Video: G4 – Attack of the Show's 'Review' of the Nokia N900 [RANT: My rage meter is high!]

| March 17, 2010 | Reply

Here’s a somewhat scathing review of the N900 from the Attack of The Show peeps.


Unlike previous reviews which actually REVIEWED the handset (i.e. actually spent more than 5 minutes on it), previous reviewers found the N900 to always be too big, the resistive screen to be a disappointment (instead of the feather light capacitive) but on the software side, the N900 was a big plus in terms of what you could do with it. I mean, even engadget was giving thumbs up there.

But these G4 AOS peeps seem to be blinded by the fact that the N900 is not an iPhone. Or anything remotely negative to bitch about is something they latch on to.

No capacitive, no multitouch, fat, and stylus = fail. I guess being more of an entertainment show than a gadget show, it is easy to pick on the stylus. I’m on the capacitive camp myself, but wanted to point out that just because the N900 has a stylus, it doesn’t mean you actually need it.

Nokia has made the excuse before hand that this isn’t meant to be a mass market device; it is for geeks who like to tinker and like to find their way about a phone (Hence MeeGo, for mass market). There’s intuitiveness about it, if you bother to take some time getting to know it, rather than just assuming it’s a Fisher Price pick up and play my first smartphone for Grandma (That’s what MeeGo will be -_-)

Other points (prepare for the rant):

  • Menu hierarchy – this was ok for me but something I always had concerns about in terms of the general public getting used to it. No offense but if you’re as stupid as these two, you obviously won’t understand the contextual menu button. But this reinforces my opinion that there should have always been a separate button – one for menu/homescreen one for multitouch/homescreen. Or make some really good adverts to teach people how to use the phone (Adverts that go on TV!!!)
  • Closing windows – I’m sorry Alison, but if you’re too inane to work out how to close a window, you shouldn’t even be holding a phone. There’s that X thing there. If you’re talking about how to go back, i.e. pressing space around icon/options screens, I think that’s much better than actually having to reach for the back button. Much more intuitive.
  • WiFi connection – I agree with them here. Once you get WiFi connected, N900 handles connections really well and switches to mobile/wifi whenever necessary. A really nice touch. However, it can be a pain for novices to get connected. Although for seasoned users you’d go straight to settings, it is very annoying to try and connect to WLAN via the status panels as it gives you a different set of options rather than just putting in the password. I mean, it works so simply on Symbian?!?!
  • The homescreens – one of the greatest features is the flexibility of customization – they just glossed over it. I don’t think they actually knew it was there, just read off a spec sheet. If they knew it was there, they’d talk about it a bit more rather than quickly going on to the next thing they dislike about the N900
  • Multitasking – “a great added feature…but it takes a bit of learning” It’s like they cannot stand pointing out something good about the N900. Everything takes a bit of learning. Unless you’re a blinkin rock and totally devoid of the capability to learn, everything new takes a bit of learning. The only difference with Apple and Nokia is that Apple made adverts to teach you how to use their phones. Pinch and zooming is NOT a natural movement, but adverts showed you how to do it and you learnt.
    • Although they should have talked about how great it is to be able to have so many tasks (With live tasks of live windows) open and quickly switch between tasks (important in a busy 24/7 lifestyle!!) on the flip side, they are hindered again by the contextual menu button.
    • I hope Nokia watch this and learn that they either have to make amazing adverts to teach people about their OS, or make sure the OS is simple enough for even the world’s biggest idiots.
    • MeeGo may sort that out. Maybe the G in MeeGo is for Granda – an OS even Gran will understand ^_^
  • Browser is overlooked – single handedly the best thing on the N900 – MicroB, mozilla based browser that Engadget touted as glorious, surpassing iPhone/Android. I guess, due to lack of multitouch (and knowledge of spiral zoom) the experience of Alison/Chris is ‘tainted’.
  • Flash – it is jittery for the first 5 seconds of buffering (esp embedded videos) but it works even better on the direct sites which those videos are hosted. I.E. YouTube video page direct. i.e. NOT the user profile that contains too many flash components. Even my XPS stutters there (when I’m heavily multitasking).
  • Flash – LED – Yeah, It’s not the best solution, but hey you have flash. (It is annoying when something like the N95 takes better low light with flash than the N900) You have neither Adobe flash or LED flash on iPhone, but that’s totally fine isn’t it? (Please, dear Nokia, bring back Xenon, although idiots like these will probably gloss over it, market it well and point it out to let people see what a camera phone is supposed to be!)
  • Ovi Store – Um, just to be fair and point out misinformation rather than just negatives over N900. Ovi store may have thousands of apps but NOT for the N900. There are quite a few hundred over at App Manager with the right catalogues.
  • I really have no idea with the whole email thing – that’s out of my depth a bit. All I know is I use GMAIL and Nokia Messaging and it gets my emails 5 seconds before does.

Nokia have made a vast improvement with the UI in comparison to Symbian (which I can happily moan about). But there’s so many improvements with Maemo that it does need and warrant defending when it’s improperly reviewed.

So in reality, multitouch/capacitive/fatness aside (they will all be sorted most definitely in the next iteration as tech progresses with Nokia) the biggest flaw is the contextual menu button as it hinders the use for most people who expect a pick up and play device (see here, it’s stopped them enjoying the homescreen and multitasking).


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Category: Maemo, Nokia, Nseries, Rant

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