So far, it looks like all I have had for the Nokia N8 is undiluted praise. Does this mean that this is a faultless device? Are there any disappointing experiences that I have had on the Nokia N8?
Well, yes. And here is my list.
1. Poor Web Browser Interface
The built-in web browser on the Nokia N8 is good and meets all my needs – mobile sites, full websites, flash videos, secure sites – and I use it extensively. I have found Symbian browsers highly capable for years and the version on the N8 is no exception.
However, the user interface simply leaves a lot to be desired. Like someone has said, it is as if the browser’s user interface was left behind. For example, I have to take three steps to refresh a page I am viewing. Nokia needs to make good use of the available space to deliver a more user-friendly browsing experience. A bottom horizontal strip of compact icons can make it possible for users to go back, forward, access bookmarks and switch tabs with one just tap.
I won’t push this too far though, because Nokia has promised a new browser in December 2010 or early 2011 – and if what we saw and heard from the leaked videos are anything to go by, I will soon be striking the web browser off this list of gripes. To the new browser!
2. Gmail does not reflect read messages properly.
When you have read an email message (Gmail) online, there are times that when it arrives on your phone, it is marked unread. At other times, in your brower, the read message is set back as unread. This doesn’t happen all the time, but it is often enough. It is pretty annoying having to manually mark your mails again when it does happen. Nokia, please fix this!
3. Social needs comments notifications
The Social application – where you run your show on Twitter and Facebook – works well for me. I do have one niggle: when, for example, someone comments on my status, I do not get any notifications of that. There are notifications for new messages, calendar entries, and friend requests, but this one lacking is significant. Please add comments notifications to Social.
4. Not all DivX movies play
Some DivX play; some others don’t. Yes; I know that the official word from Nokia’s Damien Dinning was that “most DivX videos should play out of the box”, so Nokia was truthful upfront. Still, having to convert some movies before I can play them on my sweet N8 is a hassle. Of course, its likely that if I look, I can find 3rd party apps to deal with this. Still, Nokia? Please?
5. Exchange’s handling of Google contact fields
Exchange on the N8 keeps my device and Google contacts in sync. However, I noticed that whenever I have multiple fields of a particular type in my Google contacts, only one of them is reflected on my N8.
For example, if I have two phone numbers set as “Mobile” for my wife in my Google contacts, the N8 ignores the second one. To get the two numbers to show, I have to go set one to something else e.g. “work”, “home” or “other”. As you can imagine, that is a hassle. People do have multiple mobile lines or work lines and those numbers should sync just the way they are.
Is that all?
Errr… for now, it looks like that’s it. If I find any more niggles, I’ll add them to this page. But if I have used a smartphone extensively for a few weeks and have only a handful of gripes about that smartphone, it must be a good one.
Do you have an N8? Are there other things besides what I have listed here that bug you silly? Please feel free to share.
6. Update! 9/12/10 Phone Freezing Up
In the last 24 hours, I have installed several more applications to the N8. All of a sudden, I am experiencing the phone suddenly freezing up.
I would leave it lying on my desk, and when I pick it up, I can’t get the display to unlock. Eventually, I shut it off. At other times, I would be in the middle of something and the menu key would become unresponsive. Again, eventually, only a reboot solves the problem.
Today alone, I have had to restart my N8 at least thrice. This is both a big bother and a discouragement. Is this a general problem or is it that Some of the apps I installed are simply badly coded? I’ll uninstall them and update this page It turns out that the Skype app that I installed days ago was responsible for this freezing. Its been 48 hours since I uninstalled it and I have had no such issues with my N8 since then.