Thoughts on S60

reflections on the most popular mobile operating system worldwide

Nokia N97; Multimedia Computer…from 2007.

with 4 comments

Since my last post about how much more interested I am in the Samsung i8910 instead of the N97, I have given both devices a lot of thought to try to come to a fair decision. Since my day typically consists of significantly more messaging than anything else, a hardware keyboard started to look pretty appealing to me. Then the rest of its lesser features when compared to the i8910 started making me thing that maybe they would be “enough” for my normal usage. That was until this was published on Forum Nokia regarding the hardware in the N97:

If it wasn’t bad enough that Nokia is using the same 5mp camera sensor that they’ve been using since the original N95, they also used the same processor used on most Nokia devices since the N95 from 2007! If you think I’m making it up, please take a look at the processor specs of the original N95. Not only is it the same processor, but the N95 also supported a dual CPU and a dedicated 3D hardware acceleration (making it excellent for gaming).

Meanwhile, everybody else has stepped up to processors that can at least support up to 600mhz (if not more) for their future devices, if they’re not using them already. Among them happens to be the Samsung OmniaHD which not only features the Cortex A8 process (capable of up to 800mhz), but also uses the PowerVR SGX GPU for graphics acceleration. You might reconize the Cortex A8, as it’s the same one that Palm is using in their hotly anticipated Pre due out from Sprint within the next couple months. If you’d like to see the nitty gritty on the difference between these two processors, do a search for “Pre” and “N97” on this Wikipedia page.

I know some of you may be thinking that a faster processor means significantly less battery life, which turns out to be very ironic. The Cortex A8 also features dynamic power management, meaning it can adjust its power consumption based on the CPU load in real time to significantly save battery life. The entire ARM11 architechture doesn’t support anything like this.

This has pretty much put the final nail in the coffin for me. I meant it when I said I’d like to keep my next device for at least a year if I can, and I just don’t think using old tech with a higher clock speed is going to be able to cut it for a long-term device, especially when the competition has so many other features under the hood as well.

What do you think? Will you still buy an N97 knowing it’s using an older processor than most of the new devices due out this year?

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Written by Jonathan

May 1, 2009 at 10:46 pm

4 Responses

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  1. I know the specs are not what we dreamed of, the screen sensitivity is questionable and the keyboard layout scares me to death. But since pre-order was available at $454, I figured I’d give it a try.

    sjhong

    May 14, 2009 at 8:58 am

  2. At that price, I certainly don’t blame you, as I would have drop $5- on it too. Hell, at that price, you can try it for a week and sell it for a $100-200 profit!

    Jonathan

    May 14, 2009 at 7:06 pm

  3. The same can be said about the HTC Touch Pro and the HTC Touch Pro 2. Or the HTC Diamond and the HTC Diamond 2. They all use the same CPU…

    The “new” CPUs are the snapdragon (Qualcomm?) & tegra (nVidia). I think they are in the Toshiba TG01 and the i8910. I would love to see a list of what symbian phones use the “new” CPUs.

    Counsel

    June 1, 2009 at 3:49 pm

    • The i8910/ OmniaHD is powered by the OMAP3430 processor and it is currently the only S60 device that uses it (it will be used in the SE Satio/Idou when it comes out). Every other S60 device is running a processor based on ARM11 architecture, including the N97 (the same processor used in the E71, specifically).

      Jonnybruha

      June 2, 2009 at 1:28 am


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