Nokia N8, first Symbian^3 handset, gets previewed and is deemed an embarrassment to Nokia

Eldar Murtazin, Editor in Chief of Mobile-Review, makes Gary Powell look like an amateur when it comes to leaking early prototypes. Eldar gets things weeks, even months before everyone else, and has been for years. How he does it … no one actually knows, and whether or not his opinions on preproduction unfinished hardware and software is good for the mobile industry is up for debate, but here he is, striking again, this time with the Nokia N8.

This device was first leaked back in February of this year. It was supposed to be announced at Mobile World Congress, but that didn’t happen. All we got in Barcelona was a press release saying Nokia and Intel are best friends. A little over a month later we’d see our first leaked images of the device, courtesy of some Chinese blog that probably got a sample from the factory across the street that’s responsible for making these things.

Now on for Eldar’s short preview, originally in Russian, but here are the main points translated for your convenience:

  • Confirmation this device has a 12 megapixel camera, and it can shoot 720p video
  • The device is code named Vasco
  • “Disappointment” is too weak of a word to describe the N8
  • It’s the same S60 5th Edition we’ve already seen in the Nokia N97, with a few minor additions
  • Screen is multitouch capable, and made of glass
  • Dust gets under the screen, similar to how it does on the Nokia X6
  • Camera takes good movies, but isn’t any better than other HD capable devices on the market, but the pictures it takes are even better than the Sony Ericsson Satio
  • Compared to the Sony Ericsson Vivaz, the N8 isn’t any faster, and it’s “sad”
  • HDMI connector is of a different size than the standard HDMI form factor
  • The Nokia N8 feels like a device that will damage the Nokia brand even further

Those are ultra harsh words, and we’re just going to have to take a “wait and see” approach until final units hit the market during Q3 of this year. Will the production versions be as disappointing? Hopefully not. Nokia can’t have another N97 on their hands. Many of my friends who were long time Nokia fans now carry either an iPhone or an Android device. Hell even I carry a Nexus One, and when I was in Spain a few months ago everyone in the press room had either a Nexus One or HTC Hero.

  • Jody

    Nokia has a serious expectation problem with Symbian^3.

    As far as I knew it was basically just a clean up of Symbian^2 with QT installed by default. So things like the double tap and multiple confirmation dialogs are gone. But the UI components are still old Avkon. It seems people are expecting something else entirely.

    The totally new UI won’t come until Symbian^4 when the UI components are all moved to QT based and Avkon is killed off.

    And that damn dust gets under every screen. My E71 has a bad case of that too.

  • Steve Jobs

    Oh, his name is Gray, not Gary, this is America you know, the home of silly names.

  • Adrian

    Well. Looks like the next phone I get will be an Android. Thanks Nokia… It’s been a good 20 years. Time to leave the biggest phone company in the world now. I’m not going to make the same mistake as the N97.

    • Rob The Hermit

      This is almost true. I don't think the N97 was as bad as everyone made out, just not as good as everyone was expecting. Personally I'm quite fond of my N97, but, like you, I will be moving away from Nokia.

  • Victor

    As far as I remember, several years ago THE phone to have was Nokia Communicator. Everybody was carrying one at major events: CeBIT, MWC in Barcelona, CTIA in Las Vegas, etc. How on Earth did Nokia loose this status ?!? The biggest mobile phone manufacturer in the world does not even have a flag-ship phone at this moment !

    Stefan: I realy enjoy your posts ! Respect from Romania !

    • @4strokesingle

      When you're on top, you no longer have to innovate because you're already there. That's why other companies have been able to put Nokia to shame in the last few years. Although, I am still interested to see this product when it's finally released.

  • Parry

    Its hard to believe Nokia is still adamant on upgrading its processor speed to 1GHZ .Its is still relying on slow processor and very less RAM and ROM memory compared to its peer.Its high time to leave Nokia now .

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