Nokia have been running a huge advertising campaign for the latest smartphone to come from the company, the Nokia N8. Nokia haven't had much luck appealing to smart phone consumers in the last few years with their main product range being several years behind the handsets offered from Apple, BlackBerry and other large smart phone companies. Has the N8 finally broken that curse and started Nokia back on the path to becoming a household name again?
The N8 is a striking phone, and one that can't easily be ignored. It's large touch screen takes up the majority of the front of the phone and looks pretty similar to an iPhone with a single button at the bottom. However, closer inspection will reveal the N8 has more tactile buttons than the average touch screen phone usually employs, as well as being slightly thicker than most modern smart phones, it's extra size and bulk designed to accommodate a high spec camera.
And for those who are always taking picture on their phones, this camera is amazing. Running at 12 megapixels, the N8 camera is by far the best camera we've ever seen in a phone before, and you'd have a hard time telling the difference between a picture taken using a separate digital camera and the N8, which works incredibly well even in low light conditions and has a wide range of different features and options including the ability to record in HD at 720p.
It might be worth referring to the Nokia N8 Vodafone as a camera phone rather than a smart phone, as that's clearly what Nokia have been focusing on here.
However, the N8 is a phone, after all, and the camera is only a single feature. The other features on the phone have all been upgraded from the standard Nokia fare. Of particular note is the excellent Ovi maps software which is one of the best GPS programs available anywhere, and the upgraded Ovi store, which now feels much more like Android and iPhone users are used to, with easy navigation and plenty of filtering and search options.
The N8 still has some way to go before it truly catches up with Android though. The Symbian OS is still busy trying to keep up with Android and there are still some glaring problems, such as the omission of an on screen keyboard when in portrait mode, which is likely to put many people off using the phone to send longer text messages and seems a very strange thing to miss out on. Plus, for all of the improvements in the Ovi store, it's still tiny compared to the offerings from both Android and Apple.