Archive for the ‘ Uncategorized ’ Category

A behind The Scenes Look At The Lumia 800 Design

A few days ago, Stefan Pannenbecker, Vice President Industrial Design at Nokia was a guest here in the Netherlands giving a behind the scenes look at how the Lumia 800 was created. Interestingly the story begins way back around November 2009, which should give the user an idea as to how long it can actually take for a mobile device to go from idea to ready-to-ship.

He details how the lead designer for both the N9 and Lumia 800, Anton Fahlgren showed an early model of what was to become the N9 during their monthly “Creative Review,” basically a monthly meeting that oversees all current projects that are going on. Axel Meyer, known for the N97design, was also part of the team.

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App Of The Day: Toshl For N9 and Windows Phone

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One of the most best looking apps I remember using on the N900 was Toshl. Not bad either that it was a personal expense tracker that helped you track your expenses, analyze how it’s being spend and hopefully save money. I also like the fact that it has an online component that allows you to analyze your data on a much bigger screen. They’re also offering a pro account that adds some extra features like exporting to PDF, Excel and Google Doc or having the ability to have more than one budget.

The good news is that the app is now available for the N9 (and Windows Phone) and really does justice to the hardware and UI design of these new Nokia devices. Overall it’s not only useful, but an example for how the design of an app should be done. More info about the new N9 app can be found right here. You can get the app for Windows Phone by going here.

Why Windows Phone?

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An interesting post at the Spillway(brain) blog details why you should choose Windows (Phone), instead of Android or iOS. Basically Android and iOS are compared to rooms with doors and in the case of Android you can cover the walls with widgets. But in all cases the doors need to be opened to access the majority of the information. Windows Phone has a very different Philosophy on how you interact with your information: “Now, with Windows Phone, the curtains roll up. Each live tile is a window, not just into the phone, but into the big wide world” and “I want to see something open when I look at my technology—not just a bunch of closed doors.” That’s why according to the writer, Windows Phone has better way of doing things.

I tend to agree with this, the tiles are indeed a more elegant way of interacting with data, but are they really that much different from Android widgets? Do you agree that the Metro UI’s tile system is better than the current paradigm used on iOS? Is it really that much different and or better than the Widgets on Android?

Nokia co-develops Purity HD Headset Line with Monster

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Perhaps a new trend hitting the mobile industry? Mobile companies with audio companies? Recently HTC partnered with Beats audio, now it’s Nokia’s turn, co-designing and co-developing a new line of headsets/headphones with Monster. The result? The Nokia Purity HD Stereo Headset by Monster and the in-ear Nokia Purity Stereo Headset by Monster. Nokia does have a history with high performance audio accessories like the BH-505, BH-905, BH-905i, BH-214 and recently the Essence, so it should be interesting whether they will continue with this BH line or push higher performing devices towards the Purity line. There’s also dedicated site for the new line at www.puritybymonster.com.

Ironically a quick look at the Monster website, shows Beats headphones, but  none of the Purity headphones.

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One thing is for sure, the Purity line matches the Lumia design and they look extremely good. Judging by Nokia’s previous audio products and Monster background they should sound good too, but I’ll leave that to a future review to decide just how good. What I  like is the fact that these use tangle-resistant cables, similar to what Beats has been doing and the cables are replaceable. And lastly these seem to be a rare breed of performance head/earphones that are specifically designed for mobile with some specific Nokia/Windows Phone integration as you can see below:

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What is Nokia launching this week?

Nokiaworld08announcement1 Mark your calendar for tomorrow Tuesday the 2nd of December and Wednesday the 3rd and be sure to bookmark the Nokia World event website, as things will get very interesting! Here you’ll get the chance to send questions to the Nokia team on the Nokia Events site after the key announcement. Questions will be answered in two sessions (the first at 0930 GMT, the second at 1700 GMT), right here. I don’t have any idea what we will see this week, but the word I received is that Nokia is “set to make some pretty cool announcements.”

According to Scoble this might be Nokia’s “Touchiest week.” Interestingly he adds:

“When we got here a Nokia executive met me and bragged that the Internet has no clue what they will announce this week. I asked “what about the touch screen cell phone that I’ve seen rumors about?” He said that no one had gotten it right yet. The announcements are on Wednesday morning (it’s early Monday morning as I post this) so we’ll have to wait to see what they announce. He told me this is one of the only times he can remember when a big announcement has not leaked. He said that even internally only a handful of people have seen the new device they’ll be announcing on Wednesday. Does that tactic sound familiar? It should, and is only one of the reasons why this is Nokia’s touchiest week.”

This indeed one of the very few times I haven’t seen any leaked images, BEFORE an event like this? Will we see a device to equal the N95′s success? With the competition heating up, this week will be a crucial one for Nokia.

What do you think we will see this week? A new device or devices or services, or how about both?

Facing the task: A late Ninja is still a Ninja

Alateninja08part2 With some very high temperatures, being a Ninja in the tropics isn’t easy and despite having some of Ninja wear for the Fall season being left behind in the far country overseas where all injas come from, a Ninja is still a Ninja! Having mastered the art of the mythical Nseries for years, it’s time to step up to the challenge!

During this trial period, this Ninja will have to prove himself by completing the weekly challenge. All is not lost as I will have the trusty N96 by my side. If completed in a suitably intriguing way, then I’ll be able to win five extended N96 trials for some of you, potential Ninjas! My faith is in my trusty
weapon, the N96.

As you can see my fellow Ninjas have started already started, including Ninja Mark, Ninja Dotsisx and Ninja Norman. I will follow in their footsteps as some have already finished their first task. If I don’t come back alive, all is not lost as all critical data will be uploaded to OVI Sync. Wish me good luck!

Nokia N800/N810 get first over-the-air update: Walk-through

Back in april when Nokia launched the N810 WIMAX edition they also promised an updated version Internet Tablet operating system 2008 in the form of the OS2008 Feature Upgrade, also known as Diablo. The upgraded OS2008 introduced several useful new features to the platform, including an enhanced e-mail client, support for Chinese character rendering in the browser and RSS feeds. But one of the more important upgrades was the”Seamless Software Update” functionality to eliminate manual software updates.

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With my N800 connected to the Wi-Fi connection, I got a strange orange icon ( with exclamation mark)in the Status bar. Upon clicking this icon you are notified that there’s a “New Software update availble.” Here it shows  wheather it’s a Nokia software, Third party software or Operating system update. In this case it was an update for the Nokia software. You click to install via Application manager and it will show you that there’s  “OS2008 Feature Upgrade” that have to do with “Updates to Email and Browser stability. The file itself is about 14MB and brings to OS2008 Feature Upgrade to version 4.2008.30.2. Once you do proceed with the update you are asked to an optional backup.

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It first dowbnloads the update and then restarts, where the screen actually stays dimly lit and the notification light blinks several times and voila, no more updates via the PC!

N78 support page up, available in weeks

N78supportupFor those of you waiting for the N78, it seems that wait might soon be over as the N78 support page is now up on the Nokia Europe site. If you’ve followed previous Nseries devices before, you’d know that the support page going up usually means that the product should become available in about 2 to 3 weeks. In the mean head on over to the N78 support page where you’ll find demo’s, tips & tricks, software etc.

Tip (s) of the day: It’s all about multi-tasking

Multitasks60tips_2Wikipedia defines multi-tasking as: the apparent simultaneous performance of two or more tasks by a computer’s central processing unit. In this case the “computer” could be any one of the Nseries devices, but as we all know earlier devices were plagued by insufficient and inefficient use of  RAM. They could perform many tasks, but in the end were limited by the available RAM. Luckily, the latest devices like the N95 8GB, N82 and even the N81 have been blessed with tons of RAM. So why not put it to good use?

1)The S60 browser on older devices used  to close by itself when RAM would run out once you loaded one of those RAM hungry pages or when you opened any other application like the Music Player. With the added RAM the latest Nseries phones can tackle the S60 browser in combination with various other open apps and even various browser tabs. But by default there isn’t any setting to allow you to manually open more browser windows.  So Mark from the Nokia blog has come up with a handy tip to trick the the browser into doing this. He suggests that on the newer devices with the updated Multimedia Menu, you could go to the Internet tile and open another browser tabs.  You could repeat this as many time,s adding as many tabs as you like. Pressing #5 in the S60 would bring a list of open pages.

Vaibhav Sharma from the Symbian Blog also has a neat trick to achieve similar results by using the Feed option. He suggests that by subscribing to a feed in the S60 browser and than by opening any post from that feed and selecting the “Full Article” option, this will open the post in a new window. You could then stop the page from loading and proceed to going to any site you want. Again pressing #5 would bring a list of open pages.

2) Many new Nseries users don’t that the Menu key also acts as a “Task Switcher” to switch between open apps. See that button that looks like two snakes? Pressing it toggles between the stand-by screen and applications menu. But by doing a long-press you could open a “Task bar” that shows the list of open apps. You could use Up and Down on the D-pad to browse through these apps or pressing the C-key to close the app you want

3) Once you’ve mastered multi-tasking, why close your apps? If you really want quick access to your application you could leave them running in the background and switch between them using the Menu key. This is especially handy for your email or even the slow Gallery application.

One day to go! Contest almost over.

Contest25thalmostOk guys, the contest is almost finally over. Tomorrow will be the last day to submit your entries and have a shot at that Sandisk 8GB microSDHC card! On the  26th I will have the hard task of choosing a winner and at the end of the day the best entry will be announced. I would also like to take the opportunity to thank you guys who have submitted some great entries, some of which I’m really considering making the next official logo for The Nokia Guide. I would also like to thank the guys at MobyMemory for making this contest possible. I highly recommend them as a great source for accessories and especially memory cards. If you haven’t submitted in an entry yet, you have only 1 day left. Good luck!