Notable Symbian applications and developers of 2011

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2011 was a tumultuous year for Symbian. While it was the year that saw Nokia declare its intention to terminate the platform, Symbian was still the most used mobile platform (by browser usage) - reports of Symbian's demise have been greatly exaggerated! Surprisingly, we have seen more, not less, activity and creativity in the Symbian developer community since the infamous February 11th announcement. Join me as I detail (in my opinion) some of the best Symbian applications and developers of 2011.

Opera Software

Author site: Link

Notable titles: Opera Mini & Opera Mobile

Opera Mobile and/or Mini have been essential fare for Symbian users since the S60 3rd Edition days for those who have been discontent with the built-in Symbian browser. Thanks to its proxy browsing technology, Opera Mini (and Mobile with the Turbo option turned on) reduces bandwidth usage. In either of its flavours, Opera improves upon Symbian Web due to slicker HTML rendering and text wrapping - the latter is a feature that has surprisingly not been implemented in Web.

Talv Bansal

Author site: Link

Notable titles: SymPaper, SymNote, SymFTP

Talv Bansal has had a busy year working on three top quality Symbian applications. SymPaper is the only native Symbian client for Read It Later - a handy service that saves web pages in plain text format. Meanwhile, SymNote is a client for the SimpleNote cloud service, which is a worthy alternative to the built-in Notes application. Lastly, SymFTP is an application for the super power users among us who want to set up their phone as an FTP server. Talv is also working to bring SymPaper to the MeeGo driven Nokia N9.


Harold Meyer

Author site: Link

Notable title: Camera Pro.

Harold Meyer was another prolific developer of 2011, most notably developing CameraPro N8, which was later updated with a Qt powered user interface. CameraPro brought camera enthusiasts many advanced options they found missing from the standard Camera application. Harold has many more titles, including "PhotoFX Effects Editor", "HDR Camera Pro", "Cam2Go Facebook Uploader", and "FastMotion TimeLapse".

Facebook applications

Author site: N/A

Notable titles: fMobi, Facial, facinate.

Regular readers will no doubt have seen Steve's frequently updated Facebook application round up, in which fMobi, Facial, and facinate repeatedly score 90% or so. All three deserve credit for supporting such rich feature sets, and diligently updating their applications with bug fixes and user interface updates - this always adds value to an application.


Yogeshwar P

Author site: Link

Notable title: gNewsReader

gNewsReader was introduced this year to much interest from ardent users of Google Reader. Amazingly, this is the first dedicated application for the (almost) defacto RSS reading service. Yogeshwar nailed it the first time - gNewsReader is already a full-featured Google Reader application, presented in a Nokia Belle user interface. At only £1.00, this is a must have for any Symbian user wanting news feeds at their finger tips.


Sports Tracker Technologies

Author site: Link

Notable titles: Sport Tracker

This innovative application began life as a Nokia Beta Labs project, but its developers later formed a dedicated company, Sports Tracker Technologies. Sports Tracker records your route (while jogging, cycling, etc) and takes readings from an optional Bluetooth heart rate monitor. This data can then be uploaded to your Sports Tracker account for future reference and sharing with others. While not for everyone, the research behind Sports Tracker may one day lend itself to general health monitoring software which will be of use to more than just keep fit enthusiasts.

Screenshot from Sports Tracker Screenshot from Sports Tracker Screenshot from Sports Tracker

Nokia Beta Labs / Wellness Diary

Author site: Link

Notable title: Wellness Diary

Wellness Diary is an ongoing Nokia Beta Labs project which keeps track of your keep fit activities. Complementing Sports Tracker, Wellness Diary helps you track your progress and goals. While you have to manually enter your data - rather than importing from Sports Tracker - it's an excellent way of monitoring your new year's resolutions!


Jan Ole Suhr

Author site: Link

Notable title: Gravity

No list of notable Symbian applications and developers would be complete without mentioning Jan Ole Suhr and his social networking opus, Gravity. By far the eldest application in this list, Gravity is still one of the best supported applications, thanks to a continuous stream of beta versions which almost always include new features. Gravity is primarily a Twitter client - the most feature-rich available on Symbian. However, it also supports Facebook, Foursquare, and Google Reader. While it's expensive (between £6.60 and £8.00), you certainly get value for your money.