When writers dismiss the depth of the Symbian ecosystem (c.f. iOS), they're usually referring to 'branded' applications - there's certainly no shortage of utilitarian apps to suit most purposes. Scientific calculators being a prime example: there are dozens in the Nokia Store. I've picked a handful here from the latest new releases, but can any of them replace my 1977 Casio?
Recent Reviews - S60 5th Edition - Page 4
You know me, Mr Smartphone Photography - and you'll also know that my Nokia N8 takes pretty darned good photos already. But I couldn't resist having a look at Noise Autofix, claiming to process photos on the phone, reducing digital noise and correcting exposure problems. Is it worthwhile on the N8? Heck yes, the results can be stunning. [NB. Review text updated 10th March 2012]
Just because Quickoffice comes pre-installed on Symbian doesn’t automatically make it the best mobile office software. That’s the position taken by the Scottish software house, Picsel, with its Smart Office suite. It’s a favourite among many users for its impressive PDF rendering ability, but how does the rest of the suite stack up against Quickoffice’s free and paid for offerings? Find out in our review as we put not just one, but two versions of Smart Office to the test – version 1.8 for Symbian Anna, and version 2.0 for Nokia Belle!
If you’re the sort who likes to sneak up on your enemies then a submarine simulator is probably the game for you. The Silent Hunter series of games has come to Symbian – in more of an arcade style than a simulator, but that doesn’t lessen the fun. This game lets you try your luck as a German U-Boat captain in World War 2, taking on the British fleet. You’ll have to be aware of the limitations of your boat and use all your cunning though.
Keeping up their very high standard, the programmers at Arctica have produced something quite different to their normal (excellent) arcade fare. This one combines Sokoban with Labyrinth, with a touch of Doom-style 3D. Sprinkle in ice monsters and flighty rabbits, plus some mind mangling variations and you've got yourself a 3D treat for puzzle fans.
We're all too familiar with the 'huge-production-budget game that plays like a turkey' - Air Strike is just the opposite, a labour of love by the developers that's clearly produced on limited resources yet has gameplay that's both insistent and addictive. Ultimately, it just falls short of mass recommendation, but that doesn't mean I didn't have a blast during my review period, blowing up enemy fighters and warships.
Guitar playing and fiddling with tech seem to go hand in hand, judging from the number of fellow strummers I've come across. Many worse than me and a greater number a lot better. But we all have to tune our guitars every time we get the 'ol six string (or in my case the 12-string) out - which is why there's a booming cottage industry on every mobile platform in guitar tuning aids of every type. Here's a free option for Symbian....
Way back in the last decade, around 2003 or 2004, with a creative four year old daughter who was just taking her first steps on one of my PCs, I discovered a wonderful application, Electronic Colouring Book, an old DOS application, I believe, which kept her happy for ages. Rather than requiring super-precise mouse skills for proper computer artwork, the idea was to present line drawings and have the painter pick which colour to fill each enclosed section with. Worked a treat, and now today's four year olds can do the same with their parent's Symbian smartphone, thanks to Coloring Fun.
Getting the latest news is one of the most basic needs of an always connected smartphone user, whether through an app or the mobile web. 'CNN app for Symbian' provides news in both text and video across a varied range of topics and geographical regions. It also supports the emerging field of citizen journalism by integrating CNN’s iReport service. How well does it all fit together?
Although I'm a fan of casual games, there does come a point where a casual title can be just a little... too casual. Drop It!, with a total game time as short as a few seconds and as long as you can keep the main gameplay going (around a minute or so in my case), runs very close to this boundary but redeems itself with several physics options, a dash of strategy and a little genuine excitement.