This morning's news from Nokia was bleak, with 10,000 job losses and a revised financial outlook that will see the company's key Devices & Services division report losses of several hundred million Euros for Q2 2012 on the 19th July. Media coverage has understandably focused on these key points, but a number of important strategy changes were part of today's announcement and these are worth examining in more detail.
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The Nokia N8 was the first Symbian device released as a sealed unit and with non-replaceable battery. This enabled the designers to create a striking design, but power users were out of luck if they wanted to get inside their device. Besides replacing the battery, another reason to open your N8 is to replace the antenna cap, for which there is a trend to break over time and come away from the screws securing it. Sure enough, that's just what happened to me. So, if you can't bear to be parted from your Nokia N8 while it's at a repair centre or your warranty has expired, here's my guide on how to replace the Nokia N8's antenna cap.
Almost a year ago, I compared the N8's camera to that of the Samsung Galaxy S II, but the newly arrived Galaxy S III is claimed to have a better camera, with more advanced image processing, and I couldn't help but wonder - does this new 'III" get closer to the 2010 N8 than its predecessor did? After all, two years of sensor and algorithm improvements - could they compensate for not having as large a sensor as the N8?
I think I shocked a few people when I declared, back in January, that the feature at the top of my shopping list when choosing a smartphone was a loud speaker. I did justify this, mind you, before quoting a few phones from all platforms in some sort of best-worst order. What I'd like to do here is go further, keeping the list to just the Symbian world, this being AAS. Which Symbian phone will be at the top of the tree?
You may remember that, exactly six months ago, I wrote 'Nokia C7 vs N8: Female vs Male: Madonna vs Kurt Cobain?', facing arguably the two top Symbian handsets against each other and pointing out that they had very different personalities. The same is true of the N8 versus the Nokia 701, arguably the C7's direct successor. We've covered the 701 before, in review part 1 and review part 2, but since then the device has received a big Feature Pack update, including a processor speed bump, so why not take a sideways look at the N8 and updated 701, blow by blow?
The subject of the future for current Symbian users has been debated a lot over the last year or so. "I've got to try living with the times", I thought, so I switched my main SIM into the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, 4.6" screen, dual core processor and full on Android 4. I'd dabbled with Android a lot in the past, of course, but this was an intensive week's test. I wasn't even allowed to pick up a Symbian phone, other than for review purposes. And you know what, my SIM card's now back in the N8 and I think I'm faster, lighter and more productive on my mobile feet as a result - here's my fairly personal list of things I missed after my week with Ice Cream Sandwich...
The period 2001 to 2011 should be celebrated, it's the decade when the humble 'mobile phone' become more, so much more. And it's worth noting Nokia's part in this transformation, with five things listed here that the company absolutely nailed in the fight to give us more and more powerful phones. But I also can't let such a retrospective go by without a similar attempt to identify the five biggest mistakes that Nokia made, leading to its somewhat troubled existence in the smartphone world of 2012.
Nokia's 808 PureView, with its 41 megapixel camera and large 1/1.2" sensor, has generated a lot of excitement and interest. Earlier this week I visited Carl Zeiss AG's Headquarters in Oberkochen, Southern Germany, to learn more both about the technology inside Nokia's new imaging flagship and get a first hands-on with a near-retail device.
In my recent 'N8 to 808' feature, I postulated that the natural upgrade from an N8 would be to a 4.3"-screened smartphone at most, but there was a definite opinion that the new Samsung Galaxy S III is still an attractive option for current N8 owners, despite the size. Having spent some time with the SGS3 at the launch event, I wanted to compare specs and features between this and the 'shoe-in N8 upgrade', the 808. Personally, I fancy owning both...(!)
The 'my phone (or smartphone platform) is better than yours' debates across the tech world rage on, somewhat amusingly. Yes, I know that megabucks are involved, that sales of successful products now reach into the many tens of millions, that each launch is bigger and better funded than the last. But I also can't help notice that we've only been seeing gradual improvements for the last five years and that, in truth, I could happily use almost any top-end device from that entire period to accomplish all the things I need a smartphone to do.