Quick review on the Nokia N800 Internet Tablet. So after the big sale mentioned in a previous post on the N800, managed to convince my boss to purchase one as a VoIP device. It got there a day or so after the new year and the excellent build-quality got me impressed. The boys over at Ritz Camera even had the OS updated to the stuff running on the new N810 – the linux-based OS2008. The GUI on this small yet fashionable device was very slick and intuitive unlike the Symbian S60-based Nokia’s mobile phone OS.
The 3-4″ desktop screen was a gorgeous bright/clear box in 800×400 resolution and packed in 3 layers just like any regular Windows/Mac desktop. You have the wallpaper, the applets (no icons), and the task bar (on the left column). The thing was pretty slim, it came with a stylus nicely integrated along with a stow-away rotating camera that could be used for video conferencing or picture taking.
After pairing up with my Nokia E61, with 2 strokes with the stylus, holy shit you can explore my phone. All the files (including the system folders) are visible and I was able to extract files ala Windows Explorer style. All very easy to use. The applets are so easy to push out to the desktop. Streaming internet radio worked like a charm.
Another great thing about the N800 is that the OS automatically changes the touchscreen inputs when using fingers or a stylus. Unfortunately, the main reason we got it was for VoIP and the Skpe connection wasn’t very stable. You had to leave the software running in the background in order to receive calls (duh) but if you’re on the move, you could lose your Wireless reception nullifying the use of Skype.
However, by deleting other previously accessed SSID’s in the neighborhood, you can let it auto-connect to the one you like. I couldn’t find a “preferred” list but by deleting the other SSID’s that are within range, you are able to connect automatically. It supports WPA/WPA2 so that was another plus. My boss didn’t sound too happy the last time I talked about it to him but there’s so much more this thing can do, and even he knows it.
There are 5 things which makes N800 better than the N810 (although I’ve never used the latter) in my opinion:
- Rotating camera (the N810 has a fixed single front facing camera)
- The directional pad is easily accessible on the N800. The N810 requires you to slide out the keyboard to get to the d-pad.
- The N810 allows 2 SD card slots while the N810 only has room for 1 mini/microSD. SD cards are inherently cheaper for the capacity than their smaller cousins.
- FM Radio Tuner
- Price. The N800 is 1/2 the price of the N810.
For the money, there’s nothing else that can beat it for the moment. This is one serious tiny computer that you can carry around and be proud of.