Nokia N8, it is just not a high end smartphone

Today is a little bit of a sad day. I have tried the Nokia N8 for a week and a half, but I am returning it today to the Nokia on line shop. I am sticking with my Nexus One for now. Why? Basically, the N8 is not really a high-end smartphone, in spite of all the things it has going for itself.
I initially got the N8 to see whether I would be happier with it than with my Nexus One. The main aspect that drew me to the phone was the camera, but also USB on-the-go and HDMI-out sounded cool. Moreover, though a personal thing, I also liked the design and materials used on the device.
The camera does not disappoint me one single bit. I have never taken such good pictures and videos with a phone, as well as being able to share them very easily with Pixelpipe installed. I live abroad and my family was impressed and pleased with the pics and videos I shared with the N8. It is just great to have such a nice camera in your pocket at almost all times.
Furthermore, the phone has a nice design and together with the materials used, it really has a great feel to it. Though perhaps silly, the physical screen lock and unlock switch really makes it nice to “handle” the device.
The screen has good colours and is clear enough, for me, in sun light. I am used to the Nexus One though, so it is easy to impress me. In terms of resolution, sometimes I felt it wasn’t great, particularly with text (read: web browser). This makes me think it may be more of a fonts thing, but I can’t be sure of that.
As you can see, in these areas most of my expectations were met and I was very close to keeping it. However, there were two things that bother me and make me say it is just not a high end smartphone:
  1. Web. The Web browser is just not good enough by today’s standards. It can’t compete in speed or usability with Android’s browser. In part this is due to the software, and Nokia promises to bring out a new version of Web soonish. However, I doubt it will come close to my Nexus One in this department. I personally use twitter a lot and continuously open links, and this really did not work well for me on the N8.
  2. Applications. While on my Nexus One I have 4-5 good twitter clients, there is only one good twitter client for the N8 (Gravity, in case you wondered). This is very illustrative of the situation in the app store. It is hard to find the regular apps a high-end smartphone user uses, such as Dropbox, Evernote, Kindle, news readers, etcetera.
Besides these two gripes, it also didn’t help that I actually didn’t use USB OTG or HDMI-out in daily life. These are two important selling points, but I haven’t been able to integrate them into my life, I guess.
To wrap this post up, I just came across a good article written by Rita at Mobile RNR, in which she explains how Steve Jobs would have presented the N8. I couldn’t have written it better, and in my head I had the same ideas about the possibilities of the N8. Rita really draws a great painting of what the N8 is. However, in my day-to-day usage that did not materialise and I was stuck with a good looking mid-tier smartphone with a wonderful camera. Not what I was looking for, but it may well suit your needs.
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6 thoughts on “Nokia N8, it is just not a high end smartphone”

  1. Hi I am really sorry but u r an IDIOT just because u did not get more than 1 twitter client u say N8 is not a high end phone

    go to any school and tell a kid a phone like N8 with 12 MP zeiss camera, OLED screen, HDMI, dolby, blutooth 3G and all is not high end he will laugh at u

    Jst do u americans even knw what is the definition of a smart phone, do u fools evn knw wts a high end phone.

    1. Sorry the article stirred up such strong feelings for you. I know that the argument was a little stretched, but I do still think there is a point to what I am saying. In the press it is being compared to the iPhone 4, Galaxy S, newest HTC devices, and I personally feel it is in a different league. This does not mean necessarily that it is worse, though.

      People that come from the iPhone or high-end Android smartphones will feel that the N8 is lacking in terms of software functionality. I think there is little too argue about there. If you have a poor browser and not so great app support, you have to be careful with how you position the phone.

      I personally believe that if you don’t think of the N8 as a high-end smartphone, you actually may find that the N8 is surprisingly good. In fact, I believe Nokia is well aware that they need to do better in many areas if they want to compete effectively with the iPhones and Androids that are up there. Hence, MeeGo…

      In any case, I own an N8 and sold my Nexus One. My usage of the N8 is different than the Nexus One and I don’t find myself browsing the web often or installing apps of the tens of web apps I use. This is a shame, and it needs to be fixed, but at the moment I am very happy with the N8 and fondly recommend Symbian 3. I think Nokia has made a platform for very good not-top-of-the-line smartphones. In my surroundings, I have many people that would be thrilled with the functionality of an N8, C7 or C6-01.

  2. My GOD know I understand why people say americans are big fools and why all american researchers are not americans but expats.
    u know nothin abt technology, its features that make a phone high end not one or two bloody applications.

    Nokia N8 is a nseries phone and N series brand is a hall mark of multi media features e.g N73, N95, N97 , N900 and know N8.

    Boss first i dont understand y u need multiple clients but then apps can always be ported to symbian but I know u dont understand this cause u know nothing

    I GUESS U EVEN DONT KNW ABT OVI STORE
    BUT I BET UR ARTICLE IS A JOKE OF THE YEAR AND CERTIFIES HOW DUMB AMERICANS ARE WHO SAY N8 IS NOT A HIGHEND CAUSE IT DOESN’T HAVE 4-5 TWITTER CLIENTS .

    SO DEAR NOKIA IF U R READIN THIS POST PLZ GET 4-5 TWITTER CLIENTS FOR OUR B. Heetebrij .

    FINALLY B. Heetebrij DON’T WRITE STUFFS LIKE THIS WN U KNOW NOTHING EXCEPT TO PROVE HOW DUMB U ARE.

    1. …..u are revolting dude,chill
      i agree n8 is smartphone but do not compete wid ios4
      symbain is outdated(rather outdated than android)…..

      itni mat pharoo bhai woh salla sahi keh raha hai…..japan wale humain chutiya banate haain purani technology jo wahan outdated ho chuki hoti hai woh salli india main aati hai…..bleave me

  3. […] I bought my first Nokia N8 in September-October last year. After trying it for a little over 10 days, I decided (with a little pain in my heart) to return it, as I had some serious issues with the browser, the lack of apps and the fact that Symbian^3 would be a jumping stone to Symbian^4 and that there would be a compatibility problem between the two. In fact, I wrote a post about this where I explain that the N8 is just not a high-end smartphone. […]

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