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Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Handsets, handsets everywhere. Yet not a single one I want.

Maybe June will be the month I finally replace my main personal phone. I've been utterly exasperated over the last 11 months that there has not been a single phone that's ticked all the boxes. I'm still using the SonyEricsson K800i I got from O2 almost two whole years ago (despite being on a 12 month contract....).

Sure, lots of phones have come out in the meantime that are superficially attractive, but they've all fallen down on one ground or another.

My wishlist for a new personal handset (not a work device):

5MP cameraphone with a proper flash
GPS (this has come up my list of wants recently. Not sure about aGPS though)
Looks quite cool aesthetically
Comfortable to hold & use
Decent browser
No horrible operator-customised menus
Preferably candy-bar, or maybe slider
Preferably WLAN - although it's got to be fully open if it's there
Preferably no full OS like Symbian or Windows (Fine for a work device but not personal)
Preferably keypad (not QWERTY, and only a touchscreen if it's excellent)

Extras like big memory & high-end music player are an added bonus.

Phones I'd thought about all lost out one way or another:

SonyEricsson K850i - nasty semi-touchpad screen for softkeys, no GPS
iPhone -2MP camera, no GPS, no 3G (I'd probably live with the touchscreen) & too expensive
Nokia N95 - clunky and I really don't like S60 on my main device
Nokia N82 - huge, S60 and awful keypad
Nokia N78 - OK size, but even worse keypad & 3MP camera
LG Viewty - no keypad, no GPS
Assorted HTCs - OK as a work device, but no 5MP cameras & I don't want Windows on my personal phone
Samsung Soul - getting closer but no GPS
LG Secret - same story as the Soul
Motorola - not been tempted by Z8 or Z10
Blackberries - camera limitations & operator-locked WiFi and connectivity

But maybe, just maybe I'll find something over the next month or so, although I think I might have to compromise a bit. It's starting to get embarassing going to mobile conferences with a battered-looking 2-year old phone.....

SonyEricsson C902 - looks OK but has no GPS
SonyEricsson C702 - aGPS but only 3MP camera
Nokia N96 - maybe I'll grit my teeth over the UI. Looks a lot better than the N95.
HTC Diamond - maybe I'll grit my teeth again... the UI looks better than normal WinMob
Nokia 6220 Classic - looks promising

.... although if some of the rumours are true, I might end up with a 3G iPhone.

Or maybe I'll just keep the K800i for another year.....


Sami said...

What about Nokia N82? It gets checkmarks all throughout your list, though looks is of course subjective and it is a Symbian device. But I have to say it's a first (and in all likelihood, last) Symbian device that has surprised me positively.

Sami said...

Oh, and one more thing - if you want GPS, you will want aGPS. The user experience (i.e. initial fix time) is much better.

Dean Bubley said...

Realised I'd typed N92 rather than N82.

Yes, I was tempted initially.... until I saw it in the flesh (too big, too ugly), and tried the keypad (nasty thin keys).

Sami said...

Actually you get used to the keypad. But I agree, the perfect phone is still missing :)

vinnie said...

my friend, what you really need is this


Hywel said...

Fussy fussy! You want the *next* iPhone matey, and after it's been reduced in price (some hope).

Just get a 5110 and pretend you're an extra in the French Connection. You know you want to....

David R said...

I've been in the same position - but the camera is the big "must" for me.

I loved the K800i and kept it for well over 18 months because there's nothing else out there to match it.

But the N82 in black is a far better looking phone than the silver version (although still big). It's amazing what a colour change can do.

Anonymous said...


It looks like SonyEricsson have been reading your blog and created a camera just for you — the soon-to-be announced C905: http://gizmodo.com/5015230/sony-ericsson-c905-is-a-81+megapixel-cybershot-phone

It has most of your check list ticked off, including what appears to be a decent camera, HSDPA, Wi-Fi, GPS and probably the best UI in a feature phone.

Regarding the iPhone 3G, i guess the only word that really comes to mind is ‘meh’ (and I'm not even sure that is a proper word :)

I'm sure it will be very nice to use, and its owners will love it dearly and be willing to over look it's deficiencies, but there's nothing that really grabs you, is there?

The one area that may tempt me to buy the new iPhone is the app store though. If there are decent enough apps on there I would be tempted. I have a strong suspicion that this will be the case, that the app store will be the thing that really makes the iPhone 3G an appealing device.

- Usama