- 05-31-2013, 11:12 AM #1
Recently, I switched my platform and device from Windows Phone 8 to Symbian, Nokia's previous platform before Windows Phone, as part of a personal journey in finding myself and stop focusing too much on my phone. Our smartphones nowadays have plenty of helpful functions, but they take a lot of our time and focus from the things that really matter. For example, before, I used to glance to the vivid tiles of my Windows Phone screen at all times waiting for a social network notification,a news notification, a message to pop up, or anything that made those beautiful live tiles flip and tell me that I had to use my phone. As a college student, I decided that I had to stop being one more of the tribe of those who look at their phone constantly to text, send a whatsapp or just browse the web. Maybe you haven't noticed, but I am sure that most of the people who are reading this stare at their phone much more than they look at their relatives and friends. So, I decided to quit my “addiction”. I made this decision at the beginning of this year.
I started exploring the possible platforms that could help me achieve this goal. I thought that an old platform would do it since the lack of many recent and popular apps would help me not to want to use my phone. However, I didn't have the opportunity to switch until about a week ago. A friend of mine broke his phone and asked me that if I could sell him my precious yellow Lumia 620. I hesitated for a moment because of the good performance that the mid range phone had given to me up to that point. But, I made the decision and I sold it to him. Right after he gave me the money, I went to deposit it to my bank account and pay for my new Nokia phone, the Nokia N8. At first, I hesitated about buying it, but this week has been very pleasant. Thus, I want to remark some of the advantages and disadvantages of this Operating System.
First the file manager is years ahead from Windows Phone. The experience of managing the files, made me remember my old Sony Ericsson days where finding a file or moving it was a few “clicks” away. However, now this task was achieved through a tactile display. It was very smooth easy to manage those files. However, Windows Phone 8 lacks an in device file managing system, making it really hard for users to move documents,pictures and others from the removable storage(Micro SD cards) to the mass storage of the phone. Although Microsoft has enabled the mass storage transfer function while connecting the device to your PC, it is still not as convenient as transferring those files from the device itself. Maybe in the future (WP 8.1 or later), Microsoft will allow users to achieve this task easily.
Second advantage of Symbian over Windows Phone is multitasking. While Windows Phone has been improving in this area update after update, true multitasking is still not a smooth experience with those “loading” pages in between switching from one app to the other. In the N8, I just press the physical button for a few moments (like the back arrow on WP) and the multitasking screen comes up. Then, I select the any other app and automatically opens it without loading screens or crashing the app in the process.
A third and last advantage that I have found over this week is battery life. Maybe this advantage has its own flaws since I haven't used a High-End Windows Phone 8 like the Lumia 920, 928, HTC 8X or ATIV S, and I don't use my Symbian device as much as I used my Lumia 620. While using my Lumia 620, I found that the battery life was not enough. It barely lasted a day with moderate usage, and with heavy usage like games, music and email maybe 4-7 hours top. On the other hand with my N8, I unplugged the device at 7 A.M and came back home at 9 P.M, and it still had 45% remaining. In my opinion, for a “smartphone”that is very impressive. Like I said this advantage has its own flaws since I heard of other users that get a day and a half from their High End phones.
Well enough with the Windows Phone “bashing”. Now it is time for Symbian to take some hits from a former WP user
First off, the interface is dated. Windows Phone is a million times more beautiful than Symbian. I cannot believe how ugly this Operating System is. The browser specially is not as responsive as Internet Explorer on Windows Phone. I can say that it is a pain to browse the web on this device, it is better than a flip phone, but nothing compared to the smoothness and lag free experience that I had in my Lumia 620. The apps' interface is horrible. When I check the mail app, I cannot help but remember the clean and beautiful mail box on my Windows Phone.
Secondly, the overall experience while using applications. Windows Phone has many more apps than Symbian. In my Lumia 620, I had more than 30 apps and a couple of games. Symbian has the basics, but do not hold your breath if you think that you are going to find a popular newly released app for this OS. WP apps are more functional they have more options and the interface is just prettier making the overall experience better.
Lastly, support.Every new version of Windows Phone is promised to be supported at least for 18 months. Whereas, Symbian is no longer supported by Nokia instead they handed it to another company that brings security fixes to the platform only.
I have not used this phone extensively (meaning that its only my first week) enough to say that I am an expert. But, overall my experience has been pleasant . I am not using my phone as much, I have more time to write, study, and talk with people. I am not looking at my phone constantly anymore. It has been a good change so far. It has been hurting since I was so used to check my apps constantly, but I am learning to be more patient and to rely less on my phone and more on the outside sources. Thank you for reading. Cheers!'
P.S There are twoother things that I like about symbian over WP, but I think they havebeen covered by previous articles at websites. Camera(By popular request: Nokia N8 vs Lumia 920 PR1.1 vs Ativ S camera test) and Sleeping Screen(Symbian's 'little feature that could' still to be equalled, even on Windows Phone). Although the latter is coming soon!!! to Nokia WP
Last edited by Jnbs; 06-02-2013 at 10:38 AM.
- 05-31-2013, 02:57 PM #4
Ok, i never had or used a Symbian device...but people talk about them all the time here (i guess since Nokia used as baseline OS?). I just did a quick youtube searched and watched a video review of someone using Symbian on Nokia N8. Am i crazy or does it seem like Android copied Symbian...? Looks VERY similar in terms of design, UI and functionality.
- 05-31-2013, 03:37 PM #5
Former N8 user here - I loved the aesthetic of the N8, and the camera; the device is definitely a mini PC in your pocket/purse.
With that said, I was beyond bored with the device - it was basically used phone calls, music, and snapping photos, which was OK to do for the first three months, but after that, just not a very engaging OS in my opinion. I couldn't wait to upgrade, yes upgrade, to my Lumia 900 - purchased it new, from Amazon, just like I did with my N8. But I did use my N8 for about a year and a half.
I can't seem to keep my hands off of my Lumia for very long - I just enjoy using the apps and the UI is very engaging. I still have my near mint condition N8, and should I ever have to send my Lumia off for warranty repairs, I will use it. Until then, my N8 is just my nightstand clock.
- 06-01-2013, 07:47 AM #8
Actually i used both symbian and window phone..And i noticed that
Symbian takes more time to complete the boot process compare to Windows Mobile, Window phone have high RAM.
In contacts list, Symbian performs better than Windows Mobile
Running Java applications using MIDlet Manager in Windows Mobile can sometime cause the device hang but in symbian Java applications start and run smoothly in Symbian smart phone.
In Symbian, we can only manage the alarm within 24 hours time and we need to set the alarm again and again if we want it to be rang every day. But in Windows Mobile, the alarm manager is awesome.
The default browser in Windows Mobile is much better than default browser in Symbian in term of usability and accessibility.
Last edited by sharprobert; 06-01-2013 at 08:15 AM.
- 06-01-2013, 05:38 PM #9
I use Symbian for a number of years and now I'm on WP8. There are things the drove me crazy on Symbian, mainly the lack of apps and the also the horrible social apps. However there were things I loved about Symbian. The Drive app on Symbian is way more stable than that on WP8. I have major issues with Drive at the moment and I'm going to see about re-installing it. Also the file manager and the lack of restrictions which allowed me to download whatever I wanted from the web was great! I so miss that. There's been a few times when this has come in handy for me.
I like WP8 for what it is. I will continue to use my phone, it does what I need, mostly, and I'll see what happens when we get to the Blue update. I hope MS starts to push for more apps and we start to get some niche apps as well. A lot of people say be patient but I believe action is more important than patience.
- 06-01-2013, 05:54 PM #10
To the OP, if you typed your post with that N8, you might want to check the functionality of the space bar. BTW, even though the UI is not as elegant as WP, I think Symbian is still worlds better as far as function.
06-06-2013, 04:12 AM #12
- 1 Posts
I must mention your opinnion for setting alarm on Symbian is not true. I am using N8 for few years now. It has an option to set alarm to ring every day, every few days and so on. All in all fo rpeople that use mobile phone for music, images and evertyday tasks it is ok. Also before one user mentioned he switched from WP to Symbian and internet browsing and e-mail client is like awfull. It is true, bu for internet you have alternatives as Opera and for e-mail just use Nokia app as widget. It is not too fast but works.
- 06-07-2013, 07:05 PM #13
I guess Symbian is next on my list of OSes to try (after getting a WP, I wasn't sure if I wanted to, but I guess I should)
[x] Palm OS
[x] Windows Mobile
[ ] Windows Phone
[ ] and now Symbian
- 06-07-2013, 07:11 PM #14
Strange. I'd say that in terms of 'not letting the phone get the better of you' WP is where it's at - Symbian as it stands is more old-school Android with nicer design touches IMO, and as such it strikes me as more of a phone that does get up in your face a bit.
True though, there are many things that Symbian does better than WP still such as the comparatively frustration-free multitasking - but then the same goes for pretty much every other OS around.
- 06-08-2013, 05:22 PM #16
I liked it, but it and its apps were often too old/outdated to be very useful. But Opera Mini/Mobile still work great, so it's not too bad but I'm done with it. I'm actually trying to unload my WinMo Treo Pro right now.
06-09-2013, 11:25 AM #19
- 119 Posts
I was a Symbian User for a long time. My last device was the C6-01 which was a dynamite little device. Symbian got a bad rap because it was not pretty. There were not enough animations and eye candy when compared to ios and android. But the thing about Symbian is that for the most part, it just flat out worked.
The Belle Update did wonders for Symbian's Usability and opened the door for more mods like AndroMenu, Belle Extra Buttons, Access Apps etc. It made using Symbian much smoother and interesting.
I made the switch to Windows Phone and I'm digging the different experience, but I still love my little C6--01 and have it snugly stashed away for a rainy day and the possibility of having dropped my Windows device in a puddle of muddy water LOL
08-12-2013, 06:56 AM #20
- 15 Posts
I've just 'upgraded' to a Nokia Lumia 925 from a Nokia N8 and I can't believe how bad the Lumia is compared to the N8.
1) Someone mentioned above how the alarm functionality in Windows Phone is better than Symbian's and this may be true. Yes, you can set alarms to repeat but if you wanted a repeating alarm in Symbian then you can just set up a recurring event in the calendar with an alarm. However, despite not being able to set up recurring alarms easily there is one massive flaw in the Windows alarm set up and that is you have to leave the phone switched on to hear an alarm! On the N8 you can set an alarm, turn the phone off, and it will still sound. The advantages of this should be obvious. No chance of being woken up by late night callers or texters and no battery drain overnight. The battery on the 925 barely lasts a day as it is and I couldn't imagine leaving it on overnight and I don't want to be fiddling about charging it as I generally go to bed after my wife and don't want to wake her up....
2) I love the FM transmitter on my N8. I can get in a car, ANY car, and send my music to the in car entertainment system. Where is this on the 925? It's not possible, that's where it is.
3) One volume key to rule them all on the 925 and no profiles. Gone are the days of simply pressing the power button on the N8 and choosing 'Silent' or 'Office' or any other profile. This functionality has been around since mobile phones were invented so why remove it now??
4) The N8 camera far excels the one on the 925. Where is the physical zoom button? Where is the Xenon flash etc etc. It's just embarassing how bad the camera is on the 925.
5) Swype. Need I say more? Gone are the days of swyping away on my N8 landscape keyboard. It's back to one key at a time. Progress? I don't think so.
6) Where is the Micro SD card? LOL. I'm stuck with 16gb on the flagship 925 but on my N8 I had virtually UNLIMITED storage!
I could go on and on but feel I've said enough. Maybe I'm just an old stick in the mud and just need to adapt to the new technology. What does anyone else think?
08-12-2013, 09:20 AM #21
- 474 Posts
1.) Smartphone batteries suck for every device out there. Everything's a battery hog. Every device ive come across, whether its friends devices or stuff I read online, unless you fiddle around with it, tweak it, close this, close that, root, whatever you're battery is going to last 1 day at most. I used a Nokia 6568i or something dumbphone before my WP7 device and that lasted a week before recharging. I jumped on the smartphone bandwagon awhile back and it could barely get by a full day. Nothing's changed. More power, more fully featured OS, same old 'barely a day' battery life. Its just the nature of the beast. Nokia seems to just want to stick with the 2000mah or smaller batteries also which doesn't seem to help. The off/on thing just seems to be a preference really....
2.) I think the FM radio got re-enabled in GDR2/Amber
3.) That's valid. I remember switching to the 'silent' mode (press that volume icon on the drop down volume drawer) and then I had a incoming phonecall still come through full volume ring.....
4.) This complaint would be valid on any other smartphone also. I don't think any of the smartphone cameras except for the 41mpx Lumia/808 has been known to surpass it.
5.) I personally hate swiping for everything (some things just doesn't feel right with swiping). Its like motion controls in gaming, some things just shouldnt be done in that way. But I also dislike having to spam the back button a gajillion times.
6.) Nokia keeps dropping the ball on their flagship/high end devices when they omit the microSD.....
08-13-2013, 08:55 AM #23
- 15 Posts
1) Wasn't really about battery life but about being able to turn the phone off after setting an alarm. I don't think this is a preference. It's a feature. Sure, some users won't use this feature but at least they have the choice. After all, why leave the phone on overnight unless you're expecting some mega urgent call?
2) I'm not about to hack the phone with GDR2/Amber (which I had to Google!). Anyway, my point is about the FM TRANSMITTER,not receiver. I'm not bothered about listening to FM radio stations on the phone. I want to be able to transmit the musice to other devices via FM and I don't believe this will ever be possible on the 925.
08-13-2013, 12:23 PM #24
- 147 Posts
I loved the Belle Refresh on my N8 but what the OP says doesn't make no sense. If you're distracted by the smartphone, it's your problem, not the phone's.
Symbian is in many aspects more powerful and customizable but it's dated and it shows. There's not a lot of discussion there.
Before the 1020 I could even understand someone getting an 808, but now even that doesn't make sense.
Poor old 808, didn't have its deserved time to shine :(
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