Symbian Anna firmware was spotted on NaviFirm yesterday. Today the Symbian Anna updates have been started to roll out for Nokia N8, C7, E7 and C6-01 over (Nokia Software Updater, Ovi Suite) (290MB) and Over the Air (27MB) (Dial *#0000# and Check for OTA updates)
Key features of Symbian Anna include virtual QWERTY keypad in portrait mode, split-screen text input, an updated web browser, stronger security, an updated icon set and improved Maps functionality. Plus the Nokia C7 gains activation of its NFC chip.
The update process will take around 20 minutes, with the exact timing being largely dependent on the speed of your Internet connection. While all your apps and data will be preserved we would still recommended following the prompt to perform a backup before downloading and installing the update.
Change-log: What’s New in Symbian Anna?
- Improved text input usability through the introduction of a portrait QWERTY keyboard and widespread use of split screen input. Split screen overlays text entry input boxes on existing screen elements and works in both portrait and landscape orientations. For example, in Maps a search can be entered and auto-completed results seen as you enter text. Similarly, in Messaging, when you reply to a message in Conversations view you can see previous messages in the thread. The portrait keyboard also enables Swype in portrait mode, giving you another inputer option.
- Updated Web application with a more intuitive user interface and faster performance. This includes a standard location for the address bar at the top of the page (with improved auto-complete, which benefits from the new split screen text entry), visual back button accessible at all times (bottom left), and a redesigned and more responsive ‘quick menu access’ floating button. Performance of page rendering has been improved, with an updated version of WebKit and improved scrolling and page navigation performance. It also offers better compliance with recent standards. The Web application continues to be based on the Symbian WebKit code base.
- New fresh icons, delivered as part of a new theme. The icons are derived from the existing icongraphy, but with rounded edges, giving a more contemporary look and feel.
- Draggable homescreen, making moving between homescreens more intuitive. Widgets now load on a as-needed basis, improving performance and reducing the amount of memory used.
- Ovi Maps 3.6, which is already available for existing devices (it recently graduated from Beta Labs). The major features in this version are improved search, the ability to share a location via
- Updated version of Social application (version 1.3.143), with new icon and improved performance. Previously available as an update via the Sw update application.
- Updated Calendar application, which gains a split-screen month/day view.
- Updated Photos application, which now opens straight into photo grid, rather than album / folder list view.
- Updated Mail application, with better use and layout of UI elements (most notably in email lists), faster rendering and scrolling of HTML emails and improved stability.
- Improved enterprise and security in the Microsoft Exchange implementation (Mail for Exchange). Meeting requests are now fully supported and the updates also include the provision of six new security policies, including enablers for the capability to turn encryption on remotely from Exchange device management tools.
- Addition of device encryption functionality – the device, mass storage and microSD card memory can be optionally encrypted, with support for hardware accelerated encryption provided by the operating system.
- New Intranet application, which makes it easier for corporate users to connect and access their company Intranet, via the use of IPSEC and SSL VPN enablers.
- Pre-install of Microsoft Communicator Mobile for corporate IM and presence (currently available via Ovi Store for selected devices).
- The latest version of Qt (4.7.3) and Qt Mobility (1.1.2), to improve developer productivity. This includes support for Qt Quick and a significant number of API improvements. Also included are Flash lite 4 and Java Runtime 2.2.
- [Nokia C7 only]: The NFC (Near Field Communication) hardware in the Nokia C7 is activated by the update. It allows you tap C7’s together to share contacts, photos, video and play games. In addition, NFC-enabled accessories can be paired by tapping and the device can be used to read NFC tags.
- [Nokia N8 only]: Under the hood tweaks made to prepare for extra camera features, including a UI tweak, plus continuous auto-focus in video mode and higher frame rates. These will be enabled in a separate application update, officially teased as perhaps coming on Monday.
- If ‘Theme effects’ are turned on, application loading is accompanied by a small circular animation to let the user know that something’s happening. Previously loading applications would result in a short pause and a fade to black into the application.
- Over 100 under-the-hood optimisations and bug fixes. In general this means you’ll notice both smoother and faster operations during usage.
More through the day as more details are noticed and as more devices receive the Anna update. Initial extra observations, beyond the changelog above:
- The Quickoffice and Adobe Reader applications are not included in the base Symbian Anna update. However, Symbian Anna does include a full license for both applications. An additional application package is / will be available (via Sw update and Ovi Suite) which includes these applications.
- In some cases application icon reassignments (to other folders) get lost and have to be redone.