All About Symbian - Nokia (S60) and Sony Ericsson (UIQ) smartphones unwrapped

  #1  
Old 16-06-2008, 11:39 PM
krisse krisse is offline
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The N-Gage platform must embed soon or die

N-Gage was meant to have a potential userbase of tens of millions a year, but so far we estimate it's only reached a tiny fraction of that. The main reason for this is the N-Gage application, which has to be installed manually instead of being built into the compatible phones. The embedding of N-Gage in phones straight out of the box will mark the platform's real launch, but it STILL hasn't happened. Why is everything going so slowly? Click on the link to find out...

Read on in the full article.

  #2  
Old 17-06-2008, 12:03 AM
krisse krisse is offline
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Apologies for the rather dramatic title, but it's the truth.
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Old 17-06-2008, 12:43 PM
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Tetlee Tetlee is offline
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Indeed, on top of everything it's time Nokia changed their marketing strategy by updating the public on the current situation of NGage and it's supported handsets and future plans. For a new platform they hope to push out on a huge scale the official NGage website is so void of updated information it reminds me of the original NGage site from the time the platform was slowly fading away

I expected my N93 to be supported long ago, I mean how much longer can they just leave it on the main page with "NGage support coming soon!" under the N73, N93 & N93i. For me "soon" should mean "soon", otherwise why not at least update us via the blog page to suggest that the support could be delayed for whatever reason. I keep checking for information but nothing and that does get frustrating!

For me there's nothing worst than being kept in the dark, I got to hate Nintendo for this reason and I'm starting to feel the same way with Nokia lately. We spend enough money on these NGage compatible phones, the least Nokia can do is show they do care about us by keeping us at least relatively up to date. I can take delays, just give us reasons to save us feeling we've been forgotten.

As for the embedding of NGage within the boxed retail phones, there was a member over at the official NGage forums recently that claimed they had bought an N73 which actually had NGage already installed from new, of course we have to take this persons word on this but it does sound genuine and very interesting if true.

Last edited by Tetlee; 17-06-2008 at 12:47 PM.

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Old 17-06-2008, 12:51 PM
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In case you're interested here is a link to the thread that I mentioned from the official NGage forums where a user claims to have purchased a brand new N73 handset(apparently direct from Nokia) which has NGage 2.0 already pre-installed.

http://forums.arena.n-gage.com/nokia...thread.id=1615

  #5  
Old 17-06-2008, 01:09 PM
krisse krisse is offline
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Tetlee, that sounds to me like they've been conned into paying full price for a second hand phone, and the cracked version of the N-Gage app has been put on it to make it seem more up to date.

If Nokia had N-Gage available for the N73 they would have told us by now, the N73 userbase is huge.

I remember on the old gen N-Gage someone posted about how they'd bought Snakes and didn't realise it was a free game, some market stall somewhere was selling it on gamecards!
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Last edited by krisse; 17-06-2008 at 01:11 PM.

  #6  
Old 17-06-2008, 06:34 PM
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So I'm a bit confused too as to why the N93 hasn't been N-gage'd yet.. Yes the N73 has limited RAM so delays are (relatively) understandable. The N93 has similar hardware and screen resolution to the n95 and its sisters, so what could the hold up be for?

Thinking back to when first access was released (and I guess also the illegal hack that's floating about the web) the app ran on pretty much any s60 device no probs.

What's. Going. On?

It feels to me like somewhere within the N-gage team things aren't being managed or communicated properly. Ikona for example is forever passing the buck off to the upper echelons of the team.. 'When I hear more I'll tell you'... or.. 'I'll ask if the release date can be updated on the showroom'. Talk to each other. Talk to us. Make us feel you're as excited as we are.

I'm sure Ikona is frustrated being the middle man in a scenario where the consumers seem more bothered than management. Like any business model the customer comes first, and we are a community that wants to feel part of this potentially amazing platform that is N-gage. It just seems like a small group of monkeys hitting PC's with their spanners are running the show at the N-gage camp at the mo.

Things need tightening up. Departments need to communicate. More money, better management and resources need to be pumped into areas of weakness. Release dates need to be met, or explained if delayed. The customer needs to come first.

We all want N-gage to succeed and become the future of gaming, put us at the centre of that.

Let's make it happen Nokia, let's change into fifth gear.

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Old 17-06-2008, 06:50 PM
krisse krisse is offline
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I suspect the delays in release dates are down to testing, it's actually incredibly hard to test a phone game because the sheer variety of hardware is incredible. Even a single phone model can have dozens of variations for all the phone networks, and there are already about half a dozen phones to test these games on.

I remember one of the developers of Worms for the original N-Gage told us in a webchat that one of their testers had run up $2000 in phone bills testing the game, because they had to allow for every possible state of the phone while the game was running. That was just one tester doing one game! :-)

Console game testing is far easier because there's usually just one hardware version, or maybe two or three major overhauls in the console's lifetime, and a console doesn't really do much else while it's running a game.


Quote:
So I'm a bit confused too as to why the N93 hasn't been N-gage'd yet.. Yes the N73 has limited RAM so delays are (relatively) understandable. The N93 has similar hardware and screen resolution to the n95 and its sisters, so what could the hold up be for?
The N93 doesn't have as much RAM as the N95, the N93 has about 20MB free but the N95 has about 30MB free. The N95 also has a newer version of S60v3, S60v3 FP1, which is what all the other current N-gage phones use. It could be that it's the lack of FP1 on the N93 and N73 that's also causing problems.

To be honest though, the basic problem seems to be that the N95 sold far better than the N93, so there's more incentive for Nokia to update the N95 firmware. The N93 turned out to be a very niche item, perhaps because it just looked too bulky when used as a phone.

I have an N93 myself incidentally, and I think it's quite simply the best camcorder phone and gaming phone made so far, but I can see why the average phone user would be put off by its bulk.


Quote:
More money, better management and resources need to be pumped into areas of weakness.
Nokia spent a VAST amount of money on the original N-Gage, including buying a big chunk of Sega and creating some of the most expensive phone games ever made. However, almost all of that money went down the toilet. I suspect they want to avoid throwing cash at the problem this time round.

That said, as I wrote in the article their main imperative now should be getting the application onto as many phones as possible, mainly through embedding.

Once you have people using the platform, the money will naturally start flowing in as people buy the games, and the more people buy the games the more new games will get released on the platform, which makes even more people interested in the platform.
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Last edited by krisse; 17-06-2008 at 06:55 PM.

  #8  
Old 17-06-2008, 06:53 PM
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Ikona as just anounced the 1st N-series phones with N-gage enbedded have just started to be shipped
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Old 17-06-2008, 06:53 PM
PatricOj PatricOj is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krisse View Post
N-Gage was meant to have a potential userbase of tens of millions a year, but so far we estimate it's only reached a tiny fraction of that. The main reason for this is the N-Gage application, which has to be installed manually instead of being built into the compatible phones. The embedding of N-Gage in phones straight out of the box will mark the platform's real launch, but it STILL hasn't happened. Why is everything going so slowly? Click on the link to find out...

Read on in the full article.
Working hard on out of box, as that is one of the key benefits in N-Gage. Also working on wider device support as post purchase installation. Not as easy as it may sound.

  #10  
Old 17-06-2008, 07:08 PM
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Cheers for the reply Krisse, comprehensive and insightful as always. I hadn't realised the extent of testing that had to be performed on each device. I guess really many of us have simply been feeling frustrated lately largely due to the fact we want N-gage to succeed so much and get into everyone's pockets.

I see Ikona was quick to respond with- 'GOOD THINGS ON THE WAY!' after a bit of negative chatter in the last 24hours or so. Least they're reading and listening.

Onwards :-)

  #11  
Old 17-06-2008, 07:27 PM
krisse krisse is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PatricOj View Post
Working hard on out of box, as that is one of the key benefits in N-Gage. Also working on wider device support as post purchase installation. Not as easy as it may sound.
I totally appreciate it's not easy, I'm sure it takes a heck of a lot of patience and work to make the N-Gage app function properly on many different devices. :-)

The article was just meant to emphasise that (like you say) embedding N-Gage into phones is a vital part of making N-Gage a success. Once it's embedded, N-Gage will be at its strongest, and it will become more and more attractive to third party publishers as its userbase grows.
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