I’ve had this phone on trial for nearly a month now – Christmas and our family trip away got in the way of sending it back to its home at WomWorld. An extended loan though means that I really get chance to try it out under fire, and find my way around all its quirks.
Sadly, this is not a relationship that is going to last, no matter how hard I try 🙁
My previous experience with the E72 was mainly positive. It seemed to me that all it was missing was a touch screen, and then it would be a fab phone. The N97 has got the touch screen, but in comparison with other smartphones, the screen is hard to get to grips with. You’ve to apply a bit of pressure to get a reaction, and then other times the merest brush will select something that you hadn’t intended. The screen is a usable size though, and because of the way the keyboard slides and tilts, you get a lot of tech into a very small space.
Once I got the hang of the predictive text, typing has been much quicker – the keyboard isn’t big enough to touch type, but it’s possible to do the two thumb technique. I think I was faster on the E72 though, as the layout on there is slightly smaller and very appealing to the two thumb technique. I also wish I could figure out how to turn off the beeping – I’ve tried, but I haven’t cracked it yet.
The real problem that I have with this phone though is software related.
The apps for Nokia kit just aren’t up to the standard of the apps you can get on Android phones (and I’d suspect on iPhones, though I haven’t tried one of those out myself). Snaptu doesn’t compare with Seesmic – I’m aware that there are higher recommended apps if you are prepared to pay, but I didn’t have to pay for anything I used out of the Android store, so I’m trying like for like here. And the WordPress app just doesn’t seem to work at all. I’ve tried uninstalling and reinstalling and all it does is bring up the splash screen and sit there.
This is a real shame, as there *are* things to love about the N97. It’s dinky in size, and reassuringly solid, with battery life that far exceeds that of the large screened smartphone like the HTC Desire HD I’ve tried out. If you were looking for something for light business use it can and will manage your email, although it’s constant need for reassurance as to which way you’d like to connect to a network is tiring – another software failure, this time of the OS itself I suspect. (Unless of course I’m missing something in the settings, but tbh, if I am, that’s another failure as I have tried, oh how I’ve tried.)
So all in all, if I was going Nokia smartphone, I wouldn’t go for this one. I don’t like it as much as the E72, and I’m really hoping that Nokia have something a little bit more special up their sleeve very soon, perhaps in the form of a more solid OS which will allow the very solid tech to show itself off rather better.