I am normally pretty open minded when it comes to technology, but I must admit, when it comes to mobile phones, I have always been a bit of a closet Nokia fanboy.
One of the first mobile phones I ever had (the very first was in fact an Ericsson), was the legendary Nokia 2110 (picture to the right). Not much to say about that really – it was absolutely rock solid build quality and I am quite sure if I could find a working battery it would still work fine. Sound and build quality was awesome (as it aught to be – if I am not mistaken the first one cost around US$ 1000 or so).
After the 2110 I went through a pile of Ericsson phones until Ericsson gave up and joined forces with Sony and I dropped my gorgeous T21 on a tile floor. At this point I bought a Nokia 8210. This is without a shadow of a doubt the most brilliant phone I have ever used. It was TINY especially by today’s standard and battery life was about a week (no kiddin’!). I seriously do not think this phone will ever be beaten.
I used this phone for something like 7 years (no kiddin’). At some point the microphone crapped out and I had it replaced.
At some point a friend of mine who was a serious gadget freak was given a Nokia N73 and since he had no use for it – he passed it to me. While it was quite advanced for the time, it is probably the phone I have disliked the most. It was bulky – it was SLOW – and battery life sucked big time. I only used this phone for about a year or so, but managed to kill the stupid little joy stick thingy twice.
Just when I was pretty fed up with the N73, Nokia launched a massive campaign with TV commercials advertising the Nokia 6110 Navigator. I thought this was pretty damn cool and while I am not crazy about slide phones, I decided to give it a shot. Much was my surprise that even though the TV commercial was on daily, nobody had this phone in stock in Malaysia and they all wanted to sell me a new N-something (can’t remember which one) which was much more expensive. I called Nokia in Malaysia and bitched about this, and they found one and actually gave it to me just to shut me up. Anyway – it was actually quite a nice little phone. The display was smaller than the N73, but it was much quicker and it worked quite nicely.
While I quite liked the 6110 Navigator, this was a period where everybody else – especially LG and HTC – was pumping out “Smart Phones” with touch displays and when Nokia finally got their act together and launched the 5800 ExpressMusic, I just had to have one (and I think I bought one of the first in Malaysia). Initially the firmware sucked cock, but after 2 or 3 releases – they sort of got it right, and I was quite willing to give Nokia a bit of time to sort it out. Especially because contrary to the other phones on the market the 5800 was dirt cheap.
This to me will always be the phone that represent Nokia on the top and I really can’t understand why it went downhill from this point.
The 5800 with touch screen probably stretched Symbian just about as far as it could go and I was quite excited when Nokia announced the N900 – the first mobile device based on Maemo (which I aught to like since it is essentially a Debian GNU/Linux with a mobile GUI thrown in for good measure). It was quite difficult for me to get one in Malaysia, but I finally managed to get it a few month after it was released in the state. A few weeks after I managed to get one, Nokia announced that they would drop future development of Maemo and concentrate on Meego. This is quite frankly one of the most idiotic decisions I have ever encountered. Maemo was a bit rough around the edges – and still is – but it was/is a rock solid platform and with a little bit of love and effort the user interface could beat just about anything currently on the market.
Now Nokia is about to release the N9 – their first phone running Meego. Unfortunately it is quite clear already that it will also be their last. This time they have announced a change of direction even before the phone has been released. Would I buy one? Well, I would lie if I said I wasn’t tempted, but really – no fucking way. Cheat me once – shame on you, cheat me twice – shame on me, so no – I will not put a cent more into Nokia’s pockets. In fact I have just purchased a Samsung Galaxy S2 and it is awesome so far. So, goodbye Nokia, it was fun while it lasted, but you have let yourself go.