In All About Symbian Insight 118 Ewan and Rafe share their thoughts on a visit to Nokia's design HQ in London, the release of Sports Tracker and memory performance on Ewan's X6. The second half of the podcast features an outside broadcast recorded at the recent #NokiaNav event in Richmond. Rafe and Steve are joined Julien Fourgeaud and discuss the event and related accessories and activities. You can listen to AAS Insight 118 here or, if you wish to subscribe, here's the RSS feed.
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With Steve borrowing an X6 for a few weeks (expect his thoughts on Nokia’s first capacitive screened smartphone next week) one thing we wanted to look at was the relatively slow speed of the music player on my X6. While we’re comparing over Skype and not side by side, there’s still a marked difference between Steve’s 16GB X6 and my 32GB X6. And we have a theory....
I was asked a very good question last week: "Why do you stay with Symbian when there's a world of wonder with iPhone and Android?" I have to admit to finding a number of positives in these other platforms, sometimes accompanied by positives in their hardware, but it's true that I do keep coming back to Symbian as the OS powering my smartphone-of-choice. Investigating my own leanings and trying to justify them, here are the top 10 reasons why I stay with Symbian.
In Insight 117, Rafe and Steve talk over the latest industry Q1 2010 figures and other news items, including the newly-arrived Nokia 6700 slide, Own Voice for Ovi Maps release, the new Qt SDK releases, Ovi Store adverts, Microsoft Communicator for Mobile and we cover the plethora of App Wizard widgets, including ones for All About Symbian and The Phones Show.
The Symbian Foundation has made a major new version of the Symbian^3 reference library available for product developers. The previous release was eight months ago and the new version is more comprehensive, more cohesive and has an "open source tool chain to allow us to combine the content with API reference built from doxygen comments in code". There's more on this on Symbian's blog.
Nokia has today released beta versions of Qt 4.7 and Qt Creator 2.0. Qt 4.7 brings a number of important enhancements, including Qt Quick (easy UI creation) and update to Qt WebKit (increased stability and performance). The beta of Qt Creator 2.0 offers an early preview of Quick Designer (a WYSIWYG editor to layout application UI), which is built on top of the Qt Quick technology. Nokia has also released an updated version of the Nokia Smart Installer for Symbian, which aims to ease the installation of Qt-based programs on existing Symbian devices. Read on for further details.
Forum Nokia has released a tool, Flowella, which allows designers and developers to easily create design prototypes (mock-ups of how an application will look), without using a single line of code. Prototypes are built by using images of screen mock-ups and defining links between them (i.e. what happens when you click of a given area). The information is then used to create a Flash Lite application or WRT widget, which can be run on a Nokia phone or in the included simulator.
This week Nokia announced the launch and beta availability of the Nokia Qt SDK, a single 'easy-to-use' software development kit (SDK) for Symbian and MeeGo application development. The SDK is, effectively, an evolution of the Qt SDK, with specific focus on, and support for, Nokia's mobile devices. It provides a complete tool chain for creating, developing, testing, packaging and deploying Qt applications. The SDK is available for both Windows and Linux (Mac support is being investigated) and can be downloaded from the Forum Nokia website. Read on for more details.
As part of our Nokia N8 coverage, we have recorded and published the All About Symbian Insight Podcast (number 116) a few days early. Ewan, Steve and Rafe share their thoughts on the announcement of the first Symbian^3 phone and Nokia's new imaging flagship. Over 45 minutes, we run through the N8's hardware and software and discuss the device's pricing and positioning, how the launch was handled and much more. You can listen to AAS Insight 116 here or, if you wish to subscribe, here's the RSS feed.
The N8's launch hullabaloo is subsiding and I was pleased to note that Nokia's own social media team picked out its upgraded camera as the centre of the N8's being, if such can be said to exist. Certainly in terms of physical presence, the camera/camcorder is one of the most obvious features. In yesterday's editorial, I looked at the N8's photography heritage, stretching right back to the N90 in 2005; in this article, I want to break down some of the design decisions arrived at by the N8 design team - how can it be as good as it claims it is?
Nokia have released sample images and a video captured on the Nokia N8. They demonstrate multimedia capture capabilities, which are on the cutting edge. They offer the illustrative evidence to accompany Steve's features on the N8's camera heritage and the story behind the N8's camera, which give you all the details you need on the technology, ancestry and design decisions behind the N8's 12 megapixel camera.
The announcement of the Nokia N8 has certainly got the internet chattering, more than any other recent Nokia product launch. It’s not an out and out success, but that’s to be expected. No product in the real world can get 100% satisfaction on launch day, but it can get the buzz building from the time the press release goes public (or perhaps before - grrrrr). So what did the internet think of the N8? Lets find out.
As part of their launch communications Nokia have uploaded a series of videos to YouTube showing off some of the key elements on the Nokia N8. Plus there's a video showcasing the N8's design with the help of a hands freestyler and another telling you about Nokia's 'Make My App' competition, through which you could win your own N8 and a trip to London. We have rounded up all these videos up into a single post - read on to see the videos and additional details.
Nokia today introduced their first Symbian^3 device, the Nokia N8. It is a web aware, content creation and consumption smartphone flagship in a monoblock touch form factor. It features a 12 megapixel camera with Xenon flash and the ability to record 720p (HD) videos, a 3.5 inch capacitive touchscreen with support for multi-touch gestures, 16 GB of mass memory, microSD card slot, HDMI out, FM transmitter, integrated GPS and comprehensive connectivity options (3G, Bluetooth, microUSB and b/g/n WiFi).
The phone will ship with a full range of Ovi services (Maps, Music, Messaging and Store) and marks the debut of Web TV and Social Networking integration service. With Symbian^3 comes a number of changes both to the platform and the UI. Among the highlights are support for multi-page homescreen, re-written graphics architecture, a renewed music experience with cover flow and easier access to albums, visual task switcher, streamlined menu structure with Direct UI single tap paradigm and performance improvements across a broad range of areas.
The Nokia N8 will be available in Q3 2010 at a cost of €370 before taxes and subsidies.