By some bizarre twist of fate (or perhaps, more accurately, as a result of consciously booking flights), I currently find myself sitting in Australia once again, as I was in January. And April. And some of May.
I shan’t bore you with the whole story, but needless to say it involves a girl. Sigh. Anyway, more important than all that: being in a land down under I can oh so easily get my dirty hands on the elusive Nokia N9.
I had it in my head to check out the Nokia N9 when I got here, and half-wondered if I might end up buying one. The fact that it’s officially unavailable in the UK makes it all the more desirable. Is that silly? Probably.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I’d return home and shove my Nokia N9 in everyone’s face, saying: “How’d you like them apples?” I was genuinely quite annoyed when I learned that we’d effectively get the Nokia Sea Ray (now Lumia 800) instead of the Nokia N9. At least give us the choice, you gits.
Not to mention the fact that most of my friends have no idea what the hell a MeeGo is. They’re quite happy in ignorant iPhone 4S bliss, so no – it’s not about showing off. It’s merely the romantic notion of having something I’m not supposed to have. Oh, and the fact that the Nokia N9 is actually supposed to be a rather good smartphone. Ahem.
The Australian economy is currently defying the global crisismajig. Everywhere you look, flamin’ galahs are sleeping on beds of money. Super-expensive shrimp are routinely flung on barbies. You can fully expect to pay around £6 for one measly bottle of beer. It’s quite sickening.
However, the Aussie Expansys has the Nokia N9 (unlocked, 16GB) for A$727, which works out around £480. Not cheap, granted, but significantly cheaper than the £539.99 Expansys is looking for in the UK.
Incidentally, Expansys UK has completely ruined this whole bloody thing. I was supposed to be in Australia, faced with the time-limited option of picking up a Nokia N9; it was supposed to be all or nothing.
Ah well, it’s still cheaper over here, so it remains an option, just not quite as tempting an option as it perhaps was.
Anyways, idealism aside, I shouldn’t forget that I’m considering a phone here. A mobile bloody phone. The Nokia N9. With that in mind, I went into a phone shop to try it out. The yellow one. Which network is that? Optus, I think.
The Nokia N9 is on proud display among the newest Aussie smartphones, but of course it’s massively overshadowed by the iPhone 4S. And let’s not forget, the Nokia N9’s appeal is directed predominantly at geeks; Joe Average couldn’t tell you the difference between the Nokia N8 or N9, or Symbian and MeeGo.
After drawing a series of worried looks by rubbing my hands together for a good 10 seconds, and feeling a bit like Indiana Jones at the beginning of Temple of Doom, I picked up the Nokia N9.
Of course, it was tethered to its stand, which kinda ruined the effect a little, but it was still quite exciting. Well, y’know, as exciting as picking up a mobile phone can be.
Obviously I wasn’t able to test out the Nokia N9 in its entirety. Sending texts or emails and Facebooking were out of the question, but I had a play around with the camera and what have you.
The (mostly) buttonless set up is quite interesting. With my HTC Desire HD, I’m used to having Back, Home and Menu buttons for navigation. Not so with the Nokia N9. It doesn’t even have a Home button, just a Lock/Power button on the side. That’s your lot.
The three-screen configuration is quite odd too. There’s one with a clock, one for the current open applications, and one with the full app list. You can swipe through them left or right ad nauseam. It’s all about the swiping with MeeGo.
And that’s the Nokia N9. It would’ve been nice to take it for a proper test drive, but the reviews have all been fairly positive, so…
Will I buy one? I don’t know. I really don’t. Your thoughts please, fellow geeks.