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Posts Tagged ‘3.5″’

Videos: More Nokia N97 demos!

April 29, 2009 5 comments

Here’s the Nokia N97 being demoed at the developer summit. Here it is again, if you so wish, at another angle.

There’s nothing to be gained from either video except the noticing the gradual growth of the N97’s UI. I still hate the wasteful menu of S60 5th edition – at least for phones with screens as big physically and pixel wise as the N97 (and 5800!). I don’t know if we’ll ever get a more decent 4×5 grid, and leave the back button to the red button (with long press to exit fully) or have the options bar autohide in the menu! Urgh! It just wastes so much space, dammit!!

The kinetic scrolling is nicely demonstrated again in the twitter application; changing in speed to the level of drag. Pity we don’t see this in the menu, where scrolling is quite painful to watch.

Transition from Landscape(Qwerty) mode to portrait(candybar) takes the N97 an excruciating 3 seconds  with no animation. By launch this better be instant or close to that! It needs to feel more fluid! Take a look at how relatively quickly the Nokia Photobrowser from Nokia Beta Labs changes from portrait to landscape. The wait, if any, between screen orientation should be so minimal, you don’t notice that the computer is processing such changes, instead appearing to be in natural sync with the motion of your hand. Like moving a spirit bubble.

During the video, the guy mentions that “the  N97 is very efficient on power and computational ability“. Is that marketing speak for “it has to do the best it can, given that the processor isn’t as powerful as it actually needs to be“?. The guy does point out that this is “a rough version of the software and that the teams are working hard“.

The N97 may be able to pull it off when it’s officially available in June/July, but how will it’s endurance/longevity be when users start filling it up with applications/videos/photos and developers produce more power hungry applications? Will potential buyers have to look for a rehashed “i” version or another quick replacement flagship? Will that be the keyboardless and super slim N97?

With about a month or two to go, is there time for any pleasant surprises from the N97, or are all the cards already on the table and all Nokia has are a couple of jokers?

HTC Touch Pro2 – What the N97 should have been?

April 10, 2009 5 comments

htc-touch-pro2-nokia-n97With end of May/early June (release of N97) looming, I’m getting some doubts again about what I’m actually looking for in a new phone. Not really “the best out there” but “the best for me” (but as a phone geek it’s very much the same thing)

The N97 claims to be a mobile computer:

  • Relatively large widescreen – CHECK
  • Screen at an angle – CHECK
  • Physical keyboard – CHECK

With those features, N97 seems to be bridging the gap between phones and netbooks. Its keyboard and mass of internal memory is its advantage over the other two similar competitors, Omnia HD and Idou who focus on imaging and entertainment.

What I need in a phone:

I’ve decided to use more mobile internet on my next phone purchase. Ramp up the internet allowance to have some decent “surfage” on the net: blog more and via my mobile, use more internet based services – basically try and be online 24/7 through my phone. A netbook would be good but I can’t fit that in my jeans pocket.

So if I’m going to choose the N97 because of it’s keyboard and angled screen, then it opens up the arena again for other handsets; namely the HTC Touch Pro2.

nokia-n97-and-htc-touch-pro2-mobile-phones

[Similar looking: N97 vs Touch Pro2]

The HTC Touch Pro2 trumps the N97 ON

  • Screen size and resolution: 3.5″ 640 x 360 VS 3.6″ 800 x 480

HTC’s screen is only 0.1″ bigger than the Nokia’s, but more clarity with the increased pixel count – better for photos and small screen text when viewing the web/documents (although 640×360 is already really good).

  • Screen at an angle – 30 degree only – although very stable with the N97  VS a range of angles and a max of 70 degrees with HTC

The N97’s sliding mechanism is reported to be very robust – I’m not sure about the Touch Pro 2, it looks a little flimsy but it is more versatile.

  • Physical keyboard: 3 row vs 5 row.

The N97’s keyboard is apparently OK according to early reviews, but with only 3 rows and perplexing layout of certain keys, it will take some getting used to. Whilst I can forgive the space bar being on the right and the punctutation hidden amongst the letters, I really dislike the numbers being integrated into the top line of letters.

pic06[N97 keyboard with orange back lighting. Image from Eldar Murtazin, mobile review]

The SU-W8 bluetooth keyboard was just a keyboard but it also merged the top line of numbers with the letter row and, although you get used to it, it’s annoying to have to press the Fn key. (Does anyone know if numbers come up if you long press or do you just get “TTTTTTTTTTTTTT” i.e. long press 6)

200801231600[Nokia N800 with 4-row bluetooth keyboard, SU-W8]

The HTC Touch Pro2 has a stonkingly good keyboard layout. Because the angle of the screen is at the edge (and wider than the N97, 55.5 VS 59.2) it can afford to have pretty much the normal keyboard layout. 5 rows, minimal compromise and although simple – the backlit keys look nicer and clearer.

keyboard-2

[HTC Touch Pro2’s great keyboard. Check out the video below from MobileBurn‘s Michael Oryl to see more of it in action]

Something about those orange keys on the N97 make me think about those old car phones of the 90s. Why Nokia? It could have been blue or plain white or dare say a mix it up for certain keys, but why the broad orange? On the up side, the placement of the Dpad would make it good for game play.

pic07

[N97 keyboard with orange back lighting. Image from Eldar Murtazin, mobile review]

But only 3.2MP with no flash on the HTC Touch Pro2 is too much of a compromise coming from 5MP with Carl Zeiss optics. Furthermore, I much prefer the look of the “black” N97.

nokia_n97_32gb

Additional winning points: 32GB internal memory vs 228MB internal (although the HTC can also be extended with memory card) and S60 – which I’m just particularly more familiar but -however, HTC’s done wonders with WinMo 6.1 on the Touch Pro 2.

The HTC’s Touch Pro2 is a lot more enterprise orientated, with interesting features such as “Straight Talk”, not a Macho talk show but HTC’s way of integrating important contact details and innovating conference calling; although both could serve the most conscientious of executives.

Although very much in a niche category too, the more multimedia orientated N97 tagged Facebook for now clinches it for me.

Anyway, I really should be revising and finishing of coursework.

There’s plenty of info about the HTC Touch Pro2 here and the Nokia N97 here.

For a summary comparison check this out:

Nokia N97 vs Samsung Omnia HD vs Sony Ericsson Idou

February 23, 2009 15 comments

Nokia N97 vs Samsung Omnia HD vs Sony Ericsson Idou

I was all set on the N97 until a three way ruckus broke out with the Omnia HD and Idou both diving in to join the Super-Mobile-Convergence-Device war.

Samsung and Sony Ericsson have extremely strong contenders, with:

The Omnia HD packing in a most gorgeous 3.7” AMOLED display, Symbian S60 V 5.0, 8MP camera and 720p 24fps widescreen HD video recording and

The code-named Idou, bringing in 3.5” widescreen display, as well as Symbian S60 V 5.0 and a 12MP camera with Xenon.

They all run on Symbian S60 V 5.0; even with their own specific interface ‘quirks’, they should all be pretty similar to each other. We’ll just have to see when they’re all at production level to see who makes the most to bring the best user friendly and innovative interface.

Is the 32GB of memory and physical keyboard enough to keep you from straying to the Samsung or Sony-Ericsson camp? We’ve seen most of the wow features on the N97 along while ago from the aged classic that is the N95 announced in 2006! On-board GPS, A2DP, 3G, HSDPA, WiFi, 5MP Carl Zeiss camera with LED flash, 3.5mm audio/tv out jack (most of which the mass public easily overlooked). Whilst the N95 was ahead of its time for quite a while the N97 which hasn’t even hit the shops is already flanked by two other very powerful rivals.

It seems it won’t be long until the hardware battle becomes saturated, all phones being more or less identical in shape, size and features where everything will come down to who’s providing the best software, online services and community/ecosystem interaction.

So, in this combat of flagships, do any pack enough artillery to sink the infamous iPhone? Or will that be accomplished by the elusive Palm Pré, or perhaps an Android?