Published on October 9th, 2008 | by Babar Bhatti0
Two New iPhone Rivals: Nokia Xpress 5800 And BlackBerry Storm
The success of Apple’s iPhone has spurred a series of touch-screen smart-phones from its competitors from around the world. We recently covered HTC Touch Pro HD and this HTC phone is getting great reviews from Europe and Asia. In this post I will cover two new touch smart-phones: Nokia Xpress 5800 and Blackberry Storm.
Nokia Xpress 5800, unveiled in early October, is its long-awaited touch-screen phone which heavily focuses on music services. Even though Nokia does not mention iPhone but everyone knows that it is the first handset from Nokia to challenge iPhone. Packed with cool features, it should be a big hit.
Research in Motion Ltd. is rolling out its first touch-screen phone in response to iPhone. It is named the BlackBerry Storm. Details are still coming out and it is said to work on “broadband networks on both sides of the Atlantic” and be exclusive to Verizon Wireless in the U.S. and to Vodafone Group PLC throughout Europe.
These phones just came out and I have not tested them personally. However there is plenty of media coverage and user-generated reviews and content on the web. Here’s a summary of some of the useful and relevant observations (sources at the end). Starting with Storm.
The Storm has a 3.25-inch screen — just under the iPhone’s 3.5 inches — and a durable design that makes it about 16% heavier than the iPhone. It will run on relatively quick third-generation broadband networks in the U.S. and overseas — a first for Verizon. But it doesn’t have Wi-Fi Internet access, which RIM co-CEO Mike Lazaridis said would drain battery life unnecessarily. Like the iPhone, it doesn’t have a physical keyboard, but rather touch-sensitive software that can emulate either a full PC-style keyboard or a triple-tap cellphone setup. It is expected in stores before the end of the year.
One distinguishing feature of Apple’s iPhone not possessed by the new BlackBerry or other smart phones: the ability of a user to zoom in and out by putting two fingers on the screen at the same time and spreading them or pinching them closer together. Apple has filed for a patent covering “multi-touch” technology in phones.
On Nokia’s Xpress 5800.
Finland-based Nokia has waited more than a year to respond with its answer to the iPhone, the 5800 XpressMusic smart phone. The device’s hardware and services — pitched to have mass-market appeal — include eight gigabytes of memory, a 3.2-inch screen and access to Nokia’s Ovi Internet-service portal.
The 5800 will cost around $400 when released in the fourth quarter, which includes the key holiday shopping season. This is competitive when compared with the rpice of an unlocked eight-gigabyte iPhone.
The Nokia phone’s touch screen won’t work exactly the same way as the iPhone’s, which allows users to zoom in and out using two fingers in a pinching or spreading motion. Nokia’s interface allows for only one touch point at a time.