Layman’s take on Symbian Belle-A big walkthrough

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Once I got hold on Symbian Belle on my Nokia N8 then it was kind of due to bring a Layman’s Take style big walkthrough of Symbian Belle. Though still one needs to understand that the firmware, I am using on my phone is a leaked and half baked one, so there might be major changes afterwards.

What is Symbian Belle?

The latest firmware update to Symbian^3 devices, Symbian Belle, is what Symbian^3 PR3.0 was supposed to be. A kind of rename for understanding of n00bs rather than confusing them with various version numbers. Its something that seems to be influenced from Android itself (Eclair, Froyo, Gingerbread, IceCream Sandwitch, Honeycomb ….).

Symbian Belle is the first Symbian^3 update that is supposed to bring major UI changes throughout the Symbian^3 lineup. It will change many Symbian UI paradigms and also the way, we know Symbian till now. A true modernization of Symbian without alienating existing user habits.

Is Symbian Belle the last stop for Symbian^3?

While developers and insiders were already aware of it, Nokia has confirmed officially that despite of the fact that Company is moving toward Windows Phones, Symbian Belle will not be the last update to Symbian platform.

We already seen glimpses of Symbian^4 back in Feb 2010, which though definitely feels outdated now, but still there been lots of references to Symbian^4 in Symbian bugzilla since then and so hard to deny the fact that Symbian^4 will be the next step.

Sure, it will have a new name like Anna or Belle and also there are no exact ideas that what features it’ll bring on board as many of the Symbian^4 changes are already being incorporated into Symbian Belle itself. But there is a big hope.


Now, let’s go through new features of Symbian Belle …

1. New Lock screen

We have seen some changes in the Lock Screen with Symbian Anna itself, when we got notifications on lock screen, but Symbian Belle takes it a step further. Not only there are cosmetic changes in Clock, which feels like 3D now, you see a glossy and colorful lock screen rather than old black one.

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Yes! the standby screen will still stay black (first screenshot) without any mention of signals, battery, bluetooth, data connection etc, but that is totally understandable as queries all those values takes precious battery life that sure would have been unnecessary in standby.

Continue reading “Layman’s take on Symbian Belle-A big walkthrough”

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Laymans Take on flashing Symbian Belle on Nokia N8 (link updated for v111.030.0607_03)

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Update: Avoid the old method as the latest firmware update method is very simple. Keep the files in place, open Product and flash. Use refurbish.

Original Firmware file link only: Download Link (Warning: It leaves only 20 mb around in C: drive of Nokia N8)

Updated link without Hero of Sparta: Download Link (It will leave you with around 130 mb in C: drive)

I will suggest you to use the second link which is created after removing Hero of Sparta files from the firmware.

Check the latest version demo here

Notice the speed this time.


Updated: Installed the second leaked version too via the same procedure and with new files. Haptic feedback and 6 home screens now. You can use exactly the same procedure while flashing. Note that even if you are already on Symbian Belle (earlier leaked one), you need to use the same Anna files (at least I did so successfully without any trouble).

So you bought a Nokia N8 last year and while reading a lot of negative buzz on internet and around you, started thinking if buying Nokia N8 (or even any other Symbian^3 device) was a wrong decision? But still keeping it around as there been no better camera phone than this ever nor seems likely any soon.

Think again… Haven’t you seen your Nokia N8 like brand new twice a time till now?

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Once when you bought it and once you got Symbian Anna on it recently. Not enough? That was just kind of theme change in your eyes?

Be ready to see it like real brand new with Symbian Belle now. Yup! even though its so unlike Layman’s take, I decided to take the plunge and flashed Symbian Belle leaked firmware on it. So we paid once and will be having brand new device experience for more than three times.


WARNING:

1. DO NOT USE ANY OTHER THEME THAN INSTALLED. IT WILL CERTAINLY MAKE YOUR PHONE GO IN REBOOT LOOP.
I bricked mine while trying the same and the only  resolution was to flash it back to PR1.0 11.5 scanvidia. It was a scary ride for me as didn’t wanted to loose N8 in any case. Somehow managed to get over with it.

How to flash my Nokia N8 with Symbian Belle?

I know most of readers here never did any flashing with their Nokia Phones and no one wanna take a risk of bricking their phones, specially when it comes to Nokia N8. I know there will be many questions in your mind and I will try to get them answered, but first I want to make you clear that

1. FLASHING YOUR PHONE WITH ANY UNOFFICIAL FIRMWARE WILL VOID YOUR WARRANTY (though you can claim your warranty back once you are back on official firmware).

2. THERE ALWAYS WILL BE A RISK OF BRICKING YOUR DEVICE WHILE FLASHING, SO ITS AT YOUR RISK (Not advised for faint hearted)

So done with warning, I know you still are interested in the guide .. so here we go..

Continue reading “Laymans Take on flashing Symbian Belle on Nokia N8 (link updated for v111.030.0607_03)”

Symbian Belle gets official, brings Nokia 600,700, 701 – Layman’s Take

Finally the day came, August 24, 2011.

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Nokia Facebook page was a hot topic among Nokia Fans and bloggers since some days due to a mysterious message on their page with a countdown heading towards today. It didn’t stayed long enough as a mystery among Nokia fans due to some goof-ups (?) from Nokia side itself, when they accidently leaked the name "Belle".

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Even though I am rarely blogging nowadays due to office things, but like always I been active on twitter @nkumar_ and like others I was also wondering about the message "This time it’s personal" and even sent a "funny" tweet as well. Though I am yet to figure about the exact motives behind the tagline, Google sent me to this link that was written by Chief Scientist, Accenture long back in 2009. Not sure, but was it first sign of Accenture’s involvement in Symbian?

Anyway, the news is bigger than these small speculations… it is about Announcement of three super cheap smartphones equipped with well awaited Symbian Belle (Yes! you are reading it right.. Symbian Belle, I know even Symbian Anna roll out not finished yet). So let’s talk about the new joinees first.

Continue reading “Symbian Belle gets official, brings Nokia 600,700, 701 – Layman’s Take”

Promise delivered, Nokia N8 gets CAF\30 FPS and much more via Betalabs Update

As I wrote in last post that Monday will see one more update specifically for Nokia N8 Camera, the good news just got in. You can download the update from Nokia BetaLabs right now via the following link

http://betalabs.nokia.com/apps/camera-update

Beta Labs Update Still Capture Viewfinder Beta Labs Update Video Capture Viewfinder

But its just not the Continuous Auto-Focus (CAF) and 30 fps recording than earlier 25fps, but Damian and team have aimed for many other request and delivered about each. Like some of the highly requested features were as follows:

  • Ability to record video at closer distances (Macro Video Recording)
  • Smoother video of moving subjects or when panning
  • Faster access to scene modes, especially close-up mode
  • Exposure control in video
  • Viewfinder grid not effected by scene modes, camera exit/reopening
  • Smoother zoom
  • Settings accessed through one control point
  • Red-eye reduction performance improvements

And its good to hear that all of the requests are fulfilled and delivered by a new Camera App via Betalabs (1.64mb in size). You can find the details at the official blog post.

Beta Labs Update Still Capture Flash SettingsBeta Labs Update Video Capture Scenes

Beta Labs Update Video Capture with Grid ViewfinderBeta Labs Update Video Capture Settings    

Cheers.. and big thanks to @phonedaz

Note: Its applicable only after Symbian Anna update

Nokia N8\E7\C7\C6-01 finally got Symbian Anna, Next Monday will bring more for N8

Update: As many of you might be reading from comments and twitter, yes! Symbian Anna is now available via OTA, via Ovi Suit and via Nokia Software Updater and its available not only for Nokia N8 but for Nokia E7, Nokia C7 and Nokia C6-01 as well.

N8

In addition, @phoneDaz from Nokia has confirmed that Symbian Anna update on Nokia N8 will follow one more update within few days (upcoming monday, August 22, 2011) to bring Continuous Auto Focus and 30 fps video.

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So, you may be assured that Nokia is not only meant to keep Nokia N8 on top of imaging devices but also will to stay on it. Wait till Monday and keep an eye over Nokia Conversation blog.


It was April 12, 2011, when I wrote that Sorry Friends, I am not covering Symbian PR2.0 as of now, then it was a matter of laugh for some of the people as my blog was getting top attention about the PR2.0 as I was one of those first people who posted that its not coming before Summer.

But more than blog hits, it was an annoying experience for me as well and was useless to point the delay in every next post, so I decided to put a full stop over Symbian PR2.0 a.k.a. Symbian Anna now and today I am happy that I kept my promise.

N8NCS

Yes! today, when I am here to write a post about Symbian Anna then it means that Symbian Anna is finally here for Nokia N8 and its NOT a leaked firmware only but an official one. I am still calling it an official one even if its not available via OTA or Ovi Suit which are official methods because it has arrived via Nokia Care Suit as well (Nokia Care Suit is the software that Nokia Care Center Guys use to flash Nokia Phones, an amazing piece of software).

downloading

Though I could have used the Navifirm files as well (available for Indian Users as of now), but I preferred to go via Nokia Care Suit, only to find later on that it could have worked without downloading again, if I have placed the firmware files at %Program Files%\Common Files\Nokia\DataPackage\Products


Anyway, for the people, who are not aware about Nokia Care Suit and scared that it might brick their phone, I would like to say that its been a pretty stable method for me so far and reliable as it downloads official and final firmwares only rather the half baked or beta one.

Still it will be at your risk, if you wanna try it right now like me. Though I have already covered Symbian Anna in details with my Nokia Oro post, but will keep on updating this post, if I find some differences.

Till then, enjoy as the long long long wait is over.