Monday, 31 October 2011

Nokia World, Lumia and the N9.

Hello all, thanks for reading! This is the first post on my new blog, it's work in progress at the moment but hope to improve it soon. This is my review of my recent trip to Nokia World and some of the products I encountered.

I’ll start by saying a massive thank you to Juhis & Wayne (from Nokia Support Discussions), lots of Nokia employees, Nokia Connects and lots of other great people for making this trip possible and enjoyable, all I can say is AWESOME! I won’t bore you all with a blow by blow account of the trip, just a summary of my personal highlights.

Nokia World

The scale of the event was way beyond what I’d expected and was impressed to see how slickly organised the entire event was, kudos to the crew there. The event kicked off with the traditional keynote speech and a very special mention for four people in the crowd, including me! Was blown away by that, think we all were! The speakers were all entertaining as the 90 minutes went on but the real highlights were from Stephen Elop and Kevin “AWESOME” Shields. If anyone hasn’t already seen the keynote it is worth watching. I’ll stop saying awesome now.

Shortly after the keynote we were invited into the conference area for a series of meetings ranging from forum feedback to Q&A sessions about products and accessories. The main meeting was in a packed room with 25 or so popular bloggers where we were introduced to the Lumia 800 up close. In fact so close that we were each handed a box containing a Lumia 800 and a micro sim. After a few questions the bloggers started their unboxing videos, I started play time and thoroughly enjoyed it! We were allowed to keep the Lumia’s for the duration of Nokia World which was a massive bonus. Other sessions featured Nokia’s accessories which all had stunning looks and build, really felt my wallet twitching at the sight of them! Even had a visit from the main man himself, Stephen Elop, during one of the sessions, the entire room was shocked, but very happy.

As the day went on it was great to have demos and chats in the experience lounge and saw a lot of interesting products and concepts. Later in the day a massive party was held, the entertainment was awesome (sorry) featuring circus style entertainers and a good chart covers band. I certainly made the most of the free beer on offer and was easily persuaded to join the after party in Soho, think I crawled back to my room sometime after 3am. Both days were packed with great experiences with great people, way too many for me to type about today.

Nokia Lumia 800

There’s already a lot been said about this device so I’ll try to keep it brief. The build quality is beautiful, very little else feels as good to hold and use as this phone. I would describe the size as perfect sitting nicely in the gaps of the smaller screened iPhones and larger screened high end Androids. Some people have commented on the fact that it’s not metal like the N8 but to me this polycarbonate feels seriously premium. The OS is slick, simple and fluid, can really see Nokia’s Lumia’s stealing some iOS customers away as it feels so much fresher compared to it, it will appeal to many Android users too, in fact it’s just appealing. The Lumia is more than just the OS though, it’s the whole device experience. As my time went on with the Lumia I encountered a few niggles and issues but I’m sure that given the time to sit down with one in a quiet place I’d have it running more my way. I actually managed to kill my Lumia at the end of the first day (it wouldn’t charge), but it wasn’t running release software so issues like this are to be expected, was handed another one in the Morning.

Nokia N9

Finally I had the pleasure of playing with an N9 and wow is that device good! I was angry when I found out this device wasn’t officially coming to the UK and I do hope Nokia change their minds on this along with giving it a future successor. The OS is a genius touch and can’t compare it to other platforms, it’s just so different. It’s easy to use and very powerful, a great phone for the masses and the geeks out there. On the outside the N9 and the Lumia are essentially the same phone with a few minor differences, the enlarged button-less screen area being the main one. When given the choice between the Lumia and the N9 I choose the N9 as it suits me that little bit better.

If anyone wants to ask any questions or wants further details from me about anything feel free to ask! Again a massive thank you to all who arranged this and another thank you to Juhis for being a great host these last few days. To end this post I’ll share with you an email I received this morning which really made my day!