I just cannot do it, Nokia N8 is here to stay
OK everyone, sorry for that post yesterday. There are probably people that will now think I belong in a mental institution or something after reading this post below and maybe they are right. I understand that I may lose readers too, but you have to admit I do wear my heart on my sleeve and am not afraid to write exactly what I am thinking. I admit to having an addiction to smartphones, but isn’t that better than drugs or alcohol?
I have been spending a LOT of time recently with Windows Phone 7 and was caught up in the shock and awe of a beautiful and fluid new mobile operating system. After my post yesterday, I received a lot of comments and response on Twitter regarding my thoughts on the N8 so I placed my SIM back in the device and spent several more hours with it last night and this morning to see if I truly could give it up.
First off, the dark gray N8 may still be getting returned. However, it would be replaced with an orange Nokia N8 from Nokia USA since they are now in stock. Chrome crashed on me several times after hitting the submit order button though and now I cannot order one because I tried too many times. Even though I will explain why I am keeping the N8 below, I am still very unhappy with the Nokia USA store experience and recommend you try other places first if you can. Unfortunately, the orange N8 is not available on Amazon, Newegg, or Dell or I would be all over that and will keep trying for a couple more days. Maybe I will give away my dark gray N8 here on Nokia Experts if I can get an orange one for myself, how does that sound?
I thought I could give up the N8 (and maybe even give up on Nokia Experts), but after testing it out some more I just cannot do it and need a Nokia N8 in my life. Here are some thoughts on why I changed my mind (yet again):
- Nokia Messaging: I don’t know if the Nokia Messaging folks checked into my account as a result of my post or Tweet, but early this morning my email (through my Gmail account) all came back into sync without having to delete and setup my account (I did this twice before to try to clear things up). If I cannot rely on my email then a device is pretty worthless and may actually give Profimail a shot if Nokia Messaging acts up again.
- Fonts: Yeah, they aren’t great, but after some comments and Google searching it looks like you can change the system fonts. Any recommendations on good fonts to use? I understand the new operating systems are better looking, but realize it isn’t all about looks.
- Keyboard: I do think the process of using the keyboard is a bit awkward and really do want a better portrait experience, but Swype helps a lot and the landscape keyboard is decent with proper settings so I can live with it.
- Web browser: The default one is not great, but you can use Opera Mobile or Opera Mini and with a proper setting you can actually change the system browser to Opera Mobile so I can use that until Nokia provides the updated one they promised for the N8.
- Angry Birds: The full version of Angry Birds just appeared on the Ovi Store, need I say more?
- Camera ROCKS: I know I could buy a cheaper point and shoot camera with capabilities similar to the Nokia N8, but my phone is ALWAYS with me and cameras are not. It is a simple fact that I would rather have a decent to great camera phone than a superb camera and I am not going to change how I roll here. I captured some video of my daughter playing soccer with the zoom feature working with video on the N8 and compared that to the new Samsung Focus zoomed in and there really is no comparison. The N8 camera is the best and as a father of three daughters I want the best with me.
- Phone functionality: It seems today that reviewers rarely talk about the phone part of a smartphone, but I have to say this part is very strong on the Nokia N8. The quality of reception, phone call clarity, easy custom ringtones, and smart dialing are all features I just cannot give up. The majority of people still use their phones for calls and we just cannot overlook this basic functionality.
- Tethering via WiFi: Neither the G2 Android device or any Windows Phone 7 devices I was thinking of buying support WiFi hotspot tethering at this time. Thanks to a cheap one-time cost I have JoikuSpot service up the Internet to my iPad and other devices on the Nokia N8. This may seem trivial, until you find the need for Internet access on the go and always have it thanks to Nokia and JoikuSpot.
- UI is not everything: The Symbian^3 UI is not as smooth and flashy as the latest Android, iOS, and Windows Phone 7 user interfaces, but honestly the multi-tasking and core functionality is better on the N8. Windows Phone 7 has no real multi-tasking so using something like a Twitter client is an exercise in frustration. There is also a lot of swiping and scrolling in Windows Phone 7 and I personally like the ability to customize the folder structure and get quick one or two tap access to the apps I want to use on the N8.
- App story is not that bad: I did a bit more side-by-side comparison of apps I have loaded on the N8 versus other platforms and while there are some key apps I want to see on the N8 (Kindle or Nook, Netflix, Google Voice), they honestly are not “killer” apps that I really need and must have all the time. The ability to use my Zune Pass music (now easy to sync through Ovi Sync thanks to a commenter), view Amazon Video On Demand movies, play Angry Birds and other decent games, use SugarSync, use Quickoffice, use Endomondo for running, use Ovi Maps no matter where I travel around the world, communicate through Gravity, and more is all good and I am kidding myself really if I think I need more than that.
I am NOT saying that the Nokia N8 is perfect, but after further review of other devices I realize that NONE of them are and I should give Nokia and the N8 as much of a chance as I do for other platforms. I see that Stephen Elop is already making bold decisions and I am actually much more excited about Nokia’s future than I was if they had continued on with their path of confusion and changing strategies.
So, the bottom line is that the dark gray N8 is going back, but an orange one is on the way. I will proceed with creating my FULL review of the Nokia N8 and plan to post it before the end of the month. As I told others who left comments on my posts, please do NOT make purchase decisions based on a single point of view. Read all you can about a device if you cannot get your hands on one yourself. I read a couple very negative reviews of the N8 yesterday and they may have influenced my take on the N8, along with using Windows Phone 7 devices with flashy user elements. While the new WP7 is cool, my N8 is much more pocketable, the hardware is much better quality, and I am pleased with its customizability and more.