A frequent suggestion in blog comments relating to Nokia is to go with Android/WP7 and when it was available, to go buy Palm for WebOS. Why? Nokia has in house, Symbian and Maemo, the latter of which has become MeeGo – though the phone side has no presence on the market since there are no purpose built MeeGo phones.
Well in this transition stage where Symbian is waiting for the major UI change and MeeGo is still waiting to escape the birth canal, frustration rests upon some users and onlookers of Symbian^3 (the only real Nokia smartphone choice atm) as not having the same glitsy glamour and UI appeal of its competition. Nokia is always praised for the hardware, though last year with N900 got rapturous awe for its powerful and potential filled software – but that’s now canned for MeeGo.
Therefore, is it rightly so that Nokia should look to others as a temporary measure? Or is this not suitable for Nokia’s long term success? Does a successful phone manufacturer need it’s own operating system to survive? There’s a lot resting on the events that unfold for Nokia in 2011.
In an ideal world where anything could happen – If Nokia Smartphones could have any but only one Operating System, what would you like it to be? Read more…
Poll Results: Nokia E7 versus Samsung Galaxy S . CBD AMOLED vs SUPER AMOLED – over 1000 votes, 88.28% say CBD AMOLED.
Yesterday, we saw some comparison photos between the Nokia E7’s CBD AMOLED and Samsung’s Renowned Super AMOLED.
We asked you to vote in a poll, which seemed brighter and more vibrant (points where Samsung’s displays have always been king).
Thank you for the incredible response – we had over 1000 votes so far, with 700 in the first 5 hours of voting alone. The latest few votes seem to have been pushing for the Samsung brigade , but overwhelmingly you guys have decided that in your opinion (based on these comparison shots) that the E7 was far brighter and more vibrant with its CLEAR BLACK DISPLAY AMOLED than Samsung’s Super AMOLED (pushing from very high 92 to still unquestionable 88.28%)
Let’s just be happy that the displays coming in these new generation phones are, to be modest, really good. It shouldn’t really matter if X is better than Y. If it does it job (to the current standards expected), why be so angsty? IMO, the E7 display looked great indoors, and worked superb outdoors. Job done.
I don’t know about you, but I’m hooked on mobile internet and always being ‘online as it happens’. With the Nokia N900, MicroB and FireFox Mobile, the only thing that limits me getting to the sites I want is a signal. In the UK, O2 and T-Mob have been doing a fairly decent enough job for me, getting me hooked on never been unhooked.
One of my geek concerns when travelling to the Philippines was whether they had any decent mobile internet coverage and plans. Of the two biggest networks, their online sites (and twitter accounts) weren’t too helpful. Giving Globe a try, I was initially disappointed with my crawling internet. In this case it was reception issue. I’m actually directly opposite ABS-CBN and connected to the ‘Pinoy BigBrother House’ – and shielded by the growsing number of high rise condominiums and our own houses which are concrete reception eaters.
Ironically, nearly every other place except my house however, I get a clean 3G signal. I was quite surprised by some of the speed tests I got as it was way faster than what I ever got with O2 or T-Mobile UK when in Cardiff or London, with my current T-Mob sim seem stuck at a tortoisian 400kbps. With Globe Philippines I got a respectable 1922kbps (on 10th floors each), with similar range on repeat tests. Not bad at all. Price isn’t too bad for a short stay on prepay (220PHP – approx 3GBP for 5 days unlimited surfing or 5PHP or 7pence for 15 mins.] but it does add up if you’re here for a month or longer – and getting a long term contract isn’t an option.
So, how fast is your mobile internet?
What network? Can your phone browser perform the bandwidth test?
Having read YET another article, this time by Gartner predicting the demise of Symbian (Same people that predicted Windows Mobile 6’s dominance over Symbian in the 00’s) and comparing it to the Titanic of all things,
I thought I’d put up a poll to ask where YOU felt Symbian is heading and where it will be in the coming years.
With Nokia’s first Symbian^3 handset on the visible horizon (approx 6 weeks to go) a hot topic right now is the possibility of upgrading the Nokia N8’s Symbian^3 to Symbian^4. It’s worth noting that as always, Nokia will support the N8 with free software updates that could bring new features and added functionality like it has with their other handsets. Damien Dinning has already mentioned the possibility of continuous autofocus during video recording AFTER the sales release handsets, i.e. future firmware updates. The N8’s web browser will also finally get a facelift and this will arrive outside of a firmware update.
Symbian’s blurb on S^3
The second open version of the Symbian platform. It extends Symbian^2 in many ways, including graphics support for advanced layering and effects, full HDMI support for a great television playback experience and improving data performance – ideal for streaming high definition audio and video.
On the application front, it doesn’t matter too much as both are Qt compatible. Apps made with Qt for Symbian^4 would work for Symbian^3 (as well as MeeGo devices)
On the experience side, the Nokia N8 has a reworked S^1 with a lot of the annoyances ironed out that should never have been there in the first place (e.g. now all Single tap) and should be much more streamlined than the abysmal S^1. Though the UI may be very familiar, the UX is something vastly improved. And there’s still much enhancement and tweaking to go as Nokia has delayed the N8 to ensure that the experience will be fluid and pleasing, having learnt from the mistakes with the N97 in released half baked goods. With that, we could assume that the majority of consumers and target audience for the Nokia N8 will be happy.
Some consumers however (those used to high end) are looking not just for the latest and greatest, but longevity. 6 months down the line, will you still be as happy with the N8 as you were the first time? Love for my N97 died after 3 months, although love for N900 is still on going. That however is coupled by the more touched focus, powerful Maemo 5 and the awesome hardware inside that was keeping up with the times. Now this opens up another side topic as to whether the N8 has sufficient hardware (CPU/GPU/RAM) for the next 6 months (were it released in weeks after announcement, we could be more certain).
CPU/GPU/RAM – limiting factors?
On the CPU: the ARM 11 core is underclocked to 680MHz. The default is apparently 750MHz which could be safely overclocked to 850MHz. Now we could argue that for S^3, CPU numbers isn’t all that important (and less so, comparison of CPU hardware with other devices on other platforms as Symbian is extremely optimized to run on less demanding hardware – hence democratization of the smartphone with MeeGo to push the hardware hungry devices.).
On the GPU: it’s suspected that the N8 has a class leading Broadcom BCM2727 GPU, which at the time was shown to pull in more triangles than any other competing phone. This is important for Symbian^3 as it is a GPU accelerated UI, relying more on the GPU than the CPU.
RAM: 256MB. For multitasking, will this be enough? The N900 is a multitasking beast and that has “only” 256MB (though there is +768MB virtual RAM and is on Maemo). Some could argue again that Symbian is more flexible in coping on less RAM. Very early videos has shown the N8 running 15 apps simultaneously with no speed decrease. But what happens when more RAM hungry apps come out?
N8 and S^3 already looking good in videos
The myriad of video demoes are promising, with N8 running quickly and smoothly; but actual long use and with the final build is needed to generate a valid opinion on what consumers will eventually experience (as opposed to an extremely early proto and scathing it like you just bought it off the shelf)
The question is will the N8’s current hardware support Symbian^4? If it can, why can’t we have Symbian^4? These upgrades are often paralleled with iPhone and Android’s support of software updates on their older devices (though iOS4 is not supported for original iPhone and some features are missing on 3G, with even iOS3 already proving taxing for both).
Even if it doesn’t properly support S^4 to bring the same experience, should users still have the option to upgrade? It is after all, barely going to be 1 year apart when the first S^4 handset is available (and hardly 6 months if we only count from N8 release date and not announcement).
And if it doesn’t support S^4 should this be a deal breaker?
For the majority of N8s intended audience who most likely don’t even perform firmware updates – then no. For those wanting longevity through app support, then no. For those wanting the N8 for other reasons, i.e. the killer multimedia functions, an actually fantastic 12mp camera (proof in pictures and still to improve. Plus with xenon flash and 28mm wide angle!), 720p video with stereo recording, 5.1 surround sound with dolby digital, HDMI out to 720p, great 3D gaming, not to forget the lifetime free sat nav all at 370EUR minus subsidies/tax, then no.
Perhaps for those wanting that “new experience”, then yes. Maybe then, it should even be MeeGo your eyes should be set on. Or even some other non Nokia related OS.
Symbian’s blurb on S^4
Symbian^4 is expected in 2010. It will feature Direct UI – a complete makeover of the touch UI, Qt as the primary runtime and the majority of SHAI in place, making hardware adaptation easier than ever before.
In addition to the standard black N97 mini, it will also be coming, not just in white, but in garnet red.
Let’s hope the white N97 mini doesn’t fall prey to the same quality issues (light leakage, paint chipping, staining, poorer quality keyboard) that the original white N97 did. (see this post about my previous troubles with the white N97). Well, the battery cover’s metal and there’s no D-pad to get stained so I guess that’s already a plus!
Via Symbian Planet
Dan Ackerman has been playing about with Nokia’s upcoming Booklet 3G (due out 15th in the US)
- + Feels robust, yet not overly heavy
- + Relatively high res 1366×768 pixel (enough for 720p HD movies)
- + HDMI out
- + In built 3G (via AT&T in US)
- + 16 Cell battery (claimed 12h though CNET has not yet tested – most notebooks are sold with 9 cell or less)
- – Cramped keyboard
- – Sluggish performance due to using slower intel Atom Z530 and only having 1GB RAM.
In the US, you can pick up a Booklet 3G either with AT&T for $299 + 2year contract or as a standalone for $599.
Netbooks (which is essentially what this is) are meant to be just for surfing around the net and maybe editing a couple of documents. Nothing too heavy, just some light tasks that can be done on the move. It’s a bit worrying though that the Booklet 3G seems to slow down in CNET’s initial tests when opening up multiple tabs an a MS office Doc. I knew I wouldn’t be able to edit HD movies but slowing down with multiple tabs and a .doc? We’ll have to wait till next week when CNET releases a full review to see just how much the Booklet 3G can actually handle.
Whilst you’re waiting, there’s a video and more pictures over at CNET of the booklet 3G.
Oh, just out of interest; if you were to get a booklet 3G, what colour would you choose?
Whilst we’re on the subject of the Booklet 3G, diggnation have a great unboxing video you should check out:
Alex and Kevin seem to love the Booklet 3G on first impressions. (What’s up with the Windows 95 theme?)