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Nokia Takes Third Swing at Internet Tablet 275

DeviceGuru writes "It looks like Nokia is intent on scoring success with a Linux-powered Internet tablet. The company has unveiled the N810, its third attempt at hitting a home run with the concept. The new model adds a slide-out hardware keyboard, and also a built-in GPS receiver and FM transmitter (for in-car listening), among a number of other enhancements (such as a faster CPU and more memory). At this point, the device is positioned as an email and browsing tool, a social networking aid, a GPS, a VoIP phone, and a multimedia player (and streamer, thanks to built-in WiFi). Will this prove any more successful than the two previous iterations of this offering?"
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Nokia Takes Third Swing at Internet Tablet

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  • by Archangel Michael ( 180766 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @02:35PM (#21029055) Journal
    Demands a simple answer ....

    "Will this prove any more successful than the two previous iterations of this offering?"


    At this point we need one of those forms that has all the check boxes as to why it will fail, like the one for SPAM.
    • by LWATCDR ( 28044 )
      Okay only 256m of Flash?????
      If it came with 16 Gb then it would be a worthy IPod Touch rival. I would love one but at $500 I will probably give it a miss.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Wordplay ( 54438 )
        Unless it's radically changed from the N800, it has slots for 2 more SD cards. 256MB is pretty much the minimum to run the system, but you'll slap a 1GB+ card in it as soon as you buy it, and configure the onboard to be swap instead.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by fr4nk ( 1077037 )
          Unfortunately, they changed the two SDHC-Slots to a single miniSD slot. It has 2GB of internal flash, though.
          • miniSD? I wish they'd stop changing the format. The 770 used RS-MMC, the N800 used SDHC, and now the N810 uses miniSD.
      • by elgaard ( 81259 )
        But up to 8GByte flash in *SD slots.
        I think it is fine that the flash can be replaced and upgraded.

        But I hope the WiFi is good. I have a N770 and the WiFi is just horrible bad.
        It cannot "see" access-points just fine, but it cannot connect unless you stand right next to them.
        I does not work with networks that I can use just fine with my laptop or WiFi SIP phone.

        • The N800 has pretty good network capability. I've not used the N770, but I'm quite happy with the performance of the N800. I can't imagine the N810 being worse than the N800.
          • Networking on the 770 is quite fast, at least when I'm using it with my Linksys WAP.
            • by elgaard ( 81259 )
              Yes, it is fast enough.

              But how far can you go from your access point and still be online?

              It is OK at home and at work.

              But not when I travel and want to connect to a network at my hotel, a cafe, etc.

              • I have a Motorola V557 phone, and the 770 networks with it just fine via Bluetooth. Not as fast as WiFi by a mile, but it'll work anywhere I can get a cell connection.

                That's a working Firefox, Links, *and* Opera in my pocket. I think that's frigging awesome! :-)
      • Re:Simple Question (Score:4, Informative)

        by DingerX ( 847589 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @03:06PM (#21029651) Journal
        That's 256MB of "Application Memory". The N810 comes with 2MB of storage flash onboard, and a miniSD slot. (The N800 had no onboard flash -- no GPS = no Maps to preload, and two full SD slots) That means that you can put up to 256 MB of (mostly aptget repositoried) programs on there; anything more requires a little modification (you know, it's an open Linux device, so you can run the OS off the MMC, it just takes some doing).

        iPhone/iPod Touch have similar application memory quantities.
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by LWATCDR ( 28044 )
          But you could use the "Application Memory" as mass storage.
          Yes the miniSD slot is nice but it isn't gigabytes of mass storage. If the N810 was a great media player that could also surf the web, watch YouTube, and run other programs then I think it could be a good product for Nokia. Right now it takes too much fiddling to make it work really well. People don't want to fiddle with a product. They want it to just work.
          • Re:Simple Question (Score:5, Informative)

            by Richard Steiner ( 1585 ) <rsteiner@visi.com> on Thursday October 18, 2007 @04:10PM (#21030695) Homepage Journal

            Right now it takes too much fiddling to make it work really well.

            I installed Gaim on my wife's 770 (which came bundled with OS2006), and she's been off and running with the thing for the past three months. She doesn't even know or care how to install software on it, but it works well for her. Chatting with a stylus isn't as nice as with a keyboard, but it beats the heck out of having no IM access at all in many situations.

            Me, I fiddled more. :-) I think it's fun running Firefox on my Warp 4 box via VNC from my web tablet while sitting in my living room. :-)

            People don't want to fiddle with a product. They want it to just work.

            These tablets don't need that much fiddling to be useful. My wife is happy with the bundled Opera browser in hers. I've installed a few more out of curiousity (Minimo 0.2, MicroB, and Links 1.x), but still use Opera for most stuff as well. It isn't bad, and it's lightweight.

            • by LWATCDR ( 28044 )
              Yes but the people on Slashdot are NOT a large segment of the population.
              I have to admit I don't see the value of having a portable IM. I have my cell which is a lot smaller than any of the Nokia Webpads. People can just sms me. Maybe I should write and Jabber/sms gateway for my server at home. I could hook it up to gtalk and people could IM me and have it go to my cell phone...
              Now the trick would be going back the other way.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by megabyte405 ( 608258 )
        Actually, the 256 is for root - same as the N800. It also comes with an "integrated memory card" (2gb, non-removable), so it's actually like 2gb storage, which is way more than the N800, from the factory, at least. N800 takes two full-size SDHC (up to 8gb each), N810 takes one MiniSD HC
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      At this point we need one of those forms that has all the check boxes as to why it will fail, like the one for SPAM.
      We already have one, but it's not very comprehensive yet:


      [ ] No wireless
      [X] Less space than a Nomad
      [X] Lame

    • Re:Simple Question (Score:5, Insightful)

      by BigGerman ( 541312 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @03:13PM (#21029745)
      Define: successful. N800 is regularly on the top of Amazon bestseller list higher than Mac laptops.
  • by hypermanng ( 155858 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @02:38PM (#21029113) Homepage
    And how many people out there in the corporate mainstream are ready to rely on VoIP and whatever wifi might be available? If folks were ready to restructure their communication expectations, it'd be a fine device, but I suspect they're still a little ahead of things.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by p0tat03 ( 985078 )

      WiFi sucks as an area service, it really does. Here in Toronto they tried rolling out WiFi in the downtown core, I subscribed to it for a week just for kicks and see how cool it would be to be online everywhere, and was sorely disappointed. The limited range of even a boosted WiFi antenna means that they need to have a bajillion WAPs just to maintain some semblance of coverage, and in the end signal strength was piss poor overall.

      Even at a slow walking pace, I can probably cross through the range of 6-7 r

  • OLPC and EEE (Score:4, Insightful)

    by batray ( 257663 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @02:40PM (#21029149)
    I see the )ASUS EEE (http://eeepc.asus.com/en/ [asus.com] and the OLPC (http://laptop.org/ [laptop.org]) as it's competition. Both are bigger, but also far more capable and less expensive.
    • I've been watching the Asus eee closely and you are right - but unfortunately the gap in price isn't nearly as large as I'd hoped. I'd lug around the larger eee pc to save a few hundred dollars - but to save $100? I'm not sure. Maybe if demand slows down on the eee - the price will come down too.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Mike Buddha ( 10734 )

      Both are bigger, but also far more capable and less expensive.
      And how much good is that extra money doing you when you're sitting on the crapper without it?

  • It's the price (Score:5, Insightful)

    by realmolo ( 574068 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @02:41PM (#21029157)
    The specs on that are pretty good. The form-factor is nice. The software sounds like it is very decent, also. But $500?

    I was at Wal-Mart yesterday, and they had Windows Vista notebooks for $300.

    It's the same problem that ALL PDAs have. To make a PDA that has all the functionality you want, they basically have to re-create notebook, but make everything a little slower/suckier to make the device smaller and make the batteries last longer.

    It's hard to justify buying any of these devices, as neat as they are. They're just not worth it.

    • by psavo ( 162634 )
      vista laptop costing $500 has weight of at least 3.5kg. Apples and watermelons..
      • by arivanov ( 12034 )
        Wrong comparison - both apples and watermelons are edible.

        Comparing the N800 or the EE to a 300£ Vista laptop is like comparing an apple to a one of those pumpkins used for making traditional Mexican flasks. It may look edible, but it ain't. And it weights a ton.
      • My $350 compaq with Windows Vista weighs in a 2.27 kg.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      That Vista notebook you speak of...
      Is it 5 inches wide, 2 inches high and half an inch thick?
      Does it weigh 8 ounces?
      Does it have a touch screen and a flip out querty keyboard?
      Does it have a built in GPS?
    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday October 18, 2007 @03:29PM (#21030053)

      It's the same problem that ALL PDAs have. To make a PDA that has all the functionality you want, they basically have to re-create notebook, but make everything a little slower/suckier to make the device smaller and make the batteries last longer.
      Notebooks have the same problem!

      After all, what is a notebook computer? Why, it's just a re-creation of a desktop computer, but slower and suckier. Who would ever buy such a thing?

      I confidently predict that notebooks will be phased out in the next three years, due to sheer lack of demand for them.
    • by garcia ( 6573 )
      I was at Wal-Mart yesterday, and they had Windows Vista notebooks for $300.

      Then I still have to pay $125 for the EDGE wireless card to throw into the laptop to use it when there is no wifi. To me, EDGE/GPRS capabilities are the most important. That way I can do what I need to wherever I am. YMMV.
      • by LWATCDR ( 28044 )
        "hen I still have to pay $125 for the EDGE wireless card to throw into the laptop to use it when there is no wifi"
        Why? The Nokia only has WiFi and Bluetooth. All you would need is a bluetooth adapter if the Notebook didn't already have one to match the Nokia for connectivity.
        • by jrumney ( 197329 )
          And a GPS receiver and FM transmitter. Then you'd have to knock 5kg off the weight and shrink it to 1% of the original size so it fits nicely in a jacket pocket. These just aren't in the same market as a $300 laptop from Walmart, but if you want something cheap, look at what the Nokia 770 is going for these days (without the GPS and keyboard of the 810, or the camera of the 800, but still a good little portable Linux platform if you're looking for something to mess around with).
          • by LWATCDR ( 28044 )
            I said match it for connectivity. I was pointing out that there was no need to add an Edge card to match the nokia.
            But to add navigation to the Nokia is $120 for three years. To add it to the notebook I can get Microsoft streets with GPS for $99.
            I am not saying that it is an exact match in size and function. For a lot of uses the notebook will be better than the 810. For light weight the 810 wins. But how much do you need the light weight?
            That is a question that only the end users can answer.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by cyberjessy ( 444290 )
      Well ... depends on how you are able to fit this into your daily use.

      I love my N800 ($400 when I bought it), which does a lot without having to carry a 3kg laptop.
      For instance:
      0. Access the web at 800 pixels using Firefox w/Gecko(runs Javascript just like ur other box)
      1. SSH into the web servers i manage.
      2. 8GB of music (though it can hold 16GB)
      3. email, skype
      4. write python and mono programs
      5. Watch videos

      With the 810 (another $100), you get GPS, a new proc etc.

      So depending on how you use it - it could be
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Sunspire ( 784352 )
      You think that price is bad? Get this, the Thinkpad X series baseline model starts at $1300. Boy, whoever priced that one must surely be feeling embarrassed now, why would anyone buy it over the Wal-Mart notebook...

      Or maybe, with the GPS, navigation software, camera, and the fact that it weights roughly 200 grams and fits in your pocket, it could be that the N810 isn't really competing with the Wal-mart notebook at all.
  • Best Spin Ever (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Wordplay ( 54438 ) <geo@snarksoft.com> on Thursday October 18, 2007 @02:41PM (#21029163)
    "The N810 is slightly smaller than its predecessor, the N800, and slightly heavier, leading users to 'perceive more value' in the device, predicts Olavi Toivainen, Nokia's director of product management."

    -That's- what's wrong with tech today. Our irresponsible focus on miniaturization has removed all the -value-.
    • Re:Best Spin Ever (Score:5, Informative)

      by dougr650 ( 1115217 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @03:06PM (#21029633)
      Unfortunately, that's not just spin you're noticing there, it's a pervasive marketing gimmick in the consumer electronics world. It's a widely-held belief (regretfully based on factual sales data) that "perceived value" increases with the weight and size of virtually any piece of consumer technology. If it's tiny and light, most people think they're paying too much for it, never mind that you can get more use out of things that are tiny and light and it's much more costly to produce such items. If you open up just about any DVD player or other device from certain companies that subscribe to this belief (hello Philips, I'm talking to you!), you'll often find a thick, heavy metal plate that serves no function other than to add mass, which magically transforms into a psychological notion of value and supports a wider profit margin.
      • by Wordplay ( 54438 )
        I've heard this in terms of stuff that lives on shelves and desks. It's just the first time I've heard someone try to apply the trope to mobile stuff, where lighter is generally acknowledged as preferable.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      If the volume went down and the weight went up, I would expect it to have better battery life, which is in fact added value. And it is still under 8 ounces, so it isn't a brick.
  • by Jethro ( 14165 )
    Of course, cause I just got the N800...
  • by mean pun ( 717227 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @02:43PM (#21029205)
    Personally, I don't see the attraction of this kind of device. The core functionality seems to be webbrowsing while you're traveling. That may be nice, but is it really so important that you make a dedicated device for it? Aparently Nokia seems to think so (and Apple too, in a way), but I just don't see it. Can anyone lusting for this device tell me what the attraction is? Also, how do these things compare to the devices on the Japanese market? During my recent trip to Japan I saw a similar device on display all over Japan. Sorry, I don't know a brand name, but clearly vendors also want to fill this niche in the Japanese market.
    • They market it as an "internet tablet", but it runs Linux. There is a community behind these devices (maemo.org), where hundreds of apps can be downloaded.

      Now that it has a keyboard, you can do a lot with it that you couldn't do with the older versions.

      Will this version be the one that brings this product line out of obscurity? Probably not, but it is a step in the right direction, and it won't be the last.
      • Now that it has a keyboard, you can do a lot with it that you couldn't do with the older versions.

        I dunno... I can still use Midnight Commander and Links in an xterm on my 770. Just gotta use the stylus keypad is all. And doom works fine (if a bit differently) with the stylus, too. :-)

    • by DingerX ( 847589 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @03:00PM (#21029527) Journal
      I have an n800, and I'll speak to its attractions:

      It's not about web browsing while traveling. Sure, it does come in handy there (or any number of places around the house).
      It's not about a lot of things.

      At home, I have more Core 2 Duo with two big LCD screens and all kinds of fun and power. At work, I have a desktop computer that gets the job done. But these are all computers where you have to be seated, paying attention to the device. Even laptops are that way: they're designed for you to be sitting in front of them, looking at the screen.

      There's plenty of things I do that involve using a computer, but in a secondary way:
      VoIP is one. If I can hook up a headset and drop the unit in my pocket (something the 810 will be better at), that's far better than sitting in front of the computer to take calls, and it's cheaper than a cellphone.
      Another is when I'm working with other people on a project. It's useful to have the internet, and a host of stored documents, on hand. If I want to show someone something, I hand them the tablet.
      Or yeah, checking slashdot from bed helps.
      GPS and the internet in a portable package means I can download Google Maps and Google Satellite tiles, and, when I'm out hiking, call up a satellite photograph of the area, which provides far more information than a standard GPS navigation unit.
      For me, the 800 and a keyboard is a good laptop replacement. When I'm traveling, most of my tasks don't require more of a computer now than what I had ten years ago. My last laptop weighed over 10 pounds (with power brick), so every time I go on the road, I am a happy man.

      And the 810 supports a bunch of video formats on that 800x480 screen, so I'm sure it's a great porn device as well.
      • when I'm out hiking, call up a satellite photograph of the area
        Only if you go hiking where there's 802.11b/g coverage. Or carry a separate cell phone and pair with it via Bluetooth. But if you've carrying the cell phone, you might as well let it display the satellite maps (my Treo [palm.com] does this) and forgo the extra weight.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by DingerX ( 847589 )
          Maemomapper lets you preload entire geographic sections from your favorite online map repositories; someone even slapped together a windows tool to grab tiles and dump them onto an SD card. So you don't need to be connected to the net while hiking, and you can download max resolution for an entire country if need be.
        • Or carry a separate cell phone and pair with it via Bluetooth. But if you've carrying the cell phone, you might as well let it display the satellite maps (my Treo [palm.com] does this) and forgo the extra weight.

          That's a matter of personal preference. I personally prefer a small, relatively cheap cell phone connected via bluetooth since I use that more than a PDA/tablet. (presently I use a Nokia 6820 [wikipedia.org]) I also carry said cell phone in my pants pocket normally. Putting a $400+ device in my pocket for featu

    • If I'm traveling with my laptop - I spend most of my time on the internet. With google's offerings (and others) I can even do 'office' type stuff with nothing more. My email is on the web, my social communities are on the web, many of my favorite apps are on the web, my entertainment is on the web. For a lot of people - that's all they need. They don't need any fat client, desktop software - just a decent sized screen to view online content.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by curmudgeous ( 710771 )
      I read the specs and found this quite impressive. True, it will never replace the laptop or cell phone, but per the article:

      ...The N810 is the first of Nokia's Internet tablets to integrate a GPS receiver...The N810 will come with free maps specific to the country of purchase, according to Toivainen. Optional voice-controlled navigation will be available as a $120/3-year third-party add-on from WayFinder, which will offer a free 7-day trial in the U.S.

      Add in the 802.11b/g, the multimedia playback and th
    • I have a 770 and am waiting impatiently for a new N800 to ship. ($275CDN vs $500 and another month, I'll wait on the N810.)

      I have three machines at home: A PC that I almost never use, a dual-boot MacBook and a server for media (and, as it turns out, UPnP music streaming.)

      The 770, which is a dated, slow version of the N800 which is now a dated, slower version of the N810 constantly amazes me. I'm not using it as I had intended, but I'm using it a lot.

      For starters, because I already had a UPnP server runni
    • by jilles ( 20976 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @04:46PM (#21031325) Homepage
      It used to be that whenever somebody posted something about a device to slashdot people would jokingly ask if it ran linux. Well, the N770 and N800 were a huge hit with that type of people and the N810 is a very nice upgrade for them. It basically builds on what made those devices so popular in the first place. It's the ultimate hackable linux mobile device. It ships with a big enough touch screen, slidable keyboard, GPS and plenty of juice to run a very wide and growing variety of linux software.

      I work at Nokia and although I cannot speak on behalf of my employer (i.e. disclaimer applies) I can say that n770 and n800 have been a huge success in the market. These devices have literally been flying from the shelves since we started shipping them. The thing went absolutely viral despite us not spending that much effort on marketing them initially. The people buying these devices are a mixed bag of people but a substantial amount of them appear to be linux enthusiasts who get from Nokia something that they cannot really get from anyone else currently: a hackable, mobile linux based device with a well supported and really broad development community. Sure there's lots of other mobile linux devices on the market but they pretty much all suck because they've been locked down or because they are unstable or because they have very mediocre hardware. This sounds like it is a handful of people but actually world wide we are talking about a quite large group of people.

      For example I interact a lot with researchers in the academic world and for them this series of internet tablets is hugely popular due to fact that it so damn easy for them to implement their research prototypes on them (e.g. ubiquitous computing related research). They're ordering them by the dozens. Of course there are also lots of people who are just pretty happy with the included features and don't actually bother to install extra software. And of course, with the right applications installed, it's also a pretty good enterprise device. Installing those is easy, just use apt-get install or the nice packagemanager or just click on the package in the browser.

      As for quality and battery life. I've been using this N800 for several months now. If you use it non stop, it will last you only 4 hours or so. On the other hand unless you use it to watch a movie, you are more likely to just occasionally use it for a few minutes at the time. In that case it can actually last a few days easily. For example, I routinely leave the device on my desk with an open shh connection to it and come back in the morning to find that it is still running fine and has plenty of juice left to make it through another day of testing my software on it. Bottom line is that power management works pretty well on the device. Quality of the software is also pretty good. Major improvements were made to the WLAN in subsequent firmware releases and it is now a lot more stable and power efficient than with earlier releases. Developing on it means I install lots of experimental stuff on the device. Despite this, I can't actually recall the thing resetting or kernel panicking.

      To get back to why this niche is important. I can't say why but obviously a lot of companies besides Nokia have become interested in developing n800 like tablets. For example intel seems to bet on this with their maemo derived linux platform. Also the openmoko people are sharing a lot of code with maemo. Apple seems interested in pushing this formfactor a bit further and MS has been pushing pda like phones for years now. There's plenty of tablet like products headed for the market and N810 is some of the better ones currently available.
    • by gral ( 697468 )
      I bought one of the 770s about 2 years ago. Once I bought mine, my wife forced me to go get her one, or I would lose mine.

      With the FBReader program we read books all the time. I have a conversion process setup to convert Project Gutenberg text to plucker. The screen is VERY clear.

      We also use the Web Browser alot.

      I am looking at getting two of the 800s at some point. If the price is right then, I may go ahead and get the 810s. They are worth it to me.
  • Am i the only person who thinks dedicated number keys (like on the sidekick, a well thought out but poorly marketed product) are REALLY REALLY nice? I have the newest wince device du jour, and the shared number/qwerty is very... very annoying.

    I really like separate number buttons. On a computer, where one uses numbers frequently... especially a phone-type device which involves dates.... hitting the fn button all the time is silly!
    Bonus points for the sidekick designers, who even had a separate key for t
  • by apodyopsis ( 1048476 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @02:44PM (#21029227)
    If I wanted to browse the Internet in a mobile fashion I would be much more interested in a Asus Eee PC format that could browse cellular networks, anybody know if it can? They must be thinking of adding something other then wireless...

    more power, more traditional format, proper keyboard/mouse, ok its bigger but its much smaller then a real laptop - and you can work on office documents and actually do something approaching tasks on it. now thats a toy I'm really thinking of getting....

    http://www.itweek.co.uk/personal-computer-world/news/2192000/199-asus-ultra-mobile-uk-soon [itweek.co.uk]
    • well you thought too long. they are all on back order already i believe. and that original price of $200 that was rumored has turned out to be $300 or $400 - depending on memory. so i think this is much more competitive with the eee than i would have thought when word of the eee first came out.
  • Nice (Score:5, Interesting)

    by spiritraveller ( 641174 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @02:44PM (#21029235)
    I have a 770 [wikipedia.org], and am very happy with it. But the lack of a keyboard seriously limits its uses.

    This new device looks like a larger version of my cell phone, the Nokia 9300 [wikipedia.org]. The problem with the 9300 is that it doesn't run Linux. The N810 does.

    There are a lot of people who want an affordably-priced UMPC. I think Nokia is going in the right direction with this. Eventually, they will market it (or the a later version) as a UMPC, but they are adding features incrementally, and not pretending that it is anything special... yet.
  • by Victor Tramp ( 5336 ) <info.ross154@net> on Thursday October 18, 2007 @02:53PM (#21029403) Homepage
    Why can't they (or anyone) make it steno pad sized??? What the hell is wrong with people that every devices has to be f'ing Zoolander sized??

    full size tablet notebooks fail because they are too large. PDA "tablets" fail because they're too small..

    This N810 device has REALLY NICE specs considering.. It's a handy tool for folks like me who already have 3 notebooks, like to have [access to] one wherever I go, but it's not practical to take a notebook everywhere [without looking like a tool]. The N800 has always been attractive, because of it's swissarmyknife like features, but it was impractical to me without a keyboard and some size [ssh anyone?].. now the N810 is coming, and it's got a KEYBOARD, and even BETTER features, but it's !@$#%@#$% SMALLER!??!?!?!

    I hate you Nokia; you've invented a wonderful, very attractvive information tool that does nearly everything I could think to ask for in a tablet (except maybe some nice USB master ports) and you've wrapped it complete fail!
    • by Wordplay ( 54438 )
      ssh displays fine on it at a reasonable font size. As far as the keyboard, various bluetooth keyboard solutions work well with it. I have a Stowaway for mine.

      Of course, the N800 + the Stowaway is $500, which isn't a particularly good deal in the face of this coming out. I assume the N800 will drop to the $250ish that the N770 did, though.
    • by c41rn ( 880778 )
      I have an N800 and I love it. I'm really considering upgrading to the N810 because of the keyboard, but as it is I do a fair amount of stuff over SSH on the N800 just fine (if a little slow typing). The N800 can be paired with a bluetooth keyboard too.

      The N810 isn't really all that much smaller. The screen is the exact same size as on the N800. Nokia just made the N810 a little narrower by moving the Dpad to the slide-out keyboard.

  • by Werrismys ( 764601 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @02:56PM (#21029453)
    It's an N800 plus.

    Same CPU, not a faster one, so the post is flawed.
    It's N800 + GPS + smaller form factor + slideable backlit QWERTY keyboard + better positioned camera and new version of the debian-based OS.

    It's NOT a phone. Phones that big would suck anyway. You use WLAN in cities, in public places, you use your existing phone with GPRS/edge/3G via bluetooth elsewhere. This was one of the wisest decisions Nokia made: I have gone through 3 phones in my 8 months of N800 use.

    Compromises are compromises. Phones must be cheap, small, handy, with LONG battery time. Anything with a big screen won't do. Anything with a big form factor won't do. The iPhone is far too large.

    I don't have N810 yet, I'll just sum up what the N800 (similar machine) is good for: irc (xterm, irssi, etc), movies (mplayer), remote use (SSH, telnet, VNC, RDP), plain old surfing, car GPS.

    On top of that N810 has optimized flash that supposedly runs youtube vids at acceptable speed. OS2007 version failed at this, youtube worked, but too slowly.

    iPhone runs on proprietary OS, with a real SDK coming out next year. The Maemo platform is now 2-3 years old, well understood and readily available. N800/N810 even have python bindings for most things :-)

  • I love the concept -- being able to surf the web while lying on the couch is really awkward with a laptop, and much nicer with a little tablet. Also, it's nice to take along and use at WiFi hotspots in airports and whatnot.

    However, I soured on the N770 pretty quickly because it would crash all the time. The thing may run Linux, but it's a stripped-down version, with a completely new user interface, and thus there is plenty of room for Nokia to introduce bugs. I downloaded their system software update, b

    • Yep, my 770 is sitting in the junk pile. Got so bad that it wouldn't even boot. I'm sure I could figure out what's wrong, but it isn't worth it = the thing was too slow, too clunky and too unstable.

      I'm sure the new version is better, but I'm rather leery of Nokia and the entire concept of the tablet. I'll wait it out a few more iterations, thank you.

  • My prediction (Score:4, Insightful)

    by sootman ( 158191 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @03:14PM (#21029797) Homepage Journal
    In 2008/2009, the dominant web tablet will be... the iPod touch.* Specifically, once it has been revved once or twice and you can get first-gen units for $100-150. At that point, buying one just for the Internet capabilities will be common. The iPod and iPhone are being sold as music players and phones, respectively, and that's why people will buy them en masse today, but sometime soon we'll turn around and realize that we've all got these great web tablets in our hands and that's when things will get fun. No one is rushing out to buy expensive, (mostly) single-purpose web tablets today--but people are rushing out to buy music players and phones that happen to have browsers.

    One neat thing that will happen is early-adopters will start to do more cool home-automation stuff. Once all the devices in your home have built-in web-based control panels, every iPhone and iPod touch will become the ultimate universal remote. I'm not saying I'll pick it up every time I want to change the channel, but there are lots of other cool things I have in mind--lighting, security, etc. I'm in the midst of hooking up a security camera system at home that will feed into a Mac mini which will serve out the cameras' pictures like a webcam--so with my iPhone, I'll be able to check on my house at any time from anywhere. I'm hardly the first person to do this, but the main reason I am doing it is because I now have with me a small device that I can see the pics with at any time--at work, on the road, on vacation, with or without WiFi access.

    * note to Nokia fans,anyone who thinks a 320x480 screen is too small, and anyone else who doesn't like the iPhone--I'm not saying it'll be the best web tablet, just the most common. My personal belief is that the iPhone's shrink-zoom-pan mode of web browsing is an inelegant workaround and I'd love more pixels. That said, it does do the job OK. And when looking at sites optimized for the small screen, it's great to have a device that is so physically small.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Sparr0 ( 451780 )
      Until there is a UPnP media player for the iPod, so that I can listen to my 500GB+ of music from anywhere near my house, the n800 is a superior music device. Just stick a 4GB SD card in it and its got as much storage as the smaller iPod touch, or you can do two 8GB cards if you're crazy for on the go music.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by sootman ( 158191 )
        Two little things--

        1) check the link in my .sig for a possible streaming solution. (Actually, in case someone reads this in the future and I change my .sig, here it is: http://pixelcity.com/iphone-streaming-music/ [pixelcity.com] ) Not sure what your UPnP requirement is, but if you want to listen to music outside your house (i.e., outside your network), all you need to do is open port 80. It's not a perfect solution--believe me, I'd *love* to have a native music player that let me listen to playlists, etc., rather clicking
        • by Sparr0 ( 451780 )
          Additional streaming solutions are silly when I already have UPnP players on all of my portable and non-portable devices. I can listen to any music, or watch any video, that is on my server from any device I own anywhere in my house, or from outside with some [write-once run-many] script trickery.

          I know about the size of the touch, which is why I mentioned 2x8GB SD cards.
  • by Lurker2288 ( 995635 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @03:20PM (#21029905)
    I'm not exactly an expert on this popularity thing, but I'm pretty sure if you're walking around town with your internet tablet so you can Facebook/MySpace/whatever on the go, you probably need more social networking aid than any computer can provide.
  • by rlp ( 11898 )
    My wife and I got a couple of Nokia 770's (cheap) a few months ago on Woot when the unit was being discontinued. For the most part I like the unit and the concept. I particularly like the fact that you can leave it in 'hibernate' mode most of the time and it comes on almost instantly. The first connection (after leaving hibernate) to WiFi is slow (a few seconds) but it's not bad after that.

    I've got an old Linksys WRT54G, and the tablet is usable anywhere in the house or for that matter on my property (1/
  • If it doesn't, then it has no chance in the PDA marketplace. I know, I had a Nokia 770, it worked great; only problem, calendar sucked. It did have the ability to set an alarm, once per day. WTF? How useful is that?

    Seriously, who puts out a PDA that doesn't have a working calendar and expects it to be a success?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      They aren't PDAs or phones. They're web tablets!! The main intended use is as an extension to an existing LAN, or as a browsing/mail/music/photo box that can piggyback off free WiFi or a Bluetooth phone.

      Don't try to force a triangular peg into a square hole. :-)
  • Slashdot reaction (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Sunspire ( 784352 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @04:07PM (#21030637)
    When did Slashdot turn into such a depressing place?

    Here you have a device that is built on the Linux kernel, X.org server, GTK toolkit, GStreamer media framework, supports both open SIP and closed Skype, has a browser derived from Firefox 3.0 that can actually use Firefox plugins and includes Flash 9... if your only reaction is "what's the use?" you must have absolutely no imagination or be totally burned out on tech. The GPS + included Wayfinder software alone makes this device a no-brainer over any TomTom or Garmin in my book, as not only do you get the navigator and the car mount in the box, you also get a kick-ass hackable, pocketable device.

    The reception at Engadget/Gizmondo seems to have been positive across the board. Are they wrong, or is Slashdot just full of bitter and cynical people these days?
  • I recently went on a trip to New York city, armed with my N800. Here's what I found it really useful for:

    • Navigation using Maemo Mapper -- downloaded the satellite maps for the entire city from Google Maps, and off I went. Also grabbed a copy of the subway map from the web.
    • VoIP using Skype -- this was really great... I bought the unlimited landline calling package for $20-something a while back, and could call anyone back home at no charge.
    • Watching TV -- I've got a VLC server sitting back home str
  • my n800 (Score:5, Funny)

    by killmenow ( 184444 ) on Thursday October 18, 2007 @04:46PM (#21031331)
    I'm using my n800 to post this. furthermore, I'm on the john. Sometimes I feel I'm too connected.
  • by Kludge ( 13653 )
    Still no fire buttons.
  • Almost perfect. (Score:3, Informative)

    by OgGreeb ( 35588 ) <og@digimark.net> on Friday October 19, 2007 @09:16AM (#21040165) Homepage
    I have an N700 that I bought on Woot -- so I can't offer a fair comment on the N810's price.

    I can say this about mine though:

    1. It's small enough to fit in my car's glove box (title & registration box...)
    2. I can use it to check news, email, SSH into my servers in an emergency...
    3. It's quite easy to read web pages on the screen.
    4. The on-screen keyboard is relatively easy to use for what it is.


    5. It's almost perfect for leaving in my car or throwing into my backpack for the times
    when I *must* get back online, when I don't really want to lug a notebook computer.

    Presumably the new model is faster ans more capable, and it supports Flash video, so I'll buy
    one when the current one finally fails. (So far, it's been pretty rugged.)

Suburbia is where the developer bulldozes out the trees, then names the streets after them. -- Bill Vaughn