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Nokia announces Symbian update plus two new smartphonesBy Hanleigh Daniels 13 April 2011 | Categories: news
The anticipated Nokia “media briefing” finally took place yesterday, with the Finnish firm announcing a much needed Symbian update and two new devices (although Three UK kind of beat them to it with one device).
Both of these new smartphones operate on an updated version of Symbian^3, dubbed Symbian Anna (video posted below), incorporating such features as a faster browser, improved text input, new icon styling (at last) and the latest version of Ovi Maps that sports, amongst others, smarter search functionality.
The company stated that Symbian Anna will also be made available for users of the Nokia N8, C7, C6-01 as well as the E7 within the coming months.
Symbian Anna’s most striking new feature is its fresh look, which now finally makes it look like a new mobile operating system (OS), as Symbian^3 was virtually indistinguishable from the outdated Series 60 it replaced.
This update also includes portrait QWERTY input mode and a much faster browser boasting simpler and enhanced navigation (finally). The usability of the photo gallery has also been improved and so has email with full meeting request support and hardware-accelerated device encryption now also being offered.
Everything should basically add up to a boosting of the Symbian experience, bringing it on a more equal footing with Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android.
One of the first of Nokia’s devices to run on Symbian Anna is the X7 (video posted below) which features the same ClearBlack 4" (360 x 640) AMOLED display of the E7. It also sports the same 8 MP full focus camera that offers 720p (HD-ready) video recording and comes with a dual LED flash.
The X7 boasts half the storage of the E7 though, with 8 GB on offer, but unlike the E7 users are able to boost the smartphone’s storage via MicroSD cards of up to 32 GB in size. Nokia’s X7 measures 119.7 x 62.8 x 11.9 mm and weighs in at 146 g. It also offers 802.11 n Wi-Fi, a 3.5 mm audio jack, and its 1200mAH battery is rated (according to Nokia) for up to 450 hours standby and 4.5 hours talktime on a 3G network.
It will become available in Q2 2011 for an estimated retail price of €380 (around R3664). No local release info on it is available as of yet.
The other device launched yesterday running Symbian Anna is the Nokia E6 (video posted below). It boasts the form factor of the E5, but like the Nokia X3 Touch and Type has a touch-enabled screen to go along with its QWERTY keyboard. A notable feature of Symbian Anna on the E6 is that the number of home-screens available expands from the usual three to five.
This compact smartphone (measures 115.5 x 59 x 10.5 mm, weighs 133 g) sports a 2.46" LCD capacitive touch-screen offering a slightly higher resolution (640 by 480 pixels) as the E7 and X7’s 360 x 640 pixels.
It comes with 8 GB of internal memory and support for MicroSD cards up to 32 GB in size. The battery is removable (unlike the N8’s and E7’s respective batteries) and Nokia rates it for a really impressive standby time of up to a month and 7 hours 30 minute talk-time over 3G.
The E6 also features Wi-Fi connectivity through 802.11 n, support for USB On-The-Go, Bluetooth 3.0, an 8 MP full focus camera that has a dual-LED flash, and offers 2X digital zoom (3X in video mode) as well as HD-ready (720p) video recording at 25 fps.
Nokia’s E6 is expected to ship in Q2 of this year (Q3 for the US) for an estimated retail cost of €340 (around R3280). No local release info is available yet.
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