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Old 16-06-2010, 01:17 PM
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Symbian flagship: i8910 HD, Satio, Nokia N8 vs Apple iPhone 4 and HTC Desire

With the imminent arrival of both the Apple iPhone 4 and the Symbian-powered Nokia N8, I thought it high time to pitch the two head to head. In fact, while doing so, why not widen the comparison to include the other non-Nokia Symbian flagships, the Sony Ericsson Satio and Samsung i8910 HD, both of which have similar specifications, plus throw in the Android flagship (in the UK) as well - the HTC Desire? The result is hopefully a comprehensive cross-section of the top end smartphones of 2010.

Read on in the full article.

Old 16-06-2010, 02:02 PM
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Nice comparison Steve. But I don't see how you can put comments like 'Superb', 'great', 'amazing' for the N8 features when (AFAIK) you have handled the phone just once and even that on the pre-production firmware.

Apologies if my assumption is wrong.

Old 16-06-2010, 02:03 PM
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Finally I've found one negative in N8, a mono speaker. Its not really a deal breaker though.
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Old 16-06-2010, 02:06 PM
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and the amazing flagship n97?

Old 16-06-2010, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by malerocks View Post
Nice comparison Steve. But I don't see how you can put comments like 'Superb', 'great', 'amazing' for the N8 features when (AFAIK) you have handled the phone just once and even that on the pre-production firmware.

Apologies if my assumption is wrong.
Steve can say these things very easily and with authority I reckon. He's seen the N8 spec sheet, and then he's tried the device out enough to see if there's anything obviously different from the specs - i.e. even a quick play with the handset can give a great impression of the UI speed, camera quality and so on. Not enough to do a full comprehensive review sure, but enough to be able to use the superlatives the N8 deserves.

The web is dripping with professional reviewers who've never seen an iPhone 4, or a particular Android phone, and yet don't hold back from liberally spraying praise all over these devices. At least Steve (and Rafe) have played with the N8, and what's more it's only going to improve.

> Apologies if my assumption is wrong
Time to apologise We never see comments from you that do not have some biased anti-Nokia slant. Isn't it about time you forked out many hundreds of pounds for and iPhone or Android device and found peace at last?

Old 16-06-2010, 02:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Hardeep1singh View Post
Finally I've found one negative in N8, a mono speaker. Its not really a deal breaker though.
Thats about the only possible negative so far, and I've yet to hear stereo speakers on a mobile that gave anything more than a vaguely interesting effect - you'll never get true stereo separation when the speakers are a few inches apart.

Old 16-06-2010, 02:58 PM
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What is the difference with the second generation screen of N8 and does it use the pentile matrix?

Old 16-06-2010, 03:02 PM
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Nice Review..but

Steve: Excellent review but I would not give Nokia the lead for processor (CPU/GPU). That should go either to iPhone 4's A4 w/integrated CPU(ARM Cortex A9?) and GPU...or HTC Desire's Snapdragon w/out GPU. Yes, the N8 GPU co-processor is best in class, but it's right-sized ARM 11Mhz is good but not great. I think it's a smart move by Nokia, don't get me wrong. The right balance for performance/power consumption and a solid platform...but it cannot be a +1 for the N8. IMO its +1 for iPhone 4.

I think there should be a separate category for gaming. Here. Apple should take it with its Gyro plus quantity/quality of games. N8 a close second based on hardware.

Pricing was a bit of a surprise to me too. I thought the N8 basis was estimated at Euro 370 (~ GBP 307.25) pre-tax/pre-subsidy...why buy it in the UK if it's priced at GBP 399? Another +1 for N8 IMO.

So, I get +7 for N8, +6 for Iphone 4 and the rest the same.


PS: Why SAMSUNG i8910 HD and not the Galaxy S? I think the Galaxy would take +1 away from iPhone 4 with its Super AMOLED.

Old 16-06-2010, 03:26 PM
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These sorts of comparisons are meaningless as the specs are mostly not comparable which leads to subjective assessments like the 12 mp camera sensor over the 5mp one even when the camera industry is moving away from just packing more and more pixels on small sensors due to the issue with increasing digital noise (and anyway how many people print larger than A4 which a 5mp camera is more than capable of doing), the N8 winning a point for video playback due to the HDMI out even though it only has the low res YouTube, or the N8 winning on the updates due to "true" OTA, etc...

In the end the only real comparison is that of the user experience on the final products as a fancy 12mp sensor is useless if the software is rubbish, difficult to use, and keeps crashing all of the time. I hope this is not the case with the N8 and that Nokia will finally start releasing devices that have release ready firmware but after being stung by the N97 debacle I'm not holding my breath.

Old 16-06-2010, 03:33 PM
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iPhone 4 "on board video editing"

I would not say that iPhone 4 has "on-board video editing", since the iMovie software is not provided out of the box, but must be purchased from App Store at $ 4.99.

Old 16-06-2010, 03:35 PM
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Processors are a very difficult to judge because they do not perform the same between platforms/ devices. Symbian is less resource intensive (can do more with less). Therefore comparing Mhz etc means very little.

Steve was considering things in general sense with multi-tasking etc and trade off between power and performance (so actually I think +1 for doing the right thing, not the spec thing). Interestingly some of the early generic benchmarks suggest the N8's processor outperforms the Cortex A8 equipped i8910 (and others). But yes any of these categories and 'wins' can be argued - part of the fun

The pricing estimate is conservative, and clearly will go down over time.

And yes you could add in extra categories - gaming is a good thought... but what you include is necessarily subjective. And of course what one-on-one comparisons tend to do is under estimate the multiple device choice advantage of both Symbian and Android.
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Old 16-06-2010, 03:53 PM
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Market momentum is also another intangible that's difficult to measure, but is important to a phone's success. The iPhone 4 pre-sale sold out yesterday in the US, so clearly users see iPhone 4 as a worthy upgrade to existing iPhones. Will the N8 be compelling enough to attract switchers? Will N97/N95 owners be content to wait for the N8, or will they jump to iPhone 4 or Android devices?

Old 16-06-2010, 03:54 PM
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I'll also point out that Android 2.2 is being distributed OTA, so that seems on par with what Nokia is doing with OTA updates.

Old 16-06-2010, 03:59 PM
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I have been a Nokia N82 user over the past 2 years. By considering TCO (total cost of ownership = how much you spend afterwards on programs you buy for your phone, maintenance, etc) and ecosistem strength (which translates into phone added features, total lifecycle of the phone and second-hand resale price) I will surely buy an Iphone 4. You might say Nokia is better and cheaper, but not when compared to a jailbroken Iphone.

Old 16-06-2010, 04:00 PM
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With Pricing, doesnt the fact that the iPhone does not receive any operator subsidy, while all the others would be available for free on a monthly contract worthy of note?


apple, desire, flagship, htc, i8910, iphone, nokia, satio, symbian

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