Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Nokia announces Batman-themed Lumia 900

You may remember the limited edition The Dark Knight Rises Lumia 800 that Nokia announced late last year. Nokia will now be making a similar version of the new Lumia 900 as well.

Just like the Lumia 800, the 900 will be available in Black and have the Batman logo on the back. The logo is not just printed on the phone but engraved on it, so you can feel the depression. Other than that the phone will also have some other content on the phone such exclusive wallpapers.

The phone is expected to go on sale in a few weeks in UK, France, Germany and a few other European countries. It will be limited edition so make sure you act fast if you want to get your hands on it.


Nokia plans to make all Lumia and PureView phones waterproof

Nokia have a history with hydrophobic technology for their phones - but they're also planning to take the technology beyond the concept stage and bring it to all future Lumia and PureView devices and make them waterproof.

Here's what the VP of Nokia Western Europe, Conor Pierce, had to say about the technology:

"What happens when a drop of water lands on a lotus leaf… has baffled scientists for generations... but our team in Cambridge UK found a solution.

Nano technology lets us do it. Superhydrophobic technology makes water bounce, it stops it, rolls it off the device and leaves it water impregnant, that’s the magic, that’s what we’re going to bring to the party."

You can check out a demo we caught on video last year when Nokia showed of a waterproofed 700 - you can see water bounce off the superhydrophobic coating in slow motion.

Unlike current waterproof phones whose outer shell keeps the water out, Nokia plans to coat both the outside and the inside with the stuff, so even if water gets inside the phone it won't do any damage.

Of course, Pierce was mum on when Nokia will start using superhydrophobic technology in their phones. Hopefully, we'll get more details during one of the Nokia World events in early September.


Nokia confirms that Carla update for Symbian is not cancelled

A couple of days ago we ran a story that stated the Carla update for Nokia Belle has been cancelled. However, we have now been contacted by Nokia regarding this matter, stating that this is not the case at all.

We have been told that what we know as Carla was just the codename for the Belle Feature Pack 1, which started rolling out last month for the Nokia 603, 700 and 701. The upcoming Nokia 808 PureView will also be running on this same OS. You can read more about the Belle FP1 updatehere.

We apologize if any misinformation was spread due to our previous post and hope that Symbian continues to get major updates in the future.

Nokia confirms working on multiple PureView phones

Love what Nokia has done with the camera on the 808 PureView? Well, then there is a lot more where that came from. Nokia's Head of Product Marketing, Vesa Jutila confirmed to Engadget that a lot more of such devices are in the pipeline.

These upcoming phones will have high resolution sensors, quality Carl Zeiss optics and the PureView wizardry but in a slimmer form-factor. Obviously then the phones won't have the same 41megapixel resolution because you can't have the best of both worlds, yet.

Unfortunately, he did not say anything about a PureView Lumia phone but we wouldn't be surprised if some of these phones that Jutila mentioned are running Windows Phone.


Nokia drops support for Skype app on the Lumia 610

Nokia has announced that it is dropping support for the Skype app for Windows Phone on their recently announced Lumia 610. The reason for this, according to them, is the below par user experience of using the app on this particular device.

The following is the full explanation from Nokia regarding the matter:

“Nokia values the user experience provided by its products and services. Therefore, although the Skype Windows Phone version is workable on Nokia Lumia 610, after in-depth testing, we found that the user experience is not up to par with Nokia and Skype’s expectation and decided not recommending users using Skype on Nokia Lumia 610. In the future, users of Nokia Lumia 610 would no longer be able to download Skype Windows Phone version from Window Phone Marketplace. However, Skype Windows Phone version would still be available for other users.”

The reason for the poor experience is likely to be the 800MHz processor and the 256MB of RAM on the Lumia 610, whereas every other Windows Phone currently available has 1GHz processor and 512MB of RAM. We find this a bit strange, due to Nokia's close relationship to Microsoft and with Microsoft actually owning Skype now, as to how they didn't manage to iron the issues out and make the app work properly on the Lumia 610.

This also makes us worry about how current apps will work when even more Windows Phones with slower processors and lower memory start rolling out later this year with the Tango update. If people who own Skype have been unable to optimize it properly for the lesser hardware, we wonder if third party developers will be able to do it.


Dual-SIM Nokia 110 and 112 go official, to cost under €40

Nokia just unveiled two new additions to its lineup of ultra-basic Dual-SIM featurephones. The Nokia 110 and Nokia 112 are compact-sized S40 devices targeted at emerging markets and users on a tight budget, who want to minimize their monthly bills by taking advantage of two different carrier plans.

Both the Nokia 110 and 112 feature dual-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE connectivity and microSD card slots for expanding their memory by up to 32GB. They pack VGA cameras at the back and easy-swap SIM slots on the side for replacing one of the SIMs without opening up the phone.

The Nokia 110 and 112 can store custom settings for up to five different SIM, which are automatically applied when the corresponding SIM is inserted. The main difference between the two dual-SIM phones is battery backup - the 112 packs an ample 1400 mAh juice pack, while the 110 makes do with a 1020 mAh battery.

In case you like the idea of a super simple featurephone that costs pennies, but have no use for a second SIM slot, you'd be glad to know that Nokia will be releasing single-SIM versions of the two handset as well. They will be called Nokia 111 and Nokia 113 and will be identical to the 110 and 112 in their specs sheet.

Before local taxes or operator subsidies the Nokia 110 will cost around €35, while the Nokia 112 will cost about €38. The Nokia 110 is expected to ship in Q2 2012 while the Nokia 112 will be available from the third quarter of this year.


Saturday, May 19, 2012

The Nokia Lumia 900 display takes hits with a hammer and a nail, lives to tell the story

After the Nokia Lumia 800 survived a mini ice age, we get to see if the Lumia 900 is going to pass the nail-to-the screen test.
Granted, this is not an industry standard test, but the guys over at TechCraver decided to give it a whirl anyways to see how much the Lumia 900′s screen can handle. And by the looks of it, it can take a lot of punishment.
Firstly, the Lumia 900 display got a direct hit with a nail, and because apparently that wasn’t enough, it was used as a hammer afterwards. If you aren’t faint of heart, you may see it all in video below.
Impressive, right? This is yet another example that Corning’s Gorilla Glass can indeed survive quite a lot. Stephen Elop was so impressed, that he even called to congratulate the guys on the successful test.