Latest Series 40
In the past we have seen announcements in advance of Nokia World so that Nokia could then announce other new and exciting products at NW. Today we see the announcement of the Nokia X3 Touch and Type device (X3-02). This device has something of a rare form factor with a standard 12 button phone keypad and a 2.4 inch resistive touchscreen display. It is a low cost phone, MSRP of EUR 125, that is designed to give those who love using phone keypads the chance to also experience the touch user interface.
There are millions of people who have become quite proficient at one handed, no looking, SMS with a standard phone keypad and this device lets them continue this behavior. The X3 is only 9.6mm (0.38 inches) thick and still packs in 3G, WiFi, FM radio, microSD card slot and 5 megapixel camera. It is powered by S40.
The other X3 device announced at Nokia World 2009 is labeled the X3-00 and has a slide down keypad without a touchscreen display.
While much of my focus here lately has been on the Nokia N900, Nokia continues to release some great devices that appeal to the masses. Today Nokia announced the Nokia 6700 Slide and Nokia 7230. The 7230 is a Series 40 device and the 6700 Slide is a S60 3rd Edition Feature Pack 2 powered device. Both have a similar slider form factor where the keypad is present below the display. They support 3G outside the US and there is no word on whether or not they will appear here.
Nokia 6700 Slide
The 6700 Slide is the more appealing device for me since it runs the S60 OS and is more high end than the 7230. It will be available in six colors (pink, red, blue, aluminum, lime, and purple) and the casing is aluminum so it has an iPod nano look to it. While it is a mid-tier device it comes with a 5 megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics and dual LED flash, 2.2 inch QVGA display, microSD card slot, and FM radio. Unfortunately, it has a 2.5mm headset jack so it can’t really be marketed as a music player. It does not have WiFi, but does have Bluetooth and looks to be a solid phone to be sold for around EUR 160.
The Nokia 7230 is a lower end Series 40 device priced at EUR 100. The 7230 has a 3.2 megapixel camera, 2.4 inch display and 3G support (outside the US).
Part of the reason Nokia leads the world by such a significant margin is that they do continue to appeal across the broad spectrum of users across the globe since not everyone wants or needs a full blown smartphone.
What’s up with the Nokia Mural?
A post containing the YouTube video embedded below came across my feeds from the Nokia Conversations site, but I am a bit confused since I just read over on Engadget Mobile yesterday that the Mural was pulled from AT&T shelves because it was having trouble connecting to their 3G network. I contacted some folks at Nokia to try to get the full story to see if this device is working or if there are some updates being made to it.
The Nokia Mural 6750 looks like a sleek device and it is good to see carriers in the US launching Nokia branded devices.
Nokia 5310 XpressMusic
T-Mobile also just launched another Nokia Series 40 phone, the Nokia 5310 XpressMusic, that is available now for free and comes in orange, red, silver, white aqua, and white silver with a heavy focus on the music experience.
Nokia World 2009 is taking place today and tomorrow over in Germany and I have been following the reports on Symbian Guru and All About Symbian for the latest news, hands-on, and analysis. OPK gave the keynote this morning and showed off the Booklet 3G, Nokia N97 mini, Nokia N900, new X6, and new X3 devices. In the services department, we see some new beta services for N97 (primarily) owners and even after reading the FAQ I have to admit I am still a bit confused about how a couple of them differentiate themselves without completely confusing the consumer. With the Booklet 3G and N900 being announced last week and the N97 mini revealed several times over the last month I didn’t expect any huge announcements this week and we didn’t see them. The X6 does look sleek and the use of a capacitive display is interesting. The downgraded N97 doesn’t seem very compelling to me, especially since I already have a N97.
The initial press release lays out the devices, services, and accessories that are being shown at Nokia World. Let’s take a further look at what we will be seeing more of as people get some hands-on time.
Nokia Booklet 3G
Netbooks from ASUS, MSI, HP, Lenovo, and many more generally run in the $250 to $450 range with crazy outliers like Sony priced over $700. Price on the Nokia Booklet 3G was the big question I had and it looks like it is as expensive as I thought it was going to be, coming in at fUS$817 (EUR550) as an unsubsidized device. I am sure those in Europe and outside the US will see it down in the standard netbook range, with a service contract and minimum monthly data plan, but highly doubt we will ever see it in that form here.
The integrated 3G is provided via a hot swappable SIM card so you won’t need two lines to use the wireless capabilities of the device. There will be a variant that supports 3G on AT&T. Here are some other specs:
- Intel Atom Z530 1.6 GHz processor
- 1GB RAM
- 120GB 1.8 inch, 4200 RPM hard drive
- 10.1 inch 1280×720 resolution display
- 16 cell, 56.8 Wh battery
- 802.11 b/g/n and Bluetooth 2.1
- Windows 7
I am sure it will be a very nice netbook and I would love to have one. However, I don’t need one at that price and for a top of the line netbook I expected to see 2GB of RAM and at least a 160GB faster hard drive at this $800+ price point.
Nokia N97 mini
As you know I have written several times about the N97 I purchased the day it was released here in the US and even though I complain at times about the processor and integrated memory, overall I am still quite pleased with the device and plan to keep it and ride out to future firmware updates. That said, I really do not see much appeal to the Nokia N97 mini unless the buyer can save a couple hundred dollars. It has much less memory (8GB vs 32GB), a smaller display and QWERTY keyboard, and a small battery. I don’t think there has been any real evidence that it will support 3G wireless in the US and don’t see it having much impact here in the States.
The Nokia X6 may be the dark horse of the Nokia World 2009 show with a sleek form factor and the first capacative touch screen display on a Symbian device. It will be interesting to see if the menus and drop down lists have been tweaked to support “fat fingering” the display too.
The US$780 (EUR549) X6 comes with a 3.2 inch display and 32GB of integrated flash storage with a 5 megapixel camera and Carl Zeiss optics. It is focused as a Comes with Music (CwK) device, which means nothing to us here in the US since that service is not available here and we don’t know when, or if, it ever will be.
The Nokia X3 is a Series 40 device that comes in a slider form factor with 3.2 megapixel camera and 2.2 inch display. The Ovi Store is included on the X3 and is the first Series 40 device with this support. The price will be US$163 (EUR115) when it goes on sale in the 4th quarter of 2009.
There were also a few accessories announced, the Nokia Mini Speaker MD-9, a pocket-size speaker for big sound, and the Nokia Bluetooth Stereo Headset BH-505, an ergonomic and lightweight neckband headset for great music and call audio quality also in noisy environments. I may have to get that BH-505 for working out.
There has been a lot of chatter on the Internet about the Nokia 8208 CDMA dual-slider that showed up on the FCC site this week. At first I was excited to hear the words “dual-slider” and immediately thought it may be the new Nokia N86 that was coming to a US CDMA carrier. However, as detailed on MobileBurn last August this is just a Series 40 device that may or may not appear on Verizon or Sprint.
Series 40 devices can be quite good and feature packed, especially for those looking for an inexpensive device from their carrier. T-Mobile’s 7510 is a cool device. I personally can never go back to a feature phone though after using S60 and seeing how functional syncing all of my info to a central server really is to my daily routine.
A couple of days ago I posted on the exciting news of Spb Software’s first S60 release, Spb Brain Evolution, and now I am pleased to post on the announcement of their second S60 product, Spb Wallet 2.0. As I mentioned before I have been using Spb Software products on my Windows Mobile devices for years with some of them the first applications I load on my new devices. Spb Wallet 2 is a secure information management solution that is now cross platform with clients on Windows Mobile and Symbian S60.
We have so many passwords, account numbers, PIN codes, and other numbers and phrases we memorize to access sensitive data today. Often people use the same password or PIN across the spectrum to reduce the amount of information that has to be memorized. With a secure information manager like Spb Wallet 2 you can now let your S60 device take care of all that data for you and keep it safe and secure.
From the press release, here are the features in Spb Wallet 2 for S60 devices:
- Secure and manageable storage of sensitive information
- Strong AES 256 encryption
- User-friendly logon panel helps against key loggers
- Automatic wallet lockup
- Automatic clipboard cleanup
- Special engine to protect from ‘fishing’ attacks
- Cards look like those in your wallet
- Cards and templates are fully customizable
- Templates import, export and sharing
- 60+ predefined templates, icons and graphics
- Item level synchronization with support of multiple devices and desktops
- Smart card fields allow taking action right from the wallet:
- Open web site
- Send email
- Make phone call
- Send SMS/MMS
- Copy data to clipboard
- Password generator
- Quick search
- Compatible with S60 5th Edition and touch screen devices
You can also sync your wallets with your Windows desktop and these are some of the new features in the updated desktop client:
- New synchronization engine, now data can be synchronized with:
- – Google mail account \ cloud sync
- – Network share or folder
- – Sync with Symbian S60 device (PC Suite)
- Online Templates Gallery with 7,000+ most popular cards integrated into application
- Improved integration with web browser
- Data importing: now data can be imported from HandySafe
- Option to customize font\color of notes below cards
- New option: show password always
- Advanced Integration with Internet Explorer and Firefox
After you install the application on your device, you then need to setup a new Wallet file. Spb Wallet prompts you to enter and then confirm a password before setting up the wallet. As you enter in your password a visual strength indicator lets you know if you have a weak or strong password. You can also enter in a password hint at the bottom of the page to help you remember your password. If you forget your password you will be unable to access the wallet so make sure you have a good hint or don’t forget the password. You can use Spb Wallet to remember the password, but if you can’t get in that isn’t worth much to you.
For additional security, you can setup an
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If you look across the U.S. wireless carrier offerings you will find Nokia phones on three of the four carriers (I couldn’t find any Nokia phones on Sprint). Unfortunately, you will not find any of the outstanding Eseries or Nseries devices that I am personally so fond of. It is even difficult to find something like the 6210 Navigator or Series 40 devices. AT&T did have the E61 at one time, although they crippled it by removing the WiFi radio, and there are pretty substantive rumors they will be getting the E71 soon (hate to see what they might do with that device). AT&T also had the N75 for a short while, but it didn’t seem to do that well.
Fans of the Nseries and Eseries are left to buying SIM unlocked devices through Nokia USA or other online vendors like NewEgg.com, Amazon.com, Buy.com, Dell.com, and other independent importers. If you live in New York or Chicago you could also swing by a Nokia Flagship store to pick a device up in person. The Eseries are the more affordable bunch with the amazing E71 running just around $300 at this time. Nseries are higher priced at $450 up to $700+ and only a few of them are North American (NAM) models that support the 3G frequency of AT&T. There are currently no Nokia devices that support T-Mobile’s unique 1700 MHz frequency.
So, why don’t we see Eseries and Nseries devices here in the U.S. with all the carriers like they see in Europe and other countries? Don’t we still value and seek the best RF reception and call quality in our mobile phones? I have not found the definitive answer as to why we are so far behind Europe and other countries when it comes to high end Nokia devices, but wanted to offer up a few of my theories/reasons (some of which work together):
- I think that U.S. phone consumers have been spoiled by the free subsidized phone model and are not willing to pay any decent amount for a mobile phone. Then again, lots of people are shelling out bucks for the iPhone so maybe there is a formula that works. I know from my observations that many people walk around with their phone and use it as a necessary tool or evil, whereas in Europe people seem to use it more as an object to hold, show and be proud of. I suppose with the expanded wireless capabilities here in the U.S. we may have people looking to smartphones more and more in the future.
- Carriers rule the roost in the U.S. and Nokia is
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Nokia makes more handsets that I could ever keep track of and today they announced three new classic models. The Nokia 6700 classic, 6303 classic, and 2700 class are compact, reasonably priced handsets. All three devices run the Series 40 operating system. I’ll be getting the new Nokia Supernova to review for T-Mobile and look forward to trying out Series 40 since I hear it has come quite a ways and really is a powerful implementation of the Symbian operating system.
The 6700 classic is the successor to the 6300 and has a full metal keypad area, 5 megapixel camera with LED flash, FM radio, accelerometer, GPS receiver and Nokia Maps. The 6300 is a 3G device with support for HSPA. It has an estimated retail price of EUR 235.
The 6303 has a 3.2 megapixel camera with dual LED flash, FM radio, 2.2 inch display, GPS receiver and Nokia Maps, and 3.5mm headset jack. It has an estimated retail price of EUR 135.
The 2700 has a 2 megapixel camera, FM radio, 3.5mm headset jack, and Bluetooth radio. The 2700 has an estimated retail price of EUR 65.
All three new devices are scheduled to ship in the second quarter of 2009.
I have been a T-Mobile USA customer for almost 7 years now and keep using them because I have 4 family plan cell phones and my home phone (T-Mobile Talk Forever VoIP phone) with them. T-Mobile just announced that the Nokia 7510 Supernova is now available for T-Mobile USA. I am a bit excited to get a hold of this device and post my thoughts here because it is a Nokia Series 40 device and I haven’t had a chance to try this OS out yet.
The Nokia 7510 is a flip phone, popular in the U.S., that is focused on style with three changeable faceplates (espresso brown, fatal red, and emerald green) and a hidden-until-lit external front display. The Nokia 7510 also has a 2 megapixel camera with video capture and playback functionality and a microSD card slot for storage. A FM radio is on board along with Bluetooth and WiFi radios. The display sounds great with a 2.2 inch 320×240 resolution and support for 16 million colors.
Another great feature of this device is that it supports T-Mobile’s Hotspot UMA calling service. This means when you add this feature to your account you can make and receive all the calls you want when connected to a WiFi hotspot. To top it off you get free HotSpot access at all T-Mobile supported locations. If you don’t add this monthly service then you can still make calls via WiFi, but you will be charged for the minutes against your cell phone voice plan. I tested this HotSpot @Home service in the past with some lame basic phones and it is nice to see higher quality devices supporting this unique service.
The Nokia 7510 is available now for only US$49.99 with a two-year service agreement.