Feb 12, 2012

The Nokia N8 Journal: Belle Connuability, Breaking Dawn

Twilight? Not really, in truth and in fact, I have not seen a single series of the movie no matter how my friends would want me, but my blog posts is a little related to the movie having Belle as the lead character and breaking dawn as the theme.

Belle kick off!

So lets begin with Belle, the highly anticipated new update of the prodigious Symbian 3 operating system. Like the Twilight movie, Belle was the lead rule and partly the reason why it was such a big hit, well, in Symbian, Belle takes the same rule but becomes the main reason why a lot of Symbian users are happy and satisfied at the moment. It was such a huge upgrade that it propels the system to its most competitive edge.

As mentioned on my first impression article, one of the very visible changed that I like most is the systems new touch interface, it just works remarkably fast and fluid that it makes the touch experience delightful to do. Unlike the previous version were you keep worrying if it respond to your command or not, the new system offers a cheerful experience that you just want to swipe continuously. An curve Gorilla glass display would seal a pleasurable experience.

Homescreen haven

Of all the important areas of the upgrade, the Homescreen takes the biggest refresh with new widget and icons implementation, additional 3 screens from the previous 3 and new side swipe mechanism. What I like most is the fact that you can now side swipe even if you hit an icon without activating it. I find this tedious on the old software because it limits the area where I can side wipe. I use to leave a shortcut or widget free area on each screen before so I don't get bothered by apps opening while I side swipe in between screens, now it wont matter, giving me more space for my widgets and icons.

Then comes the more optimizable individual icons were you can positioned anywhere on the screen. This is what I like most on the SPB Mobile Shell and I'm glad that its on the new software. I was a bit disappointed though because I thought the icon or widget can be adjust to preferred sizes but its plainly minor, I like the icons smaller because it makes the screen look bigger on a glance.

3 new homescreen is a welcome addition since it offers more optimization. It will allow me now to add all applications in the menu directly to the homescreen. There was a big debate lately in Nokia Connects about users preferred number of Homescreen, well, for me, the more the merrier because I love to customized and group apps according to use.

Among the widgets, I personally like the Digital Clock, though it looks like that of HTC's, what matters was that it looks fairly attractive. The music widget looks hot as well as the radio and not to mention the Wi-Fi on/off switch. I do hope Nokia could add more great looking widgets to the existing ones particularly to its most usable application like the calendar, clock alarm, battery level, themes, notes among others.

Drop it down!

Nokia must have realize the importance of drop down menu on Android and adopt it for Symbian, what they have not realize was that they copied the same problem that I raise against it on the way this was implemented by the former. Its had been called a drop down menu because it needs to be access on top of the phone and drop it down to open, now for one handed operation specially on phones with bigger and longer screens, the command becomes tedious because users have to exert effort to reach the screens top. What Nokia should have done was put the command on the bottom of the screen and implement a "pitch up" gesture so it can be effortlessly access. It would have been so much easier.

I also like all the application switch on the pull down menu most specially the Mobile Data switch which allows me to turn on and off, mobile data connection in a single touch command unlike before that it needs to be access on the settings menu, then a few more commands. I'm fun of using mobile data on my phone having subscribe to a mobile internet data plan.

Menu menance

As much as I like the Homescreen changes, the menu was a bit of disappointment. The big icons and the three row implementation looks to intense. Worst is the visible drag when you scroll downwards, unlike the homescreen, the icons touched during the swipe down or up gestures opens carelessly. It would be best if it gets the same swipe mechanism to that of the homescreen.

Breaking Dawn

Breaking the blog post for now, but thats not the main point why I specifically tag it as it is, the software upgrade definitely gave the Nokia and the whole Symbian Ana entourage a new day and life in a very competitive environment of Smartphones. One way or another, it evens the competition software-wise but with the superior hardware of i Nokia smartphones, novelty and exclusive apps and features offered and low price, they are heading for a major upset. Like the breaking of the dawn, the scenario wont last long as morning comes and that is why Nokia has to prepare for the next phase to ensure that they would shine the brightest in a day, Donna is on the works as well as the new camera king to replace Nokia N8.

Belle connuability journal continues, stay tuned!


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