This is Momchil here wrapping up the discussion on the mighty Nokia N8.
As mentioned before, I am a Nokia supporter and I always use a Nokia as my primary handset. I have been closely following the development of Nokia touchscreen smartphones since the 7710 made it to the market. This leads me to my first point – reliability. Every Nokia I’ve had, smartphone or not, has always been utterly reliable. The 7710 I’ve owned since 2004 still works perfectly despite having been dropped in the pool and suffering numerous substantial impacts. The Nokia N8, being its very distant successor, is also extremely reliable.
The 7710 was relatively unsuccessful in the market for a reason which is no fault of Nokia engineers as the phone was (and still is) amazing. The only problem with the 7710 was that the device was way ahead of its time. Now coming back to the future (Nokia N8), the lesson has been learned. AMOLED screen, HDMI out, USB OTG, 12 megapixel camera, aluminium shell, these are the fundamental components of today’s ultimate smartphone. The customer is already used to touchscreens, he has an HDMI compatible TV or monitor at home, he would make good use of the amazing camera and he would know the difference between 12 megapixels with HD video capabilities and the 5 megapixel phone he probably owned before. The market is ready for the N8, and Nokia N8 is already setting standards in the market.
It all ties in – Camera, HDMI, USB OTG, 16GB
Start by taking some really impressive high resolution crisp photos with your N8. Make a video or two, or as many as you wish, the 16GB internal memory will handle it. Impress someone at work or at home by connecting the Nokia to a big HDMI flatscreen and playing your clips. Amaze your friends even more by copying the pictures to their USB flash drive, which they happen to carry on their keychain. Enjoy!
Things we take for granted
Amazing sound quality and playback time. The music player is very user-friendly and the 3.5mm stereo jack enables you to plug your favourite earphones. Music playback has been tested at MIR and works perfectly with our huge pair of Sennheiser earphones. The sound was also sharp on our JBL sound system and finally we tested it with a Phillips amplified setup in the 5.1 dolby digital sound mode – again fantastic results. A huge advantage of the N8 over competitors’ products is the ease of music (and video) accessibility. You can just plug the Nokia to your PC in mass storage mode, upload some MP3s and videos, and they will be immediately ready to play. The same applies to USB OTG, just connect your flash drive or external hard drive to the device and it will play anything, yes, instantly, in High Definition, on your HD TV. No need for special PC applications or conversions.
Improvements of the OS
Symbian OS hasn’t been so spectacular recently compared to what others have to offer. However, Symbian ^3 is a real improvement to the previous versions of the system. It is much more user-friendly and there has been an enormous effort put into making it more touchscreen-oriented. Take the QWERTY keyboard, for example. It occupies the entire screen, providing more area for each of the buttons, therefore making it easier for the user. There is a much more decent task manager and the menus are more intuitive compared to the N97, for example. Messages appear on the screen as IMs, no need to click “Open” every time you receive one. E-mail connectivity works really well. The automatic screen orientation feature on my N82 and my N97 was really annoying, I had it switched off. However, on the Nokia N8 it feels really different. It actually works when you need it to. There is a little pause just before the change of screen orientation, to make sure this isn’t just a random movement of inclination. In general, Symbian is much better now!
The on-screen clock
I have elaborated on this in my first N8 post: Nokia N8 – First Impressions. I absolutely adore this seemingly normal feature. There is an on-screen clock visible at all times when the phone is locked. It doesn’t disappear in a minute. You don’t have to press a button in order to check the time. It’s simply brilliant!
Aluminium and Glass
The scratch and scuff resistant anodised aluminium body speaks of quality, and feels like it. I must add that the phone feels cool most of the times, not like other handsets with powerful processors that might fry your palm. Glass screen, not plastic, feels much better and is more responsive than the N97, for example. Rigidity is a strong quality of the N8, take the micro USB port reinforcement for instance. The very access to the port is integrated into the shell of the phone, which helps support the micro USB plug when connected, unlike many other handsets on which the port is prone to snapping off the mainboard.
The ULTIMATE TEST
The N8 as a portable home entertainment centre?
Here at MIR we decided to put the N8 to the ultimate test. We wanted to use USB OTG, audio and HDMI playback at the same time. How so? We connected a USB wireless mouse/keyboard to the Nokia. We used the HDMI port and placed the handset close to our HD monitor. We linked our JBL audio system in. But first, let’s transfer something from an external hard drive…
Active Ingredients: Nokia N8, USB Hard Disk, USB Keyboard, Bluetooth Mouse, Full HD Monitor
The Nokia N8 as a Portable Home Media Centre
How this worked:
First, connect a USB Hard Drive to the Nokia (or any USB Flash Drive). Browse for videos, copy them to the phone or open them directly.
Connect a Keyboard, it works automatically. Pair a bluetooth mouse, it takes seconds!
Now let’s put this all together. Bring in the Full HD monitor!
Try the browser, connecting to a WiFi is easy enough. Let’s see if the keyboard works… Flawless! The mouse functions are fully integrated and really useful, hold the right button and you have a Task Manager!
FINAL STAGE OF THE TEST
THE PORTABLE MEDIA CENTRE
It works!!! The Nokia N8 really did it! We have a USB keyboard, Bluetooth Mouse, 720p HD Video file copied from a USB Hard Drive, Full HD Monitor and a JBL Audio system connected to the Nokia N8 Simultaneously!!!
I can’t express my feelings right now… This device is really, really powerful. In addition it didn’t heat up at all while playing in HD and the battery was charging at the same time too!
WELL DONE NOKIA, I am truly impressed!!!