n79 review

I’ve just struck off another item on the wishlist. And n79 so happen to match all points I listed in the phone item. Looks like I’m a few years ahead of technology when I made that wish. The next phone I’d like to see will be a touch phone, but with a morphable surface so that it will jut “keys” out on areas that can be pressed, creating a tactile effect, as though there were keys. Crazy? Maybe.

Having set up and customized my phone for a day, here’s my perception of the phone.

What I like:

  • Connectivity. Apart from Bluetooth and GPRS, Wifi support is fantastic. I quickly hooked up to my home WLAN + WEP with literally no issues. I’m transferring stuff from my PC through Wifi instead of Bluetooth. I also connected easily to Wireless@SG with the intention to check up bus services, only to realize I lost my password. Am still looking for a stable S60 MSN client.
  • Browser. Loads sites correctly so far. Works well with Wifi. Still figuring out how to open multiple windows.
  • Navigation. I’ve longed for GPS + Maps. Tracked my location on my bus home yesterday, and it was pretty accurate. Complete local map preloaded.
  • Radio. Lets me learn of new songs. It still require the wired enhancement to act as an antenna. I wonder when this will improve.
  • Light. Others might consider it heavy, but it’s lighter than my previous phone. And considering the number of hardware features it needs to pack, it’s light to me.
  • Memory Card. Hot swappable micro SD. Finally I can store more stuff in my phone.
  • Bar phone. Less moving parts. Although it results in a smaller screen, I still dislike slide and flip phones.
  • Fast. Feels responsive, maybe because I haven’t loaded a lot of stuff yet.
  • Standard audio output. I can hook up my favorite headphone to the phone (and use it as a radio antenna as well).
  • Shortcuts. Good ol’ Nokia has shortcut keys for the advanced (read: impatient) users. I like to access what I want quickly with minimal keystrokes.
  • Quad-band. No more roaming problems while overseas.

What was fine:

  • Camera. I just needed a basic camera that is able to take pictures. This 5MP beast works for me, though its a little overkill.
  • QuickOffice. It says I can open MS Office documents. Haven’t tried that yet, not sure if I can edit it.
  • Music Player. Useful when the radio’s not available (e.g. underground), or when the DJs just talk and talk.
  • Rotatometer“. Formally known as the accelerometer, it makes web browsing slightly more enjoyable with a “wider” screen. Its sensitivity could be reduced for a better experience.

What’s useless:

  • Express-on covers. It is supposed to change my phone’s theme to match the cover too. I’m not impressed. But I do look forward to spraying a stencil on to one of those covers to create a custom one.
  • Breathing“. Light on the keypad fades in and out when at rest. Wasting battery to me. Lucky its “disablable”.
  • Keypad lock switch. Located at the top of the phone beside the power button, its not somewhere my fingers will reach in my 1-hand operation. I’m glad the soft keypad lock sequence works.
  • FM transmitter.

The bad:

  • Number pad. Flushed, I do not know where I’m pressing without looking.
  • Crowded keypad. Buttons are squeezed together. I have to use nails for number pad and some soft buttons. I have a higher error rate than my previous phone. The reason for the crowd is partly because its a bar phone. However I see room on the phone surface for bigger/sparser buttons. The multimedia button could also have been eliminated.
  • Plastic finish. I tend to oil up such surfaces.
  • Navi-wheel. Not as sensitive. Actually over-sensitive. The wheel was actually on the nipple, like ThinkPads. Could be useful for scrolling if it was better.

The last thing I hope to like will be the battery life of the phone. So far my one day of heavy usage (Wifi, radio, GPS, maps, browsing, N-Gage) has just cost me one of seven bars.

2 thoughts on “n79 review

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *