Nokia to use Android?
In Dutch tech news, I read some "messages":http://webwereld.nl/nieuws/68083/-nokia-denkt-na-over-adoptie-android-.html#utm_source=front_sub2&utm_medium=website&utm_campaign=ww that Nokia is considdering using Android on it's new smartphones. I was very suprised to hear that, after having been told at the DevDays that Nokia is fully commited to making Qt the platform for their phones. That does not rhime well with using Android.
Did more people pick this up? What do others think of this? Fact or Crap?
First, I hope that they don't. Android is much less open than people seem to think. Only at the moment of the release we knew what features Gingerbread has, for example, and it was only some weeks ago that it was unofficially confirmed that Gingerbread was 2.3 and not 3.0. I dislike a lot the way they act, branching upstream stuff and creating problems for themselves and upstream itself in the long term. I like the way Nokia is handling community stuff with respect to "we add it to upstream first". I think is not only polite, but very wise. I've maintained 2 super-small packages in Debian, and even there I realized how important is to do work upstream so yo don't have code bases that diverge.
Second, I think they will not use switch to Android after all this. Nokia has invested a lot in Qt, MeeGo and Symbian, and their employees have the know-how, experience, etc. They also have a different set of services, so it doesn't make sense for them to compete with Google in their own field, where they have advantage.
Also, one of the things that I like of MeeGo, it's the use a completely standard X11, libc, etc. That allows MeeGo to be capable of reaching from phones to desktops. It also frees Nokia, Intel and all the MeeGo contributors to develop on their own their stack.
"An automatic translation of the article":http://translate.googleusercontent.com/translate_c?hl=es&ie=UTF-8&sl=nl&tl=en&u=http://webwereld.nl/nieuws/68083/-nokia-denkt-na-over-adoptie-android-.html#utm_source=front_sub2&utm_medium=website&utm_campaign=ww&prev=_t&rurl=translate.google.es&twu=1&usg=ALkJrhjMsa7bJXXScx9SebPErwK2Owbj-g
Yellow press :-/
The article says that the view is of head of Google's mobile platforms. Now we know someone is day dreaming.
In my opinion Nokia is completely committed to Symbian and is now trying to make it look younger by treating it with Qt cosmetics. I am sure Nokia will regain the lost market cap in the coming days.
Nokia has never said or suggested such a thing. I believe the relevant interview they are talking about, the Nokia spokesperson replied that they would move to any platform that offered more value than their own. The person who was interviewing responded surprised he didn't flat out say 'NO'. But, he actually did say 'NO' just in more polite way.
I can understand how this gets lost in translation.
Android isn't free and it isn't entirely opensource (the parts that make it unique are closed). Also, it has less features in the back-end that Google are just now catching up on. Hello integrated VOIP? It is also less optimised for mobile devices as they have just hacked on a plain Linux kernel.
I also believe it doesn't follow Nokia's model here. Nokia wants to focus on Qt (and C++) with Java being on the lower-end. Meanwhile Nokia is trying to go with a one hardware model like iOS and WP7. Same screen res, same CPU, same GPU, same RAM on all models for this year.
I also think they are trying to get a high quality market. High signal to noise ratio. If you look at the current status of the Android Market ( http://www.androlib.com/ ), you can see it's quite hard to sift through the junk.
Qt on Android... oh yeah!
Nokia phones running android... can't (and refuse to) believe will happen! Would be pretty silly for nokia to drop two mature platforms (symbian, maemo) and the upcoming meego to become "one more droid" in the market.
An interesting analysis done "here":http://jfourgeaud.wordpress.com/2010/10/21/536/
Why invest so much in MeeGo to then use Android instead?
[quote author="Bradley" date="1292136123"]Why invest so much in MeeGo to then use Android instead?[/quote]
Right its just rumors. Nokia has its plans out - will support Nokia OS, Symbian and Meego. And a no no for Android. I personally believe that Smbian OS is the most stable OS around when it comes to Mobile.
Because they aren't (and have never even considered) using Android.
Their feature phones have had a huge step up this year with "X3-02.":http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ouF-lzfwj4g It has USB OTG, WiFi, HSDPA (3.5G), sub-10mm aluminium shell. Although having no native apps, the Java API is very comprehensive. Touchscreen and keypad on a mass-market S40 device. All for about $200.
Their S60v3 devices are still the best non-touch smartphones with their "E5 running 74 apps seamlessly.":http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ru9gBlHXRrA
2011 will see their Symbian and Meego following suit with huge updates (and releases).
I am still surprised that people like Symbian. I've used it a lot, and I'm used to how it works. Ugly, but very very convenient. For example, my old N81 can do some stuff much simpler that my actual main phone, an HTC Desire (Android), because the UI is simple and doesn't have a touchscreen. But I'm still surprised that people like it, and that Nokia defends it when nobody else does. The lack of partners in the Symbian Foundation was a clear sign, I think.
Lack of partners? If you mean SE and Samsung: Nokia is just making it their OS. What would be the point in taking it up since you wouldn't get the killer features like Ovi Maps and Ovi Store.
You can't really compare the non-touchscreen phones coming out like E5 to the touchscreen line. Even though they have most of the same features and same underlying OS, the touchscreen makes a world of difference.
Also, why are you surprised people like Symbian? What's wrong with it? Really?
bq. The lack of partners in the Symbian Foundation was a clear sign, I think.
Here the issue was completely different. Ovi Maps and Ovi Store was one of the reasons as xsacha pointed out. Also Symbian Foundation's Horizon had a long way to go.
And Samsung - I feel is very much not sure about their future. Or say don't have a clear roadmap - they are supporting every other OS in market - even when they invested a lot on Bada.
And Symbian has been out here for quite a long time and is know to be stable and tested very well. Only it needs some cosmetic changes to fight with these new players. But internally its much stronger.
When I used an N97, I was surprised to see that you had to scroll pressing the tiny scrollbar on the side, instead of sweeping any part of the screen. It was a clear sign that it wasn't ready for touch, as nobody does that nowadays, not even Nokia on their new phones.
The N8 (or Symbian^3) only has T9 keyboard in portrait mode (you can install swype, ok). I like this kind of keyboard, and I'm pretty sure that it probably works better than the T9 keyboard on my Desire (it has plenty of unacceptable bugs, like storing passwords on the dictionary). But the lack of choice I think is a symptom of not being ready for touch.
Is not only the lack of partners. It's the lack of interest in the whole community. Now that Symbian is open source, you could expect some interest by open source enthusiasts. I haven't seen it at all. Instead, I've seen harsh critics (that I can't judge, since I don't known about the internals). A lot of them.
[quote author="disperso" date="1292161859"]When I used an N97, I was surprised to see that you had to scroll pressing the tiny scrollbar on the side[/quote]
Well in a firmware update, the N97 and 5800 were given Kinetic scrolling. All Symbian^3 phones have this too.
This period where you had to use a tiny scrollbar was 2 years ago. At the time there was one Android phone on the market which was lacking a lot and was quite ugly. Similarly, the iPhone had just received an SDK and still couldn't multi-task, bluetooth or send MMS. This was the dark ages.
[quote author="disperso" date="1292161859"]The N8 (or Symbian^3) only has T9 keyboard in portrait mode[/quote]
Two years ago when Symbian Touch launched the keyboard options were: Portrait QWERTY, Portrait alphanumerical, Landscape QWERTY, Landscape alphanumerical, Floating QWERTY, handwriting (and more depending on locale).
Portrait QWERTY is temporarily removed for one firmware revision in S^3. It will be back within the month.
In addition, you can install third-party QWERTY keyboards including Baidu, Dayhand, SouGo, slideIT, Swype, Virtual Keyboard and also Baidu mods including Opera keyboard, iPhone keyboard and Milk. There's probably more I haven't mentioned.
[quote author="disperso" date="1292161859"]lack of choice I think is a symptom of not being ready for touch.[/quote]
They removed one in-built keyboard two years after having it. This isn't a 'symptom of not being ready for touch'.
iOS, WebOS and WP7 platform only give you one keyboard. And you aren't allowed to install third-party keyboards. Are they not ready for touch?
The only keyboard experience that compares to Symbian is Android.
It's definitely a strong point -- for both platforms.
[quote author="disperso" date="1292161859"]Now that Symbian is open source, you could expect some interest by open source enthusiasts.[/quote]
People don't exactly announce when they are interested in something. The apps just pop up later.
400, 000 developers signed up and there were 1.5 million downloads of the NokiaQtSDK. That could show interest.
[quote author="disperso" date="1292161859"]
Is not only the lack of partners. It's the lack of interest in the whole community. Now that Symbian is open source, you could expect some interest by open source enthusiasts. I haven't seen it at all. Instead, I've seen harsh critics (that I can't judge, since I don't known about the internals). A lot of them.[/quote]
Now Symbian is back to licensing model. Symbian PDK 3.0.5 would probably the last one to have the code released in public domain.
I don't have a strong opinion since I haven't used extensively any of the recent Symbian phones with touch screens, much less after firmware updates. However, I can't help the fact that I see still too many parts of the Symbian UI that need the necessary break with the past to be more oriented to touch input. When I compare it to a platform that has been built to be used just with touch input (e.g. meego), I see too different stuff.
But anyways, it's not just that. I'm a linux user, and you know how painful is to develop for Symbian here. It's getting better, and very fast, and I'm sure that next year developing for Symbian and MeeGo (and Android?) at the same time is going to be easier than with other systems.
But anyways, it's not just me, it's a huge amount of people that dislike internal symbian stuff, plus all the burden that puts on the developer's shoulder.
- "Symbian, the Biggest Mobile OS No One Talks About":http://mobile.slashdot.org/story/10/07/05/1829243/Symbian-the-Biggest-Mobile-OS-No-One-Talks-About
- "Nokia Trades Symbian For MeeGo In N-Series Smartphones":http://linux.slashdot.org/story/10/06/24/2257235/Nokia-Trades-Symbian-For-MeeGo-In-N-Series-Smartphones
BTW, I don't want to sound as if I think that Symbian completely sucks, and the others rock. I'm not buying an iDevice even if someone points my family with a gun. I own an Android device, and I think it has a huge amount of problems (at least for me). If the N900 had a capacitive screen and more portrait operation, I would be a happy owner of one. I'm a big advocate of how nokia is doing everything right now. Even if MeeGo doesn't rock the world, I'm pretty sure I will buy the first MeeGo phone that comes to market.
I agree that it puts lot of burden on developers and developing for Symbian on Linux platform is a pain. Regarding the Meego and Symbian plan - Meego will be supported on high end smart computers and tablets competing with other products in the iPhone and iPad range. And Symbian would be installed on devices in Mid Range smart phone category.
I think using an Android device while Symbian gets its act together is fine.
But it will get its act together. I'm confident in a few months they'll refresh the UI. It seems the only issue people have with it is the UI. That's also actually the easiest part of the OS to change. Think about the UI in one of your apps. It's much harder to change the back-end code with custom assembler or what-have-you.
[quote author="QtK" date="1292169418"]Regarding the Meego and Symbian plan - Meego will be supported on high end smart computers and tablets competing with other products in the iPhone and iPad range. And Symbian would be installed on devices in Mid Range smart phone category. [/quote]
I don't consider the iPhone high-end. Unless they radically re-position their product in the next few months. It's a low to mid-end device that happens to have a lot of apps because it has a lot of customer base who are willing to pay money. When it first came out it was worse than a Series 40 phone in every conceivable way. The only thing that changed? The apps.
Meego is aiming at mobile computers (+phone). The same as Maemo is positioned now. The only competition is high-end Android's.
[quote author="xsacha" date="1292191606"]I think using an Android device while Symbian gets its act together is fine.
But it will get its act together. I'm confident in a few months they'll refresh the UI. It seems the only issue people have with it is the UI. That's also actually the easiest part of the OS to change. Think about the UI in one of your apps. It's much harder to change the back-end code with custom assembler or what-have-you.[/quote]
I think that the best move that Nokia has done in the recent months, is the decision of moving 100% to Qt. Since then, I think that I've seen an increase in the amount of traffic that the qml mailing list receives, and many are Nokia employees. I think this is great news for everybody.
[quote]I don't consider the iPhone high-end. Unless they radically re-position their product in the next few months. It's a low to mid-end device that happens to have a lot of apps because it has a lot of customer base who are willing to pay money. When it first came out it was worse than a Series 40 phone in every conceivable way. The only thing that changed? The apps.
Meego is aiming at mobile computers (+phone). The same as Maemo is positioned now. The only competition is high-end Android's.[/quote]
The iPhone is high-end in price. An unlocked iPhone costs more than an unlocked-anything. It certainly is limited in some aspects (when I saw that for the first time they allowed folders to sort the apps I looked with bright eyes my old N81), but it's powerful in the sense that people pay a lot for it, and are even willing to pay for apps. I still don't understand why angry birds was 1.x euro (spain, some weeks ago) and it was free on android. :P
Angry Birds is ad-supported on Android (which is why it is free).
Although, I have come across a few apps that are free on Symbian but cost money on an iPhone.
A friend was playing with an app on my phone the other day and I asked him why he can't use his phone for it (he has an iPhone). He told me it wasn't worth $4 and it's free on mine.
But in general, the users are willing to pay more for everything. Which is why it is a great platform for making paid apps I guess.
It's also a good target market for Apple. High-end price with high-end (design/UI), low-end (features - S40 like) software and mid-end hardware.
Yesterday I was reading this which IMO is a very good article: "http://communities-dominate.blogs.com/brands/2010/12/some-symbian-sanity-why-nokia-will-not-join-google-android-or-microsoft-phone-7.html":http://communities-dominate.blogs.com/brands/2010/12/some-symbian-sanity-why-nokia-will-not-join-google-android-or-microsoft-phone-7.html