It took a little longer but there been too many requests to be ignored and here I am back with Layman’s Take on another Nokia Lumia. Its been some time since Nokia Lumia 520 been into the market enjoying the cheapest Windows Phone tag and it’s the time when I would be looking that how does it fare against its price. We have already talked about Windows Phone 8 in the last post on Nokia Lumia 820, so here I would be jumping to unboxing part straight away.
I remember the day when I was invited in one of the Nokia workshop in Delhi to sneak through a glimpse about the new generation of their Phone OS, which was about to unveil at the same day. I was also given glimpses of the upcoming marvels Nokia Lumia 820 and Nokia Lumia 920 at the same day even though wasn’t allowed to operate it myself. Even though Nokia Lumia 920 was a show stopper, Lumia 820 found many a people staring over it more (including myself) considering the size and build quality. It took a little long to come to me, but finally its here and finally its time to write Layman’s Take after a real real long while (Being a Daddy at home and a manager at office taking big time toll over me).
Windows Phone 8: The background
First Generation of Nokia Lumia Series had entered into the already crowded phone market as a fresh breath of air due to the fact that they took many of the basics right. But due to changed dynamics of the market, when this all moved to the second generation of Lumia Series, then there was a lot on stake and huge expectations coming from users spoiled with changed smartphone habits.
Windows Phone has gone through something game changing beneath the surface, so that Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8 may share a lot of code and even kernel with each other. Its game changing because Microsoft would be the first one to have their phones, tablets and workstations all sharing same code base & hence less trouble for developers and users as well. Helps in mobilizing developers and also in making a coherent ecosystem as well.
In all, I did appreciated what Microsoft did or what they intend to do and actually can vouch that they doing a brave and right thing but at the same time being an active user/ analyst about other platforms, I also see that how hard it is to lure the users from other platforms if you ask users to do things differently. Let’s see where it leads to.
A little bit late than rest of the world but finally Nokia Lumia 900 is introduced to Indian Market in a rather silent way than Nokia India had launched other Lumia siblings in past. A bit less buzz about this handset might be due to proximity of Nokia Lumia 820/920 around the corner. When it paid a visit to Layman’s Take, then there were some harsh questions to be asked.
While it was the most prettiest Nokia handset ever that would have came to my hands, the questions were still fierce:
Is Nokia Lumia 900 is just an enlarged Nokia Lumia 800?
Does the biggest screen from Nokia till date makes it hard to handle?
How the different build feels better than Nokia Lumia 800 or Nokia N8 likes?
The new display in Lumia 900 any different than Lumia 800? For good or for bad?
Is it worth to buy Nokia Lumia 900 when you can get a Lumia 800 for cheap?
Is it worth to buy a high end Nokia Lumia 900 when Nokia Lumia 820/920?
So, let’s read ahead to know that how I found out this beautiful Nokia Lumia 900?
It might be a tough job for a blogger to review one of the Asha handset. Blame our own habits which are addicted to high end. But if one looks at Asha Series out of this Metro City Blogger mind set, then less chances to find it dull, in terms of the value it adds to the feature phone market that is still going steady and strong (even if we don’t feel that way on twitterverse or blogs).
While in the last review, I talked about Nokia Asha 300, now it is the time to talk about the real leader of the pack, Nokia Asha 303: One of the phones, over which Nokia thought to pull it back with low end handsets in Indian market. Let’s see how it is….
Nokia Asha 303 is finally the one to showcase a capacitive screen on S40 Touch and Type genre along with the honour of being a Nokia Touch-n-Type QWERTY at such low price point. In many ways, this seems to be the Nokia Asha handset which should have started the Asha Touch-n-Type Series in first place.
It rarely happens that I write a Layman’s Take on a Symbian App, barring Gravity posts, but when I was checking out the latest fMobi version 2.5, then it certainly felt worth mentioning and we are here, reviewing fMobi 2.5 that is being called as the best Facebook client out there for Symbian.
While Official Nokia Social app been already a pain for Symbian users, more tragic was the absence of official apps from Twitter/Facebook like popular social services. Adding more insult to injury was the web browser part that never got a preferred treatment from these services despite of having Symbian in market leading position for a time. Part of the blame goes to tedious development with conventional C++ that was always a tough job for developers due to rapid changes across interfaces\features of social sites. With Qt though, Symbian got a sigh of relief and out of many apps getting benefitted from it, one was our fMobi.
fMobi: First released on 05 July, 2011 (not sure of exact date), the Qt-Based Facebook client fMobi kept on growing its fan-base by each passing day due to plenty of features combined at one place with a smooth working UI (Thanks to Qt). You can understand the level of popularity by the fact that It didn’t took even three months, when it got acclaimed as best Facebook Client for Symbian by Nokia itself.
Its not that I didn’t noticed it then, but somehow it was features like shaky split screen input etc (not a fault of app itself but Qt version issues) that kept me away from embracing it fully rather than relying on some other apps, but this fighter app didn’t gave up and kept on luring me time to time with each update. And when I checked out the latest version 2.5, then I was like.. this is the right time, when the app deserves a mention like a Layman’s Take on fMobi.
What makes fMobi special and superior over other clients out there?
The keywords are innovation and consistency which makes fMobi always one step up ahead of the competition. fMobi chooses a different UI and mannerism than the official apps and yet delivers an experience that brings you best of Facebook activities. Being in latest Qt, its smoothness/animations in various actions, native split screen integration and its own way to notification will sure please any Symbian user.
it might not be free like some of the Facebook clients out there, but the way, this is being developed and being enhanced in each iteration, I couldn’t even compare it with any of the existing clients out there (when there is no real official Facebook client there and Nokia Social is kind of no challenge since always). A few things certainly worth the price (Just Rs. 50/-).
Last November been a really eventful month for me (though apparently less eventful for my blog posts themselves) as after BlackBerry Touch 9860 and Nokia N9, Nokia Lumia 800 also joined in the list of review devices to me. But then Its not been only tough schedules but also the entirely new product experience that made me delay in posting my first impressions (though I always been vocal on my twitter account @nkumar_ in this while) like I did in case of big devices like Samsung Galaxy S or Nokia N9 in past.
It was necessary to get over with the excitements/ pre-judgments first before writing a Layman’s Take about it. So,… here I am. Back again after the longest period taken with any of other review device to me in past.
Since we heard of leaks about Nokia SeaRay, this handset (now known as Nokia Lumia 800) always been overshadowed by the adjective Nokia N9 look-a-like and that really been a lot injustice to this brilliant piece of design. Think if there was no Nokia N9 and Nokia would have came out with this iconic design as their first Windows Phone? Shouldn’t we judge this device in that way only?
Nokia: Symbian –> Windows phone
Since the Burning Platform Memo, there been a lot of debate around Nokia’s shift to Windows Phone. Like any heated discussion, there will always be some pros and cons of any move on such a big scale, but the thing is, we should accept the reality now that Nokia is a business company and they are here for business. When a new CEO got hired and was expected to do a turn-around (with probably not that many easy options around as many of us might have thought in early emotions of #Feb11), then considering the reputation of in-house software in eyes of major operators, we can see a point here in choosing Windows Phone as viable alternative.
Many called Stephen Elop a Trojan Horse since his joining as Nokia CEO in October 2010 and speculations around his shares in Microsoft kept on fueling the doubts until he sold those shares and bought Nokia’s shares. But in all those speculations, people missed one thing to notice. Even if he would have been a Trojan, even if he had plans of a Nokia-Microsoft deal since the beginning, was this really that easy to convince whole Nokia to go Microsoft way from day one? Making a Windows Phone from day one? Think practical. How much time Nokia Lumia 800 got in R&D labs? Not even an year.
Me and you may not understand that how hard it might have been, but ask the manufacturers and experts that how hard it is to actually deliver a product in market in this short span of time? Even if you write off the design as that of Nokia N9 plainly, it’s a totally different OS and related interfaces beneath and testing of components follow a standard process that is sure a time taking one.
You have to admit the remarkable work that is personified as Nokia Lumia 800 today, one totally distinct design standing apart from whole world of suing and counter-suing. When you think of situations around it then Its just not a design or just another phone, but its something even bigger than that.
Windows Phone and me
Believe it or not, its been the first ever Windows phone for me as I never had a brief hands on over Windows phone in past. So, what I am gonna write here, will be raw impressions for a first timer. I would be someone who is coming from a Nokia device background and being a Samsung Galaxy S owner, can weigh its pros & cons in comparison to other available alternative that is Android.
Its not only interesting for you, but its been interesting for me as well and so I decided to give it enough time before writing something about it (After all, I been given a generous two months review period for the device). And now it would be one of the biggest text based walkthrough of Windows Phone Software till date.
Its been enough long since I didn’t came back about the much awaited Nokia N9 post, the Layman’s Take on Nokia N9, but I wanted to assure you that I wasn’t lost and was exploring the beauty from the most critical angles, so that you can get a view beyond the praises, beyond the technicalities… beyond the background stories … beyond Meego’s Future etc.. just a practical and real life plain view about the device and here I am .. back again..
What will you do if …
You know that you are among least wanted out there …
You know that nothing matters now, no matter how hard you try …
You know that this is actually the last life you are going to live out there …
If you have to face the world out there alone as even your own people will back off from you …
Yes! this been exactly the thing with Nokia N9, when it was waiting for its turn to come out in lights.
Odds from whole universe been tiding their hands against this lonely warrior. Big tech blogs were habitual of discarding anything from praises, if a name Nokia attached with it. Think of the adrenal in your veins when you know that people are ready to discard you even before giving you a tiny chance, leave the talk of a fair chance, think of the thoughts going on inside, when you know that even your company don’t want to launch you all over the world and just want to pass it on?
Do you know, what Nokia N9 did?
It did something that only heros do, like Beethoven did, with composing legendary music even when he went medically deaf. Nokia N9 stood tall in front of all the odds and turned around the things single handedly.
Its been long since when we heard literally hundred percent reviews about a Nokia filled with adjectives only and when it happens then if it tempting you to know about it “more and more” then you are perfectly sane. After all, when people like Gizmodo, who even refused to review Nokia N8 (still the best Nokia phone for me till date), feel tempted about it, then why should you hide your lust for it?
I had every reason to literally beg for this gadget pornography and thank to kind people at Nokia, I wasn’t denied like always.
But who was I?
The one who started his mobile blogging with almighty Nokia N900 and still dreams about that “old” resistive device only, I was obviously not surprised by the praises coming in the way of Nokia N9, knowing that it was successor to Nokia N900 itself with removal of most of its shortcomings (not all).
I was obviously not starting afresh here. I had my own expectations, coming from Nokia N900 and Nokia N8 combined, let’s see what I felt about the device, but I should warn you that once you click the Read More link, you are into a post that is as big as around 11000+ words, more than double larger that any other review I posted till date..