I think this will really increase the useability factor of the camera.

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