Archive for March, 2011

Best of Smartphone Experts, 27 March 2011

CTIA 2011: Hands-on with the T-Mobile Nokia Astound

The Nokia C7 was one of my favorite devices at Nokia World and if I didn’t like the camera on my Nokia N8 so much I would like have picked one of these up. I have to admit I am a bit shocked at what T-Mobile and Nokia announced with the Nokia Astound launching at just $79.99 after $50 rebate. Chris already posted on the announcement, but Dieter and Phil are at CTIA Wireless and were able to get a bit of hands-on time with this new Symbian^3 device as you can see in the image gallery below.

The Astound is a Nokia C7 that actually still has the C7 label in the upper left. It feels like a touch screen Nokia E71 in your hand with metal and hard plastic construction. I think that new smartphone owners are going to scoop this up in seconds and all of the teens that I have seen with the Nokia Nuron (thanks in large part to its cheap data cost) will want to switch to this much better device.

Nokia portrait QWERTY and usable browser not coming until summer 2011

Sorry that I haven’t been posting here much lately, there just hasn’t been a lot going on with Nokia and my excitement for the company continues to wane. It doesn’t help that they are rolling out PR 1.2 for the Nokia N8 and C7 with a delay in 2.0 that provides the portrait QWERTY keyboard and modern web browser until “summer”. This could mean the end of summer which could put this update just a month or so away from the Nokia N8 one year release anniversary. Seriously Nokia, no wonder you had to partner with someone as the ship sinks from under you.

I was quite excited when I heard that WP7 was coming to Nokia hardware, but given that none of my WP7 devices have this mystical pre-NoDo update yet my confidence in a successful partnership is slipping fast. Neither company seems to know how to roll out updates in a timely manner and actually both of these updates should NEVER had been updates. WP7 should have launched with copy/paste and a usable Marketplace search function while the Nokia N8 should have launched with a portrait QWERTY keyboard and a browser that wasn’t years old.

Nokia and T-Mobile officially announce the Astound Symbian^3 smartphone

Nokia Astound

Although FCC documentation called this one a while ago, we can now finally put some official verbiage behind the T-Mobile release of the Symbian^3 powered Astound — or if you prefer Nokia C7. Today brought forth the official announcement of the Nokia Astound on T-Mobile, launching as of April 6. Given that the device is a re-branded C7 the specs include a 3.5 inch nHD AMOLED capacitive touch screen with a rear 8-megapixel camera capable of capturing 720p video and a 1.3-megapixel front camera with Qik for video chat.

Aside from Qik being pre-loaded you’ll also get Slacker Radio, Swype and Ovi Maps to make use of the included GPS. If traveling with this device is a concern for you, you need not worry as the quad-band GSM and penta-band HSPA radios have you covered and in case that wasn’t enough T-Mobile has also included Wi-Fi calling. Storage space won’t be an issue either, you get 8GB on-board with a microSD card slot included should you need more. All in all, you get a nice device with a slightly updated version of Symbian^3 for only $80 with a new 2-year contract. [Phonescoop]

Engadget had the chance to try out this upcoming Nokia device and if you are a T-Mobile customer this is definitely a compelling smartphone choice. I have seen a lot of people with the Nokia Nuron who will appreciate a much better device like this on T-Mobile.

Is the Nokia C7 coming to T-Mobile USA as the Tiger?

Is the Nokia C7 coming to T-Mobile USA as the Tiger?I had a chance to play with the Nokia C7 for a bit last fall at Nokia World and found it to be a very good device. It reminds me of the E71 as an all touchscreen device, in terms of overall feel and quality. According to Engadget the C7 user manual hit the FCC with support for T-Mobile AWS. Remember, these new Symbian^3 devices are the world’s only penta-band GSM devices so they work with 3G on T-Mobile and AT&T. Thus, you should be able to buy this, get it unlocked, and use it with AT&T as well if that is your desire.

T-Mobile has done a fairly good job of supporting Nokia with the Nuron and most recently the Nokia E73 Mode. The C7 is a very popular smartphone due to its power and price so having this on T-Mobile should be good for both Nokia and T-Mobile. If my wife did not have the Nokia N8, then I would likely pick up a C7 for her since she likes the battery life, call quality, and reliability of the Symbian platform.

I would love to have a Nokia E7, but it is priced way too high (even for my tastes). However, I may just consider picking up a Nokia C7 if it is priced right.

Nokia N8 Guide

Nokia E73 Mode Guide
Nokia N900 Guide