Dev Week is back after a couple of week’s absence and I hope to keep it truly weekly from now on (despite the best attempts of Telecom New Zealand to deprive me of an internet connection). This week: getting started with the widget development tools, changes in FleaC licensing, and a new API for haptics.
Recent News - S60 5th Edition - Page 70
Nokia's next-gen Photo Browser utility has just received a big update, adding faster operation, easier access to the menu, folder sorting, send functionality and image rotation. This release is for all S60 devices, but future updates will be focussed on S60 5th Edition and touch-screen phones. Via Nokia Beta Labs.
Nokia today announced the Nokia 5530 XpressMusic, a music-focused, touchscreen phone running S60 5th Edition. It will be available from Q3 2009 at a cost of €200. It has 2.9 inch (640 x 360) touchscreen, 3.2 megapixel camera, accelerometer, 3.5 mm audio jack, FM radio and will ship with a 4 GB memory card. The homescreen features a 20 person contact thumbnails carousel with communication and conversation history just a touch away. The drop down media bar gives fast access to key phone functionality including music, photos, video, web and share. Effectively the 5530 is a cut down version of the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic with a smaller screen, no 3G connectivity, and no GPS. Read on for more.
Gameloft's rather good people simulator and adventure game Paris Nights has been reviewed by Ovi Gaming, and we've also added lots of screenshots as well as a ten minute gameplay video. It might not have the best graphics in the world but it's fun, it's got a fairly grown-up feel to it, there's an interesting plot and it only costs three euros from Ovi Store.
Ovi Store has been updated again, and it seems the latest content push has added about 79 new titles to Ovi as well as more apps and other content. The list of new games is below, and you can see these for yourself by going to store.ovi.com and selecting the "Any Phone" option, then "Games", then "Newest - Oldest" from the drop down menu. By our reckoning Ovi Store has around 350+ different titles now available, with lots more still waiting to be added for various technical reasons. Note that not every game works on every phone, so if you select a particular model on Ovi Store you probably won't see every game on offer. As always, you can find out more about Ovi Store on our Unofficial FAQ page.
Those Vesuvius software chappies sure like cranking out the Java-based S60 5th Edition apps - just released are Hack Proof Password Manager (go on, guess what it does...), MindBreaker (a rearranging tile puzzle) and Komikj (a comic reader - needs a PC to do conversion from Internet comic standards though). Might be worth these guys discovering the Ovi Store? Anyway, all their apps seem to be free, so what are you waiting for?
While Steve and Rafe are working on the full review of the Nokia N97 (initial impressions and multimedia thoughts are already posted), Ewan has been working on a little something for the weekend. An N97p for every AAS reader. Admittedly it's mainly made from paper (hence the p) and has limited electronics in it, but with the judicious use of a printer, scissors and glue, you to can appear to join in the revolution this weekend. See below. You will of course need a Bluetooth keyboard since the N97p doesn't have a sliding hinged qwerty keyboard. We'd be interested to see who can come up with the best "action shot" of their N97 (p) in action, so let us know where to find the pictures!
NAVTEQ have supplied us with a comprehensive overview of their activities at this year’s CommunicAsia show, running 16 to 19 June in Singapore. The development of location based services in and for the APAC region remains strong and NAVTEQ is hoping to capitalise on this growth with its portfolio of map data and developers tools.
A new beta version of Ovi Maps 3.0 has been released via Nokia's Beta Labs website. Ovi Maps is the new name for the application previously known as Nokia Maps. The new beta adds a number of new features including weather information, premium POIs and, in selected countries, safety camera information.
Additionally the number of countries covered by traffic data has been increased, the underlying map data set has been updated, zooming and panning performance improved, numerous bugs have been fixed and overall stability improved. The new beta includes support for S60 5th Edition (Nokia N97 and 5800) in addition to the existing compatibility with S60 3.1 and 3.2. Read on for more details and screenshots.
In the second part of our multi-part, multi-author review series on the Nokia N97, I look at its multimedia functions, including camera (superb in daylight), camcorder (super for landscapes...), video and music playback, radio and Podcasting (all good). Are there any weaknesses left in this Nseries flagship? And what happened to Internet Radio, UPnP and a TV out cable? By the way, see also Part 1 - First impressions and overview.
Following on from the news that the BBC iPlayer is available for older Nokia S60 devices we can now also report that the BBC iPlayer is also now available for the Nokia N97. It uses the same widget as the Nokia 5800 and can also be downloaded from www.bbc.co.uk/mobile/iplayer. The N97 version includes full download capabilities.
The adventure game Mystery Mania has been reviewed by Ovi Gaming, and we've also done a ten minute gameplay video and lots of screenshots too. We've reviewed it on the Nokia 5800 but it is available for other phones too. You can get it right now from Ovi Store either through the website or the Ovi Store client. (Mystery Mania has been developed for EA by Danish company Progressive Media, who also did the absolutely excellent Sola Rola which won our very rare Mega Game award.)
Nokia Beta Labs has a graduate! Gizmo for S60 an application that allowed you to access the Gizmo5 service for IM and VOIP functionality on your handset is no longer in beta test – it's all grown up, left the program and is now available as a regular application in the Nokia Download! Store, although interestingly it is not yet in the Ovi Store.
Three years ago I wrote an article comparing text input speeds using various devices and form factors from the PDA and smartphone world. Here's the update, with some modern devices (including the iPhone 3G, HTC Touch Pro 2 and Nokia N97) included and tabled, plus a rogue's gallery showing Communicator keyboards through the ages. Am I obsessing too much? Is raw text input speed that important to you? Comments welcomed.
Forum Nokia has announced an update to the plug-in that enables WRT widget development in Aptana Studio and added new plug-ins for Adobe Dreamweaver and Microsoft Visual Studio. WRT widgets are clearly seen by Nokia as a mechanism to accelerate the availability of add-on features for S60 devices. Recent news, such as the availability of a Facebook widget, suggests it may be a good strategy.