Nokia's strategy in the smartphone market is a heated subject for some out there, but it looks like the company may have a line of silver along some of those formulating storm clouds on the horizon. Thanks to Eldar Murtazin, the (in)famous Russian-based journalist who has been known to break a few Nokia-centric stories in the past, it looks like Nokia's upcoming effort, the N9, is looking very, very good. At least, when it comes to the hardware.
It seems even the threat of legal action can't keep Mobile-review's Eldar Murtazin from spilling the beans on unannounced Nokia handsets, with the latest on his test bench to be the upcoming Nokia C7-00. Spotted in the wild back in early June, the Symbian^3 handset has a 3.5-inch AMOLED 640 x 360 display and, Murtazin reckons, is basically the N8 with a mere 8-megapixel camera and no HDMI output.
With his track record of leaks and occasionally scathing previews, we can't imagine mobile-review's Eldar Murtazin is the most popular guy at Nokia; still, we're surprised all the same that the Finnish company apparently approached the Russian Interior Ministry hoping to take him to task over allegedly stealing trade secrets. Murtazin says that his Nokia N8 coverage touched a raw nerve; though the ministry official did ask where mobile-review's servers were physically located, for the moment the site is still online.
Last we heard of Nokia's N9 it was a mysterious unannounced device near the peak of the Finnish company's roadmap "house"; now we're being asked to believe that this monochromatic slider is the handset itself. A new video purported to show the N9 in pre-release form has emerged, tipping a device similar to the N8 only with a slide-out QWERTY keyboard.
Video demo after the cut
Nokia's N8 certainly seems to be creating some hype for the Finnish company, and we can't imagine that's going down too badly at Nokia HQ. Currently being picked over is the N8's ability to hook up to an external hard drive and access its files - something that we actually knew from the spec sheet back on the day of the N8's launch, since that detailed the USB on-the-go support - together with rumors that a 32GB N8 is planned together with the 16GB Nokia announced.
Remember the device purported to be Nokia's N8-00, spotted well in advance of its rumored commercial launch later in 2010? According to one of Engadget's "trusted sources", the smartphone - which totes a 12-megapixel camera, HDMI output and a capacitive touchscreen - will be launched as the Nokia N8 in the middle of April 2010.
We knew the Nokia N97 Mini was only mildly smaller than its full-sized sibling, but Mobile-Review's Eldar Murtazin has - thanks to his early access to the QWERTY smartphone - confirmed it with a full review. Unfortunately for Nokia, he's not impressed: a combination of insufficient price differentiation between the N97 Mini and the N97, mediocre looks and, most damning, a keyboard that's actually worse than that of the original add up to a handset that's yet to answer the original question of "why bother?"
In case the regular old Nokia E71 isn't good enough for you, rumor has it that there will soon be another version of the device available called the E71i. And while this version will be very much like the standard E71, it will have a significant camera upgrade and a few other perks.
Just as they have apparently tapped HTC for the dual-boot option for Android phones with Windows Phone 8, it's become apparent today that Microsoft may have asked Samsung and Huawei to do the same. Microsoft was tipped this past week to have suggested HTC make a selection of devices that boot to Windows Phone 8 as well as their basic Android mobile OS to increase the likelihood that a user would find Windows Phone appealing. If Microsoft does indeed get their way with the likes of HTC and Samsung as well, we may see Windows Phone 8.1 working on the HTC One Max and the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Active.