Skip to comments.Nokia N8 Review: Nokia's New Flagship ( Camera with phone attached??)
Posted on 01/13/2011 11:29:59 AM PST by Ernest_at_the_Beach
I remember one of the first mobile phones I ever used being a Nokia 5110i. It was among Nokias earliest of devices that packed an easy to use and straightforward interface in a supremely well-built package. Since we didnt have as many phone launches each month back then as there are stars in the sky, the 5110i served me very well for more than 3 years without showing any signs of aging. That was in the mid to late 90s.
Fast forward to the end of this decade and we see Nokias current flagship, the N8-00, continuing to hold on to the Nokia tradition of building what are arguably some of the best constructed mobile devices on the market. In fact in many ways, with the Nokia N8-00 (referred to as the N8 from here on) it seems as though Nokia has let its hardware and industrial design teams have a field day; this phone feels almost over engineered when held in your hands. While the current flagship demonstrates Nokias engineering prowess quite well, previous models seemed to epitomize what I felt was the companys philosophy; build the software around the hardware. This worked just perfectly for as long as mobile phones were just that, devices used to make and receive calls and/or texts.
Sometime in the last decade, Apple, Google, Palm and Microsoft redefined mobile experiences, and as a result old flaws have slowly become gaping holes in the Finnish device manufacturers proverbial armor.
The devil is in the details
The N8s symmetric design is attractive in a very understated manner. It wont immediately grab your attention in any way if you look at it. The 3.5 640 x 360 AMOLED screen commands the majority of the real estate on the front with tapering edges on all 4 corners. The menu/home button at the bottom left corner is the only detail on the face of the phone which narrowly saves the N8 design from being branded bland.
While the button did seem a bit oddly placed when I first saw it, the overall profile and weight distribution of the phone didnt lead to any issues in actual use (although left-handed users may disagree).
Upon closer inspection, you will find the front facing VGA camera, the ambient light sensor and the proximity sensor sitting behind the (Gorilla) glass on the top right corner. The left side houses a well-constructed but tad finicky and plastic suicide door of sorts to cover the microSD and SIM card slots. Theres also a multifunction micro-USB port (more on this later) and a charging light indicator. The right side seems a bit busy with the volume controls, a spring loaded screen lock button and a 2-stage camera shutter button. This is the only part of the phone that I have issues with, when it comes to design. The volume controls have a lot of play and dont give good feedback when pressed. The spring loaded screen lock button, while a good idea in itself, is not well placed. On multiple occasions, I kept hitting the volume button while attempting to lock the phone.
The top of the phone plays host to a 3.5mm jack (that can also serve as an AV-output if used with the appropriate connector), and a mini-HDMI port hidden behind a plastic flap and the power/profile selection button. At the bottom you will find a lone connector for your charger, although it could easily pass off as a microphone because of its placement and size, along with a lanyard or strap port.
The rear of the phone prominently shows the N-series branding and houses the crowning jewel of the N8; its 12MP Xenon-flash assisted autofocus camera. Because of the complexity of the camera module and the associated optics used in the N8, the camera itself (along with the loudspeaker) is housed in a bulge, and as a result the phone cannot lay flat on any surface. While that in and of itself isnt an issue, what concerns me is the possibility of excessive visible wear appearing on the lower part of this bulge as it is the only part of the phone that comes in contact with any surface when the phone is made to rest on its back.
Also, something I did notice was the fact that just within a week of use, dust started accumulating in the crevice between the top of the bulge and the back of the phone.
Ping for later
The comments get into the camera angle ...quite a bit of discussion comparing this to the iPhone and android devices.
This has the various Global communication bands covered as I understand it.
ARM 11 680 MHz processor, 3D Graphics HW accelerator
Pros: -THE CAMERA/MOVIE CAPTURE!!!!! It is amazing beyond belief....and no other phone can compete...actually most stand-alone camera's cannot compete!
The audio recording quality is also top notch!
-BUILD QUALITY! Very solid phone! Lets just say that when the nukes fall...this phone will still be standing.
How much? $800.
(Ah, the secrets of marketing!)
A decent 12MP camera is going to cost you ~$100
Decent GPS maybe another ~$150 (GPS works without cell service)
So the phone part costs > $200
If you have T-Mobile, works with tzones
Also has a wireless FM transmitter.
Works with swype.
We’re shopping for new phones/email/camera/lattemaker.. we don’t text or upload much video tho.. sooo,, we’ll probably just KISS and not spend the farm on a handheld device.. unless it ejects lead at a high rate of speed. :-)
the pup crunched my ol’ Nokia and chewed the case, it still works but the screen is cracked and it gets lousy local reception.. and as I, it is aged from wear and tear,, in a few years we will all be wireless. we are already mobile movie watchers. :-}
My LG Verizon phone died...and my Sony Alpha 200 is bulky...so I am looking at stuff.