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Old 16-02-2010, 02:43 AM
snoFlake snoFlake is offline
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Nokia exec to give candid assessment of N97? - interview with Rafe and Ewan (MIR)

http://www.mobileindustryreview.com/...a_preview.html

http://www.mobileindustryreview.com/...nokia_n97.html

Looks like more to follow in the morning - sounds interesting judging from Ewan's sound bite.



Haven't posted here for a bit (was poorly aaaahhhh) but having updated to v2.1 my experience with my N97 has improved - it still crashes occasionally and in first 2 days after update it dropped almost all my calls but for whatever reason that seems to have abated (no it makes no real sense to me apart from where I live seemingly being a marginal 3G reception spot so maybe getting better reception but would imply it's still not coping very well with handoff from 3G to GSM/GPRS ).

Anyway in more detail: the firmware upgrade didn't go that smoothly for me unlike others here and I'm not sure if I coudn't have done the proceedure better. The new firmware was available right from the outset for me so no probs there I backed up on Mem Card OK (although OVI suite wouldn't let me). I then did a reset as now recommended by Nokia I see (bit of a change from them there) and restored my contacts etc (but not settings) then resync'd calendar from Ovi Portal and then set about restoring the random apps that had disappeared. I commented on this before after having to do a rebuild but which apps endure and which get wiped is a bit of a mystery as it seems quite arbitrary to me and I have all 3rd party ones installed on the E: however quite a number of them did go so I did the round of re-downloads and installs.

I've no idea how some of you do it so quickly as that all seems to take me a good three hours plus and redoing all the profile and other small settings etc. The next step was where I ran into real problems when I tried to refresh the music library I received a phone call while it was doing it and nothing I could do would persuade it that there were any tracks stored on the E:. Tried uninstalling them and reinstalling them through OVI suite, tried manually deleting and transferring over in mass storage mode, well you get it, tried every variation I could think of and nothing - even left it 5 hours trying to do the indexing in case I hadn't left it long enough. Ended up reformatting the E: and the did a full reset as well so then had to completely rebuild and download absolutley everything all over again and still couldn't get it to refresh the list of music. In a moment of desperation/inspiration I ended up taking the Micro SD storage out and you guessed it worked just fine, the previous time I had to reset after WSOD I didn't have this problem at all. In all I must've spent over 12hrs on this and goes back to my oft stated contention: Firmware upgrades shouldn't really be encouraged as they're not that simple to perform so Nokia need to DRAMATICALLY improve the release firmwares rather than relying on a series of itterative improvements as they seem to have fallen very much into the habit of over the last few years. Secondly they still need to imrove the seemlessness of the update process it's still far to easy to bork the phone (or seemingly have borked it) it's no good having UDP if the phone's actually require a factory reset to get the firmware upgrade to "take", they need a leaf from Apple's book on this. Why no place to store your App list (assuming it's all from OVI as mine is) with a batch reinstall? (or have I just been and idiot and there is one that I missed ?) Some seem perfectly content to put with this behaviour though.

However getting past that, as I said at the beginning the new firmware is an improvement, it's not preefect but is what it could and should have been released with. They've been pretty ruthless with the memory management and I notice that quite frequently when I fire up either the new OVI maps or Web it has closed down most or all of the other apps that were running and Web still crashes or more accurately freezes way too regularly but I think that's really a reflection on the constricted hardware than the OS though failure events should be handled more seemlessly in an ideal world without locking up the OS (pipe dream). All in all it runs more "solidly" can't say it's faster really but seem less moments of uncertainty as to whether it's going to do anything or not. Talking of the hardware problems after the Maps update and as I'm using Nokia Messaging and have couple of other Nokia Apps installed (Point and Find etc) I am in a bit of trouble with the C: now (23-24 MB) generally but seems to stablize in that zone without falling further but obviously that's it for any more Nokia programmes for me (which is a bit silly on what was sold as a power flagship) as they all seem to install on the C: and I have already rerun the memory reorganizer several times and it isn't making any real difference any more I really do have everything I can control installed on the E: .

I'll be very interested to see what this senior Nokia executive has to say as I still contend that the overall ownership experience of this product has been way below what it's 500 price warranted. Frankly the 5800 has got the same hardware platform barring the Camera and Mass Storage and seems to have offered a much better cost/benefit ownership ratio and I think those like me who feel that they've bought into a poor product that's been poorly supported have a good argument.

1) The Hardware platform wasn't sufficient for purpose - even Steve Litchfield (hardly known as a Nokia basher) contends this is so and I suspect Rafe is about to put the same point across too - for the sake of a few dollars and some foresight or allowing for future expansion would have saved months trying to get underpowered hardware to cope with overbloated demands made on it. Even now the best way they have been able to stabilize it seemingly is to stop it doing too much multitasking ie making it ruthless when running some apps.

2) Taking from July to February the following year to actually get the OS into a state it's fit for public use is just not acceptable. By this I mean not having to make allowances along the "Oh it Only crashes if I ask it to do this........or it only crshaes intermittently" which are just not acceptable. A highend SmartPHONE should just work, every time, always, end of. It's fine for a platform such as the N900 to be a work in progress when it was advertised as such; the N97 wasn't and it simply didn't work reliably or deliver the services it was advertised with. Now I think it's particularly stupid given that it wasn't exactly quick to market after Dec 2008 announcement and that it was running pretty much the same stuff as 5800. Which is why following reviews that certainly didn't warn of it's huge early problems (and AAS were as, if not more guilty of this as many others) I think many felt safe to buy it, it wasn't until the waves of user feedback came in that alarm bells started to sound. Too late for many of us by then and I wasn't an early adopter. I still think many of the problems can be attributed to the first failing with the hardware.

3) Nokia didn't either acknowledge that there were problems or what steps were going to be taken to rectify them in a timely or professional manner. This is a fairly common fault but even after the last shreds of plausible deniablilty have be torn form them they still haven't been fully open about the Cam/GPS problems or indeed about the legion of software problems and which are fixable and in how long and which are not.

Again none of this adds up to a 500 phone experience.

Any early N97 owners fancy buying SF^3 devices hot off the presses or maybe not? Which is a shame - especially for me as a shareholder LOL so yar boo sucks to me the Nokia "hater"

  #2  
Old 16-02-2010, 11:49 AM
rdcinhou rdcinhou is offline
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Only 3 hours?

A full restore and installation usually takes me about 8 hours (it used to take 10 but I'm getting more efficient at it!) all-told (not restoring from back-up, but manually configuring all settings, including folders, arrangements, license reactivations, etc.). The biggest part being the USA/North America map download and music library download.

Short of giving all of the N97 early adopters their next smartphone ABSOLUTELY FREE (including licenses) I don't believe that there is anything that Nokia can do to regain its high-end customer base.

  #3  
Old 16-02-2010, 12:57 PM
mato3113 mato3113 is offline
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Thumbs up Symbian^3 handsets

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdcinhou View Post
Only 3 hours?

A full restore and installation usually takes me about 8 hours (it used to take 10 but I'm getting more efficient at it!) all-told (not restoring from back-up, but manually configuring all settings, including folders, arrangements, license reactivations, etc.). The biggest part being the USA/North America map download and music library download.

Short of giving all of the N97 early adopters their next smartphone ABSOLUTELY FREE (including licenses) I don't believe that there is anything that Nokia can do to regain its high-end customer base.
That's interesting point, perhaps only free exchange of N97 for the new handset can fix N97 disaster experience.

  #4  
Old 16-02-2010, 11:06 PM
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I, for one, am very keen to see this interview. Given Ewan's enthusiastic preview, it sounds like Nokia did indeed "grow some" and maybe we'll, at the very least, get some answers, some apologies and some explanations about how the N97 has done so much damage.

Looking forward to this.
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  #5  
Old 17-02-2010, 12:29 AM
rdcinhou rdcinhou is offline
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Quote:
it sounds like Nokia did indeed "grow some" and maybe we'll, at the very least, get some answers, some apologies and some explanations about how the N97 has done so much damage.
Talk is cheap.

The N97 wasn't.

  #6  
Old 17-02-2010, 08:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rdcinhou View Post
Talk is cheap.

The N97 wasn't.
I have to agree, no amount of talking and hand wringing by Nokia is going to change the fact we were sold a very expensive failure of a dud handset.

The only question I would like to see answered is how will they plan to help and improve (if they can) the N97 owners user experience now.

  #7  
Old 18-02-2010, 06:47 AM
dez_borders dez_borders is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rdcinhou View Post
Talk is cheap.

The N97 wasn't.
OMG you are so bitter!
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  #8  
Old 18-02-2010, 08:11 AM
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angiepea angiepea is offline
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Gosh Dez, that's seems terribly harsh

I do understand the sentiment though.

I believe that most of the N97 owners who have a fully working and capable handset don't bother too much with forums like this, although i do, i'm always interested in learning new things. Of course it's also the place where people come when they have problems, and when they have problems they are usually and quite rightly angry.

However, i really am tired of people saying that THE N97 is a useless piece of c**p, that THE N97 is a waste of time, that THE N97 is a waste of money, when, in actual fact ... YOUR N97 might be a worthless doorstop but MINE isn't - this sweeping generalisation that all handsets are and have faults isn't right.

I'm by no means a nokiafangirl, i almost feel embarrassed for liking my phone so much, i don't want to make anyone feel like they cannot complain about THEIR handset or ask for help but really, the piece of kit is in YOUR hands, it's either YOU as an operator or a faulty handset ....... definitely not all N97's
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  #9  
Old 18-02-2010, 08:52 AM
nbriscoeuk nbriscoeuk is offline
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Quite agree Angiepea.

Apart from the hardware issues (now fixed) my phone, even on the older firmware mostly worked fine. I've upgraded it as far as V20 and have no major problem. I'll upgrade to V21 if VF get their act together, but I have rather too much info on my phone to go through the pain of a debrand and complete re-install. Hell, I've even got a working SIP stack on a VF branded phone, and that was the one thing I thought I just might have to go through a debrand for.

Definitely not a complete pile of crap by any means.

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  #10  
Old 18-02-2010, 10:34 AM
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I'm happy that there's happy people. I still have a raft of hardware issues with my N97 and need to send it to Nokia again (local care point not capable).

I keep quoting my n95 experience (using my n95 currently) because although the original firmware was a little flaky it was an awesomely capable phone with incredible groudnbreaking hardware (and could run quake - I remember when quake was what we used to benchmark our pc's - "but can it run quake?"). The N95 was, frankly, awesome.

The N97, for me, isn't.

It could have been. If they'd put in more RAM & a bigger C:\ and maybe, just maybe, done some quality control before they rushed it out the door (camera, gps, etc).

And oh, how I wanted it to be awesome.

I don't think there's anything Nokia can do to change how I feel about the N97. I've wasted too many hours sending it back, arguing with Nokia, reisntalling software, taking the battery out. I've taken the battery out so many times that one of the clips that hold the case in place is broken. But it's not covered in warranty. Even though I wouldn't have to keep taking the battery out if the firmware had worked properly.

If my N97 had been a TV or a laptop I'd have taken it back to the shop and demanded a refund as not fit for purpose and bought another brand. But you can't do that with a contract phone, because it's not as simple as that. There's nothing to refund and you have a contract.

I don't post on n97 forums much anymore, or go looking for N97 freeware, or write widgets, or any of the geeky fun things I used to do, because I simply CBA. The whole "ownership experience" has been thoroughly soiled. Never again will I early adopt a Nokia - and by early I mean within 6 months of release.

OK,I'm done. I'll get me coat...
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Old 18-02-2010, 11:38 AM
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Leave yer coat mate!

I am so sorry to hear of your disappointment with the N97.

I truly am.

I remember those early halcyon days last June/July when the N97 was first released and our expectations for it, perhaps unreasonably so after the euphoria of the N95.

I couldn't agree more with you about the RAM and C: drive. I would have thought Nokia would have learned by their mistakes after launching the original N95 with too low a RAM, which they then doubled in the N95 8GB.

Touch wood, I've not suffered the camera lens scratching problem or bad GPS but I have to admit that my N97 was on its final countdown with versions v10, v11 and v12.

I started eyeing up the Sony Ericsson "Satio" and "frying pan into fire" springs to mind.

Because of my lack of hardware problems, v20 and v21 swung it back for me.

I know the time and effort you have put into, not only your N97, but the forum (who can forget your Wurzels song) and your freeware app's site. On a number of occasions a posting of yours has helped me out.

I can understand why you don't post here anymore, after all, you've said all there is to be said and I guess that you don't want to be a repetitive "Moaning Minnie" full of bile and vitriol.

I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that I miss your input and wit but trust that you will still keep a watchful eye here in future.

So, just leave yer coat and we'll look after it.
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  #12  
Old 18-02-2010, 11:39 AM
GremlinUK GremlinUK is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davecozens View Post
or go looking for N97 freeware, or write widgets,
Thats a shame it always seemed like a good site...

Maybe you should update your website with a "This site is no longer updated" message to save me and others cheking it out regularly or suporting you by using your affiliate links on it?

I wonder how many people have had issues with thier N97's because of using old deep links on your site not knowing that they could be using old versions of software as a result of you not keeping the links up to date?

  #13  
Old 18-02-2010, 12:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GremlinUK View Post
Thats a shame it always seemed like a good site...

Maybe you should update your website with a "This site is no longer updated" message to save me and others cheking it out regularly or suporting you by using your affiliate links on it?

I wonder how many people have had issues with thier N97's because of using old deep links on your site not knowing that they could be using old versions of software as a result of you not keeping the links up to date?
As far as affiliate links, etc go it was an attempt to try and justify the amount of time I was spending on it. Never even reached the minimum threshold for payment, so never made anything. It was never about that, anyway.

Plus, anybody can add software they find by clicking the "add it here" link on the main page - literally, anybody...

Most of the links are to author software sites not direct downloads, so you should be OK as far as versions go.
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  #14  
Old 18-02-2010, 01:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GremlinUK View Post
I wonder how many people have had issues with thier N97's because of using old deep links on your site not knowing that they could be using old versions of software as a result of you not keeping the links up to date?
W.T.F.!

I would say, "caveat emptor", but it doesn't apply in this case.

Most of davecozens app's are arrived at by following links to other sites. Therefore it is the responsibility of those sites to ensure updates.

Dave started this site, in his own time and using his own money, to collate the few app's that existed at that time for the N97 and it has proved to be an invaluable source of reference to myself and a lot of others.

I still visit the site on a regular basis to use those links that can, in some cases, give me more up-to-date app's than Ovi Store and, moreover, allow me to download the installation files to my computer or phone for storage in case of a re-install.

I'm sorry that you are and feel that you deserve a full refund of every penny you've paid.... oh! wait a minute...
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Old 18-02-2010, 03:07 PM
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Tis an awesome site which gives, as mentioned, great info etc. I still have my old n95 8gb and i ran all three quake games on it. i must say, quake three ran amazing. i was disheartened to learn that the hardware of the n97 was not block rocking but i thought it would do the job. My n97 runs fine. A reboot a day seems to keep it running at its fastest and a clearing of web cache, reset of google maps after every use and a trip into the system file via y-browser to delete the folders in there keeps it going.

I do find it anoying as i will have to do a hard reset soon as my c drive is slowly shrinking with all the log files etc created by programs etc. Oh well, life with the N97! Tis still a brill handset though!

-Des
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