With Nokia World 2010 just around the corner, we're seeing plenty of news - official and otherwise - from the Finns. Fresh to Vodafone UK comes the C6, the company's latest QWERTY slider, with the carrier also announcing that if you want the green N8 then you'll have to see them too, since it's a network exclusive. Meanwhile there's more news on when exactly the N8 will hit shelves.
Nokia has begun accepting preorders for the US version of the upcoming Nokia N8, with the Symbian^3 smartphone set to arrive at the end of September 2010. Priced at $549, the N8 has a 12-megapixel camera with autofocus and flash, a five-band WCDMA 850/900/1700/1900/2100 modem suitable for both AT&T and T-Mobile USA, together with 16GB of onboard storage.
Nokia continue to insist that they have no plans to ditch Symbian or MeeGo in favor of Android, and so we'll have to get our Google/Finn crossover kicks in unofficial ways. Chinese firm iZiNN has cloned the Nokia N8 and slapped a copy of Android 2.1 on their copy, the CJ-3; it lacks the original's 12-megapixel camera (making do with just 5-megapixels) but does keep the HDMI output and 3.5-inch capacitive touchscreen.
Amazon Germany has apparently begun cancelling Nokia N8 preorders, according to FinestFones, informing customers by email that while the retailer had attempted to source the smartphone in a timely manner, they had been unable to do so with the Symbian^3 smartphone. Interestingly, they also say that while they try to ensure their database is up to date, manufacturers sometimes change their release plans; it's unclear whether Nokia has been delayed in its release intentions for the N8, which many had expected sometime in August.
It's close to two months since Vodafone UK told us that the Nokia N8 was "coming soon", but there's still no sign of an official launch date for the 12-megapixel smartphone. Now T-Mobile UK are getting into the act, with the N8 showing up on their own teaser page.
Nokia's financial results for the second quarter of 2010 are out, and it's a mixed bag. Despite the doomsday predictions, sales of Nokia devices - both smartphones and mainstream handsets - are up, with 111.1m units shipped (an increase of 8-percent compared to the same quarter twelve months ago, and up 3-percent from Q1 2010); smartphones in particular (or "converged mobile devices" as Nokia refers to them) saw volumes rise 42-percent year-on-year to 24m units. However, the flip side is a reduced average selling price per device, which cut into Nokia's profits; Devices & Services' operating profit was down to €643m ($820m), a 16-percent fall in comparison to the same three month period a year ago, while overall net profit was €221 ($282m), down from €380m ($485).
The Nokia/mobile-review controversy continues, with Russian journalist Eldar Murtazin making an official statement on what he describes as "a witch hunt" designed to discredit him. After finding last week that Nokia had called in the Russian authorities to retrieve any prototype devices from Murtazin, something which Nokia then claimed was in response to ignored official requests for their return, the mobile-review editor now says that he never actually had an N8 in his possession; in actual fact, he merely spent periodic hands-on time with someone else's prototype. Therefore, he insists, there's nothing left to hand over.
While controversy continues over the Nokia N8's Symbian^3 OS, one thing most people can agree on is that the smartphone's 12-megapixel camera is possibly the best so-far on a mobile device. We grabbed a couple of test shots in our recent hands-on with the N8, but Nokia Conversations has a full gallery of unedited pictures from the phone.
Nokia has given us an official comment on the report that they have enlisted the help of Russian authorities to take mobile-review to task, and it seems the Finns weren't so much upset with what was mentioned in the N8 preview but with the fact that Eldar Murtazin wouldn't give them the prototype handset back. "Several weeks back" Nokia told us "we formally requested the return of all unauthorized Nokia property from Mr. Murtazin and he declined to respond."
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.