From Nokia’s Q4 2012 report comes this simple, official nail in the coffin of the legendary Symbian OS: During our transition to Windows Phone through

We All Knew This: Nokia 808 PureView Is The Last Symbian Device

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Symbian-smartphones

From Nokia’s Q4 2012 report comes this simple, official nail in the coffin of the legendary Symbian OS:

During our transition to Windows Phone through 2012, we continued to ship devices based on Symbian. The Nokia 808 PureView, a device which showcases our imaging capabilities and which came to market in mid-2012, was the last Symbian device from Nokia.

It is no big news. In fact, I still referred to it as such recently here. But it is news that will have lots of people reminiscing. From my first Symbian device, the Ericsson R380s to my last, the Nokia 808 PureView, I have owned a total of fifteen (15) Symbian devices, if my mathematics hasn’t gone to the dogs yet. And what an awesome time me and those gadgets had. One of the legacies of Symbian was the wide range of forms that the OS powered – regular keypad bars, full touch, QWERTY keyboard bars, Communicators, clam shells, and even gaming-style designs. This is in contrast to the boring landscape of touch slabs that we have today. There was no lack of variety with Symbian. And for about ten years, Symbian OS ruled the smartphone landscape against competitors like Palm OS, BlackBerry, and Windows Mobile.

Well, my Symbian love affair is over. Yes; it is over, but it was love all the way. Here’s the chorus from Roxette’s popular track, “It Must Have Been Love”:

It must have been love but it’s over now
It must have been good but I lost it somehow
It must have been love but it’s over now
From the moment we touched till the time had run out

RIP, Symbian OS.

PS: In case you missed it, I also recently asked current Symbian/Belle users if they would be switching over to Lumia, as Nokia would love them to do, or be looking elsewhere.

41 comments

  1. I am not one for making speeches, or giving euologies, but then, all I can say is…

    There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:

    There is a time to DIE. Symbian time has come.

    Somebody lend me a handkerchief!

  2. The king is dead……….. Long live the king! Long live the king!! Long live the king!!!

  3. RIP Symbian.

    It’s unfortunate that non of the new kids on the block is capable of providing the versatility of hardware and software that Symbian provided.
    All we get now is a slab with options to swipe up,down, left,right.

    The beautiful ones are not yet born

  4. Nokia 808PV, the last of the Mohicans, it will be an honour to own you if not for the monster camera, at least to remember the last greatest work done by the former mobile supper power. Symbia never died in the first place, it was only made an orphan by the death of its parent (Nokia)which was never a natural death. Like every supper power, they come and go but the seat of power remains where it is. As ios and android fight for the seat like US and China, Symbia shall be watching like old USSR just because nokia like Rusia is no longer what it use to be. RIP Nokia.

  5. I’ve attended a couple of burials, and even for those who obviously were villains in their lifetime and yet, their funeral orations never indicated such. Symbian’s case will obviously not be different.

  6. I’ve attended a couple of funerals, and even for those who obviously were villains in their lifetime and yet, their funeral orations never indicated such. Symbian’s case will obviously not be different.

  7. well, harry. there is..

    necromancy :

    n
    conjuring up the dead, especially for prophesying
    syn : necromancy

    perhaps you believe in magic?i

    Or, miracles?

    Maybe someone will buy the Symbian legacy code and breathe new life into it?

    It has its strong points, you know!

  8. Yes, you may be right, but I don’t believe in yesterday and that’s where Symbian belongs. And why should it concern me so much when the chief mourners like Eye.Bee.Kay and Mr Mo are busy flirting around with other platforms and having themselves good time.

  9. @Quarry,

    And why should it concern me so much when the chief mourners like
    Eye.Bee.Kay and Mr Mo
    are busy flirting around
    with other platforms and
    having themselves good
    time.

    Variety is the spice of mobile life, and you never really forget your first love.

    These new OSes_on_the_block have a trick or two to learn from this old_dog. Not one of them can hold a burnt_out candle to this old warhorse.

    Multitasking, the rght way, the Symbian way. I yearn to see that on Android

  10. These new OSes_on_the_block have a trick or two to learn from this old_dog. Not one of them can hold a burnt_out candle to this old warhorse.

    Multitasking, the rght way, the Symbian way. I yearn to see that on Android

    Really? No, you are very wrong there. You have a wrong idea what multitasking is all about and so you can hardly know when it is done right or wrong. And I tell you, it was Symbian’s poor approach to multitasking that was one of its banes. People, I mean most people prefer not to be nagged about system running out of memory, they just want to get on with their tasks. Symbian was simply doing it the wrong way and that was one of the reasons it failed to compete with the modern trend. It is simply obvious that Symbian was the operating system that couldn’t hold its own against the modern operating systems. Funny you have to mention learning from Symbian, when it is only too obvious the learning should go the other way round.

    And if you don’t like what you are seeing on Android, there still are Symbian/Belle devices out there to choose from, since it appears you are bent on dwelling in the past.

  11. It’s amazing to here that multitasking on the likes of Android, iOS and WP is better than Symbian.

    What’s multitasking if you cant run apps in the background,

    The issue we all know Symbian had is power and look and feel.

    Put Android on a Nokia 3650 and the OS wont even boot at all.

    Put Symbian on a GSIII and see wonders.

  12. You have a
    wrong idea what multitasking is all about and so you can hardly know when it is done right or wrong

    Come on!

    While that paragraph is grammatically correct, it is semantically and intellectually vacuous!.

    No one needs a degree in Computer Science to understand what multitasking is all about, and to see clearly when it is done wrong (as on Android)- or is implemented wonderfully (as on Symbian / Belle)

    Take the lowliest Symbian smartphone, and you can be reasonably sure that your background apps would be running when you switch back.

    That is not the experience on all Android phones. I know that!

    So, Android can learn from Symbian in. that regard

    And if you don’t like what you are seeing on
    Android, there still are
    Symbian/Belle devices out there to choose from, since it appears you are bent on dwelling in the past.

    you are going tangential to the point.

    the important thing is to give credit where it is due, and point out weaknesses where they are glaring.

    the hallmark of fanboyism is to never admit there is any weakness in a product or service used, even when such defects are apparent to the most cursory observation.

    @Bosun99uk laconically put it well:

    It’s amazing to hear that multitasking on the likes of Android, iOS and WP is
    better than Symbian.
    What’s multitasking if you cant run apps in the background,

    The issue we all know
    Symbian had is power and
    look and feel.

    Yes.

    What’s multitasking if you cant run apps in the background reliably?

    as you have on Android?

    Must we all use devices with tonnes of RAM to enjoy basic multitasking, when Android wastes RAM interminably unnecessarily loading useless apps into memory?

  13. additionally, to bring home more forcefully my frustration with the Android way of “multitasking”

    if I am browsing, and a call comes in, most times, the page i was browsing would have disappeared!

    you call THAT multitasking? Good. I call it “crap”!

    that would never happen on a Symbian phone!

    NEVER!

    Another instance..

    I copy multiple number of screens off a browser, with the hope of pasting the snippets of text elsewhere.

    by the time I switch over to and fro my Clipboard program (Clip Ninja)- most times, the browser would have closed, making me lose what I was doing seconds ago!

    that is the story of my Android life!

    android needs to learn how a Symbian phone is very UNLIKELY to perform that poorly at basic multitasking.

    from what I have read about the newer OSes, their handling of multitasking is at best wobbly and at worst appalling , rather than appealing!

    they need to learn the multitasking ropes from the Old Guru – Symbian.

  14. the hallmark of fanboyism is to never admit there is any weakness in a product or service used, even when such defects are apparent to the most cursory observation.

    There certainly could be some but multitasking is certainly not one of them. And the truth is that no product is free of some weaknesses. Like I said, you have wrong ideas of what multitasking is all about and you can’t tell when it is done right. Multitasking is already in existence before Symbian came onboard and thus, Symbian cannot redefine multitasking, it can only do it in its way, which was acceptable until other operating systems came into the scene to give consumers a better experience.

    if I am browsing, and a call comes in, most times, the page i was browsing would have disappeared!

    I’ve explained this to you a couple of times but you still insist on doing things the Symbian way and hoping to get same result on Android phone. I’m not going to start all over again. I will have to leave you with your whims and frustrations. I certainly am not having similar experience. Keep operating your Android phone like a Symbian phone hoping it would work the way your Symbian device worked. My little confusion is, just why did you abandon Symbian in the first place? Whining cannot change Android, it can only satisfy your desire to whine.

    that would never happen on a Symbian phone!

    NEVER!

    Oh, sure it would and it has happened before and again, but you really don’t need to worry about it happening or not because, in a few years time, there won’t be any Symbian phone left for it to happen and you can go ahead and make the claim as much as you like.

    Let’s dispense with hypocrisy people! Why are people claiming that Symbian is better and still abandoning it in droves. You claim that Symbian is better and still leave it for others to use, while you pick the one that is supposed to be inferior to Symbian. Are you expecting me that already knew that Symbian is not got enough to go buy a Symbian phone and use?

  15. just why did you abandon Symbian in the first place? Whining cannot change Android, it can only satisfy your desire to whine

    ..lol

    why did I abandon Symbian? Fate. It was fate that thrust the current Android device into my hands.I dint pay cash for it.

    By the way, I still have my trusty crysty Nokia 5800, 5230 and E7.

    that must give a new HARRic definition to the word “abandonment’, no? !

    Let’s dispense with hypocrisy people! Why are people claiming that Symbian is better and still abandoning it in droves.

    hypocrisy? excuse me!

    In my world, hypocrisy is pushing an argument via subterfuge, subtle obfuscation and tangential rigmarolling!

    Nobody ever claimed that Symbian us better… in the open_ended way you have put it. They both have their strengths and weaknesses, and we are merely pointing them out.

    Symbian is better at multitasking. simpke!

    being a master of disambiguation, why are you resorting to inexactitudes of expression, if not for fanboyish reasons?

  16. why did I abandon Symbian? Fate. It was fate that thrust the current Android device into my hands.I dint pay cash for it.

    By the way, I still have my trusty crysty Nokia 5800, 5230 and E7.

    that must give a new HARRic definition to the word “abandonment’, no? !

    You said it all. They were put away in some receptacle to be gathering dust why the Android phone thrust into your hands by fate gets all the attention. Maybe fate also left you with a commandment at the same time. And well, that ought to be universal: Only use the best among the devices available to henceforth. If it is not so good, for something that didn’t cost you money, you could have given it away. But held unto it. What an excuse for getting and using what is obviously your heart desire.

    That is not the definition of abandonment as long as there is fate to pass the bulk of the blames to. Yes have iSheep, fandroid, fanboy, but your case doesn’t seem to fall in any of these. Shall it be fateism or fanfate?

  17. *grabs microphone and adopts back up singer stance*
    But its over noooooooooooooowwwww
    oooooohhhhh ahhhhhh!!!

    All this argument of Symbian superior multi tasking skills is confusing. My last symbian device was Ellen (Nokia E72). I run gravity (the twitter client for symbian), UC web and open an E-book. A call comes in. I answer. I gossip for 3minutes. caller’s airtime runs out. I make my way to gravity and the app don close.
    So what does EyeBeeKay mean by;

    “Take the lowliest Symbian smartphone, and you can be reasonably sure that your background apps would be running when you switch back”.

    The Nokia E72 was no slouch even with the annoying RAM. RIP Ellen (she was stolen from the dude i sold her to)Poppa misses you.

  18. @zsch, eyebeekay is probably exaggerating. The lowliest of symbian will frustrate the living daylight out of anybody. Any symbian phone that has RAM size below 256MB is in for a rough ride. But at 256MB, it is fairly stable. So the lowliest symbian phone doesn’t handle multutasking as well as eyebeekay implied.

  19. @Efe, can you elucidate, because I don’t quite get your point.

    even a phone with 2Gig RAM can be made to crash uf you load 500 apps simultaneously.

    the RAM size is not the bone of contention here, but its effective utilization!

    you seem to miss my point –

    my point is that Symbian (RIP) handles multitasking much more effectively than Android.

    I am not interested in the technical mumbo jumbo. the result is what the user is after.

    I used a Nokia 5800/-with tiny memory.I was not frustrated half as much as the current Android shindig has, multitasking_wise! And this current Android phone has memory capacity that makes the Old Nokia 5800 PURPLE with JEALOUSY!

  20. I like the way @Eyebeekay repeated the main point.
    ‘My point is that Symbian (RIP) handles multitasking much more effectively than Android’

    If you want to compare Symbian with Android, pick devices with the same processor and ram from the two OS and compare them.

    If Symbian had the things given to Android on a platter of gold, you would have seen more wonders.

    We all know Nokia leaving Symbian is more of a company bureaucracy than deficiency of the OS, if Nokia had revamped Symbian like RIM is doing for BB10, the story would have been different.

  21. @eyebeekay, Do you realise that android apps are far larger than the average symbian app? Do you know that android runs more background processes than symbian? You said the lowliest symbian multitasks without problems which I know is false from experience. Zsch also pointed out that your statement is not true. I used a symbian phone. With whatsapp running in the background, I could barely run more than two additional apps. My phone was marketed as a navigation phone but I couldn’t use navigation because I always got a low memory error message. Whenever I had to type a lengthty text on opera mini or other browsers, I usually keep my fingers crossed because a call or a whatsapp message usually crashed the current app. So comparing symbian and android based on adequate RAM size is misleading. The fact that Windows 98 requires less RAM than Windows 7 doesn’t make it better at multitasking. Besides, we have said several times that with the appropriate hardware, android handles multitasking perfectly. I have used a Galaxy S2 with just 1GB of RAM and multitasking was as smooth as any symbian. I have a galaxy tab with 1GB RAM and it handles multitasking excellently.

  22. @Efe

    As just mentioned one of the reasons why Symbian handles multitasking better.

    Why must you need all the RAMs and cows in these world to multitask properly.

    Compare a Symbian and Android with same processor and RAM and see how Symbian handles multitasking better.

  23. @bosun, there is a reason symbian is not as good as android. Symbian apps are smaller and less sophiscated. A few that are up to android standard use up so much RAM that they mid to low range symbian phones stutter. Is 1GB of RAM too much in this modern age? I asked a question above and I will ask again, does the fact that windows 98 uses less RAM than Windows 7 make it better at multitasking than Windows 7?

  24. @bosun, there are so many factors that determine performance. Zeroing down multitasking prowess to minimum required RAM size is a mistake. Symbian may require less RAM but the fact remains, Android handles multitasking as well as symbian. Android and symbian are different so a pound for pound comparison is difficult if not impossible. Windows 7 is as capable in multitasking as Windows 98 or Vista, yet RAM size between Windows 98 and Windows 7 has tripled.

  25. “If you want to compare Symbian with Android, pick devices with the same processor and ram from the two OS and compare them”.

    I tried very hard to ignore this statement then you sir had to repeat it. Android is a more sophisticated and intensive OS. Give an Asha device and a Pureview 2gb of ram and the entire shebang then tell me which would be more fluid.

    Its like comparing metabolism and energy output in a dinosaur and a lizard. My take on it so y’all can quit the bickering already ( ???)

  26. Android and symbian are different, so a pound for pound comparison is difficult if not impossible.

    Very convenient. Android fanboys do this pound for pound comparison at every opportunity where the results favour Android. But now, such a comparison is a bad idea. LOOOOOOL.

  27. Very convenient.Android fanboys do this pound for pound comparison at every opportunity where the results favour Android. But now, such a comparison is a bad idea.
    LOOOOOOL.

    I think Symbian devices still stands very little chance if we should go that route. Since we are consumers, the right place to start would be the price. Take a Symbian device and an Android device of the same price and Symbian will simply start failing.

    As a consumer, if I’m going to start complaining that Android devices do not handle multitasking well, and that Symbian does it better, I start with devices of similar prices because that is what will matter to me at the end of the day.

  28. @Mr Mo, it is not convenience, it is the truth. Android is by far more sophiscated than symbian. As such, hardware requirements are different. Android runs more background processes that include far better apps, the best notification centre and the most immersive third party integration system in the business. It also features memory hungry widgets and deep OEM customization which adds extra resource requirements. Symbian doesn’t go through such rigors and when it did in the past, it was a disaster in some cases. Remember Sendo X? The fact remains that android handles multitasking excellently as you attested to in your Note 2 review. Even RIM that used to be conservative with hardware specs are releasing their first phone with a 2GB RAM. Times have changed. Even the iPhone 5 that doesn’t do true multi-tasking has a 1GB RAM. The same 1GB RAM that handles multi-tasking excellently on Android.

  29. im going to be rude….its just silly when android fans make noise like the OS is perfect. Android sucks with multitasking simple. Admit it and move on! The symbian phone with the highest ram specs is 808PV with 512mb ram. Android 4.0 will not even run on devices below 512mb ram. And it closes apps at will. A whole 9 months of multitasking on my phone anf nothing , i repeat nothing closes automatically by itself…but if you have used android for a while or you have never used symbian belle you wouldn’t know how bad android is…

  30. so everyone has to buy a Note 2 to enjoy multitasking on android. What if i can only afford a samsung galaxy ace?? I suspect iphone 5 is using most of the 1gb ram for HD games.. Not multitasking!

  31. Windows 98 requires minimum of 16MB of RAM to install while Windows 7 requires minimum of 1GB of RAM to install, about 64 times the requirement for Windows 98. Should we conclude that Windows 98 is a better multitasker than Windows 7? somebody raised that question yesterday and nobody has answered it.

    If you want to start comparing system requirements and multitasking, then maybe the older Symbian operating system versions are also better or more capable at multitasking since they also generally require less RAM to run than the latest iteration in the form of Belle, and I will be surprised by the lot of the Symbian fans who think that multitasking on the lean is true, better or proper multitasking since all of you are praising Belle on how close it is in UI and UX to the more modern and leading operating systems – Android and iOS, while still at the same maintaining that multitasking with less RAM is the best approach without due consideration to the entire operating system and its sophistication.

  32. @Olusheenor, I do not use a Note 2 yet my android device multi-tasks perfectly. Whether Apple ugraded the RAM size in the iphone to 1GB because of games or multi-tasking, the fact remains that all modern OSes have moved on to 1GB as minimum RAM size for flagship devices. I just checked the specs of Nokia N9, another Nokia phone hailed for its multi-tasking prowess. Guess what? It has a 1GB RAM. That is a phone that is almost two years old. Android is the most robust OS and in most cases is heavily skinned manufacturers. Hence, it requires more power.

  33. @Efe

    Very soon, Android will require more power to multitask than the grandfather of multitasking – PC, and you tell me Android is better at multitasking.

  34. @Harry

    Windows 7 is a many years after upgraded version of Windows 98, they belong to the same Leanage.
    That example can not hold water in this context, if we ever need to compare Gingerbread and Jellybean; it will sure pass.

    Pick devices from the two OS with equal processor and Ram and lets compare and see who multitask better.

  35. @bosun99uk:

    Do you know that the kind of HD games coming out for Android these days are in the same league as those found on Windows desktop PCs or at least very close to them in terms of graphics qualities and size? But the same is not true for Symbian/Belle. The idea is that Android is moving very close to the desktop operating systems that mobile operating systems are touted to replace in the near future, in terms of processing capabilities and sophistication. And yes, if mobiles phones are going to replace desktops, they will have to catch up in sophistication and processing power and if desktop development should stagnate, Android will eventually overtake it in processing power and thus resource requirement. That stagnation is exactly what happened with Symbian, limiting its use beyond mobile phones and thus reducing its value in the modern mobile computing trends. It is very obvious, Symbian has been there for years but failed to move mobile computing beyond just mobile phones and that is why it failed to compete effectively in the present scheme of things.

    Things are really changing faster than you can imagine and things keeps getting bigger both physically and logically and thus, processing power has to increase. Why did Nokia have to increase the RAM size on the Nokia 808 PureView to 512MB from their traditional 256MB or less that you find in most of the older Symbian devices? Emulating the modern trend takes resources to implement and run. Simple. And yet, Belle still lags behind the pacesetters.

  36. @Bosun, dont you get it? Comparing symbian and android is like comparing a Kia and a Lamborghini. Maybe windows 98 and windows 7. Go and compare hardware requirements for windows xp and windows 7 or compare Windows 7 and Chrome OS in terms of hardware requirements.

  37. @Efe

    Am not comparing hardware requirement.

    And saying compare the phones.

    If you are not ready to compare phones, please call it a day.

  38. We ought to have called it quits before now, after all what is there to compare about an inadequate operating that has been jettisoned by its maker and fast thinning out of circulation, with one that is serving its purpose excellently well as evidently reflected by the overwhelming financial vote of its users. Symbian belongs to the past and should only come up in history classes when discussing the history of operating systems and past but interesting legacy technologies like Polaroid camera, Cathode Ray Tube monitors, Microsoft DOS operating system, Pentium I & II and like technologies.

    And yes, Symbian served its purpose well in the Stone Age Era of mobile computing, but this is 2013 and nobody wants to be stuck in the past. It is actually amazing that people enjoyed using Symbian phones, but Polaroid cameras were also once luxury devices just like Pentium I computers. Let’s move on people!

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