Q&A session with N78 Product Manager

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Tangler.com is hosting a Q&A session with the N78 product manager at 2pm GMT on Friday 6th June (tomorrow). If you want to join just let me know (comment or e-mail).

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Straight to the map

OK, this is pretty cool:

GPS and photos with the N78

Yesterday I went to watch Ironman and on my way back home I decided to take some crappy pictures every 5 minutes to test the mobile’s GPS. The map above is the result (click to get the actual one): the trail starts at the cinema in the top-right region, and finishes in my place at the bottom-left.

To get the map I didn’t have to do anything special. Just uploaded the photos to Picasa and you’re done (I couldn’t make it work with Flickr yet). You get a map with your photos georeferenced, and a automatic KML in case you prefer using the Google Earth imagery.

During the last months at the office we’ve spent a considerable amount of work georeferencing our data and putting it on maps. A problem we’ve detected is that workers in the field do not have the necessary devices (software, GPS) to enhance the data-collecting or the post-processing. I can’t wait to see this technologies reaching the field.

Evaluating the Nokia N78

The nice people at WOM World / Nokia have sent me a Nokia N78 to play with it for a couple of weeks. I got it on Friday and I’ve already been testing it during this long weekend in Belgium. I must admit the device is pretty impressive, specially if you compare it with my previous one, a Nokia 6230i (which is not bad at all).

DSC04615It supports wi-fi connectivity (with WEP keys), Bluetooth, camera (actually two, the ‘normal’ one in the back –Carl Zeiss, 3.2 MP– and a basic one in the front, for videocalls I guess), integrated speakers, USB connectivity, expansion card, MP3 player, web browser, maps and GPS, and ufff… much more.

Ah, it also send messages and make phone calls :)

It has a bunch of handy applications preinstalled (Flickr sharing, for example), and getting new ones is straightforward (I got Google Maps and Gmail within seconds, this is not a damn iPhone ;)). Speaking about Flickr, I’ll be putting in this set the photos I take with its built-in camera.

I’ve found however some annoyances:

  • It has a welcome wizard which helps you configuring the cellphone. With it I managed to set up everything except, I don’t know why, the possibility of sending SMS messages. Maybe it’s something I have to check with my carrier, but the rest is working.
  • The central squared button is way too sensitive. You don’t actually need to press it to get movement in the screen. I wonder if this is an expected iPod-like response, or something the Nokia people need to adjust.
  • The GPS is working well and includes the lat/long information in the photos (love it), however there’s an issue with Flickr getting confused with the numbers. Let’s see if we manage to solve it.
  • The numeric pad is pretty trendy, right, but a bit uncomfortable. The keys are thiner, harder and smaller than in my previous mobile. I suppose it’s a matter of progressively getting used to them.

Well, I promise not to be too boring with this thing but I can’t help posting about the N78 from time to time. Nokia likes it, I like it (who doesn’t?), and prospector buyers (anything you wanna know?) may find it interesting. Game on!

Update: N78 – hands on review.