Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Nokia's Mail on Ovi public beta goes 'live' around the world

With Mail on Ovi, Nokia mobile phone users who use Nokia Series 40 devices can now set up their own Ovi email account directly on their phones.

The Ovi email account according to Nokia has all the features and functionalities of a typical PC-based email account. During the Beta period, consumers will be able to choose from 12 languages based on the settings of their device, including English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Hindi, Bengali, Tagalog, Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Malaysia.

Mobile phone users from India, Malaysia and the Philippines have been able to use the Beta service since November, with extremely encouraging results, and the availablity is now being extended to the rest of the world.*

Devices that enable Mail on Ovi include:

Nokia 1680 classic, Nokia 168Oi
Nokia 2320, Nokia 2323, Nokia 2330, Nokia 2600, Nokia 2600 classic, Nokia 2630, Nokia 2680 slide, Nokia 2760
Nokia 3210, Nokia 3555, Nokia 3600 slide, Nokia 3610 fold
Nokia 5000, Nokia 5130 XpressMusic, Nokia 5220 XpressMusic, Nokia 5310 XpressMusic, Nokia 5610 XpressMusic
Nokia 6267, Nokia 6300i, Nokia 6301, Nokia 6260, Nokia 6500 classic, Nokia 6500 slide, Nokia 6555, Nokia 6600 fold, Nokia 6600 slide
Nokia 7100 Supernova, Nokia 7210 Supernova, Nokia 7310, Nokia 7500 Prism, Nokia 7610 Supernova, Nokia 7900 Crystal Prism
Nokia 8800 Arte, Nokia 8800 Sapphire

MY PERSONAL TAKE: Don't trust this beta service as it may have the same problem as the Share on Ovi service that they have. This new service that they are offering is not the core competency of Nokia, although it is trying to re-invent itself from a phone manufacturer to an Internet company.

Nokia's share on OVI "a big joke"

Looks like it's not only me who's frustrated with the way Nokia is handling Ovi. It's the fourth day now that I could not get my photos in their site and I am not the only one whose having this problem, and it seems that Nokia is doing some damage control by CLOSING the comments of the blog they have created. Go to the share on Ovi blog to see the comments, I guess Nokia would soon sanitized this so better hurry up.

One poster said:

Your Share on Ovi service is a joke. Shut it down and outsource it to Google or MSN, one of the big boys who really know how to run a web service. Stick to what you know, making phones. You're wasting your $ and destroying shareholder value by trying your hand at web services.

The problem is also being discussed now at All About Symbian, the only positive comment came from one poster who is obviously working at Ovi who said that "There have been some glitches of course - at least one reader emailed in with a story of woe - but things generally seem to be working." All posts after that comment are all stories of woe informing the readers that nothing is working with Ovi.

What would happen now to my photos? If they could not let me in to manage my account they should delete everything in it.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Nokia's OVI is DEAD (for 3 days, and counting)...

This is what I am afraid of. I regret the day when I decided to trust Share on Ovi to host my pictures. I have more than six thousand photos in that site and now I could not access the site when I badly needed them. It could be up in the next few minutes, hours or days but it FAILED me when it was not there in times when I needed it the most.

I don't care anymore if it would be more user friendly or more secure the time it would be online, I would be back using Picasa and Flickr.

Nokia should concentrate on manufacturing phones where they are good at.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Lanye N70: a phone with built-in projector

PC158403 - Share on Ovi
You wouldn't strain your eyes viewing your photos and videos with this phone as it has a built-in projector that could display your phone screen up to 65-inches (per our test in the Technews Lab). The phone is a touch screen device with user interface copied from the iPhone. This is a "Made in China" phone.

First Blackberry Storm in the Philippines

PC158397 - Share on Ovi
The Storm arrived last Sunday in the Techenws Lab.

GSM/GPRS/EDGE: (850/900/1800/1900 MHz)
Size: 112.52 x 62.2 x 13.95 mm
Screen 3.25 " HVGA+ 480x360 Multi-touch, Gesture Touch
Battery: 1400mAh
Memory: 1GB flash for media/ 192 meg ram
Camera: 3.2 MP camera, vanity mirror, Auto-flash
Audio: 3.5mm jack, bluetooth stereo

There's something strange about this touch screen phone, in order for your touch to be recognized, you need to apply a pressure and push the screen all the way down until you hear a click, only then the phone would recognize your touch. It feels more like a regular phone, the only difference is that the whole screen has become one big button. Full review will be published in the Manila Bulletin on Monday.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Storm is coming in the Technews Lab

As I was writing the blog entry below, my source in Hongkong called me and said that the Blackberry Storm is now available. I will get mine on Monday :). I love this job.

Technological Metanoia

PC028004 - Share on Ovi

I was WRONG!

This is the first time that my first impression of a phone was totally changed after about a week of using it.

Just a few minutes after I received the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic from my source abroad, I immediately blogged about the major letdowns of the device. I compared it with the iPhone and the G1 and was planning to release another review bashing Nokia for releasing a touch screen phone that could not go toe-to-toe with the iPhone and the G1.

Then I started exploring it... and my frown became a smile.

1) Touching the clock of the device at the upper left part of the screen would open the clock application. Clock settings, alarm, world clock can be changed in fewer steps.

2) Touch the active profile just below the operator logo and you could open the Calendar or change your active profile.

3) There is a Media Bar button that could open the shortcuts to Music, Picture, Share Video and web

4) Contacts Bar could be placed in the home screen, the Bar lets you put four of your favorite contacts on the homescreen and displays information about them like activity logs and message feeds. It also serves as shortcuts to call and send new messages to these "fav four" from your contacts.

5) It has a proximity sensor that turns off the screen once you place the phone near your face when placing or receiving a call.

Where did I go wrong?

I compared the 5800 against the iPhone, a foolish move for an IT guy like me. The Nokia 5800 is not a high-end phone, it's a mid-range, touch enabled, music focused device and should be reviewed as such. It does not aim to kill the iPhone or even go against it, they are totally two different device that belong in two different segments.

The Nokia 5800 XpressMusic is about music and entertainment it comes with 8GB of memory, 3.5mm stereo jack, graphic equalizer and supports all digital music formats it even comes with a plectrum, it's like a guitar pick that you could use if you don't want to use the traditional stylus.

Again, I would say this. My first impression of the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic that it is not a great phone was totally wrong and I take it back. "Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa."

= = = = = = =

* Metanoia is a biblical term which means conversion or a change of heart
* This is my own Nokia 5800 XpressMusic. I bought it for P24,000.00 in Hongkong.
* Nokia Philippines, its PR agency or any of its employees, supporters and/or friends did not pay me to write this blog entry and I don't expect anything from them. I write what is TRUE.


Monday, December 1, 2008

of Celebrities and Technology

I asked one of the LG executives why they opted to use resistive rather than the capacitive toucscreen technology in their new device launched in the Philippines, the LG KP550. He said that frankly speaking "they do not know". I was about to let him get away with it because he is a marketing guy and not a technical person from LG, but to my surprise the host JM Rodriguez a local celebrity of sort tried to save him by saying that resistive touchscreen technology is better because capacitive touchscreen technology "could not drag and drop", I discreetly signaled him that it is wrong by shaking my head, to my amazement he confidently continued by saying "also capacitive, could not forward messages". I almost fell off my seat.

First Nokia 5800 XpressMusic in the Philippines

nokia 5800 - Share on Ovi
WE DID IT AGAIN! Photo shows the first commercial unit of the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic in the Philippines. Technews got this from our friendly gadget "sari-sari" store in Hongkong.

Two major letdowns:

1) If iPhone has Apps Store and G1 has Android Market, the 5800 has no option that could let users download additional software and applications to the device.

2) The Nokia 5800 XpressMusic uses resistive rather than capacitive touchscreen technology. Device with Resistive touchscreens are best used with stylus and not with fingers. You need to give extra pressure with your taps and presses unlike the iPhone and the G1. The device compared to the G1 and the iPhone has a rough touchscreen UI.

I believe Nokia launched the 5800 Xpressmusic, the company's first touch screen device, just to be in the Touchscreen map being dominated by iPhone.