Tuesday 17 April 2012


Nokia; why isn't it working?

   This is quite a strange post for me because it is essentially an opinion piece but it's relevant too. Nokia aren't doing well and Reuters carried a story earlier today that Nokia was losing face with carriers; the carriers would have preferred the devices to run Android and the carriers have said the phones aren't good enough to compete at the moment. This turned into a debate between authors on Coolsmartphone.com focusing on why Nokia isn't working and below is my take on the matter. The post followed a discussion on whether Windows Phone hardware was good enough and people were arguing it was not a matter of hardware, instead user experience was more important, something which I disagreed with because every smartphone is expected to perform well and with ease now. My piece reads something like this, starting with how Android phones are more value for money;

If you go shopping for a new laptop and you have £500 to spend on a choice of 2 PC's. for the sake of argument one has a an i5 processor and the other has an i3, both cost £499.99.
You'd usually buy the one with the i5 if all the other specs were the same.

I think my point focuses more on high end phones; the Lumia 800 is free from £31 a month on orange and so is the Galaxy S2. It just seems clear to me which one is better 'value for money' in terms of what is inside the phone, which surely must impact consumers even if they don't care what's inside. The iPhone has always been there or there abouts with incorporating the latest hardware and it always sells well. So the spec sheet surely must matter, normal people are more tech savvy nowadays.

I acknowledge there is an issue here with lower priced phones; the mid-range Blackberry's and the Galaxy Ace's and Lumia 710's of this world, which may have different factors which affect how they sell, like BBM. But, I don't think Nokia needs these sort of phones to sell well to turn things around, they need flagships to do well which, given what's inside them, in my opinion, won't happen because they just don't seem good value. Which is why the Carphone warehouse gives you an Xbox if you buy a Lumia 800 to appease you.

I completely agree with the cool issue, Nokia has one but so does WP7, people think it's the 3rd best. Although, I do love Nokia's unibody design, I think it looks stunning. But, Irrespective of how easy it is to use and how well the People hub is integrated or how quickly you can type out a text, I don't think this matters because people expect a phone to do this with ease.

.....but someone said earlier;
"Perhaps they [the carriers] feel that Nokia is punching above its weight now. I'm not entirely sure.

I tell you one thing I was thinking about last night. After seeing everything at Mobile World Congress I couldn't help thinking that things have reached a bit of a plateau. A lot of phones had quad core, a lot had 8 megapixel cameras and hi-res screens. What now? There's no "big hitter" which I think is why there's so much attention on the S3."

And Nokia is not part of the quad-core, hi-res crowd and they aren't selling phones, surely the spec sheet is affecting this on top of the 'cool' issues and everything else which is going on here.

I think there is something in what I had said there, I'm not saying it's a definitive explanation of Nokia's current failings but it's part of the reason in my book. Let me know what you think in the comments below!

Gmail down; but only for 2% of users.

   Google has today has a bit of downtime for customers of its insanely popular Gmail service. Despite the twittersphere and facebook lighting up with complaints the company has said the outage has only affected 2% of it's users, so they must have one huge user base. The company initially released the statement;

"We’re aware that some users are experiencing an error when accessing their Gmail. We’ve implemented a fix and users should be able to access their mail shortly. We apologize for the inconvenience. Thanks for your patience."

Soon after this Google announced the issue had been resolved but didn't offer any reasons, which is probably for the best, if it's an embarrassing hiccup;

"The problem with Google Mail should be resolved. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience and continued support. Please rest assured that system reliability is a top priority at Google, and we are making continuous improvements to make our systems better."

In other news:

  • The Blackberry Playbook got a bump to Playbook OS 2.01, which basically just improves Android App Support.
  • Microsoft announces Halo 4 for November 6th.
  • Samsung has announced the Galaxy Tab 2 has been delayed so it can receive a Quad-core processor before it's release. Great choice Samsung, the tablets needed something to set them apart from the crowd.
  • Windows 8 is coming out this year and it has been announced that there will be three variants of the platform with; WIndows 8, Windows 8 Pro and Windows RT. The last of which is available for devices running ARM-based architecture.
  • The rumour today is that the Galaxy S3 will be an incremental update over the SGS2. So much so the rumour mill says, that the device may not even be called the Galaxy S3. A UK telecoms source said the device will be like the iPhone 4S was to the iPhone 4.


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