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Summary:

There’s quite a bit of buzz around the “Tube”, which is expected to be Nokia’s touch-enabled handset meant to compete squarely with the Apple iPhone. On paper the rumors sound appealing: large touch-screen, quad-band GSM, HSDPA, Bluetooth, WiFi, GPS, and camera. The S60 environment should be […]

Tube02we6There’s quite a bit of buzz around the “Tube”, which is expected to be Nokia’s touch-enabled handset meant to compete squarely with the Apple iPhone. On paper the rumors sound appealing: large touch-screen, quad-band GSM, HSDPA, Bluetooth, WiFi, GPS, and camera. The S60 environment should be updated nicely for touch controlling, so it all sounds good.I saw two pics of the apparent device over at Symbian Freak and well… I did freak. Hopefully, the second picture uses a stylus simply to depict the phone’s size, but based on the rounded stylus top that appears to match the round nature of the phone’s corner, I’m concerned. If this phone comes with a stylus, I think Nokia will have missed the boat. Mainstream consumers are still mystified and wary of the stylus. Some people have actually asked me “And what does that do?” when I’ve pulled the stylus on my XV6700, as if it the stylus itself has “features.” “There’s no magical or technical properties”, I tell them. “It’s just easier to tap on the phone.”At this point, the stylus should simply go away on a handheld phone. It’s been successfully proven that with the right user interface, it’s simply not needed on a device with a screen size of 3-inches or less. Again, I’m really hoping that the pic is just for size comparison, but if it’s not, I hope Nokia considers this as constructive feedback. If you’re going to start out in the touchscreen device market: start out right with a touch-optimized UI and lose the stylus.

  1. I believe it was engadget but don’t quote me…

    I’m sure someone specifically mentioned that it is (at least at this point in time) supposed to have a stylus.

    in reference to this they said while the S60 icons seemed marginally tweaked, the scroll bar at the side of this particular shot is veeeery small and probably not finger friendly per se…

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  2. Yup, I just saw the Engadget article. There’s a VERY skinny scrollbar and accompanying stylus expected. I think Nokia would make a much bigger splash if they could tweak the UI to remove the scrollbar.

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  3. Stylius is just an option and it is necessary for the handwriting recognition.. . . .

    You should read my S60 5th gen related article for more about interface itself:
    http://www.symbian-freak.com/news/007/12/nokia_world_2007_s60_touch_ui.htm

    Anyway, Nokia intention is to kill iPhone by the features so don’t blame them because of the UI only, in my personal opinion adding the touch option to S60 platform is the great move and it also important o say that there will not be the code break and 5th edition will be backward compatible!

    Speaking about iPhone, well, it was already discussed numerous times and I am not interesting in opening the same discussion again, it is completely pointless, its hard to say something about phone that lacks file manager for example, phone that lacks cut/copy/paste feature or isn’t capable to process crappy MMS format or record video in 3gp format at least, or phone that has BT but can’t send a files over it, will stop it here as I haven’t enough time to count all cons, crap is crap and that’s it.

    We all know that iPhone is nothing but the crap, but general public won’t know that and most of them won’t even realize that when they actually buy one.

    The iPhone brings nothing new to the market, except multi touch of course, actually, if it brings anything new, its the look, and honestly, slim and sleek design has been seen before, and it will be done again, Prada is nice example and it going to be even better and better equipped phone with more features.

    Price, size, weight, height, width, design, brand, OS, who really care, features before all and in terms of features it simply *, it’s a piece of **** with nice screen over it and extremely good marketing behind it. . .

    Teo

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  4. The S60 Touch UI is both touch and stylus enabled so it leaves the choice up to the user, which I actually prefer. You cannot do any handwriting recognition with your finger so if you want to use this input method you need a stylus.

    I think having both is a better design than the iPhone because it gives you the choice.

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  5. Finger-touch works great for some things, but for others, not so well.

    Putting aside HWR (which I’ll happily take if I can get it), there are also plenty of web pages with dense links that are close enough that it’s hard to be precise with a finger on a 3″ screen. Heck, just move up THIS page to the list of recent comments on the right and you’ll see what I mean – and there are much harder examples out there. I’ll take the stylus for this purpose alone, every time. Remember, most web pages are designed for use with a precision pointing instrument that can put the pointer in a space a few pixels wide – a mouse or stylus – not for finger pointing.

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  6. >>>S60 environment

    Oh Christ. Yeah, have fun with that General Public.

    >>>We all know that iPhone is nothing but the crap

    Yeah, right. Feeling the heat of impending bankruptcy in Finland, are they? Good riddance.

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  7. turn.self.off Wednesday, April 9, 2008

    im with the people that say choice is good.

    reading webforums on my N800 i can either zoom 3-4 levels so that the “new posts” element becomes big enough to reliably hit with a finger, pop the stylus and tap it with that, or turn of all images so that i can get the alternative text based link…

    and given the limited options of a iphone, i would say that zooming until finger friendly would be my only option. and then zooming back out again so that one get most of the text on screen again. all in all, meh…

    if the unfamiliarity of the user should stop one from including something, then we would still be bashing stones together…

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  8. “Yeah, right. Feeling the heat of impending bankruptcy in Finland, are they? Good riddance.”

    That’s about the dumbest thing I’ve read today. Thanks for the chuckle.

    Nokia has over 40% of the handset market globally. Nokia also has over 50% of the smartphone market globally. The iPhone is definitely not a piece of crap, but right now Apple is a tiny blip on the radar compared to Samsung as far as Nokia is concerned. Will that change in a few years when Apple has 4 or 5 solid handsets out. You’re damn right it will. Hopefully by then Nokia will have put this S60 Touch nonsense behind them and will have stepped up their game if they choose to be competitive in the touch UI market. Either way, they’ll be the global leader for many, many years to come…

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  9. I’m all for freedom of choice and I have owned many great S60 phones, but also many crapy ones.

    But staitments like:
    “We all know that iPhone is nothing but the crap”
    “The iPhone brings nothing new to the market”

    they just judge them self.

    Also it is quite funny to see Nokia make the same mistake that all of apple competitors in the iPod market made, make worse product’s with more, and more features.

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  10. turn.self.off Wednesday, April 9, 2008

    i have said it before and i say it again, the iphone is a construct of the us mobile phone market.

    compared to even a low price nokia in europe, the feature set of the iphone is down right laughable.

    bluetooth that cant do file transfer? come on…

    but i guess the us market i used to that sort of thing so i dont blame them.

    i will say the same about the iphone as i will say about a girl. while the looks my get me interested, the brains will make me stay.

    but then i guess i match the geek stereotype, and probably have my style vs substance values crossed these days…

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