Gartner has released a summary of its worldwide analysis for the mobile industry for Q2 2011 and it, as expected, shows that the in-demand Android smartphones have leapfrogged Symbian in the rankings. I've quoted the main tables below, but in summary, Symbian OS's marketshare worldwide is now 22%, with 23.8 million smartphones being sold.
Recent News - S60 5th Edition - Page 4
Another in my series of developer interviews has just been published at Nokia Conversations. This time I was chatting to Sebastian Brannstrom, creator of Podcatcher but also (for the purposes of this interview) looking at his new hit app, CoverUp, which retrieves album art for your music files on Symbian smartphones. In the chat, he talked about the app, the challenges he faced and the tools he used, especially Qt.
Mac owners who enjoy bullet-proof syncing from iCal and Address Book with their Nokia/Symbian smartphone(s) should note that upgrading to the latest (and new) OS X Lion operating system will yield at least one unpleasant surprise: Apple has removed all trace of iSync, the phone-sync application that has had wide manufacturer compatibility. Happily there's a workaround.
Nokia has announced that it plans to close web-based access to Ovi Calendar at the end of August. The sync service will continue to be available, but will now only operate as a backup for data. This means it will no longer be possible to view or edit calendar information through the Ovi.com website. Nokia says this was a business decision and that it "will help us to concentrate on our core service offerings". In reality, the decision is likely driven by the low numbers of active users of the web-based portion of the service.
Nokia have updated the dedicated Foursquare application to version 1.02 (9). You can pick up the update from the Ovi Store either through the updates tab, or going to the Foursquare app page and selecting the update option from there. The major change in this version is to accommodate the new Foursquare API methodology.
Although we haven't seen a new version of Google Maps for Mobile (for Symbian) for an eternity now (it's frozen at v4.1.1), it doesn't mean that we Symbian users aren't benefitting from Google's back-end improvements, not least the ever-growing place and business databases, transit lines, better satellite and street views etc. Shown below is a recent addition, of real time traffic status for a whopping 13 extra countries across the world.
Just noticed this in the Ovi Store, HWKey is a small and free utility to launch any designated application from your phone's camera (hardware) button. For anyone more interested in launching PhoneTorch or Gravity (etc) than Camera, this is a great little addition to your smartphone. Screens below...
Nokia's Ovi Store recently recorded 7.62 million downloads in a single day. This follows on from June's announcement that Ovi Store was averaging more than 6 million downloads a day. The greater than expected jump between June and July is primarily due to the "removal of the registration and log-in requirement for free items in the mobile web channel".
Nokia has released its Q2 2011 results, reporting an operating loss of -€487 million, with net sales of €9.275 billion (down 7% YoY). Nokia's Devices and Services division's losses were -€247 million. Margins in devices and services were -4.5% (down 14% YoY and down 14.2% QoQ). However, non-IFRS operating profit was €391 million (down 41% YoY and down 44% QoQ), with Devices and Services non-IFRS profit at €369 million, and margins at 6.7%. Total smartphone device sales were 16.7 million, compared with 24 million units in Q2 2010 (down 34% YoY) and 25.2 million units in Q1 2011 (down 31%, QoQ).
Months after you thought the Samsung i8910 modding scene had finally died, out comes arch-modder 'faenil', curator of 'faenil's pit', with a major new firmware release, 'n2o5', bringing an all-singing, all-dancing graphical interface to a wealth of i8910 system settings (browser user agents, camera tweaks, kinetic UI tweaks, and much more), compatibility certificates, Qt runtimes, and more. See below for warnings and links.
Not a big enough application to warrant a full review, but I still wanted to highlight GPS Toolbox as a cheap utility that satisfies a very specific need: looking under the hood at what your Symbian^3 smartphone's GPS is doing. How good or bad is your satellite lock and where exactly are you in terms of latitude and longitude?
Having recently started updating the browsers and Maps of many older devices, running S60 3rd Edition and S60 5th Edition, Nokia has now released a performance update across the board for the Ovi Store client for all (most?) pre-Symbian^3 smartphones. Version 1.12(5) is an optional (rather than mandatory) update and replaces v1.10 in most cases. There's no official changelog yet, but I did see noticeably snappier performance on my test devices.
A new firmware for the Nokia N97 mini, version 30.0.004, is now available OTA (17MB) or via Nokia Software Updater (Ovi Suite). This is part of the series of updates to older devices that Nokia announced last week. Updates include a new version of the browser (7.3, the same as that shipping with Symbian Anna), updated Maps (3.6) and emoticon support in Messaging.
Synchronica, a UK based company that provides mobile messaging solution, is to acquire Nokia's operator branded messaging business. This business provides a number of American operators with branded email and IM applications and services. In addition, under a professional services contract (outsourcing), Synchronica will take over the development of the related Series 40 client software and the messaging gateway, which is used by both Series 40 and Symbian devices.
Well spotted Yash for noticing that both Opera Mini and Opera Mobile have received big updates, to versions 6.1 and 11.1 respectively. There's the main changelog below, but I'd highlight the iPhone-like web page text selection as the main reason to upgrade. They're both free, work on all Symbian phones, and are available now from m.opera.com in the 'other' web browser on your Symbian device.