PHAT it is Sexy it ain’t
I have been given the priviledge of evaluating the Nokia N900.
Let me start by saying that I am no techno buff. I have a passable understanding of mobile devices, but am addicted to them. I am not entirely sure what I did before they arrived on the scene, but enough of that…… My evaluation of this device will be short on the merits of Maemo vs. Symbian (Operating systems for the not so technologically minded) and longer on the out of the box experience.
So let’s go…
Open the box…..Looks nice….pick it up mmmmm feels a bit thick around the edges. But my evaluation one is a very slimming black so almost not noticeable to the eye, I do think the bulky feel makes it a little less sexy than some of the other devices. Hit the power button, action stations folks! quick off the mark and certainly quicker than any other Nokia device out there. Maybe it is just my one, but the time zones selection is limited? Also battling with the selection of the items as the touch screen is not as fluid as the iPhone. Then I see it….sticking out marginally to the side….no not an aerial…a stylus……… nnnnnooooooo! I hate these oversized tooth picks with a passion!
First impression, the graphics are amazing….Well done Nokia, certainly comparable to my beloved Apple (maybe just a little better @TM223 loving this right now!). Quickly turn the thing off and insert the sim card!
Right back on we go….
The second start-up was not as exhilarating as the first, but never-the-less, on we march.
Where are all of the applications and short-cuts?…… It is an evaluation model ….fool!!!…. start setting it up! Right okay let’s begin with this.
Take one stubby finger touch menu area…opens…Different look but still the same Nokia user friendly experience….I drift to my past loves…1610 my very first Nokia; 3110; 6110; 7110; 8210; 6310 (with my name on the bottom from club Nokia); 6630; 7610; 6680; 9300; n70; e61; e71….snap back to reality.
My finger is not working that well, keep selecting stuff incorrectly, really ticks me off, seem to have to “push” on the screen to get it to work well. I guess I have to resort to the stylus. Under stylus operation, you get the true speed of the device. The menu set-up is quick. I assume though that Nokia will send them to market with some of the applications already set-up? My view is that it should come to market with the basics ready to rock?
Now for exchange server…..well I have still not been successful as far as setting this up! This may be a user problem or something to do with the network, but it really sucked that I could not get this right. I was really keen to see this in action purely from a look and feel point of view. I am not going to write-it off as a Nokia issue though as the phone appeared to be going through the correct motions.
I like the multiple applications ability but did not really put the device through its paces in terms of this functionality (although I will admit that I wish my apple could do this), from a street point of view this will be a plus, but not a big thing I think. The more mobile savy user will certainly draw great benefit from this.
Not sure that I enjoy the keyboard, but to be fair, I think as come about as a result of the iPhone not having one, I do believe that you will get used to it fairly quickly, some key placements leave you guessing which key to press. Found a nifty little stand on the back, great for watching the movie without having to hold the device. Unfortunately due to the high cost of data in South Africa, I just watched one Youtube clip (not even a full one), before I blasted my bundle.
After playing on an off with the device for about 10 days I will say that Nokia have delivered a product that is light years ahead of their previous devices. I think that it may win over some folk from their existing non-Nokia phone. I was not convinced that it was better than my Apple this I will confess has a lot to do with the fact that I feel the iPhone touch screen is just too good.
I will say this much….if you are on MTN (as I am, although I hate them and will be moving to Vodacom in August) then you must take up this device. I am not sure that Nokia will like me for putting it this way around…. but I think that the N900 is a brilliant alternative to the iPhone.
Nokia have successfully merged a phone and computer, where Apple merged a computer and phone. I love my iPhone but it is more computer than it is phone and perhaps Apple could take a few things from Nokia…given the latest press reports maybe they already have?
And here ends the review!