Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Nokia N8: The Begining

Allright here's the deal - I'm not gonna on and on about how the latest handset lets you connect to people or browse through social networks and ...
All right, so what makes the N8 special is that:
  • I like the metallic case
  • I might like the Symbian 3 iteration a.k.a Symbian^3
  • I like the 12 megapixel sensor
  • I like the way the body tapers at the top and bottom..
  • Everyone likes multitouch
  • I do not like the 1200mAh battery
  • I've always been impressed by HD
  • I like support for gestures such as multi touch, flick scrolling and pinch-zoom.

From what i figured in some of the Nokia videos, the OS seems to be far from finished. If you look closely you'll see that some of the UI examples show flawed transition effects and slow responses.
Here's a video that you might find interesting:

WirelessWars: Bluetooth is dying?

I'd always wondered why people put in both WiFi and bluetooth on the same device when they're both wireless communication tools with the unique feature being that the former is high speed while the latter is less power consuming.

Presently we use bluetooth to pair with personal devices like mice and headsets while we use for wifi for data transfers and such. The thing is WiFi it self has the ability to connect with personal devices but what's stopping its usage is that it cannot talk to other wifi devices and a router simultaneously. If we do try to do this the latency would be so much that you might have to wait for your keystrokes to show up on the screen in case your using a keyboard. And that's where Osmo Devices comes in.

Osmo has coded a software patch that allows the laptops wifi to communicate to other wifi devices in minute packets while allowing it to continue with the router the rest of the time. But this reduces data rate to 9 megabits/sec. Another potential problem faced by wifi users is the battery consumption - WiFi might reduce uptime by up to half for most handheld devices with their itsy-bitsy battery packs.

To answer the question-title, there's no way bluetooth is gonna say goodbye. It's like the Symbian OS, flawed but has been deployed too wide to be taken out easily.

Courtesy IEEE Spectrum

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Nokia n900: As a Canvas?

Of all the things that I've seen being done with a Nokia n900, this is something that really caught my eye. These sketch are done using the Nokia N900 Phone + MyPaint 0.7.2 for Maemo 5 a.k.a Fremantle.Sketched by CreativeTone these pieces of art an example to the flexibility of apps and functions that the Nokia n900 and open source OS can support.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Nokia n900: Clocking 800MHz

And there you have it, a 800MHz clocking Nokia n900 - that's a 33% overclock over the stock 600MHz and it's all thanks to Letho's kernel. Titans kernel was also available but i felt an inclination towards this one. It's also a ultra low voltage kernel, which means that in this case the processor is running at (an assumed) 1.14v which is lower than the stock by a couple of milli volts. And that's more than enough to create a difference.

Overclocking the n900 is a real tough job because unlike 'traditional' overclockable systems this isn't a PC with fans or other active cooling systems - it's a phone that has features crammed into it so much that there's no space for anything more. Any extra heat that might be generated due to misbehaving code might fry the device and your pocket with it. This is a good reason to not keep your n900 in your pants pocket.

I'll let you know in a few days how i get along with the 800MHz n900 and of any stability/heating issues that hopefully won't crop up. If all goes well i might move onto overclock this baby all the way to 1GHz - and maybe fry an egg while I'm at it  ;).

Read the previous n900 overclock post here.

Nokia n900: What's your clock speed?

After hacks that made overclocked the n900 were made available by Lehto and Titan the question on everyone's lips had been why Nokia didn't do this itself in the first place. Possible answers include:
  • Greater Stability at lower clock speeds.
  • Lower power loss due to heat which also accounts for longer lifespan.
  • Increased battery longevity.
  • Fewer defective devices at the production level.
Then they probably had spaced it out some to accommodate for hardware tolerance. To get a better idea on what you can expect from overclocking your n900 I'd recommend you to check out Jaikmans Guide.
If you have a Nokia n900 that you want to overclock (or fry..) then head over to the Overclock WiKi at maemo.org 
But first you have to keep in mind that:
- The lifetime of your device will get reduced
- You could lose the data in your device (file system corruption)
- Every device is an individual, what is stable for others might not be for you
- If you encounter ANY unusual problems, lower your clock frequency
- You do it at your own responsibility. No whining after wards. If you're unsure, don't do it.
 Read the next n900 overclock post here.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Device sales over March 2010

Tom Hanna just sent in the device sales data for the month of March 2010. The data has been acquired by monitoring the aggregated data from their software sales.

Compared over previous months, sales seem to have taken a big dip this time.
Name                               March      Feb
XpressMusic 5800:        35.2%     (20%)
Nokia N97 series:          29%        (56%)
Samsung Omnia HD:     25%        (7%)
Nokia X6:                       4.48%     (2%)
XpressMusic 5530:        02.8%     (8%)
XPressMusic 52xx:        01.6%     (7%)
 Last month the Nokia n97 had driven sales at an astonishing 56%, but ever since Nokia's public acceptance that the device is a disaster it's sales have slumped big time!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Does India need 11 digits??

 The National Numbering Plan (NNP) had never forecast such a increase in mobile phone users in India. The 10-digit scheme being used now is being increasingly regarded to be insufficient. As more families were ditching fixed lines for the mobile phone, the tele-density level is getting out of hand.

Sensing the need to revisit the NNP 2003, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recently issued a consultation paper seeking views from service providers on a better utilisation scheme of number resources.

Of all the arguments that had come in, BSNL seems to be of the opinion that the present system would be feasible until 2020. They feel that moving to 11 digits now would result in a huge loss to the network providers as they would have to execute a complete overhaul of the software and billing systems across India.

Knowing India, what this could probably be is that some info-tech companies might be pressuring the committees to move over the system to 11 digits. This would let them setup a huge market for developers specializing in these fields. With low competition, it would be daylight robbery !

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Nokia n97 firmware updated to 21.0.102

The Nokia n97 has recieved an only OverTheAir (OTA) update from v21.0.045 to v21.0.102. The new firmware has Mass Memory content updates, Oi Suite 2.0, Ovi player installation files and an update to the preloaded maps. 

Seems to be a small step for Nokia, as this update comes after Nokia publicly apologized for the failure that is the Nokia N97. You can get a transcript of the chat from AAS here.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Trailblazer - i am loving it

I used the Trailblazer today during my morning drive today and I am really impressed. If you have no idea what I'm talking about please check out the previous post on this cool car charger. Back to the topic, using the n900 along with the Trailblazer really gave me the effect of using a carputer. Activate the FM transmitter and play music seamlessly. The 2ports available from the Trailblazer allows me to charge up to devices at the same time. Neat!
The only problem that i did come across today while on the drive is one of confusion. Confusion as to whether i should charge the device using the USB adapter or whether I should use the the supplied wire = ) The TrailBlazer comes with 7 tips - iPhone/iPod, Nokia small pin, mini USB, micro USB, Sony Ericsson, LG and Samsung.  This means it will pretty much charge any mobile phone as well as various GPS units, cams and MP3 players.

Included below is a video that i took of using the n900 along with this accessory, just a short something ..

Buy the TrailBlazer or other car holders

Trailblazer - holds and charges any device

Guess what just came in from Mobilefun =). All n900 users out there rejoice because I believe I have just reviewed the best valued car charger out in the market today. And this one's particularly handy for the n900!

Not only does it allow us to control the insufficient battery problem of the n900, the Trailblazer also lets us hold the n900 in any angle that you want - ball joints let you twist it around all the way. When I placed mine, it looked just like a carputer or satnav.

  • Simple plug and play installation
  • Second USB port for charging a second device simultaneously
  • Comes with 7 different tips to offer universal charging
  • Adjustable arms means it holds all shapes and sizes
  • Fold out feet so it holds your device perfectly

I've taken a few pics and a video of this device in action and they'll be uploaded ASAP.

Initial Impression: this is one accessory that you have got to have.

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