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When you buy a mobile, you know that you’re likely to be stuck with it for the life of your contract. Good news: you’ll get used to its quirks and differences. Bad news: you can only watch as gorgeous handsets are released for the next year or two. Nokia X7 Smart move? Nokia's X7 But what’s trickier about the new Nokia X7 is …

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Pint

Never mind the OS

the phone design has a certain 70s chic about it.

Wouldn't buy it, especially with my Android fanboi Elop hating to do in my spare time

But if you have a dodgy old Italian supercare from the Seventies then this looks like the phone to match it, if only it came in a weird lime green or bright yellow

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Devil

Marmite Design

Design - You either love it or hate it

The rest - that is too much money being asked for what is essentially a software zombie.

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Anonymous Coward

Hardly Zombied

I feel calling a OS that will be supported until 2016 zombied, 5 year is a long time for software support for any phone.

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Anonymous Coward

Zombie is as zombie does

And Nokia have left Symbian to rot ever since they acquired it.

Braaaaiiinnnnssss!

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Devil

zombied for sure

its not about being able to call on Nokia for support... You think Nokia is going to do anything more than the most minimal / absolutely necessary fixes for it? Think...

Its about mindshare with 3rd party developers. Do you think Skype will ever bother to grace it with a new version? ya right :P

And thats just one example of the myriad cool new apps available on iOS and Android.

zombied indeed

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Low end specs

The specifications on par with the ZTE Blade (or Orange San Francisco) with a better camera and probably better speakers, but a worse screen.

Besides that, the ZTE has a decent OS, made for touch, frequently updated, and with a vibrant community, not a soon to be abandoned one.

The ZTE can be bought by 150€, tell me again how much does this cost?

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Silver badge

except...

this bit:

screens swiping exactly when your finger does, and the accelerometer spinning the display as quickly as you turn the phone. The three home screens of the N8 stacked with shortcut icons respond instantly

The boy has a San Francisco, and it's a good cheap(ish) way of getting an Android phone. However, you couldn't honestly describe it as always responding instantly. So while this Nokia phone, on paper, has low specs, what's important is how well those specs deal with the OS. Judging by this review, it manages that fine, with a responsive ui and battery life of "over a day". In my opinion those statistics are much more important than processor speed or amount of RAM.

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But but but

The OSF (I have one) has an appallingly bad ability to see an RF signal, and therefore bad call drop ratio and poor 3G signal strength, an abominably bad battery life, a dreadful camera and is as reliable as Amy Winehouse.

So before you point at number specs have a think about real world use.

Not that I would want an X7 at that price, or even half of it.

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Only on stock rom tho

As has been said there's a vibrant modding community with many custom android roms available which are simple for even a novice to install.

A new Gingerbread rom has been recently released, the UI is as slick and responsive as any other smartphone around and with juice defender installed you get a couple of days normal use (which is ok for todays smartphones)

The camera is bobbins tho, but I've not noticed any problem with signal reception and I live in a rubbish area.

I got my ZTE Blade for £90, the Nokia is over £400 - it does look better, and have a much better camera but for over £400 with a not brilliant processor and no native flash???

You can do alot better for the money being asked.

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@except

Either the ZTE is released in the UK with a firmware much worst than the bloated Portuguese version, or it isn't the same. I got the wife a Portuguese Sapo A5, which even before the recent official update to froyo was fast and lasted up to 3 days. The only reason I ended up flashing cyanogen on it was to get rid of all the TMN/Sapo applications, that were useless for her. With gingerbread the battery now lasts a little less (around two days), but it is still snappy, the camera is ok (a flash would help in interior shots), and the screen is bright and easily readable. It responds very well to swipes, and the accelerometer screen turning, while not instant, is fast enough.

This, together with a quarter of the cost of the X7, makes it very difficult to understand why to chose the later.

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The Orange San Franfiction

I love the way people defend the OSF/Blade by making untruths about it. I have one and it is a drawer resident shortly to make its way to Mazuma because stock ROM or modded ROM it's a pile of carp.

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Doing it wrong?

You must have been doing something wrong with yours then, because there's nothing wrong with mine?

Have just upgraded to a Galaxy S II and while the Samsung is some sort of crazy mobile computer-phone the little OSF still does everything you ask of it, I never had any problem browsing the web or playing games on mine.

The lack of flash and rubbish camera were the only drawbacks I found, but for under £100 it's a cracking smartphone.

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Anonymous Coward

Won't be the last Symbian handset

A few more in the development pipeline I bet. And when the WinPho one comes out- that will be the only one running Windows, whilst there will be a number of Nokia smartphones running Symbian. Don't expect the world to change that fast!

I would also put money on the Nokia WinPho being a bit rubbish in the multi-media (Camera, video playback, record etc) department compared to the current Nokias.

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Meh

all hail to the new dawn

expect the world to change in autum, when Nokia releases W7 handsets? ... yeah right, expect the new breed of Nokisofts to run out of battery really soon and be shit for, err, making phone calls.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: all hail to the new dawn

I think that's what he meant...

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Silver badge

Like the corners, hate the grilles

I think the design would look nicer without the grilles on it.

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FAIL

Let me summarise

Its ugly, it has a OS even the company that developed it hates, everyone else hates it as well - hence why its not selling, there are like 4 apps for it and its expensive.

DO NOT WANT, nor will anyone else.

Fail, because Nokia already have.

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Anonymous Coward

Not selling?

Nokia had sold 10's of millions of the latest Symbian phones (N8 onwards). So someone must be buying them,.

They truly are not as bad as people make out. The latest Symbian seems very good - maybe not up to iPhone standard, but pretty good nevertheless. The cameras are way better than all the competition, call quality is better, overall mechanical quality is better than most. It's just the Sw isn't quite up to modern standards, but it's really not that bad!

People seem to think that because Symbian is reaching end of life it should be avoided - but I really don't know why. Most people keep their phones until they either buy a new one at end of contract, or it dies. So the choice of OS depends on your apps choice. If you are not that bothered in the apps department (and a lot of people don't care), then there is nothing wrong with buying Symbian. You do get quite a lot for your cash.

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That's why the iPhone is the best phone ever.

it has the most apps. There was me stupidly assuming a phone was for phoning, when of course that's got nothing to do with it! And this Nokia phone's expensive, no one buys expensive phones! And people do hate symbian (I regularly hear people saying just that when I'm sat on the bus) so no way will it sell.

Well done anonymous, you've really hit the nail on the head with that post! No really, well done!

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Anonymous Coward

Thanks Sabroni.

I thought I hit it pretty well.

If you want a phone that actually works as a phone - get a Nokia. They work.

And as for people hating Symbian - try the latest one (as reviewed here), not the older versions. It's, as I said, not bad. People on the bus won't have tried the latest version, but since you are forming an opinion from overheard conversations on the bus without actually using it....

And Nokia have still sold 10 of millions of the latest Symbian devices, so not sure why you think they won't sell, since they have already done so.

People don't buy expensive phones? Have you heard of the iPhone?

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Anonymous Coward

Or...

You could specify which post you are replying to perhaps? This is a problem with El Reg commentard system though, don't you think?

AC because of an NDA btw, so just being careful, although i don't think I said anything out of order.. Sorry, nothing I can do about that.

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Coat

IPhone Standard?

Sorry, but while Apple makes decent kit, it's not the supreme smart phone. OS aside, Nokia phones are solid. Cant say that about apple.

I for one want my subsidized phone to last the life of the contract. Is that too much to ask?

Oh yeah. Mine is the jacket that has a phone which is used as a phone and does email. Could care less about watching vids or surfing the web, I have an iPad2 for that.

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Gold badge

Solid?

We've had a couple of Nokia model phones at work. One was so buggy that it would switch to speakerphone and you had to pull the battery out and switch it on again to fix it.

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Anonymous Coward

Couldn't Care Less

The phrase is "I couldn't care less". Notice the n't bit at the end of the could word? It means that there is no way you could care any less about whatever you were talking about whereas what you wrote is that you could care less so obviously you do care about whatever it was.

People!

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Headmaster

"Everyone"

Hardly, there are 100s of millions of Symbian users. If they all hated Symbian as much as you seem to, then I suspect that precisely zero symbian phones would have been sold. This is clearly not the case.

As usual, the US experience is a bit different, because the US telecoms market is seriously fucked up, as are the analysys there who seem to think USA=World. The fact that NOK are not number one there, does not diminish the fcat that globally, despite Elops best efforts so far, still accounts for a massive amount of sales, and an increasing number of sales - a fact that many analysts and commentards fail to realise - mostly because they are intellectually incapable of basic comprehension.

WinPho might be the "saviour" of NOK, but (a) I do not think NOK needed a saviour (unless one thinks USA=World) and (b) The latest Symbian and the new MeeGo phone seem to indicate that NOK was well on the way to solving the issues they had with speed to market and product software capability.

Nothing like ignorant trolls to liven up the exchanges on the Reg, but it gets tiring hearing the same fanboy rubbish spouted by the ignorant

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Stop

Update for the N8?

Even though the N8 is older it still has a better spec in my opinion yet doesn't seem to be being updated as well. The GUI on the N8 is very sluggish and desperately needs an update. Given the similarities between the X7 and N8 it strikes me as that Nokia still don't appreciate the problems associated in having too many models covering much the same ground.

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It will be..

N8 will get Anna in August (presumably when the Finn's get back from Holiday, almost the whole of Finland takes July off.) I expect the rest of the Symbain ^3 phones will get it as well. Chances are very high that they will also get future updates as well because Anna was only supposed to be a building block to a more radical UI revamp.

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Too late

While I agree that Anna looks like it'll be a nice update, it's 8 months later than promised and is, in fact, the OS that the N8 should have launched with. And the N8 should have launched two years ago instead of the N97.

It's nice, if somewhat annoying, to see that Nokia is finally getting Symbian sorted out but if they'd done it all that time ago (when it mattered), then they probably wouldn't have had to do the Microsoft deal.

As you said, Anna is just meant to be a building block for the next version (Belle); the preview videos look good, but then so did the Anna ones 6-7 months ago and TBH I'm not waiting any longer. My contract is up in September and I'll be ditching Symbian phones and Nokia, probably for good.

And that really irks me because Nokia was always my "return to" brand that I went back to after making the mistake of trying another phone brand and now they're actually the mistake brand that I want to get away from.

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FAIL

Im curious...

If anyone who comments or writes reviews on this site is fitted with a brain.

The phone is fitted with a 600-800mhz range processor because of one very simple reason. It doesnt need any more power. Android, iOS and the rest of the them are lardy behemoths that suck processor power. The symbian core is still that of the EPOC machines, you know, the ones whose battery life lasted three weeks on two AA batteries.

I have a six year old symbian phone on its original battery - and it still does 4 days on standby without a problem.

I find it interesting that all the detractors are AC's - what a surprise to see the spineless leading the gormless as usual - reminds me of wall street.

This is the rule of the retards personified. There is plenty of freeware around for symbian v5 (which is what the X7 runs, with a few tweaks) so the arguments that there is no software for it are total and utter crap.

It always amazes me that people these days spout about the environment and saving energy, then get a phone that uses more power than the average notebook computer a few years ago.

I will say it again - condemning this OS because its actually more efficient than *any* of its competitors - harks of the stupidity of the masses... who've fallen for the adverts... and are happy to use systems on their phone that are insecure, powerhungry and utterly unsuitable for the devices they are used upon.

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Not just the CPU

The GPU also needs to be very power efficient, either on CPU or as a co-pro, and I think I am right in saying the GPU in the N8 and the rest of the current Symbian range is the lowest power and once of the highest performances available. Certainly considerably lower than the GPU's used in the iPhone and Androids. All that fancy GUI, HD playback and record etc stuff needs some grunt, and low power parts make a big difference.

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Go

Re: standby

My iPhone 4 does 4 days in Standby without a hitch, and that's with Skype running on WiFi (GSM/3G data disabled).

I wonder why Symbian phones never use Cortex-A8/9 processors? Is that a Symbian limitation? You say they don't need it, but try loading a complex web page over WiFi and compare load times with a modern Android/iPhone

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but

iPhone and Android phones eat up power as the users install a bunch of apps and games and then spend all day fiddling with them and complain when the battery dies after being hammered by the CPU & GPU.

There aren't the same range of apps for symbian, there isn't the same use of handset and the battery lasts longer.

The OS may be slightly more efficient, but the use of the phone has a greater effect on life.

Who cares if you need to charge the phone everynight because you've messed around with it all day, it's not like you need to use it when your asleep.

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@introiboad...

Sony Ericsson's last Symbian phones and the Samsung i8190 were Cortex A8's so there's no OS limitation. Nokia just seem to have a fetish for arm11. Hopefully the first batch of 1Ghz Symbian phones due shortly will be using ST-Ericsson's u8500 (dual Cortex A9).

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@Adam

Thanks for the info, I was not aware of this.

Another issue is whether Symbian is finally ready for SMP like Linux and iOS are. Transitioning from a single core to symmetric multiprocessing is hard. I guess it's less relevant now since Symbian is being deprecated in favor of Linux/WinPhone.

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If the X7 interests you...

...at least consider the N8 - on the hardware side, the N8 has a higher-spec camera, all-aluminium unibody construction (and in my subjective view, better looks), built-in HDMI port, front-facing second camera and quite a few other goodies the X7 doesn't have. The N8 is also due to get the "Anna" OS update in the next few weeks or so, removing yet another advantage the X7 would have.

Best of all, the N8 can now be found SIM-free for under £300 (compared to the X7's £400+), and presumably cheaper on contract too, so it's well worth a look if the X7 catches your attention. More on the N8's hidden gems here:

http://www.allaboutsymbian.com/features/item/13066_Its_better_than_you_think-5_un.php

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N8 et al

A TomTom will always be cheaper, but there will be a point when the N8 and its ilk will become very affordable (second hand or selling off stock) and become an excellent sat-nav. Max out the SD card with downloaded maps (for free) and you're sorted wherever you go.

It will also have a browser and be able to make phone calls too, if you want it to.

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+1 for N8

The X7's screen is a lot bigger, and offers better image quality, but if you want an outstanding camera, for a lower price, with the same battery life and call quality, the N8 is now available for pretty good prices, and, screen aside, has a much nicer specification. If you want a keyboard, the E7 has the same excellent screen, plus a keyboard, but is more expensive than X7. Basically, the C6-01, C7, E7, X7 and N8 are all the same hardware core with varying form factors and feature sets, so you take your pick.

Another plus: the firmware on newly-made N8s will be the same version as the X7 (Symbian "Anna"). Nokia expects all existing C6-01, C7, E7 and N8 users to have access to this update over-the-air before the end of August, but when exactly will depend on the mobile networks signing it off. ( http://conversations.nokia.com/2011/06/21/symbian-anna-available-starting-july/ )

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Devil

Re: N8 et al

Exactly. I have an N95 doing this job already :)

Big bright screen, 8G worth of map storage (enough to hold all EU and North America and some music) - here is a working car SatNav which would have gone down in the recycling bucket otherwise. It is also built like a bricks***house so it is not falling apart any time soon.

It is definitely cheaper than any TomTom as it costed me nothing :)

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+1 for the satnav

Lately, I've been using my N8 more and more for satnav purposes - Ovi Maps is one of the golden arrows in a Nokia handset's quiver (now there's an analogy).

IMO, it really can replace a dedicated satnav for most people's needs, especially if you pre-download map packs. You don't have the range of downloadable "voices" that TomTom offers (yes, I'm tempted to buy the Brian Blessed pack), but with the "Own Voice" app in the Ovi Store, you can record your own voice (or a loved one's?) and be guided to your destination by it.

TomTom must REALLY hate Nokia...

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4 years too late

Funny that, finally Symbian looks like it is useable (based upon the pictures and videos I've seen), shame they implement these oh so necessary UI tweaks 4 years too late and after they put the nails in the coffin...Daft buggers those Fins.

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Devil

Blame Canada

Elop is a Canadian hatchet man.

Blame Canada

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Mushroom

Portrait T9 ftw

Please tell me that you can turn the portrait QWERTY off?!

Going to M$ was one thing but hindering non-pixie-fingered users is just the final straw.

No-one actually likes portrait qwerty - it's just the iphone users have to tell you they do in the same way they call all their phones' faults a "Must Have Feature"

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Silver badge

Yes, you can turn the portrait QWERTY off.

Yes, you can choose between T9 and QWERTY for the portrait layout (tap the menu icon, and change the keyboard mode), and you're right: for one-handed use, the twelve-key T9 layout is hard to beat. It's nice to have a choice, though.

iPhone's keyboard isn't bad, but in its eagerness to give you a proper word rather than a typo (or what it thinks is a typo - let's not go into the issue of non-American given names), it can land you in some very difficult situations. I'd be very wary of using an iPhone to send messages to an important client...

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wow

Expensive, but DAMN! that's a funky design. Looks like something out of Total Recall.

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Cylon phone?

Is it just me, or could this be a smartphone from the new Battlestar Galactica series, what with their obsession with hexagonal paper? Just give it an oscillating red light..

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Spin off Symbian again please. Still love my Nokia 5500 Sport Series 60 3rd edition.

Nice small-ish rugged phone to take down the beach and not get too precious about. Dropped loads of times, still full signal strength.

Case got tatty several times, so smartened it up with replacement fascia etc for a few quid off ebay, hey presto, brand new phone.

Basic camera but has a torch, web on GPRS fast enough for train times, email and the odd social networking.

Charge lasts for about 4 days on standby, maybe a little more or a little less depending on use. Love the minimalist, simple things sometimes.

A variation on the sticker on old cars would be: "My other phone is an Android." - for when I do want the full web on the move, better pictures.

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WTF?

The world HAS changed - it's called N9

It's just taking a bit of time to catch his breath...

Maemo, Maemo, wherefore art thou Maemo? Too bad Nokia will not pay NetFlix, Wordpress, Hulu, NFL, et al to build apps for Maemo, because they've been borg'd my Microsoft.

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Alert

What's wrong with Symbian

I honestly can't understand why so many people seem to have it in for Symbian, I've been very happy with my Nokia X6 and don't intend to replace it any time soon.

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Pint

nice..... nice.....

not thrilling..... but nice.

that's the X6 for ya.

now "wash this"

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