All About Symbian - Nokia (S60) and Sony Ericsson (UIQ) smartphones unwrapped

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  #16  
Old 04-08-2010, 06:37 PM
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As a Symbian engineer for almost 10 years then, you will be aware that Symbian OS which is based on EPOC32 from Psion, has been using a UI called S60 that was added by Nokia?

Believe me, I'm aware that Symbian is based on EPOC32. It the same way as EPOC32 is in some little way based on EPOC16 (Sibo). Trust me, I was developing for this OS as well. But it's not really important, it's just a simplification. What I meant is that Symbian has a great potencial as a mobile operating system, mostly because from the beginning it was desiged, based on really important in mobile computing objectives. Sorry if anyone from Psion felt angry that I wrote that they hadn't invented Symbian Sure guys, it's your great work as well And the work of many contributors. So I totally agree, there is nothing wrong with Symbian as a core. There are some UI changes needed and that's it. And probably QT will be the answer. Will see.
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  #17  
Old 04-08-2010, 07:18 PM
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Why is it that many posters believe the iPhone UI to be SOOOO much better than Symbian's/S60's?

Does the iPhone have an active standby screen? A today view? Widgets?

The iPhone UI is essentially as simple as it gets, regardless of the dimensions of the device in question (ie. iPad, iPod touch, iPhone , iPhone 3). It's a grid of icons, with some flashy sliding effects (woohoo!). Hardly ground-breaking or awe-inspiring, and debatably noth particularly effective or productive. Oh yes, and they've just added the ability to arrange icons in folders... sound familiar...?

  #18  
Old 04-08-2010, 08:40 PM
KPOM
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People think of iOS as "better" because it is simple to use. Put it in front of someone who has never used it before, and pretty quickly that person will understand the basics. That isn't the case with any S60 or Symbian^1 device I have ever used. iOS also has the best browsing experience on a phone, apart from the lack of Flash.

Android is a bit rougher on the edges, but it bridges between iOS' simplicity and Symbian's flexibility. That's why I went from Symbian to Android rather than to iOS. Android is much more integrated than Symbian^1. UI goes beyond what the icons look like and what gestures work. If there is an address in a calendar entry (or browser or note) in Android, I can click on it and it will open up the Maps application. If I have two maps applications, it will ask me to select which one, and if I want to make it the default. It does this with other applications, as well. That's part of the UI. Android also handles embedded phone numbers better than Symbian^1.

  #19  
Old 04-08-2010, 08:47 PM
ILoveGadgets ILoveGadgets is offline
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Let's face it, for every one of us who pays attention to the UI there are loads of people who don't really care, just want to put a nice pic on the wallpaper and have a reliable phone. You're right Steve, Nokia need to play to their strengths, not try to play catch-up with the fancy-boys. They make the best phones (i.e. for making calls), they have some of the best cameras, and they are reliable. Sell on those things, not how good the screen is or how slick the UI is (especially when the thing spends most of it's time in your pocket being a phone).

  #20  
Old 04-08-2010, 09:45 PM
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Agree in part, but not entirely

@ILoveGadgets:

While I agree, that Nokia should play on their strengths, I do not agree that they shouldn't try to catch up on the points where they are weak.

While I have a Nokia N97 because of it's strengths like the camera, stable phone performance, flexible OS etc. I also like that fact that I can do "smartphone" stuff on it - it is quite useful you know? ;-)

I see the N8 (and the other coming Symbian^3 devices) as a sensible way to catch up and get all the smart stuff more integrated and with better navigation and interface. This makes good sense to me, esspecially if the N8 still has all the good things from earlier Symbian devices AS WELL as the stuff that makes (some) Android devices desirable, which it looks like.

In essence to me, the N8 seems like the perfect allround device with virtually no compromises. That is a good thing, isn't it?

  #21  
Old 04-08-2010, 09:51 PM
gadget freak gadget freak is offline
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denial denial denial, this new bb will be a massive success whether you like it or not, android is now the most popular OS in america, the iphone has the tech media and the want factor and Nokia need a massive success to wipe away the memory of the disgusting mess that was the N97

  #22  
Old 04-08-2010, 11:08 PM
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EXACTLY KPOM!
I laugh at s60 users who brush off Android as simply a "glossy" UI with lots of apps, as it is WAY MORE THAN THAT. All it proves is that they are ignorant and havent touched an Android or used one extensively. Android is indeed a sort of bridge between iOS and Symbian. Love how I AS THE PURCHASER AND USER OF MY SMARTPHONE can decide which apps are default when opening certain files,links,details etc... Its MY SMARTPHONE and i can decide how it functions,customization is not just about themes and fonts s60users,get off that lame excuse,if you havent used an Android extensively then i suggest you keep quiet.
Its not about what new things Android can do over Symbians,its about HOW,HOW WELL AND THE USER EXPERIENCE and i can tell you now, Android whipes the floor in all 3.

  #23  
Old 04-08-2010, 11:48 PM
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by banter

I left Palm Treo because their specs fell far behind and new models were not providing enough incentive to upgrade. I moved to N95 even though I was upset about not having full qwerty keyboard, but I started to appreciate having a god camera. I liked Palm Pre but spec was not particularly impressing (downgrade from N95)and GSM version was missing initially.

I like the BB Torch, especially the sliding down keyboard. It is going to be Treo like experience. It will be easy to operate it with one had. However all other specs are making me to to prefer N8.

I would had preferred even side sliding, but thankfully soft keyboards became better and hopefully I will adopt.

  #24  
Old 05-08-2010, 12:01 AM
Jimmy1 Jimmy1 is offline
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On topic, I think RIM will sell a bunch of these Torch models to their enterprise market clients, but it won't do much to stem the tide of regular consumers migrating to Android.

For the same amount of money, a Motorola Droid X or HTC Evo placed next to a Blackberry Torch = no contest. The Android phones will win every time.

Also, RIM is going to be threatened by the resurgent Microsoft at the end of the year with THEIR new offering, WP7, that will also be aimed at enterprise AND regular consumers. Long story short, the long term trend for RIM is a slowly creeping downward slope.

  #25  
Old 05-08-2010, 12:11 AM
Jimmy1 Jimmy1 is offline
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BTW, I would LOVE an E-Series device with this form factor, which is also sort of Palm Pre-ish.

Symbian 4 but preferably Meego touchscreen, with a slide out qwerty.

Get on this, Nokia.

  #26  
Old 05-08-2010, 12:29 AM
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I love listening to these Symbian fanboys in denial. People vote with their wallets... If you haven't notice Android is making humongous headway. Can you say that about Symbian? Do you think spouting out in geeky phone forum will help? Most of your less geeky press will never mention a word about Symbian and all they hype sorrounds Android and iPhones. If there is mention of Symbian/Nokia it's usually negative press.

If you ask Joe public what is Symbian, the vast majority will say what the hell is that. Symbian figures are only respectable in the smartphone market because Nokia is selling low end cheap smartphones as dumbphones to your Joe public who just needs a phone to make calls and send texts.

I've been a Symbian user for the last decade but moved on. I was in denial too until I started using other phones I realised how clunky and complicated current Symbian UI is. Sometimes you just want things to work, not fiddling around with the inconsistencies, the clunky interface and customisation that is buried so deep that only someone techinical/geeky can work out how to do it. I can see why people move to Android and iPhone OS. Yes the current Symbian UI sucks so much... I hope the interface can be greatly improved and regain some confidence in the press.

  #27  
Old 05-08-2010, 02:09 AM
Will81
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Symbian figures are only respectable in the smartphone market because Nokia is selling low end cheap smartphones as dumbphones to your Joe public who just needs a phone to make calls and send texts.
I could not agree more. The majority of Symbian devices sold are low-profit, low-end, cheap "smartphones as dumbphones". This is evident by the fact that the average selling price of Nokia's smartphones is steadily going down.

I don't see anything on the Symbian or Nokia roadmap which will turn this around.

  #28  
Old 05-08-2010, 04:22 AM
kalel17
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whoever thinks symbian is difficult needs a brain. We can sit here talking in these forums all day as techies and how symbian is doomed etc while the millions of non techies out there snap up symbian smartphones.

  #29  
Old 05-08-2010, 07:30 AM
clonmult clonmult is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
I love listening to these Symbian fanboys in denial. People vote with their wallets... If you haven't notice Android is making humongous headway. Can you say that about Symbian? Do you think spouting out in geeky phone forum will help? Most of your less geeky press will never mention a word about Symbian and all they hype sorrounds Android and iPhones. If there is mention of Symbian/Nokia it's usually negative press.

If you ask Joe public what is Symbian, the vast majority will say what the hell is that. Symbian figures are only respectable in the smartphone market because Nokia is selling low end cheap smartphones as dumbphones to your Joe public who just needs a phone to make calls and send texts.

I've been a Symbian user for the last decade but moved on. I was in denial too until I started using other phones I realised how clunky and complicated current Symbian UI is. Sometimes you just want things to work, not fiddling around with the inconsistencies, the clunky interface and customisation that is buried so deep that only someone techinical/geeky can work out how to do it. I can see why people move to Android and iPhone OS. Yes the current Symbian UI sucks so much... I hope the interface can be greatly improved and regain some confidence in the press.
You're right about Symbian itself not being known - people tend to just think of a Nokia phone. And its irritating that Android appears to be advertised heavily, whilst Symbian has never really been promoted to the public.

However, S^1 whilst clunky, is definitely *not* complicated. If you think its complicated, then thats possibly an issue with you, not the phone. Damn near everything on the 5230/5800/N97/etc is easy to use.

No geek factor required to use it, both my son and step-daughter (both under 10 years of age) have absolutely no problems at all with it.

Similarly, my ex wifes kids (18 and 20 years old) both chose Symbian phones - 5800 and Satio, and haven't ever found them difficult to use. And they're not exactly the cleverest people on the planet.

The only real elements of the S60 UI that suck are the icon design and the tap/double tap. The latter appears to have been resolved in S^3, and the former can easily be sorted with a theme.

  #30  
Old 05-08-2010, 08:14 AM
Richard L Richard L is offline
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I'm in the "Symbian user experience sucks" camp: I really don't understand why anyone thinks it's even close to the experience an iPhone or good Android device can offer. It simply isn't, sadly.

On the Blackberry - the issue here was the ham-fisted attempt to ape Apple's (irritating but effective because their hardware is superb) "revolutionary and magical" marketing language.

What most commentators have, so far, forgotten is that the blogs and tech news services don't drive sales. Operators and their stores do - that's why the (genuinely appalling at launch) N97 did so well: it was cheap and pushed hard because Nokia has superb point of sale relationships. Didn't help Nokia's margins but shifted a ton of units.

The BB will also move off shelves fast for the same reasons and the fact that the BB brand has an upscale cachet for the mass market thanks to its corporate heritage.

The phone is fine but it's definitely mid-range by 2010 standards: there's no harm in that (especially as the pricing-on-contract will be mid-range) but if you try to sell it as a revolutionary step forward (even if only in a small BB-centric context) and it's outshon by others, you are going to get criticism.
 

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