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

  #1  
Old 06-04-2004, 11:48 AM
Bateman
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Why I'm thinking of Selling my P900

The reasons for this are many;

Below is a list of fairly high-level observations and grievances I can list off the top of my head, therefore the most severe.

1) As SE's flagship phone, one would expect it to be sufficient in the "business functionality" areas such as synchronizing calendar items, email items etc.

However, when syncing email items:

a) One has no choice to include Outlook subfolders other than default inbox, outbox and sent items.
b) Status of mail items in Outlook (i.e. Read, Unread etc) cannot be altered by marking (reading/replying etc) them in the P900 and then syncing in Outlook. (How do I keep track of mail items I have read/replied in the P900 then synced to Outlook, in Outlook?)
c) The inbuilt email program does not support HTML emails, so sending email from the P900 looks unprofessional in a corporate environment.

When syncing contact items:

a) The biggest and most absurd disappointment is that the PC software that came with the P900 has no ability to map contact fields. This means I loose all my extra mobile phone numbers for each contact. Absurd. I contacted SE support about this fundamental necessity and the tech says that he cannot tell me if there is 3rd party software out there that will allow mapping. I have tried looking but can't find it anywhere.

2) General issues:

a) There is a 'known' bug that causes calendar, task, jotter etc data to be lost upon turning the phone off then on. Apparently this bug is related to the low battery power in the P900. SE has done nothing to advertise the status of this OR as to whether they are aware of it or if it has been fixed. I have lost data a number of times and this is unacceptable for the price I paid for the P900.

b) There are bugs in the OS that simply make the phone an annoyance to use. For example the "out of memory" bugs.

c) There is simple functionality missing from various areas of the phone such as the ability to select a number of SMS's and save them to the SIM card simultaneously, without having to open each up individually. The ability to record voice conversations is missing (it's possible on the T68i!!). No phone profiles ability. There are many more...

I also find the Symbian OS too linear in its approach to human interaction. Clicking one thing at a time in order to get to an applications (i.e. applications icon, applications category, then applications) is much too slow. It could well do with a native desktop where apps can be accessed from, and a menu system on the desktop. I know things like Tracker and Handy Day provide this functionality but for the price and class of phone little things like this should be taken for granted.

The thing is SE advertise this smartphone as their high-flying business class product. But it lacks essential functionality to make it a business-class product and there are too many "issues" with it.

I am someone who always keeps firmware up to date, and patches regularly, yet these issues have not been addressed, or even publicly acknowledged by SE.

Apart from these things it's a great product. But as a business class product it falls short in too many areas to be seriously considered, as I'm sure many of you would agree.

Regards,

Bateman

  #2  
Old 06-04-2004, 12:58 PM
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n1ghtFLY n1ghtFLY is offline
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OOT

So... what r u gonna do after u sell it ??

back to the oldskool organiser with pen, pencil and paper ??? >_<

well nothing is perfect cos if there is, life will be boring as hell LOL
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  #3  
Old 06-04-2004, 02:50 PM
Bateman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n1ghtFLY
OOT

So... what r u gonna do after u sell it ??

back to the oldskool organiser with pen, pencil and paper ??? >_<

well nothing is perfect cos if there is, life will be boring as hell LOL
Pencil & paper? No... I will look into something like an iPAQ/PocketPC. The P900 sits on the fence and overlooks both the phone and the PDA fields, but unfortunatly lacks proper functionality in the latter (and surprisingly some functionality in the former too, e.g. profile swapping, voice recording).

I will see if there are any solutions on the PDA market that more appropriatly meet my needs as a business user (and an ad hoc user)

Bateman

  #4  
Old 06-04-2004, 03:39 PM
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Maybe old but the Communicator(9210i) might suit you better or you can wait for the 9500.I'll probably use a combo until the 9500 is released.An old Psion Revo and some cheap Symbian device,like the N-Gage.

I wouldn't go back to PockePC,although ActiveSync rocks,loosing data will be much more frequent then on the p900 plus the phone side is awful.
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  #5  
Old 06-04-2004, 04:53 PM
Bateman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GhostDog
Maybe old but the Communicator(9210i) might suit you better or you can wait for the 9500.I'll probably use a combo until the 9500 is released.An old Psion Revo and some cheap Symbian device,like the N-Gage.

I wouldn't go back to PockePC,although ActiveSync rocks,loosing data will be much more frequent then on the p900 plus the phone side is awful.
I actually never have used a PocketPC properly so I'm not sure how reliable they are. I'm thinking of PIM compatibility between Windows Apps like Office.

It's a shame about the P900. It's just the software that's the problem. BTW I just found another bug. If you sync your email then read an email in the P900 and click on an email address you get a menu (Email, MMS) If you choose email then a couple of screens flash before your eyes and the Messenger App just exits! No email even in the drafts folder... (I haven't tried the MMS option yet )

These things SE have overlooked. If they only made these fundemental improvements to the software the phone would be close to perfect.

But out of all these gripes, lack of mapping via syncing the contacts is I think the worst. I see it as a flaw in the product.

Does anyone know if there IS any 3rd party software out there that can map contacts with the P900? What about email apps for the P900? Is EmailViewer anygood (and can it sync with outlook?)

Regards,

Bateman

  #6  
Old 06-04-2004, 05:05 PM
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Oddness.
I have not got half the bugs on my phone that you have.
The email and mms work 100%
No data loss. (the sync should have a map option i agree... even the mac does not have that sob.)
The memory bug i had... but i did a restore from my p800.
I then did a format installed everything from scratch and it works 100% now.
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  #7  
Old 06-04-2004, 10:39 PM
Bateman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KayonLord
Oddness.
I have not got half the bugs on my phone that you have.
The email and mms work 100%
No data loss. (the sync should have a map option i agree... even the mac does not have that sob.)
The memory bug i had... but i did a restore from my p800.
I then did a format installed everything from scratch and it works 100% now.
It could be because you have an email account set up on your phone. I do not. All I do is sync my Outlook email and the P900 creates the email profile. I do not have an email account set up on the phone, which I am guessing, is why it fails as per my previous post.

Bateman

  #8  
Old 08-04-2004, 03:06 AM
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Bateman, although I don't suffer many of the bugs you do, I agree about the lack of functionality. I kind of made the decision to move away from my PDA as I was sick of carrying a phone AND pda everywhere. The SEP900 is a compromise and I feel it's the best compromise I could have made.

I think you should write to SE and tell them where you think it is falling down. I will be doing so.

  #9  
Old 08-04-2004, 12:43 PM
Bateman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rb14
Bateman, although I don't suffer many of the bugs you do, I agree about the lack of functionality. I kind of made the decision to move away from my PDA as I was sick of carrying a phone AND pda everywhere. The SEP900 is a compromise and I feel it's the best compromise I could have made.

I think you should write to SE and tell them where you think it is falling down. I will be doing so.
Hi,

I think I will be writing to SE soon. I agree with what you said; the P900 is the best compromise I could find too, but these issues really need to be sorted out. I blame SE for their advertising of the P900 as giving the impression it has the functionality of a business class product, when in reality and practice it doesn't.

If such a high-flying device claims "email functionality" for example, one would expect just that; Email functionality, not "partial email functionality". Same goes for the other things I listed.

In short, I think the P900 is too expensive, and there isn't enough there to justify the price. But it does make a good compromise if you don't want to carry a Nokia Communicator or a PDA around. I think if one stops thinking of the P900 as a business class phone it suddenly becomes sufficient, because then you don't expect to be able to do things with it you should be able to do on an expensive device advertised as a business class / leisure product...

Regards,

Bateman
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  #10  
Old 08-04-2004, 01:30 PM
Bassey Bassey is offline
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Although I acknowledge all the faults you've listed, I think your conclusion is a little harsh. Yes the P900 has bugs and is missing features, but what business class product isn't? You mention that you require perfect synching with Outlook and yet Outlook XP is probably the buggiest piece of software I have used since Word 95 and lacks so much seemingly obvious functionality, I have to wonder what the developers were smoking when they wrote the spec.

But, I say this coming from Lotus Organiser. As a PIM, for me, Outlook is so lacking and buggy, the two aren't even in the same league.

Yet a colleague, who had to switch from Outlook to organiser, couldn't believe how primitive the collaboration features were in Organiser and complained constantly. Apparantly, all the extra features in the calendar and contacts were completely lost on him.

I think it comes down to the fact that losing something is always harder than gaining something. If you suddenly loose the ability to do something that can in actuality, with a little effort and thought, easily be worked around, it affects us far more than gaining something. So, losing the ability to map fields in your PDA to synch to Outlook seems to FAR outweight the benefit of being able to send an e-mail on the move without having to carry a PDA and infra-red phone and connect the two and wait an age whilst the data transfers accross and....

This isn't a criticism. It's human nature. Someone did a study a while ago. They took two groups. One they gave a 5% pay rise, the other a 5% pay cut. Two months later they surveyed them to find out how much it had affected them. The 5% payrise people hadn't noticed any tangible benefits. The 5% pay cut people didn't know how they were going to survive!

I think the P900 is a mixture of the two with many benefits over a speparate PDA and phone combined, but many disadvantages over just a PDA, and many disadvantages compared to just a phone. I think it depends on where you have come from as to what affects you the most.

In the end, I suppose it just goes to prove that we're all different and so even the most advanced phone in the world can't possibly be right for everyone. But to state it doesn't qualify as a business class product because it doesn't suit you personally seems to be over simplifying things a little.
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Last edited by Bassey; 08-04-2004 at 01:35 PM.

  #11  
Old 20-04-2004, 04:56 PM
lotus49 lotus49 is offline
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I haven't actually got my P900 yet, it should arrive in the next couple of days but I have been using a P800 for 14 months.

While I agree that the P[89]00 is a compromise, there are areas where the phone really isn't suitable for business use. The email client (I understand there has been no material improvement P800->P900) is truly atrocious and synchronising with Outlook has some real drawbacks.

I have also found Bluetooth to be thoroughly unreliable on my P800. I hope it improves with my new P900.

On balance I feel that the P900 is a great gadget and I am really looking forward to getting mine, but I don't really believe it's a suitable business tool yet.

  #12  
Old 26-04-2004, 07:39 AM
CuttaCalhoon CuttaCalhoon is offline
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Angry P900 Mapping

Bateman and to whoever is reading this,

The inability to custom map P900 contacts with MS Outlook is a huge downfall. I just purchased the phone, and this is really pissing me off. But! This is not a problem of the phone: the PC suite is what sucks. Hence, I was wondering if you found any 3rd party SW that enables better mapping of contact fields between the P900 and MS Outlook.

The other annoyance I can live with, but with no custom mapping I don’t need this. Any low level Nokia provides better mapping capabilities.

Calhoon

  #13  
Old 26-04-2004, 02:38 PM
Bateman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CuttaCalhoon
Bateman and to whoever is reading this,

The inability to custom map P900 contacts with MS Outlook is a huge downfall. I just purchased the phone, and this is really pissing me off. But! This is not a problem of the phone: the PC suite is what sucks. Hence, I was wondering if you found any 3rd party SW that enables better mapping of contact fields between the P900 and MS Outlook.

The other annoyance I can live with, but with no custom mapping I don’t need this. Any low level Nokia provides better mapping capabilities.

Calhoon
Or low-level SE for that matter. In fact I could map fields with my SE T68i... so I wonder how seriously SE has taken the P900...

On this exact issue, I called up SE data support and asked them if there was a way round it or to inform me of other 3rd party s/w that would do the trick. As to the former they specified that it is highly unlikely that there will be future builds of the s/w that will include this functionality. As to the latter they refused to point out any 3rd party s/w out to me. I have looked everywhere but cannot find any 3rd party s/w that will solve this problem. I realise it's a s/w problem and nothing to do with the P900 per se but since it directly affects the way you use it I mark
the P900 down anyway.

Does *anybody* know of any 3rd party P900 sync s/w that allows you to map custom fields with Outlook?

Regards,

Bateman

  #14  
Old 28-04-2004, 01:48 PM
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Exclamation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bateman

2) General issues:

a) There is a 'known' bug that causes calendar, task, jotter etc data to be lost upon turning the phone off then on. Apparently this bug is related to the low battery power in the P900. SE has done nothing to advertise the status of this OR as to whether they are aware of it or if it has been fixed. I have lost data a number of times and this is unacceptable for the price I paid for the P900.
At least this bug is solved in AquaCalendar.

  #15  
Old 03-05-2004, 05:17 AM
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P900 Gripes

While I too don't have many of the "bugs" listed by bateman, I believe he is making a very valid point. The important thing to note, Bassey, is that he is making these points in the context of the way the phone is advertised and the price. I used a P800 earlier and now a P900, and it does seem extremely frustrating to find that it still doesn't do a great job (it does a GOOD job) of being either a phone or a pda. I mean, from the P800 what are the two major improvements - T9 (which they had no business to leave out in the first place), and the camera (I would rather have had some improvements in the business functionality than in the camera). In fact, why doesn't SE have a cheaper P900 without a camera as an option??

I agree wholeheartedly that its much better to have one integrated device than two great separates, but the fact remains that the P900 IS a compromise - which is fine to start with, but they will HAVE to better themselves if only to keep up.

Incidentally, here's another annoying feature (unless there's a way around it which I haven't found) - I use Outlook for my mail, and have also created an account on the phone to access the same mailbox when I'm on the move. But if I also want to synchronise mails with Outlook, it creates a separate messaging account, when in fact they are the same account! Can't I have all mails from the same mail box in the same messaging account whether I sync from Outlook or poll my server directly?
 

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