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Oh, Nokia. Where do I begin? I want to love you, I really do. But I just can't.

Yesterday, Nokia confirmed our long-lived suspicions of yet another handset from the Finnish company. The 3.9-inch AMOLED N9 – which many say favors an older iPod Nano – will release later this year with MeeGo 1.2 in tow.

Upon first glance, the N9 is everything that I've ever wanted out of a phone, hardware-wise, since I made the jump to all-touchscreen devices. Just by looking at the mockups of the phone, you can tell that the quality of build tests the superior hardware of Apple's products, despite being composed of a polycarbonate material. Its unibody design and the lack of physical buttons on the face of the device give it a remarkably clean look. And the 8-megapixel camera with a Carl Zeiss Tessar lens means this phone will have one of the best cameras around.

Inside, the N9 will feature a 1GHz OMAP processor, PowerVR SGX530 graphics (as seen in the Droid X, Pre 2 and Droid 2), 1GB of RAM, 16 or 64GB of storage and NFC. While it may not be the most powerful phone out there, it packs a punch and will suffice as a strong daily driver for the average consumer (think iPhone 4, not the most powerful but still outperforms a large number of phones). And with up to 64GB of storage and Dolby Headphone and Dobly Digital Plus support, it will serve as an awesome media device.

Even MeeGo, another in-house platform made by Nokia, looks great. Graphically, it has come leaps and bounds from where it was just months ago. Although it is rather cartoonish, it looks smooth, modern and pulls aspects of platforms of Windows Phone 7, webOS, iOS and Android together to form an extremely smooth looking UI. Lest we forget that the device is buttonless (minus the obvious power and volume controls). This means that the software will ultimately be gesture controlled, possibly beating iOS and Android to the punch with a “buttonless” device.

“What about apps though, Taylor?” MeeGo will use Nokia's existing application store that Symbian uses, the Ovi Store. So application support will be there, though the Ovi Store isn't known for the best apps out there. It is home to roughly 40,000 applications with around 1,000 being added each week.

With the exception of a dual-core processor, the N9 comes with everything that most cell phone junkies could ever want in a current-gen phone. Everything about the N9 sounds great – except for maybe the Ovi Store. That is, until we take into consideration the future of MeeGo and the former rumors of the N9.

Nokia has said that beginning later this year, their main focus will be Windows Phone 7. Those who buy the N9 with hopes of long-term support will face the reality of MeeGo not being a substantial long-term player. Releasing the N9 with MeeGo is simply Nokia's way of letting the fruits of their labor see the light of day, for however long it will last. The N9, in essence, is a probe device for Nokia's side-project, nothing more.

It's also worth noting that the original rumored N9, now confirmed to be the N950, sported a remarkable looking hardware keyboard. Made of aluminum, the device itself looked similar to a pocket-sized Macbook. It was/is dead sexy. With their announcement yesterday, The Nokia Blog stated that the keyboard wearin' brother of the N9 to be the N950, a phone that will only be made available to developers. This completely blows my mind. Why not just release this phone to consumers, too?

The N9 is yet another knockout device from Nokia that is, more or less, ruined by software. Regardless of how smooth and awesome MeeGo may be, without Nokia's full attention, the platform will not grow or flourish to become a substantial platform like Android or iOS. That said, MeeGo is an open source project and something may eventually come of it.

Despite the inescapable expiration of this device, I may bite the bullet and buy one anyway, simply for the hardware. There is still some, albeit little, promise for MeeGo. Here's to hoping it will either gain the attention of third-party devs or someone can eventually port Ice Cream Sandwich over to the N9. And since their focus is now diverted to Windows Phone 7, maybe we can expect a device along these lines sporting Microsoft's platform. Unfortunately, a lot of this is just wishful thinking.

Who else is planning on picking up a N9 once it is available? Do you think it will be DOA due to MeeGo and little attention from Nokia? Would you buy one if it were running different software like Android or Windows Phone 7?


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31 Reactions to this post

"Did Nokia botch the Meego-powered N9?"


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Blass Reiter
Blass Reiter But Nokia is stopping its Meego development after its release of the N9
Gabriel Fernandez
Gabriel Fernandez I think the N9 is great and I think MeeGo has great potential.
Gabriel Fernandez
Gabriel Fernandez Have any of you even seen MeeGo in action to even put it down? Stfu.. seriously..
Sarath Sanker
Sarath Sanker meego is gud ..bt the problem is tat the fukng ovi store...
Steve Moore
Steve Moore Yes.
Kamal Halder
Kamal Halder Man We are Going for It, no matter what the future of the software will be and the lack of Apps, still the brand and confidence of Nokia is enough to take decision, Would love to see a deeper intrigration of Facebook and twitter just like Windows phone 7, as the maximum used app worldwide
Vivek Rathod
Vivek Rathod I wish its good. But the thing is, Its Nokia !! The more you expect, the more it disappoints . :(
Steve Doric
Steve Doric Meego = extremely gay
Hunter Remington
Hunter Remington I agree meego is good, I just suggest android, because the masses would gobble it up on a premium handset.
Duldulao Ryel
Duldulao Ryel Any idea when is the release of Nokia N9? I'm sick and tired of waiting for the iPhone 5 so maybe this one is good than iPhone 5!!!!
Ryan Ruth
Ryan Ruth @Mauka click "read full article"
Arvydas Grušeckas
Arvydas Grušeckas WP7 beats every OS and Mango will be a killer. Why u love Meego so much? WP7 is super smooth, it has apps, it is fast and it will have so much stuff with mango.
Mauka Side
Mauka Side Yeah. How can we read the article if you don't even link it?
Sergio Nayar
Sergio Nayar I wish it had Android in there...
Arvind R Jaiswar
Arvind R Jaiswar Good improvement on meego ...........the ui looks cool........better as compared to Nokia n900.........
Michael Alfonso Ho
Michael Alfonso Ho Click on the photo.
Robert Mathias
Robert Mathias Seriously phonedog, can you put links in the post of the article you are talking about
Aj Green
Aj Green Doesn't seem to bad, its just really boring..
David McNeill
David McNeill This is a masterpiece of design, has almost Bang & Olufsen levels of style. But yeah, they botched it and this amazing thing looks like its gonna be a cult release. Nokia have signed a 5 year deal declaring Msoft are their main concerned and have hinted Symbian will remain in second, this will likely be a one-off release which sucks as it looks amazing.
Jason King
Jason King The N9 Looks good but didn't the CEO of Nokia say they were trying to move away from Meego? The hardware I love it. The software looks good also, but I would love to see webOS on this device. Nokia shot themselves in the foot only catering to Microsoft.
Steve Moore
Steve Moore Buy our newest phone.. but we're not going to support it. Wha? Stick a fork in Nokia. I wouldn't buy another piece of garbage from them if someone gave me the money! Whatever.
Michael F. Ainabe
Michael F. Ainabe So there aren't any buttons on it at all?
Niko Ylä-Poikelus
Niko Ylä-Poikelus MeeGo's cool! Nokia needs to support it along with WP7!
Nick Melnick
Nick Melnick I am a fan and user of Android, but let me tell you, Android wouldn't be nearly as smooth as this.
Bradley Larcher
Bradley Larcher i seriously hope Nokia changes their MeeGo plans. i believe Elope just wants Windows Phone and nothing else. It's his former company after all. The N9 is a masterpiece. MeeGo is great. The N9 will sell like crazy, i am looking to pick one up. agree with they should have made the N950 available as well. i really wish LG, HTC, Samsung and others play with MeeGo and put it on their devices too.
Hunter Remington
Hunter Remington Had and make*
Hunter Remington
Hunter Remington God. I wish Nokia hand android under the hood, they male some premium hardware.
Keven Sotto Ngujo
Keven Sotto Ngujo This will be a great device... i hope nokia will continue innovate the MeeGo OS... the phone is really snappy even with more live running apps...
Fonzy Paniagua
Fonzy Paniagua It's a sexy piece of hardware but meego has to go!
Enrique Pulido
Enrique Pulido ooooo those phones look sexy
Gustavo Banuelos
Gustavo Banuelos First




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