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Linux Based Nokia N800 Internet Tablet Reviewed 127

HHL3T writes "CoolTechZone.com has published a review of the Linux-based Nokia N800 Internet Tablet that was announced at CES 2007 back in January. The review concludes, "As it currently stands, the N800 is an absolutely amazing product for web browsing. However, it's targeted at a very exclusive market: pure technology admirers who must have the latest and greatest, regardless of its real world functionality. We wouldn't recommend you place all of your critical information on the N800, due to its limited online connectivity options and lack of a portable form factor, especially if you are a professional. But if you must have the N800, we would recommend only using it as a digital newspaper to stay abreast on the latest news, and get work done online. It's just too much of an independent platform to be able to replace anything else, such as a notebook, a smartphone or a cell phone."
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Linux Based Nokia N800 Internet Tablet Reviewed

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  • That's why I use a Windows-compatible pen computer (Fujtitsy Stylistic), so that I can have (bear with me, it's an odd-ball and eclectic list) Adobe Acrobat, FontLab, FontForge, FreeHand, LyX, PhotoFiltre (this one is on trial --- may need to go back to PhotoShop or try the GIMP again, wish I'd kept my copy of Fauve xRes), WinTeXshell (w/ both MikTeX and w32tex) &c.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by drinkypoo ( 153816 )
      Correct me if I'm wrong, but won't everything on your list except for Acrobat (I assume you mean pro) and Fontlab run on Linux? I'm currently using a combination of Wine (For Dreamweaver 8) and vmware+Win2kPro (for Crystal Reports and the Venus 1500 sign software) and have successfully moved my existence over to Linux thusly.
      • FontForge (not FontLab) runs on Linux, so does LyX (and GIMP of course) --- pretty much everything else that I listed would have an equivalent on Linux (InkScape instead of FreeHand, KILE instead of WinTeXshell &c.).

        However, I failed to include two apps which are Windows-specific and don't have really good analogues (yet), RitePen and ArtRage.

        Also, EverNote (though Jarnal and some of the other Journal apps are close).

        The other issue of course is how well the graphics app work w/o an active digitizer ---
        • by rbanffy ( 584143 )

          InkScape instead of FreeHand

          Calling them equivalent is a bit of a stretch, isn't it?

          • rbanffy said:
            (re: InkScape and FreeHand}
            >Calling them equivalent is a bit of a stretch, isn't it?


            It kills me that Macromedia didn't make a Cocoa version of FreeHand (using the Altsys Virtuoso source) when they had a chance and that Adobe owns all that source now --- I really wish there where a better, up-to-date alternative to FreeHand.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by garbletext ( 669861 )
      I have an n800. So far, I haven't been able to come up with a task that it can't handle. it runs a modified debian; imagine apt-get on a handheld. Most any GTK program its cpu can handle can be quickly ported by the most inexperienced programmer. If you already use linux, this device is an amazing godsend. However, I understand that this amazing ability to use all the same programs as on the desktop will be lost on someone who uses windows. Literally my only gripe is that its chipset doesn't support U
  • Its Linux! (Score:2, Funny)

    by Samalie ( 1016193 )
    That means it HAS to be good, right?
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      That means it HAS to be good, right?

      I'd much rather use ntoskrnl.exe on my handheld device, as I've heard it's much more user friendly.

    • That means it HAS to be good, right?
      Indeed it does. Just look at the definition of Linux:

      (n) - A computer operating system.
      "The OS for the rest of you."
      (adj) - Good; Great but never good enough.
    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      "Its Linux. That means it HAS to be good, right?"

      Well yeah. that's why projects like OpenStreetMap [openstreetmap.org] are using it [openstreetmap.org] (with maemo mapper [highearthorbit.com]).

      For comparison, Nokia's solution for map-on-phone is that you pay GPRS charges per-byte to download the maps, and pay them per-month to allow the phone to locate itself using cell towers, while paying them per month to allow you to use the phone at all.

      The free software version of this idea is that you use maemo mapper on an N800 with a bluetooth GPS, and it downloads the maps
  • Awesome book reader! (Score:5, Informative)

    by pugdk ( 697845 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @10:30AM (#18782077) Homepage
    I bought my N800 to use mainly as a book reader and I must say its been awesome. Crisp, big, and high resolution screen, perfect for reading. I'm using one of many free software addons called fbreader for reading ebooks.

    Instantly working bluetooth data connections with most carriers (I was amazed how easy it was to setup - select your carrier, turn on bluetooth on your mobile and off you go, instead of windows where you have to know setting XX ZZ and YY before you have a chance of getting connected through your mobile phone).

    Wifi with as good a range as my Thinkpad T60p.

    The ability to surf the web easily on a display that's *readable* everywhere you want to.

    Way better battery performance than my PDA which features a screen half the size...

    Did I mention it runs linux? You can run VNC, ssh etc. on it and install these apps with just a few clicks... VNC actually works quite decent (over WIFI, it blows using bluetooth, mainly due to bandwidth limitation).

    All in all, I definitely don't regret buying one.

    • by i.r.id10t ( 595143 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @10:39AM (#18782251)
      I have a 770, and love it. You forgot to mention the mplayer port, ssh server, rdesktop client, etc. in your list :)
      • by pugdk ( 697845 )
        Yup, those are some nice tools to have at your disposal as well, however I mentioned the ones I had tried myself :-).

        I have yet to try and watch movies on the N800, I'm not sure if it can play "fullsize xvids" (e.g. 600+ pixels width), perhaps someone else knows.
        • While the n800's cpu is beefier than the 770's, it's far from being able to play video that's as big as its glorious 800x480 screen. Apparently they cut some costs and the video bus can't handle the data rate that full screen video entails. So you have to transcode most video to 320x240. I'm told this might improve in future kernels. On the upside, there are several upnp media players written that you can use with a upnp media server to automatically transcode to the proper resolution and codec before s
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            Mostly poor programming on Nokia's part. The ARM processor that it uses actually has hardware video decoding built-in, but Nokia hasn't provided a way to access it so far. The latest firmware update did have a big bump in performance 600x360 MPEG-4 @ about 1200Kbps total works perfectly for me.
        • Well, the trailers for Ice Age 2 that came with it played great, as do ummmm.... "educational" clips I've downloaded off the intarweb thingie... most of those were encoded at 320x240 or similar though...
    • The article is Slashdotted. Does it do Xstroke?

      • I can't recall the name of the software, but what it's using is way better then XStroke. It uses a natural handwriting recognition. You can you writing the letters natrually using multiple strokes, and it will recognize them. Writing a captial E using a [ type stroke and then a short - to complete and viola. Or do a capiotal a with /, \ , - strokes or a ^ and - strokes. Or you can train it to use you recognize your handwriting.
    • by dr_dank ( 472072 )
      Is flash available on the Nokia? If so, I'm curious if the ipk would work on my Zaurus 6000.
      • the n800 has flash 7. I believe it's not that optimized for the n800 or the arm in general. It has horrible flash video playback performance.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      Indeed, FBReader is the killer app, imo. The screen is incredible. I suppose it's a bit expensive just to read ebooks on, but it does have a lot of other nice features, and is very hackable. Also, I got mine for 20% off from my local CompUSA, which is closing :-)

      I'm currently looking for a folding bluetooth keyboard that costs less than a million dollars... with a compact keyboard, it would make a great little mobile terminal.
    • "Instantly working bluetooth data connections with most carriers (I was amazed how easy it was to setup - select your carrier, turn on bluetooth on your mobile and off you go, instead of windows where you have to know setting XX ZZ and YY before you have a chance of getting connected through your mobile phone)."

      Something else that is really cool is that when you connect to the phone with bluetooth, you can access the memory on the phone like an attached storage device.
  • Function (Score:4, Interesting)

    by simpl3x ( 238301 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @10:33AM (#18782131)
    As a platform the thing is very nifty, true, but it has some interesting uses as a platform if people developed with a different mindset. The 770 and this device changed my thoughts about what mobile devices should be. I'd like a small useful "phone" that acts as a local router, with devices that perform specific functionality around it. Think of the tablet as a screen for your mobile.

    As an ADD'er, I'm interested in how I can create tools for keeping me on track. The 800 can sit at the desk, act as a radio, run widgets, and act as something like Xerox's multiple display system. There aren't a whole lot of thought tools in this area (mobile), and a lot of opportunity. I'm happy that Nokia has the gumption to put something like this on the market. Your mileage may vary...
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      I'm aware of a project called myStep [quantum-step.com], which is supposed to shoehorn the GNUstep [gnustep.org] application framework set into mobile devices. It's basically an Open Source effort to create a Mac-like interface for mobile devices. I don't know what they're doing with the 800, but I know the Nokia 770 was a target they were shooting for.

      Developers seem to speak well of OpenStep APIs (Mac OS X/GNUstep), so if myStep is refined enough, maybe it could be a good avenue for introducing apps for mobile devices as you were s
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @10:34AM (#18782157)
    apparently they are using one as their web server.
  • I'm tempted (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Bill, Shooter of Bul ( 629286 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @10:40AM (#18782271) Journal
    What I really want is this thing, with a real cell phone feature as well. That way I'd rig it to receive calls via skype and fail over to the cell when wifi wasn't available. Oh, and I'd like the phone to have a prepaid option as well. There really isn't a combination I know of that has prepaid, wifi, and skpye capabilites in a single phone.

    Please let me know if there is one for the US of A.
    • by ceeam ( 39911 )
      Cheap phone. Duck tape. Nirava.
      • by ceeam ( 39911 )
        Hmm, I wonder _how_ I misspelled Nirvana as _that_.... :-/
        • Yeah, I thought about doing that, but I don't think I have the pocket space.
          ,br> I have the cheap phone already, Switching to it would be interesting. I'd have to tell everyone to use the new skype in number, but most of them would still use the old number and it would work. There wouldn't be much of an incentive for them to switch to the new number.

          And I guess the biggest problem right now, is the lack of wifi where I am. It might happen once in a blue moon when I was in a coffee shop, but that isn'
          • by ceeam ( 39911 )
            BTW - Nokia has a whole range of hybrid GMS/WiFi-VoIP phones already.
            • but not prepaid. I know it seems a crazy thing to want. But,most of my communication is through email, chats rather than phone. I don't want to pay $30 a month for a service I don't use much. I want a mobile communication device that doesn't cost a monthly fee. Why should I pay more for phone internet access at slow as dial up speeds, when my infinitely faster broadband at home is cheaper?
              • Nokia makes and sells phones, not phone service.

                You buy the hybrid device the GP was talking about. You get a pre-paid SIM card. If you're in the US, T-Mobile offers probably the best PAYG rate if you make your first top-up $100 (subsequent top-ups can be for $10 or so, and all top-ups last one year. Air-time 10c a minute.) You use the GSM side of the device when you're making "out of range of Wifi" calls, and your usual VoIP provider for when you have Wi-fi.

                That's what you're asking for, correct?

    • People have been wanting this for years. The phone companies won't let it happen. Not for a long while anyway.
    • Just get any old prepaid phone with Bluetooth. Problem solved.
    • The question comes down to how committed you are to that actual idea. While I work for a software company in Pennsylvania, my Dad works for a company called Novatel that creates various silicon for connecting devices to cellular networks. Your dream could be a reality with the combination of one of these:
      http://www.nvtl.com/products/ovation/index.html [nvtl.com]
      and the appropriate drivers written on the N800 maemo platform. The N800 has a USB connection. You wouldn't have a "cell phone" per se, however, what do you ne
  • Abandonware (Score:5, Informative)

    by arrianus ( 740942 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @10:41AM (#18782277)
    The problem is that Nokia considers GNU/Linux tablets to be unsupported abandonware only 1.5 years after introduction. The tablets are loaded with proprietary and binary-only drivers and software, which means once official support goes away, you're left with a very expensive paperweight. Linux Weekly News reported [lwn.net] on this just this week.
    • by twitter ( 104583 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @11:11AM (#18782717) Homepage Journal

      The problem is that Nokia considers GNU/Linux tablets to be unsupported abandonware only 1.5 years after introduction. The tablets are loaded with proprietary and binary-only drivers and software, which means once official support goes away, you're left with a very expensive paperweight.

      This is true for all the devices in it's class and is not special to GNU/Linux tablets. It's true that an all free device like the One Laptop per Child is better, but that single device is the only one I'm aware of. Everything else has to be reverse engineered and all other makers consider their PDA's, tablets, laptops and deskops to be abandonware by the LWN definition, "the End-User Software Agreement is still valid and Nokia 770 customers can make use of all their rights, same as before the N800 and the IT OS [2007] were launched."

      • by amper ( 33785 ) * on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @01:49PM (#18785221) Journal
        That may be true, but what exactly is the point then of buying a device that runs an open OS? I mean, the whole reason I plunked down $300 for a 770 (when I knew that a replacement was in the works) is because I'm heartily sick and tired of the Palm devices I've been using (Kyocera 6135, Samsung SPH-i500, Sony Clie NX60) having absolutely no upgrades to the software available. I figured with the 770 and a new Bluetooth phone that I would be better off, but the sad fact is that there are many existing flaws in the 770, even with the latest OS update, that will likely never be fixed. Hopefully, the user community won't drop support for the 770 as quickly as Nokia has, but that remains to be seen. The potential of the 770 has barely been scratched thus far.

        There's no way I'm buying an N800 after this, unless Nokia is willing to guarantee support for longer than 1.5 years. I think I'll just go for the iPhone. At least we know Apple has produced many software updates for the iPod line over several years. I don't expect the thing to be supported forever, but I don't think it's unreasonable to expect support for longer than 1.5 years. My G3 iBook, which is over 4 years old, still runs the latest, greatest Mac OS X (though of course, my new MacBook Core 2 Duo is much faster at the same tasks)...why can't Nokia do the same?
    • by V. Mole ( 9567 )
      While I think Nokia is making a mistake (I was about to order an N800, changed my mind when I heard they were dropping support for the 700), lack of support doesn't make a device a "paperweight". I've got an old Audrey that hasn't been updated in 5 years, and it still works fine for the purposes for which I bought it. Sure, it won't get support for the latest flashcrap version, but hell, we Linux people should be used to that by now...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @10:41AM (#18782281)
    I've got one of these, and love it. Yes, it isn't a phone, and isn't trying to be a phone, and isn't for people who wanted a phone.

    It's definitely a lot more than just a web tablet though. GPE PDA software is being ported, it's got gpg and ssh and the gnumeric spreadsheet and GPS software and interfaces to online digital maps and mp3 player SW. It's got a ton of other stuff like that, coupled to a device with a best-in-class screen, built in 802.11, and around ~5 DAYS of battery life under my normal use.

    It's really a nice little multifunction device and slips in my shirt pocket. The closest Sony x86 based ultraportables are about 3X the weight and volume of this thing. This won't replace a real laptop with a keyboard and so forth, but it's still a great thing to augment your laptop and you can carry it with you everywhere.

    Bad sides: the case that comes with it sucks. The included mp3 player only works with tagged files, not with simple directory-sorted files. Couple of others, some of which can be fixed with SW.

    That's my impression of it. I've got one with 8 Gb (2x4), but an upcoming kernel patch will allow use of high capacity SD cards for more storage.

    There is not much on the market I'd trade mine for, and it's not all locked down crap that wants you to pay for each little feature you want to use like many competitors' offerings.
    • This won't replace a real laptop with a keyboard and so forth...

      Actually, coupled with a bluetooth keyboard, it can replace your laptop while you're traveling. Well, depending on what type of work you need to do. Abiword is quite capable on the N800, as well as Gnumeric. I've only traveled with it for 4 days so far, but in a week it will be my only device I have with me for 2 weeks. It was fine for the 4 days. It'll be interesting to see if I still feel the same way after solely using ot for 2 wee

  • by bofar ( 902274 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @10:41AM (#18782287)
    I veiw my Nokia as a dedicated system for browsing my bank and stock accounts. It is cheap enough to set aside for that reason and I am confident that my interactions with these important websites are through a browser/system that has not been hacked.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by DMoylan ( 65079 )
      good luck to the hacker getting a keyboard logger on that! :-) probably possible with a vnc server but bloody difficult.

      that been said i bought a 770 second hand and i've stopped using it. i got a nokia e61 a few weeks after buying it and i'm now using the e61 for almost everything that i bought the 770 for.

      * reading etexts, the 770 and 800 are almost to big for this. if the book is a ascii text document then it is very readable on the e61. the e61 is smaller and sturdier. if it is a pdf then the large
  • Sounds like a great device for scanning networks. I am assuming that you can run kismet on it anyone have any experience doing that with the Nokia?
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      I have the predecessor to this (the Nokia 770), and it's a top-rate wifi scanner. You get all of the power and leetness of kismet without the need to lug a laptop around, which means that it's perfect for war-walking. It even has aircrack-ng ported to it, although I haven't tried it yet.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by soleblaze ( 628864 )
      Last time I tried kismet (about a month and a half ago) It crashed on the n800 when the screen blanked. Other than that, it works pretty well. It actually gets better reception than some laptops I've used. Not sure if they fixed that problem or not. On the 770 it works perfectly.
    • Well...While it is not Kismet, Immunitysec is running their product called, "Silica" on the device. Silica is great for auditing your wireless networks and the security of systems connected to them. You can find it at http://www.immunitysec.com/products-silica.shtml [immunitysec.com]

  • by ewanrg ( 446949 ) <[ewan.grantham] [at] [gmail.com]> on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @10:48AM (#18782395) Homepage
    The first batch of N800's have a known problem where after a few weeks of use, the right side of the device (left side if you're looking at it) stops responding to touch or can't be calibrated accurately. Since there is no way other than the touchscreen to access many of the device's functions, you then have to send it in for repairs.

    Nokia will not reimburse you for the shipping cost, and has a very broken tracking mechanism. As several users at the Internet Table Talk forum [internettablettalk.com] have documented, this means that your $400 device goes back to Nokia, and you don't know when/if you'll get it back.

    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      hrm, other than the statusbar, you can actually reach almost all of the device from the keys.

      first, you need an application open, if you don't have one:
      01. tap menu.
      02. tap the down arrow four times (applet settings may or may not be disabled, but the specs for the platform say that keyboard behavior shouldn't wrap at the end) - this takes to you tools
      03. tap right
      04. tap down three times - this takes you to help
      05. tap the hardware select key - this opens help

      ok, now you need to run another application
    • Well standard early adopter rules apply my friend :)
  • "However, it's targeted at a very exclusive market: pure technology admirers who must have the latest and greatest, regardless of its real world functionality."

    Um, is not that the point of creating a product, to define the market you want to capture. That would be like saying the iPhone is meant for the exclusive market: parents with too much spare cash and greedy kids who demand a $500 cell phone.

    Okay, it is targeted at the technology admirers. Wait, isn't that almost all of the buyers out there who keep
    • by Locutus ( 9039 )
      yup, I got the impression that the reviewer was quite sophomoric and couldn't finish reading the 'review'. IMO
      But then again, I'd rather read a review from Tomshardware.com or arstechnica.com because of the depth they go into. This review was as if it was done by someone walking into the local Radio Shack.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    ...it's another worthless device to purchase and carry around, which has no real useful function other than glorified web browser.

    Consumerism. Yes. Credit card debt is fun.

    "It's just too much of an independent platform to be able to replace anything else, such as a notebook, a smartphone or a cell phone."
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @11:02AM (#18782591)
  • Also have one (Score:5, Interesting)

    by wilburdg ( 178573 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @11:05AM (#18782631)
    I gotta chime in here... I also purchased an N800 and am overall very satisfied with it. The thing is amazingly capable, especially when paired with a bluetooth keyboard. I use the Think Outside XTBTUE keyboard. The keyboard folds up to a size not much larger than the N800. I can walk around with an 802.11b/g capable, fully functional Debian based machine in my pocket, with ssh, vnc, and a keyboard that I can type on at full speed.

    To be honest though, I think what really was the catalyst for my purchase was the desire to show my support for companies willing to empower and work with the opensource community, rather than against it (which is also why I purchased a SqueezeBox, [slimdevices.com] another company willing to work with their opensource customers.) Check out maemo.org for a glimpse of the N800 development community.

    Nokia even had a program [maemo.org] where they allowed 500 active opensource contributors to purchase an N800 for only $99.

    PS. Hear that companies? I vote with my wallet and will gladly give my money to companies that embrace opensource software.
    • To be honest though, I think what really was the catalyst for my purchase was the desire to show my support for companies willing to empower and work with the opensource community, rather than against it
      I definately have to second this statement. From what I can judge, Nokia has been doing a fantastic job collaborating with the community in relation to their Internet Tablets.
  • I was eying the 770 for awhile as a possible pentest platform. I ended up grabbing the n800 the week it came out. It's a pretty nifty product. Only problem with me is the lack of usbhost and the flakey wifi drivers (It puts in ghost data which skrews up some programs, like aircrack) Kismet does have a driver and works fine with it, but I believe it still freezes up when the screen blanks. The programs on it that came from the 770 still need some work to be used properly. You also have some weird endle
  • Cluebat Nokia (Score:4, Insightful)

    by delire ( 809063 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @11:17AM (#18782773)
    When will gadget developers realise that it's completely stupid to put lots of tiny little holes around buttons?

    Speakers on gadgets are all very well but like so many laptops (the widescreen Apple and some Fijitsu notebooks esp) they get full of dust and gunk if the holes are facing up or around the keypad. Get it together, sheesh. Your device doesn't exist on the drawing board, the idea is that it's actually used by (grubby) humans.
  • I bought an N800 to be my primary "connection" on an upcoming trip to Italy since I don't own a GSM phone... I am hoping reasonably available wi-fi and Gizmo Project will let me stay in touch with email/voice communications while trekking through Italy (ok, "Trekking" sounds far more adventurous than what I have planned...) So far I am really pleased with the N800. It is a great email/web browsing device while sitting in bed (and less obtrusive than the laptop). I do wish there were more applications, as
  • by Anonymous Coward
    ...cell phone. That'd be cool. It'd be like a PDA I can make phone calls from. I wonder why no one has thought of that before.

    I think I'm gonna hold off on buying until they invent this PDA + cell phone combo.
  • I bought an n800 the day after they came out, and I have been extremely happy with it. The review recommends using it "only as a digital newspaper"?! I'm sorry, but the reviewer wasn't being very creative.

    I find the n800 most useful as a portable penetration-testing platform. The reviewer missed the point that the n800 really is a linux box, so it will run whatever you throw at it - kismet, nmap, metasploit, dsniff, aircrack - you name it. It's small enough to hide just about anywhere, and it looks so much
    • You got aircrack working on it? Is there a repository with that in it or did you compile it yourself?
  • The reason I bought the N800 was the fact that the price ($399) made it the least expensive mobile web platform that uses an actual desktop version of a web browser (opera 8.2). No other mobile device or PDA has a web browser that really works as well, even Opera Mini. I use the N800 to do mobile web administration of my forum and other websites, and it has worked perfectly every time. A UMPC costs about 3 times as much as this. It would be nice if it had a phone built in, or even simply an EVDO aircard con
  • My mini-review (Score:4, Informative)

    by Werrismys ( 764601 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @12:07PM (#18783469)
    After a month of use: The 770 has better form factor and looks better, but the N800 has: - much better power savings thanks to the new OS - practically never crashes. I have had zero crashes after installing the updated OS. Installing was a breeze, it even located my backup and restored settings from old OS. - has MUCH improved packet management - works flawlessly with a Nokia bluetooth keyboard - has enough CPU power to watch those 350M TV series episodes (it's not 30fps but it's smooth enough using mplayer) - Opera never crashes, loads very fast, and renders very fast - It's "always online" thanks to very sane hassle-free WLAN configuration system and good power saving modes Its' a great platform for Lucasarts games, remote configuration (X Terminal, SSH). And with the LCARS Trek-theme the OS is very very futuristic. Some software ports like X-Chat (for IRC) and X-Terminal are excellent. 770 was a nice prototype (I used it for a year). N800 is a solid product. With 2 x 4G SD cards it can easily carry a weekend's worth of videos of music. Looking forward to the Navicore navigation set (released last week).
    • The PDF viewer is good. I have read 400-page PDF's full of images on this thing, as well as warezed scanned Tintin/Asterix/Whatnot cartoons. For proper e-book formats fbreader rules, you can rotate the text 90 degrees and keep the tablet in one hand and scroll pages using zoom buttons.
  • A local CompUSA was going out of business so they gave me 40% off on the N800. I just had to buy it. As a result, I've been installing open-source applications for it, and they are amazing. One of the selling points of the device was the bluetooth integration with a GPS unit. The device runs an application called "Maemo" for the desktop, and its built on Debian. I downloaded "MaemoMapper" which has GPS, Routes, and Maps, and once you get the "Flite" library installed, it reads you directions. All for far le
    • I was in CompUSA and saw they were selling them for $349, with 20% off, during the great purge. I already had one, but at that price I had to get one for my brother.

      I purchased a Samsung Q1 last November and truthfully, it's no where nearly as useful as the N800, and costs 3x as much.
  • I would love to buy one, but there are no fire or jump buttons on the right side. How can I justify the purchase?
  • From TFA:"the streaming performance was sub par at best. The movies were pixilated, and the audio was unsync'ed with the clips. YouTube videos are known for their notorious video quality, and the N800 doesn't have the power to remedy those issues like a PC would to tolerable levels."

    What exactly does that mean? Does the author think your PC has some magic CSI-like software that "enhances" You Tube videos? Or does the Nokia use some crappy codec that can't handle video at 320 x 240? Or did he just have
  • I see no compelling reason to get this over a Dell Axim X51v (or if you're on the cheap, an X50v off ebay).
    -High res screen? Check. Resolution is only slightly less -- 800x480 (iirc) vs 640x480, which still kicks the crap out of any phone on the market.
    -Wireless? Check.
    -Bluetooth? Check.
    -*Far* faster processer, making things like watching xvid-encoded movies off of either a CF or SD card a breeze using such freeware as TCPMP [corecodec.org]. Use DVD Decryptor and Auto GordianKnot and entire DVDs can be compresse
    • I see no compelling reason to get this over a Dell Axim X51v
      You must be new here... IT RUNS LINUX!!!111
    • No comparison for software -- the Axims run Windows Mobile, which has hundreds of free and commercial games and various apps available.

      You're right. There is no comparison. ARM is a fully supported Debian platform, and there are definately more Debian apps than Windows Mobile apps.

      • And what percentage of those Debian apps implicitly assume that you use a keyboard? Applications are only viable for daily use if they are designed for your particular platform. Virtual keyboards on PDAs are ok in a pinch, for typing in a URL or a short email, but all the open source productivity software in the world isn't going to make a bit of difference if it wasn't designed with no keyboard + stylus/touchscreen in mind, the way Windows Mobile apps are.
        • Yea, it'll be annoying to use some desktop apps with a stylus / virtual keyboard interface, but I think you're overemphasizing the platform difference. We're talking about the sort of screen resolution that many Debian apps were designed for (800x480), and the stylus is basically the same as a mouse. Yea - the keyboard thing is annoying, but many GUI apps are designed to allow mouse-only operation - especially those that aren't specifically intended for textual input.

  • by Alizarin Erythrosin ( 457981 ) on Wednesday April 18, 2007 @04:07PM (#18787275)
    I have a 770, and I can't wait for some sort of bluetooth storage like Seagate's D.A.V.E. or that Bluonyx thing by Agere. Then I can store more movies and music on it than I can with the small 2gb flash card that my 770 has.

    Its an excellent device to take on planes. You don't have to worry about getting out the laptop, putting it on the tray, the guy in the seat in front of you in full recline and taking that much more of your personal space, longer battery life, etc.
  • I guess the author of the review really does not want to know what his surname means in Swedish.... :=)
  • I managed to get a Solderless USB hub + whatever peripherals [thickertha...hebook.com]. Working on the 770. This should work with the 800 too.

    BTW the Think Outside keyboard is awsome, and mega handy.

  • I bought a N800 a week ago. At first I didn't like it but as I got used to quickly changing the zoom and toggling "optimize" mode for the web sites I use it for, I started to like it a lot - glad I bought it. This transition took several hours of use.

    I think the PDF reader could stand improving: it does not remember where 'where you were' last in a document and navigation in full screen mode could be improved.

    It works well to read GMail but if I need to send a long reply I wait until I have my laptop booted

It is not for me to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence. -- The Earl of Birkenhead