Thursday, December 9, 2010

Skype arrives to Symbian^3, YouTube app gets updated

Two key apps got an updated for Symbian^3 - Skype is now available for Nokia N8, C7 and C6-01 and YouTube has been revamped with better support for the bigger screens and you can now log in with your account.

The new Skype app for Symbian^3
It took a while but Skype for Symbian^3 is now available - it lets you talk and chat over either 3G or Wi-Fi with support for Skype-to-Skype and SkypeOut calls. The app also supports the SILK codec, which allows it to adapt to changing network conditions and provides reportedly better audio quality (check out the samples).
The YouTube app got updated to version 2.4.10, which brings visual changes like better use of bigger screens and smoother transitions between the different screens of the app. Apparently, the video resolution has been increased as well, but there's no confirmation of that by Google (yet).

YouTube for Symbian v2.4.10
Grab the apps from and respectively. You might have to use the phone's native browser so that the sites can properly recognize which phone you're using. Oh, and Symbian^1 users can also update their Skype to enjoy the SILKy voice quality.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Nokia N9 Meego Handset Leaked

Nokia's been working on its new Meego platform for a while now, and details about the first device to use it should be coming out any day now, but until then we have to rely on stuff like these photos that were recently leaked. A forum poster on Chinese language site put out these clear, high-quality photos claiming they are of Nokia's N9, a device Nokia has confirmed will be the first to run with the new Meego operating system but has declined to provide any official photos of.
Meego will for all intents and purposes be Nokia's response to the colossal uprising of competing smartphone platforms iPhone and Android. Unlike most phone manufacturers that use third-party software to power the device's operations, Nokia, perhaps stubbornly, sticks exclusively to its own internally developed operating systems. Its Symbian platform once had a commanding presence in North America. But as times changed, Nokia did not. It is the largest phone manufacturer that does not have a handset running on Android.
Still the undisputed leader in global handset sales, spurred largely by its dominance in under-developed parts of the world, Nokia is rapidly fading into obsolescence in the US. It hopes Meego can help change that.
However, if these photos are genuine, this is not going to be an easy climb for Nokia. Despite having a nice-looking screen and full Qwerty keyboard, the device looks unabashedly bland. Besides, it may be too little too late. Consumers are already becoming very familiar with Android and/or the iPhone operating system. Most are unlikely to be willing to give a different platform a fair shake.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Nokia Black Friday and Cyber Monday Sale 2010


  • 15% off Nokia phones
  • 35% off all Nokia accessories 
  • $50 off the Nokia N8
11/26/2010 - 11/29/2010
    Black Friday Nokia Accessories Deal Nokia Black Friday Black Friday Nokia Phones Deal Black Friday Nokia N8 Deal


    Tuesday, November 16, 2010

    Nokia N8 in drop/torture test (Nokia N8 gets severely tortured, lives to tell the story)

    A unibody anodized aluminum chassis and a reinforced glass over the panel make the Nokia N8 certainly look like one of the sturdiest smartphones around. And the Finnish company is keen to show just how resistant to the elements it really is.
    The Nokia Conversations blog has just published a video demonstrating the drop test that the N8 prototype is subjected to before entering mass production. They have also listed some of the other endurance trials the N8 had to pass.

    Those include exposure to extreme temperatures (from around -40°C to +85°C) and humidity over 95%. The N8 was also tested in some real life scenarios like simulation of carrying the phone in your pockets plus a buttons durability check, where buttons are tested to last over 1 million clicks.
    Still neither Nokia nor we would suggest you try any of these at home, unless you want your warranty voided.

    Nokia N8 Torture Test
    Before they’re released to the world, Nokia phones undergo some rather stiff testing to see if they’ll stand up to the wear and tear of everyday life. After the break, you’ll see the heartbreaking sight of a pair of Nokia N8s undergoing the infamous drop test, simulating your phone falling from the height of your shirt pocket onto a hard surface dozens of times.

    In addition to the drop test, there’s more than 200 other endurance tests that we put new models through to see if they pass muster. Some of the highlights include:
    • Extreme weather: We use special machines to expose them to extreme temperatures from around -40°C to +85°C, helping them to withstand conditions from the cold of the arctic circle to the heat of the Sahara desert.
    • Humidity: We also test for use in tropical and humid parts of the world by placing devices in a special chamber for several weeks where they will experience humidity levels as high as 95%.
    • Clothing: When we carry devices in our back pockets they may bend when we sit down or rub on trouser fibres. We simulate these effects with special machines that bend and twist the device, and one that uses a real pair of jeans to test friction and wear and tear.
    • Pockets: Devices are often in bags or pockets with other items like keys or coins, so we place devices in a special “shaker” machine with hard particles to see how resistant they are.
    • Buttons: People press the main keys on their device an average of 200-300 times every day. To ensure the keypads can respond to this level of use, we press the keys up to one million times in the lab.
    As they say on TV, though, don’t try this at home! Extreme endurance tests are not covered by your warranty…
    PS: We’ve run a story on Nokia testing centres with another video earlier on Conversations. Head on over here for an introduction to the UK setup.

    Tuesday, November 9, 2010

    The QWERTY slider Nokia E7 hits the stores on 10 December

    The fourth Symbian^3 device - Nokia E7 - will be released on 10 December. It will bring a full hardware QWERTY keyboard under the tilting 4-inch ClearBlack AMOLED screen.
    The confirmation came straight from the official Nokia Twitter account. Strangely enough though, the tweet was removed shortly after it was published.

    The Nokia E7 comes to complement the Nokia high-end portfolio with its bigger 4-inch nHD AMOLED capacitive screen, using the new ClearBlack technology. It comes with scratch-resistant surface and, of course, the sliding out QWERTY keyboard.
    There are a couple of sacrifices, though - E7 has an 8 megapixel fixed-focus camera with dual-LED flash instead a 12 megapixel monster with xenon. Also, there's no card slot on this one. Well, you can't have it all, we guess.
    The rest of the specs are pretty much the same as those of the N8 - a 680MHz processor, 3D graphics accelerator, 720p video recording, 16GB onboard storage, 256MB ROM, 1GB ROM (N8 has 512MB) and full connectivity package. Nokia E7 also packs HDMI slot just like the N8.
    The first wave of availability starts on 10 December so we guess you should have yours by Christmas. And you might want to start saving now as the expected price is around 495 euro (637 USD) before taxes and subsidies.
    Source: Nokia Twitter channel (tweet now removed)

    Thursday, November 4, 2010

    Symbian^3 family grows as Nokia C6-01 starts shipping

    Today Nokia announced that another of the devices Nokia unveiled at this year’s Nokia world started shipping.C6-01 is the most affordable Symbian^3 handset to date and also the most compact one.

    The most interesting part of the Nokia C6-01 however is its 3.2” AMOLED display. It’s the first publicly available unit to use the new Nokia ClearBlack technology that promises to improve the image quality significantly. Considering that the non-ClearBlack Nokia N8 and Nokia C7 were pretty good we have some high hopes for these new screens.
    The display aside, Nokia C6-01 packs virtually the same feature set as the more expensive C7. You get an 8 megapixel camera (regrettably fixed-focus), capable of recording HD video, 680 MHz CPU with dedicated graphics accelerator and 256 MB of RAM.
    Of course, some sacrifices were needed for the price tag to be achieved and in this case it’s the internal memory (only 340 MB and a 2GB card on the C6-01 vs 8GB on the C7) and the waistline (13.9mm vs 10.5mm).
    It all sounds pretty decent actually considering the estimated retail price of 260 euro before taxes and subsidies.

    Nokia C6-01 starts shipping today

    Nokia_C6-01_1.jpg GLOBAL – The second of Nokia’s new Symbian devices announced at Nokia World, the C6-01, officially starts shipping today. The boxes have been filled, the vans loaded and the factory gates opened. Soon they will be with retailers and operators near you. Join us after the break for a reminder of why you might want one.
    The new Nokia C6 is the smallest and most affordable of the new family of Symbian devices. The C6-01 measures 103.8 x 52.5 x 13.9mm and weighs in at just 131g. Like its siblings, it’s a fully functional communicator with support for 3G and WiFi on board. It’s got a 3.2-inch AMOLED capacitive touch-screen featuring the new ClearBlack display technology for the first time (more about that in a later post). The C6-01 is also one of Nokia’s greenest devices to date, featuring the use of bioplastics and recycled metals for much of its construction.
    It doesn’t skimp on multimedia, either, with an eight-megapixel full focus camera with dual-LED flash. The camera’s also capable of shooting 720p high-definition video. The usable internal memory (340MB) is probably a tad tight for that, but can be souped-up with a microSD memory card for over 32GB of storage. There’s a 2GB card to get you started in the box. Like all the recent devices, it comes with free navigation through Ovi Maps, extra apps from Ovi Store and tunes from Ovi Music.
    “The Nokia C6-01 is designed for the consumer who wants to stay on top of their social life while on the go,” said Jo Harlow, head of smartphones. “The new Symbian platform makes social networking fast and easy, while from the design point of view the Nokia C6-01 fits perfectly in your palm. Even the smallest of hands can reach every corner of the screen!”

    Nokia X2-01 surfaces, is another QWERTY-packing S40 phone

    Sigh. There's some gossip on the Internet of photos and specs for a Nokia X2-01, which is a lot like the Nokia C3, but it's obviously positioned even lower. Yes, we're as confused as the rest of you.
    Anyway, the Nokia X2-01 is an S40 phone with a hardware QWERTY keyboard that is indeed very similar to the Nokia C3. It's 2G-only, with 2.44" QVGA landscape screen (not a touchscreen like the C3-01), microSD card slot, FM radio and Bluetooth.
    Nokia X2-01 Nokia X2-01
    Nokia X2-01 looks a lot like the Nokia C3
    The camera has grown to 3MP (C3 had a 2MP snapper) and yet there's no mention of Wi-Fi (which the C3 did have). The Nokia X2-01 has two dedicated keys - one for music and one for messaging.
    Of course, those are rumored specs and the official specs might be different. But the C3 is already dirt cheap, how much cheaper can the X2-01 be with the Wi-Fi module taken out?
    Anyway, we'll have to wait for the official specs to confirm all this info about the X2-01.

    ITC to rule in favor of Nokia in Apple lawsuit


    ITC to rule in favor of Nokia in Apple lawsuit
    Apple and Nokia have been locked in a legal sparring match for over a year now. Their most recent lawsuit was filed by Apple against Nokia, alleging that Nokia infringed on 9 different patented technologies. Why can't we all just get along?

    A preliminary statement from a member of the International Trade Commission indicates that they will rule in favor of Nokia, saying that Nokia's usage does "not establish a violation." The ITC determined that the patents were all either invalid, or they were not infringed upon. This means Apple won't have the pleasure of seeing Nokia's imports banned.

    But it's not a one-way street. Both companies have dished their share of litigation, attempting to quash their competition's imports, and claim a piece of their market share. Nokia is still the largest OS worldwide, but Apple's iPhone is a looming threat to their business.

    The ITC judge is scheduled to render a verdict in February of 2011, and it may significantly affect their businesses. If Nokia were to be found guilty of infringement, the infringing devices could be banned from import, further loosening their slipping grip on the market.

    source: The Wall Street Journal

    Nokia being sued by Apple in Britain

    Nokia being sued by Apple in Britain
    Apple is the recipient of lawsuits all the time, as are many big name companies with billions of dollars tied to their names. Apple has flipped the usual lawsuit script and is suing Nokia in the UK for 9 different cell phone technologies.

    The two companies have actually being going through these legal disputes for a fair amount of time now. The lawsuits are in regards to 9 US patents that are apparently already in suit between two companies in the states.

    Nokia spokesman Mark Durrant has made it known that Nokia is investigating the claims. It is unknown at this time what these 9 particular technologies are. This lawsuit tug-o-war between these two corporate giants started last year when Nokia claimed that Apple freely used their technology and profited off of it.

    One thing is for sure, with the money in the bank that these companies possess, a lawsuit war really won’t hurt their production. So consumers need not worry, as this shouldn’t have any effect on us.

    source: Reuters

    MeeGo 1.1 released - includes IVI, Handset and Netbook UXs

    The MeeGo project reached an important milestone today with the release of MeeGo 1.1. It aims to create a solid baseline for both manufacturers and developers to devices and software across a broad range of categories (netbook, handset, IVI and) across both the ARMv7 and Intel Atom chipset architectures. The current MeeGo releases remain mainly of interest to device manufacturers, developers and those wishing to take an early look at MeeGo before it arrives on commercial devices. The MeeGo 1.1 release comprises of Core OS 1.1, Netbook UX 1.1, Invehicle Informatinment (IVI) UX 1.1, and Handset UX 1.1. The MeeGo project release are formal milestones of development, but do not necessarily indicate commercial readiness.
    In addition the MeeGo project will be releasing an SDK based on MeeGo 1.1. some time in the next few weeks. It will include support for both MeeGo Core OS and the supported UX's and will greatly improve developer and device accessibility to the platform.. It will be formally released at the MeeGo Conference in Dublin (November 15th-17th).
    The MeeGo project has a six-monthly release cycle. MeeGo 1.2 is scheduled for April 2011. It is set to include a complete Handset UX release (full application set) and will likely be the basis for the first commercial devices.

    MeeGo Core OS 1.1

    The MeeGo Core OS is a consolidated common base operating system for all UXs. This means that they all have the same base technology, but the UX is what gives them specific features, application and user interface differentiation.
    MeeGo 1.1 Core uses the Linux kernel 2.6.35, Server 1.9.0, Mesa 7.9 and has a BTRFS file system. Other key components include the Conman connection manager, Ofono telephony stack, Tracker data indexer, Telepathy real-time communications framework and Bluteo sync framework.
    A key focus for application developers is the inclusion Qt 4.7, QtWebKit 2.1 and Qt Mobility 1.02, a feature reach application development framework. Nokia recently announced that Qt would be their soul development environment for their MeeGo and Symbian devices.
    More details are available in the MeeGo Core 1.1 release notes.

    MeeGo Handset UX 1.1

    The MeeGo 1.1 for Handset release build on the earlier Handset UX preview. While the preview presented a first look at the Handset user experience, the first full release is more complete, but is still described as a technology snapshot. The Handset UX is expected to be completed with the MeeGo 1.2 release.
    MeeGo 1.1 screenshotMeeGo 1.1 screenshotsMeeGo 1.1 screenshot
    MeeGo 1.1 Handset UX screenshots (multi-tasking, calling, people)
    The current release includes key technologies such as cellular functionality, connectivity, a sensor framework (e.g. for auto-rotation) and mobile browsing. The release now includes basic UX for calling, SMS messaging, web browsing, music and video playback, photo viewing and connection management.
    A download of the MeeGo 1.1 Handset UX has been made available for the N900, but it is not targeted at end users. Anyone contemplating downloading and flashing the software to the N900 should pay attention to this warning from the MeeGo site:
    MeeGo is an open source project and if you choose to install the MeeGo image to your N900 device, you do it completely at your own risk. If you are not confident that you know what you are doing with it and why, please don't use it at all. Especially now, if you start playing with call software under development, you need to watch after your phone bill, as well.
    More details are available in the MeeGo Handset 1.1 release notes.
    MeeGo 1.1 browser
    MeeGo 1.1 Handset UX browser. More screenshots are available here.

    MeeGo Netbook UX 1.1

    The MeeGo Netbook UX provides a visually rich netbook experience based on the latest open source technologies. Key features include quick access to PIM information, social network aggregation and a fast and rich Internet experience.
    The MeeGo 1.1 for Netbooks release build on the previous netbook releases, rolling in the latest developments from the core OS. Since the last full release support for touch has been added and many of the application updated to their latest versions.
    MeeGo Netbook UX
    MeeGo Netbook UX screenshot
    The latest version can be downloaded from the MeeGo website. Those running an earlier version should receive an automatic upgrade notification in the next few days.
    More details are available in the MeeGo Netbook 1.1 release notes.

    MeeGo 1.1. for In-Vehicle Infortainment

    The MeeGo IVI UX provides a system for providing in car computing. This release follows on from an earlier preview.
    In this release a sample IVI homescreen and taskbar are included, which have been built using Qt 4.7. The taskbar is designed in line with the Automotive Center Console HMI requirements. The taskbar, which can be controlled by scroll wheel, touch or mouse, can be moved to either side of the screen (allowing for optimal usage by passenger or driver).
    MeeGo IVI
    MeeGo IVI screenshot
    Also included in the release is initial support for text-to-speech and voice recognition (using Festival Speech Synthesis and PocketSphinx respectively). MeeGo Touch Framework integration is used to provide a number of sample applications including video player, music player, photo viewer, hands-free dialler and settings management.
     More details are available in the MeeGo IVI 1.1 release notes.

    Monday, November 1, 2010

    Nokia Z500 Leaked on Ovi Store

    A new Nokia handset or device which we have not heard of before has been revealed on the Nokia Ovi Store website. Its the Nokia Z500 and is rumored to be a MeeGo device.
    Some sources are indicating it is a MeeGo tablet and expected to be announced this year.
    A Nokia tablet was due this year after a report indicated that Nokia might be working on a tablet

    Leaked Nokia MeeGo OS Demo

    We just spotted a video demo of what looks like MeeGo OS running inside a Nokia Phone Emulator. The screens don’t look like the UI where MeeGo screenshots pointed us about a month ago. But we heard that Nokia is going to have it’s own UI on top of the native MeeGo UI and this might be atleast a portion of that. But the UI looks pretty impressive !

    Thx to chilko for spotting this vid who also feels that video might be about Symbian^4 rather than MeeGo. But we saw the extras icon in the video so its MeeGo we say !

    But it might be confidential information and we shall find out soon when the video is yanked !

    Tuesday, October 26, 2010

    New N900 software update available! (PR 1.3 aka 20.2010.36-2.002)
    A new software update is now available for your Nokia N900. The update adds Ovi Suite support to your N900 and makes it even easier to access and sync files and messages between your device and your desktop. In addition, we’ve added hundreds of tweaks and fixes that will make your N900 run faster and smoother than ever.
    And there’s even more great news. Ovi Music Store is now accessible right from your N900 (where available). You can use your inbuilt browser to access and download your favorite tunes straight to your device in DRM-free format.
    Be sure to check out the latest games and apps from Ovi Store, like Angry Birds Level Packs 2 & 3, Kroll, Tower Boxx Deluxe 3D and Joiku WiFi Hot Spot. If you receive a not enough memory warning when you try to update the software, just uninstall a few apps and try again.
    Also worth noting is that the phone has less lag and is faster along with Qt Applications support. Don't forget dual booting Meego and Maemo at the same time, although I'm not sure if this was implemented yet.
    Happy downloading!
    Raw computer power Raw computer power

    Thursday, October 21, 2010

    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4

    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4

    The iPhone took the cell phone industry by surprise in 2007, and managed to usurp half of its profits for only three years in active duty, with only 3% of the world's handsets sold. This was mostly at the financial expense of Nokia, which got knocked down from its perch due to some complacency issues, typical of a sprawling empire. Its share of the cell phone industry profits shrunk threefold, and it was even losing money at some point in the epicenter of the financial crisis.

    The Finns are no doubt willing to reclaim some of this space back, so they began some movers and shakers at the management level, bringing a foreigner at the helm for the first time in Nokia's history. The swan song of the previous management is personalized in the Nokia N8, the current flagship of the company, on which a lot of hopes are placed for a turnaround.

    The Apple iPhone 4, on the other hand, is the culmination of Apple's efforts to craft an outstanding consumer-friendly device, that will keep people’s attention for a year, before the next iteration is introduced. Apple started a new major design cycle with the iPhone 4, introduced the Retina Display  in it, and custom-made one of the fastest smartphone chipsets on the market, making it the most compelling iPhone package so far. Thus the battle lines are drawn, let's see how the two hotties fare against each other...


    Designwise, it is the steel and glass of the iPhone 4 vs the aluminum of the Nokia N8. One shows the craftsmanship perfected over the years that culminates on a phone made from a single sheet of anodized aluminum, with an etched Nokia logo on the back.

    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Designwise, it is the steel and glass of the iPhone 4 vs the aluminum of the Nokia N8

    The other has made the thinnest smartphone on the market, out of the most unorthodox materials. The Gorilla Glass casing of the Apple iPhone 4 might have raised questions about its fragility, but coupled with the stainless steel frame around the phone, it also makes for an appearance never before seen in a phone, just what we would expect from the cool kids of the Silicon Valley.

    Both phones have 3.5” screens, but the difference in technologies used makes for separate experiences. The iPhone 4's IPS-LCD has been called Retina Display, for its astonishing 640x960 pixels of resolution. It is bright, sharp and clear, and possibly represents the best that the LCD technology can offer for now.

    The Nokia N8, on the other hand, has the competing technology in its AMOLED screen, with its high contrast and vivid colors, set back by the 360x640 pixels of resolution, and higher than the iPhone 4 reflectance under bright sunlight, which diminishes visibility. The Nokia N8's display is also protected by the scratch-proof Gorilla Glass, but the touchscreen layer is slightly less responsive than the one on the iPhone 4. On the other hand, Nokia N8's screen has excellent haptic feedback, whereas the iPhone 4 doesn't include that function. The displays offer bright and clear images, with the iPhone 4's higher resolution placing it in the lead.

    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    From left to right - Apple iPhone 4, Samsung Galaxy S, Nokia N8

    Both handsets only have one physical home key under the screens. The one on the Nokia N8, though, is tiny and hard to reach when using the phone with one hand, without the risk of dropping the handset. Speaking of dropping, the iPhone 4 now feels more slippery than the previous generations, because of the glass surface.

    The handsets weigh roughly the same and have similar dimensions with the notable exception of thickness. The iPhone 4 is surreally thin at 0.37 inch (9.3 mm), while the Nokia N8 clocks in at 0.51 inches (12.9 mm), excluding the elevated area on the back, where the camera is located, necessary to fit the big sensor of the 12MP shooter, and the Xenon flash. The glass back of the iPhone is smooth, with only the logo, and a small round area for the lens' eye plus the tiny dot of the LED flash in the upper left corner.

    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4

    There are no less than ten elements, like openings and buttons, around the sides of the Nokia N8, which comes to show the different design approaches in the creation of the handsets.. Both phones sport non-removable batteries, thus their SIM card slots are placed on the sides, but accessing it in the Nokia N8 means just prying open the plastic cover, while the micro SIM tray on the right of the iPhone 4 needs a paper clip to come out.
    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4
    Nokia N8 - above, Apple iPhone 4 - bellow

    It is immediately apparent that a lot of thought and sleepless nights have gone into the design and manufacturing of the iPhone 4 and the Nokia N8 from multiple teams. The two phones represent some of the best pieces of industrial design in the smartphone universe, each with its own character – the strong but smooth aluminum unibody of the Nokia N8 comes in a bunch of different colors, and the steel and glass construction of the iPhone 4 resembles a concept phone, made by a boutique designer shop in limited series.