The common phrase is ‘too little, too late’. In the smartphone world, this appears to be the key facet when assessing any device. From the looks to the features, each aspect has become a mini battleground.
But the actual war is not of hardware; it’s the software oiling the chips and giving users an experience, instead of convenience. And on this end it is Apps that rule, with quantity given higher regard than quality.
Enter the old and once wise being of the smartphone world: Nokia. Age seems to have taken its wear on the Finnish giant, with strategy and vision by the company appearing unclear each day. Put aside the battering on the financial front; the product portfolio appears to be shaping on so many fronts that it will be a wonder if quality smartphones actually emerge.
At the underway Nokia Connection event in Singapore, the company has unveiled its latest drone to battle the Apples and Droids taking over the world. The N-Series handset N9 showcases the new OS MeeGo, which Nokia had so sadly announced it had abandoned due to the Microsoft adoption.
With Windows Phone 7’s Mango widely awaited in the later parts of the year, this has the smell of desperation to remain a competing entity, rather than a strategized move.
While possessing a keen resemblance to the X6, the N9 appears more refined and possibly for some, wow-ee. A slim design with nicely curved edges, Nokia has taken the ‘no button’ approach for the front fascia, giving it a glass sheet look and increasing the vibrant nature of the AMOLED screen.
Claiming a Unibody design to allow for better antenna performance, it appears as a punch to the family with the infamous ‘i’.
But it’s not all looks. With an ARM Cortex-A8 OMAP3630 processor that is clocked at 1GHz and a 1GB of RAM, there is serious power in this Nokia smartphone for all users. Built-in memory is the only storage option, with 16GB and 64GB being the two models due to enter the market.
An 8 megapixels camera with Carl Zeiss optics and capable of HD video recording will cater to the snappers and paparazzi who want the all in one device.
Nokia made no mention of release dates, price or countries for official launch. But it is likely to enter global markets in the near future seeing shareholder reservations and dissatisfaction.
However, the question remains on whether it can make any in-roads with an OS that it shelved not too long ago. And then there’s the whole bit about Apps.
From the window shopper perspective, the N9 is enticing. It’s that gizmo you want to hold in your hands and rub to get a feel for it. However, will it be one you want to use during your daily routine? That is the million dollar question, or the hundreds of millions of dollars question.