I also own an E90.
Now I'm a big guy so I don't mind it being a brick. I mean its not slick and cool like the phones that were released 2 years later, but it does have a nice large keypad and was one of the first if not the first phone to offer a camera for vid to vid calls.
Definitely a leading edge piece of hardware.
Flash forward to the N8.
Most of the commentards that knock Nokia probably have never held or played with any of their phones.
With respect to Nokia, its not the hardware but the User Experience.
Not always the easiest thing to navigate and unfortunately the Finns don't understand how to design things for easier use in target markets. (Their contact system is a joke.) (Ovi... don't get me started...)
With the Windows 7, they get the OS, they get the 1000's of Microsoft developers. They also get a bit more respect than if they went with Meego. (Which still isn't ready for prime time from what I've heard.)
The new CEO made the right decision. However... I don't think he bargained well with Microsoft.
Microsoft got a key component from the deal that they need to compete with Google.
With respect to a lot of the commetards remarks concerning building a better product for a lower unit cost...
Nokia's hardware is pretty solid. Can't say the same for HTC and other plastic phones. Sure they cost less, but you'd be lucky if they could last the 2 years for the length of a contract.
To be honest, I was rooting for Meego. If successful it would have gave Intel an entry in to the mobile market and a world class partner in Nokia. But here's the thing. You need an OS that works now, or you're going to continue to sink. Make the deal with one of the devils and you survive to fight another day.