Rumours: Nokia N9 “Nokia is using a patented, new technology, not seen in any other device in the market.”

| May 30, 2011 | 38 Replies

Janimatik tips us another juicy bit of rumours spread by mr zehjotkah again. Stirring up the maemo discussion boards he writes:

Hey guys (and girls?)!
Just thought I should give you a heads up.
You’ll love the consumer device even without keyboard. Nokia is using a patented, new technology, not seen in any other device in the market.

Now there’s already been some speculation that Nokia were doing something new interface wise with MeeGo. Back in December there was of course Marko Ahtisaari speaking about new ways that you can interact without keeping your head trapped onto the screen.

I think we’re missing a trick. Need to bring people’s head back up, maintain eye contact with better one handed use, better ways to use devices without them commanding our full attention

The MeeGo teaser was all about gestures. Nokia Conversations started talking about Nokia Innovations again talking about gestures.

So one of the things that our engineers are up to is making technology disappear. How we then control our devices is the tricky part: with possibilities like gestural control, contextual choices and – who knows? – thought projection – all up for possible consideration.”

Rumours re-emerged that Nokia might be doing something again with touchless gestures (they applied for a patent for that back in 2008).

Talk.Maemo.Org has also been discussing the possiblity of Neonode’s zForce optical touch screen:

  • It does not require a glass overlay. This translates to better light transmission and subsequently better display quality.
  • It does not require any force. With a resistive display, you need to press the surface with some amount of force before any feedback is received.
  • It supports interactions using a finger, a stylus, or even a gloved hand. Most capacitive touch screens cannot function when you use a stylus or a gloved hand.
  • Since it leaves the e-ink display as is, all the benefits associated with an e-ink display is retained.


Something else of discussion: Over on the MeeGo Hardware Pages the following are listed:

#define PRODUCT_SU18_STR                "SU-18" /**< 770 */
#define PRODUCT_RX34_STR                "RX-34" /**< N800 */
#define PRODUCT_RX44_STR                "RX-44" /**< N810 */
#define PRODUCT_RX48_STR                "RX-48" /**< N810 WiMAX Edition */
#define PRODUCT_RX51_STR                "RX-51" /**< N900 */
#define PRODUCT_RX71_STR                "RX-71" /**< Development board */
#define PRODUCT_RM680_STR               "RM-680" /**< ??? */
#define PRODUCT_RM690_STR               "RM-690" /**< ??? */
#define PRODUCT_RM696_STR               "RM-696" /**< ??? */
#define PRODUCT_RM716_STR               "RM-716" /**< ??? */

The RM-680 is the keyboarded Nokia N9/N950. It passed FCC a few weeks ago. The RM-696 is the rumoured keyboardless N9, lankku.

What is the RM-690 and RM-716? I see they’ve been discussed many months ago already in our comments, but still no clue as to what they are except that they are Maemo/MeeGo related.

Update: Back to the touch screen thing – I can’t believe I forgot this as this was the reason I wanted to write about this story. As Al Pavangkanan points out, what if it’s Nokia’s Haptikos feedback technology? This makes the most sense out of all the possible new technologies since this DOES allow people to bring their heads back up (whereas the other two air touch and zForce don’t).

Haptikos basically gives your touch screen real button like feel. One of the pros of physical QWERTY/Keypads is the ability to type without looking at the screen. Your fingers will remember where keys are based on relative position of other keys – something you can’t really easily do on FLAT touch screens. Not just “vibrations” which is haptic feedback. But a realistic sensation of having pressed a real button (not too unlike electrotactile feedback).

“The basic technology is not that difficult…we inserted two small piezo sensor pads under the screen and engineered in a 0.1mm movement in the screen itself. What’s taken the time has been fine tuning the movement and response to mimic exactly the sensation of pressing a real key”

Back in 2008, Gizmo ran with the title, “Nokia’s Haptikos Technology Makes Physical Keyboards Obsolete, Hopefully”

I’m not sure how fine that could be, but if it could mimic dots, it might even allow for Braille. That’s something Nokia tried to tackle before.


Category: MeeGo, Nokia

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