How to: Calibrating the Nokia N97's compass in 3 seconds.

| July 12, 2009 | Reply

The Nokia N97 has a compass mainly for rotating your maps to align with the roads/surroundings as you turn your phone. It doesn’t rotate instantly towards north like a real compass – and so, needs a bit of calibration, which according to the manual, the method is to swing your phone in an 8-shape like an idiot. If you wait a bit, it does come on by itself.

Norman John from SymbianWorld has found out an even better solution – 3 or 4 sharp downward swipes and the compass is calibrated. Tried a few times and it works. Note, the compass only works if the map is centred on your position and you’re zoomed in enough. In Ovi Maps 3.0, to centre on your position, just swipe the map so you can’t see your position (red dot), then press the red dot that appears on the top right.


If you’re using this for pedestrian navigation, you will look less odd, appearing as if you’re just frustrated with your phone instead of twirling it like you were part of a baton parade. Now, in reality, we shouldn’t really have to do any of this.

In google maps, there’s an arrow which always points in the direction you’re going. What if the map just oriented itself based on the last linear movement. Though it would only work if you held the phone in the direction you were heading (none of that fancy twiddling the phone in circles and watching your map rotate) – but it’s calibration free and would work as fast as getting the gps lock.

From SymbianWorld vis thenokian97


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Category: 5th Edition, How to:, Nokia, Nseries, S60, Symbian, Video

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Hey, thanks for reading my post. My name is Jay and I'm a medical student at the University of Manchester. When I can, I blog here at and tweet now and again @jaymontano. We also have a twitter and facebook accounts @mynokiablog and Check out the tips, guides and rules for commenting >>click<< Contact us at tips(@) or email me directly on jay[at]