Nokia Releases a Bunch of Phones at 3GSM
You would think that, working for the largest mobile phone company in the world, I would get an opportunity to play with the latest phones before they come out. But like a fellow Nokia employee wrote on his external blog, just because you have Nokia on your business card doesn’t mean they automatically give you phones to play with. I would also draw attention to the fact that I am rarely in an actual Nokia office, so even when the executive gets a new prototype toy to play with, I don’t get to see it unless I just happen to be in the office at the time.
While there are less scrupulous people out there who get their hands on pre-release information and leak it before the official release, if I get to see a pre-release phone, of course I can’t talk about it here. At least, until the phones are officially announced. And today, that happened, so I can talk about what I saw when I was in Finland. And obviously, these are my opinions and impressions, not necessarily the corporate line.
Today, six phones were announced: Nokia 3110 Classic, Nokia 6110 Navigator, Nokia N77, Nokia E61i, Nokia E90 Communicator, and the Nokia E65. I did not see the first three phones, so I won’t comment on them. I did to fondle some prototypes of these phones back in October. I did not see software or spec sheets on these devices, though I did hear some details. I don’t think they had names back then either, other than their code names, which of course I (likely) cannot reveal here.
The Nokia E61i addresses two problems I have with the current E61: size and lack of camera. Otherwise, the same old device. Nice, incremental improvements.
The Nokia E65 reminded me a lot of the Nokia N80 when I first saw it, but it was much slimmer and had a much smaller camera (2 versus 3.2 megapixels) and had no flash. Either way, it just had a nice feel to it. It’s business, yet elegant, and not too flashy.
The best device of the bunch was the E90 Communicator. I’ve always been a fan of the communicator not necessarily as a phone, but as a near laptop replacement. I really liked my Nokia 9500 for the screen, the keyboard, and the WiFi. Unfortunately, the size, both in terms of length, thickness, and weight made this a difficult carry. The E90 went with a much higher resolution screen, a much higher resolution camera (3.2 megapixel, with flash), a slimmer overall design (less thick, less length), backlighted keyboard–another complaint of the 9500, and the ability to run Symbian applications on either the smaller outside or largert inside screen. The GPS is just icing on the cake. It also, unlike the Nokia 9500, folds open completely flat much like the Nokia 9300 did.
I have no idea if, or when, I will see any of these phones through internal channels, especially since our team has now completely switched over to the Nokia E61. The unsubsidized price for this phone is expected to be 800 Euros, which makes it a bit pricey for me or anyone else to acquire on their own. I wish Andy Abramson were running blogger relations for the E-series phones instead of the N-series phones now. After seeing this phone, I bet he does too.