Day two of my conference was packed dawn to dusk with interesting stuff. After all the announcements of new S60 devices the day before, I was more than keen to take a closer look at them at the Nokia and S60 booth. Unlike the year before, S60 joined their mother company in the main hall but fortunately was still separated a bit so most people rather went to the hopelessly overcrowded Nokia booth to stand in line rather than to go to S60 to check things out without any hassle.
I very much liked the E90, aka the new Nokia Communicator. Great resolution screen on the inside, smaller screen on the outside which is however fully usable. You can start web browsing on the big screen, close the Communicator and continue browsing on the smaller screen on the outside. Very smart. The E90 does GPRS, EDGE, UMTS, HSDPA and Wifi, so fast Internet access should be no problem anymore where ever you go.
As hoped, I met Jouni, aka Marketing Man of S60 on their booth and we had a long chat about the new S60 3rd edition feature pack two. Things which stood out for me were for example the enhanced animation when browsing through the menus. Also, the new memory paging feature, which is a bit less obvious for the user, but which will hopefully prevent applications from being closed once the device runs out of memory because two many applications are open should further enhance usability a bit. This is my main pain point with the N93 at the moment as the browser just takes monumental amounts of memory when browsing on normal web pages. Memory paging in feature pack 2 allows the OS to page out parts of the memory used by applications waiting in the background to the Flash memory thus making room for the memory requirements of other applications running in the foreground. I didn’t see the new paging feature running yet so it remains to be seen how fast memory is paged in and out in practice.
I also went away very impressed from the N95 mapping application demo. The mapping application is now available for download from smart2go.com for lots of other S60 devices and I can’t wait to try it out myself as soon as I have some time to install it one my phone. Stay tuned for my usability report which I will do shortly.
I was also happy to finally meet Ganesh in person, who is in charge of the S60 browser marketing. You should check out the podcast Phil Schwarzman made with him a couple of months ago, which is available on the Voice of S60 homepage. I very much liked the new floating menu in the browser and the offline RSS reader capabilities.
In the afternoon, I was kindly invited to the S60 press panel and I got to talk to Lee Epting, Vice President of Forum Nokia and Matti Vaenskae, Vice President of Mobile Software Sales and Marketing. Quite an interesting panel for me, it gave me a lot of insight how S60 works on integrating all people from the value chain including mobile operators. Some interesting statistics from the panel: 85 million S60 devices have been shipped to date and 25 3rd edition phones models are already on the market (Compare that to a single iPhone which is not even on the market yet…)
Before completing my Nokia day at the exhibition at the S60 party at the Palau de la Musica, I went to my publisher to see how sales of my book are doing at the exhibition and in general. As every year, Wiley is at the Congress to show their wide variety of telecom books at the exhibition and I was glad to see that people were eagerly buying books.
So much for the days events and news, pictures as always on Flickr.