Nokia has confirmed rumours that its forthcoming flagship smartphone, the N8, will arrive at the end of september 2010, opening its online shop to pre-orders for the phone which will arrive there in the last week of September, and reach other outlets in October.
The Nokia Online shop will sell the N8 for £429 SIM-free or on contract from £35 per month (with O2, Vodafone or T-Mobile), promising delivery by the end of September. The rest of the UK’s phone outlets – specifically, Carphone Warehouse, O2, Orange, Phones4u, T-Mobile, Tesco Phone Shops, Three Mobile, Virgin Mobile and Vodafone – will have the phone from Friday 1st October.
Much anticipated N8 arrives
The Nokia N8 will include a 12 megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics and Xenon flash. It also records HD quality videos, with its own editing suite and plays them back with Dolby Digital Plus surround sound, either on its screen or through an HDMI-out socket. It will have new Ovi apps and social networking – with a single app covering Facebook and Twitter.
It is also the first Nokia phone to use the Symbian^3 operating system – an open source OS backed by Nokia – although its future use of the OS seems to fraught with questions. The release date was leaked last week on Nokia sites, and again by a Nokia executive in a Finnish newspaper.
N8 suffered delays
Early reviews of the N8 confirmed the strength of its features, but questioned whether the usability of its (admittedly pre-release) software would put it on a par with the Apple iPhone or Android.
Its strength of video features seemed unecessary, although the new Apple TV and iPod Touch have raised the profile of pocket-sized video. It also arrives at a point when the iPhone 4, despite its successful launch, has suffered antenna problems.
The N8 has suffered delays. Two UK websites, Play.com and Mobilefun, have been taking pre-orders with delivery dates that have shifted into October, a date which means the phone will miss the Nokia World event in London.
Symbian^3, has been compared to the Titanic, by Gartner analyst Nick Jones, who said Nokia developers were not improving the user experience enough and had spent “too much effort on stuff that really doesn’t matter.”
After the N8, Nokia has said future phones in its N range will use the Meego Linux version its is developing with Intel, and will not use Symbian – but Nokia execs have hinted that further in the future, the N-series might switch back to a future version of Symbian.