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Nokia Fears Carriers May Try To Undermine N900

Soulskill posted about 5 years ago | from the but-the-carriers-are-usually-so-helpful dept.

Cellphones 307

An anonymous reader writes "Nokia is worried that networks may reject selling the N900 because it won't allow them to mess with the operating system. Nokia has previously showed the N900 running a root shell and it appears to use the same interface for IM and phone functions. Meanwhile, Verizon is claiming that 'exclusivity arrangements promote competition and innovation.' Is it too late to explain to people why $99+$60/month is not better than $600+$20/month?"

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1st (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323013)

1p

Another one for Nokia (5, Insightful)

Jurily (900488) | about 5 years ago | (#29323021)

I know where my next phone is coming from.

My next phone (4, Insightful)

A beautiful mind (821714) | about 5 years ago | (#29323037)

I really hope European carriers will carry the N900, because I'm planning on getting one. It looks really sweet for basic phone + capable mobile computing device with apt-get usage that I'd like to use it for.

it it a phone? (1, Interesting)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | about 5 years ago | (#29323107)

Is it a phone? I'm yet to see anything (other than a few unsourced claims on tech sites) that shows the N900 will be a phone, it seams to be an internet table (like the N770,N800,N810) which lacks mainstream appeal when you can get a phone with similar capabilities and only carry one device instead of two.

Re:it it a phone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323129)

Yes. It's a phone. Quite sophisticated, indeed, but a phone.

Re:it it a phone? (4, Informative)

oh2 (520684) | about 5 years ago | (#29323195)

Yes, its a phone. Several tech journalists in Sweden has tried it out and it DOES make calls.

Re:it it a phone? (1)

moon3 (1530265) | about 5 years ago | (#29323605)

I would say it is with halfway ultraportable and halfway supersmart phone.

Take the keyboard, it is too small for normal two hand typing yet too big for one finger typing.

Re:it it a phone? (0)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about 5 years ago | (#29323671)

"Is it a phone?"

No it is not a phone, but Nokia is still concerned that carriers won't stock them, which doesn't make much sense come to think of it.. Yes, it's a phone, or more accurately a handheld computer that happens to be able to place and receive cell calls.

Re:My next phone (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323157)

I'm sure that if I buy one, I will not even know if my carriers is "carrying" the N900, whatever that means. I would buy it in a shop. And then put a sim card in it.

Re:My next phone (1)

raving griff (1157645) | about 5 years ago | (#29323191)

The issue here is that the phone might not be available in the first place. A network that "carries" a phone is one that provides network service to it, so if networks choose not to carry this phone, you won't be able to do what you just described.

Re:My next phone (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323217)

If they do that, then you file a complaint with the FCC, wait 3 years, follow up, follow up, have your lawyer threaten the FCC, and finally sue AT&T. Yes,it's already been litigated.

Re:My next phone (4, Interesting)

RalphSleigh (899929) | about 5 years ago | (#29323269)

So buy the phone and put your sim card in it.. I think what you mean is the carriers won't subsidise the phone, so you may have to cough up the full hardware price.

Re:My next phone (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323469)

I did some research a while ago and concluded that phones are never actually subsidised. the cost is always calculated and spread into the monthly payments you make so i now opt for buying the phone outright (its an expensive one-off outlay) then use a monthly sim plan that means im not locked into the contract for 12,18 or even 24 months.

Re:My next phone (4, Insightful)

bhtooefr (649901) | about 5 years ago | (#29323503)

But, in the US, you won't get your plan any cheaper, at least from what I've seen, by bringing your own phone.

This is as it should be. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323447)

This is the free market at work!

Re:This is as it should be. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323555)

No, it isn't. The service is access to a network by a predefined protocol. It's my free choice to use whatever device I prefer, as long as it adheres to that protocol. To make the network inaccessible to devices that use the same protocol but a different firmware (in this case unfirmware), is monopolistic behavior.

Uh, wait. I see now your post is a package deal. This really would be the free market at work, where monopolistic network carriers have conglomerated, and force their world view on you by exclusivity arrangements. It's just that this is expressly not as it should be.

Re:My next phone (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323449)

Only an american (no offense) can think something like that.
In Europe carriers subscribe to a common standard for telephony that dates back to when the GSM was invented.
There is *no* concept of "carrying" a phone in Europe, either the phone conforms to the network standard or it doesn't (and if it doesn't nobody sells it).
*all* you need is a SIM card for the basic service, and a data plan if you want 3G stuff.
Of course you can't do 3G if your phone does not support the frequencies and standards, but they are *standards* meaning the only limiting factor is whether your phone is built to use them.

Welcome to a freer and more honest (though not as it could be) telecom industry.

Re:My next phone (2, Insightful)

Jurily (900488) | about 5 years ago | (#29323253)

I really hope European carriers will carry the N900

They will. In Hungary, for example, the mere idea of a phone with a tampered OS is ridiculous.

Great pitch (4, Insightful)

Shin-LaC (1333529) | about 5 years ago | (#29323043)

He also said the phone might not sell well because it's only the fourth iteration in their five-step plan, and people might wait for the fifth, which is going to be the real deal. Hasn't this genius heard of the Osborne effect [wikipedia.org] ?

Re:Great pitch (0, Redundant)

A beautiful mind (821714) | about 5 years ago | (#29323065)

Yeah he sounded really weird. Almost as if he wouldn't like this phone to sell at all. Why would anyone trying to sell a phone do that?

Re:Great pitch (3, Informative)

Plug (14127) | about 5 years ago | (#29323319)

The fourth iteration (Maemo Fremantle) has a UI built on Hildon/GTK+; the fifth (Maemo Harmattan [maemo.org] ), a UI built on Qt. I've read [techtree.com] 4Q 2010 or 1Q 2011, so app developers have to consider whether or not to use the community-supported Qt API on the existing device, which will become "the" OS in 2011, or build something on GTK+, Maemo/Nokia-supported now, which will become community-supported in Harmattan.

Re:Great pitch (4, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 5 years ago | (#29323527)

I won't buy one because, as soon as the N800 and N810 were released, Nokia immediately stopped bothering to support the 770, which was only about a year old. Even Apple doesn't drop support for products that quickly. If I'd paid anything like the full price for the 770, I'd be quite upset, but as it is I just know not to buy Nokia's Maemo products in future.

If true, this is now the phone to beat. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323051)

Finally a company gets it! We want a phone we can hack LEGALLY, that doesn't have Steve Jobs giant head staring at us 24x7 telling us what we can and cannot do with it. If they can really keep the carriers from imposing idiotic restrictions of their own, this will be the phone to beat.

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (2, Interesting)

FooAtWFU (699187) | about 5 years ago | (#29323205)

So, you're saying you want the HTC Dream?

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (5, Interesting)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about 5 years ago | (#29323279)

The N900 is -far- superior to the HTC Dream. Lets see here, the HTC Dream ships with 192 MB of RAM, the N900 ships with 256 MB of RAM. The HTC Dream ships with 256 MB of Flash and a MicroSD expansion, the N900 ships with 32 GB of Flash and a MicroSD expansion, The HTC Dream has a screen resolution of 480×320, the N900 has a resolution of 800×480. The HTC Dream uses a 3.2 megapixel camera while the N900 uses a 5.0 megapixel camera. The HTC Dream is without a doubt inferior to the N900.

Nokia isn't a FOSS software firm... (0, Flamebait)

GeneralSunTzu (1163223) | about 5 years ago | (#29323321)

Pal, when I will see Nokia selling anything open and hackable I will believe it. So far they keep sleeping with the Microsoft suits and you cannot hack their crappy software without lots of efforts. BTW, I am considering the HTC Hero, not the Dream, as it is running Android, though customised. The N900 will probably be as locked up as any other crap sold by Nokia... Recent E71 Nokia victim

Re:Nokia isn't a FOSS software firm... (1)

maxume (22995) | about 5 years ago | (#29323377)

The N800 and the like are a better comparison here, and they are reasonably open (they are a better comparison because they share the platform...).

Re:Nokia isn't a FOSS software firm... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323515)

Complete FUD. Go and look at where the N900 comes from, the N810 which is from N800, in turn from N700. They're all linux devices that use Debian's apt-get for package management, and getting root is part of the system. So please cut the bullshit and get back to jerking off over the S. Jobs photo you keep on your iWank.

Re:Nokia isn't a FOSS software firm... (4, Interesting)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 5 years ago | (#29323553)

Nokia isn't a FOSS firm? The company that bought all third-party code used in the OS that most of their products ran (Symbian) and open sourced it? The company that's been developing the Maemo stack with community assistance for years and has released three Linux/ARM tablets based on it already? The company that owns Trolltech? Are you talking about the same Nokia as the rest of us?

We are talking of the same Nokia, yes indeed (1, Redundant)

GeneralSunTzu (1163223) | about 5 years ago | (#29323633)

I am. Their business model is based on locked down symbian (the open source is to let kids play, not for real-life) and Windows Mobile. Allow me to doubt of their good intentions. And yes I have tried to hack their "open source symbian". It's hard as hell! You a Nokia fanboy, by any chance?

Re:We are talking of the same Nokia, yes indeed (4, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 5 years ago | (#29323753)

Their business model is based on locked down symbian

No, their business is on hardware. None of the Nokia devices I've owned have been locked down at all; they've all come with SDKs and allowed me to run software. Many of their customers add restrictions, but if you buy your phone from a carrier then you get what you deserve. Symbian and Windows Mobile? A bit disingenuous, given how few Nokia devices run Wince; they've shipped a lot more Linux devices than Wince so far.

I got a 770 (the first tablet in this series) under Nokia's Open Source Developers' Program, for a fraction of the retail price, simply based on existing open source contributions. I probably won't be buying an N900 - the hardware's nice but after trying to develop for Maemo I decided it was more effort than it was worth - but that doesn't mean they don't regard open source as important to their business model (oh, and I forgot to mention their WebKit contributions in my original post).

The fact that open source Symbian is hard to hack on doesn't surprise me in the least. Closed Symbian was also not at all fun for developers, and neither is Maemo. Based on what I've heard from a friend to used to work for Nokia, I'm much more inclined to blame this on the general level of competence of their developers than on any hostility towards Free Software.

Re:We are talking of the same Nokia, yes indeed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323755)

Dude, you really need to go look at what MAEMO has to offer, not Symbian.

Re:Nokia isn't a FOSS software firm... (2, Informative)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | about 5 years ago | (#29323745)

Nokia bought trolltech, the company that created QT. They continue to make QT available freely, or you can pay for the commercial version. Nokia absolutely is a FOSS company, they just also have proprietary products as well. The two aren't mutually exclusive, even though one would certainly get that impression from the way the two are treated as diametrically opposed opposites around here.

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323323)

The N900 is -far- superior to the HTC Dream. Lets see here, the HTC Dream ships with 192 MB of RAM, the N900 ships with 256 MB of RAM. The HTC Dream ships with 256 MB of Flash and a MicroSD expansion, the N900 ships with 32 GB of Flash and a MicroSD expansion, The HTC Dream has a screen resolution of 480Ã--320, the N900 has a resolution of 800Ã--480. The HTC Dream uses a 3.2 megapixel camera while the N900 uses a 5.0 megapixel camera.

The HTC Dream sends one of Nokia's men to the hospital, the Nokia sends one of HTC's to the morgue?

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (1)

cheesybagel (670288) | about 5 years ago | (#29323341)

Does the N900 fit into my shirt pocket?

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323361)

If, "cheesybagel", you're a fatass American, then yes. It does.

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323387)

Specs say 3.5 inch (diagonal) screen at a 16:9 ratio.

I'm too lazy to do the trig at the moment, but it makes the phone most likely almost exactly the same size as the iPhone.

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (1)

entgod (998805) | about 5 years ago | (#29323659)

What size is your shirt pocket? maemo.nokia.com says the dimensions are 110.9 Ã-- 59.8 Ã-- 18 mm and 19.55mm for the thickest part.

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (2, Informative)

entgod (998805) | about 5 years ago | (#29323681)

Should've read my message after preview, the Ã--'s should of course be *'s. Is there a reason for slashdot breaking unicode so badly? :P

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (1, Troll)

FooAtWFU (699187) | about 5 years ago | (#29323501)

All this and more I will readily believe! But the AC's criteria were more modest: "a phone we can hack LEGALLY, that doesn't have Steve Jobs giant head staring at us 24x7 telling us what we can and cannot do with it."

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (3, Insightful)

RedK (112790) | about 5 years ago | (#29323737)

You have a root shell on the N900 without having to jailbreak it. What more could you want ?

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 5 years ago | (#29323547)

Oh Anonymous Coward. He isn't "staring", he's "watching over you with the stern benevolence of a strong father".

Some people.

Re:If true, this is now the phone to beat. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323641)

If they can really keep the carriers from imposing idiotic restrictions of their own, this will be the phone to beat.

In everything except market-share.

On a 12 month contract it is (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323071)

60*12 + 100 = 820
20*12 + 600 = 840

Re:On a 12 month contract it is (3, Insightful)

Jurily (900488) | about 5 years ago | (#29323103)

So for $20 extra, you get to use all the features of your phone.

Re:On a 12 month contract it is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323123)

I thought all the low price promo contracts were almost always 2 years in length

60*24+100 = 1540
20*24+600 = 1080

Not a 12 month contract (5, Insightful)

confused one (671304) | about 5 years ago | (#29323135)

except some carriers require a TWO year contract; so, that becomes:

60*24 + 100 = 1540
20*24 + 600 = 1080

Definitely better off buying the phone outright

Re:Not a 12 month contract (2, Interesting)

c_forq (924234) | about 5 years ago | (#29323197)

This has the major flaw of assuming you get a cheaper rate if you provide your own phone. Almost everywhere I've looked has standard plans. If you sign a one or two year contract you can get a cheap or discounted phone. If you don't sign the contract the plan is still the same amount. So the question become do I think I'll be with them for at least the length of the contract, if I do then it makes sense to get better phone out of the deal.

Re:Not a 12 month contract (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about 5 years ago | (#29323309)

Exactly, and assumes you can get a "perfect" plan. Good luck getting a plan on A) A high-speed network B) Has "unlimited" data C) And has enough text messages/minutes for you to actually -use- your phone. Getting all this for $20? I'd really like to see which network they used...

Re:Not a 12 month contract (2, Insightful)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | about 5 years ago | (#29323325)

I'd be happy enough with a data plan and no inclusive minutes - I make an average of about 3 seconds of calls per month.,..

Re:Not a 12 month contract (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about 5 years ago | (#29323389)

Sure, but some of us have the annoying relative who don't know how to text or use the internet to talk and end up talking on the phone for hours on end. Yeah, you might be able to hack together a VoIP app for that, but sometimes its just as easy to get a 200 minute plan per month for those sort of people.

Re:Not a 12 month contract (2, Informative)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | about 5 years ago | (#29323519)

Ah, cross-atlantic differences. This side of the ocean, only the caller pays, or I too would want a bigger plan for all the times my wife calls me wanting tech support.

Re:Not a 12 month contract (1)

bhtooefr (649901) | about 5 years ago | (#29323529)

Probably Sprint after being with them for 5 years on a SERO account, and getting screwed over multiple times by clueless customer service, so they hit up the retentions candy store every time, and got what they asked for. You could get ridiculous incentives out of retentions up until recently.

But Sprint's CDMA, not GSM, so that won't work with this thing.

Re:Not a 12 month contract (1)

Pax681 (1002592) | about 5 years ago | (#29323423)

well i renewed my phone contract without a hardware upgrade as i didn't know what direction to go in as far as hardware upgrade.

this mean that i got my monthly bill HALVED, so for 900 mins,unlimited texts and unlimited(haha) net access i get for £20 GBP per month with vodafone uk.

so if i then went and bought then handset SIM free i'd make quite a saving in the long run.

all the networks ere, as far as i am aware will renew your contract without hardware at much cheaper rates, if that's not the case in the USA then yer getting even more humped than i thought you were.

so the major flaw in your position is that you assume that people don't have pre-existing contracts

Re:Not a 12 month contract (1)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | about 5 years ago | (#29323539)

OOh, shiny... mine is already £20pcm... I wonder if they'd add a data plan to it and cut the cost, I've been due an upgrade for about 2 years.

Re:Not a 12 month contract (1)

Pax681 (1002592) | about 5 years ago | (#29323707)

mine had all the above mentioned in the bundle when i got the contract/phone (N96) ani just took the extension on the line rental and no hardware, as i said. so thus halved the bill.

as far as i know pretty much all uk carriers will do this if you don't take hardware.

Perhaps it is. (4, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | about 5 years ago | (#29323083)

> Is it too late to explain to people why $99+$60/month is not better than
> $600+$20/month?"

For some it may be. Why do you think you know what is best for everyone?

Re:Perhaps it is. (1)

caffeinemessiah (918089) | about 5 years ago | (#29323149)

For some it may be. Why do you think you know what is best for everyone?

I think the GP was referring to basic math. Assuming that Verizon ties you into a 1 year contract, which is probably the LEAST we could expect for a shiny new phone (more like 2 years), then you end up breaking losing money under the GP's scenario. With the more realistic two year contract -- and let's face it, Verizon is not going to let you walk away on a prepaid plan with the N900 -- you lose a decent chunk of money. Since I think most people, according to recent polls, LIKE money, it's probably better for them.

If you feel that Verizon CEOs are underfed, on the other hand, by all means go ahead and pay more....

Re:Perhaps it is. (1)

badboy_tw2002 (524611) | about 5 years ago | (#29323243)

And where do I sign up for the magical $20 contract? Show me one where I get the hours I need + internet (and oh yeah, in the US) and I'm there. Generally the ones without a contract are no better than the one with. It would make sense if plans seemed to go down over two years, but because of the lack of competition they don't. So in the end you might as well get the contract and the phone - you're paying out the nose either way.

Re:Perhaps it is. (4, Funny)

oh2 (520684) | about 5 years ago | (#29323307)

The lack of competition in the US is funny from a distance. In Sweden we have 4 major carriers with their own nets, plus a number of virtual carriers that buy capacity from the majors. And Sweden is a horrible socialist country where the bad guv'mint decides everything for us...or something...

Re:Perhaps it is. (1)

maxume (22995) | about 5 years ago | (#29323399)

I think part of the idea behind the comment is that if more people were interested in buying their phones up front, the carriers would have more reason to offer cheaper services, with less tie up. As it stands, they have convinced the American consumer that the appropriate cell phone plan is the one that they never fully use, and agree to for an extended period of time.

Are you reading, Verizon, ATT, TMobile, Sprint? (1)

xkcdFan1011011101111 (1494551) | about 5 years ago | (#29323625)

Apparently I'm not the only one that wants a service plan only for a sexy open smartphone. I wrote a letter to Verizon saying I'm going to terminate my contract with them so I can get a phone like this, but in truth it looks like there may not be any carriers to support this phone.

There is a market for people that want phone+internet service for cool devices. I wonder if that market is big enough for any big carriers to finally consider serving it?

As previous post mentioned, find me a phone+internet plan that's cost competitive and I'll buy a Nokia N900 and join...

Re:Perhaps it is. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323565)

you end up breaking losing money under the GP's scenario.

Dude, I'm thinking you need to cut back on the caffeine :)

Re:Perhaps it is. (3, Interesting)

pla (258480) | about 5 years ago | (#29323151)

For some it may be. Why do you think you know what is best for everyone?

Although not explicitly stated, (at least) the first option comes with a 2-year contract. Thus, it only takes some very simple math to figure out that in two years, the first option comes out to $1539, and the second option to $1080.

If you'd really like to spend more, feel free to send me the extra $500 and we'll call it good.

Re:Perhaps it is. (1)

darjen (879890) | about 5 years ago | (#29323223)

How could $500 extra over a forced two year commitment possibly be better for some people?

Re:Perhaps it is. (3, Insightful)

Xiterion (809456) | about 5 years ago | (#29323335)

It allows them to buy the shiny toys they otherwise wouldn't have been able to afford because they lack the basic self discipline to save up $600 to pay for the item. They also have no concept of the cost of something that has monthly payments.

Re:Perhaps it is. (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about 5 years ago | (#29323367)

Because in this economy a lot of us simply don't have the cash due to increased savings in case your job is the next to go or slumping sales of your product. Also some of us also have short-term investments that we expected to liquidate without much trouble but in the current economy either they lost value (stocks), didn't lose value but are now hard to sell (real estate), or items that weren't investments but hard to sell luxury items (such as a third car). Plus seriously, $20 a month for a plan? Someone tell me the network that has A) unlimited data B) A decent speed on their data C) in the USA and D) also has enough text messages or minutes so you can actually use your phone.

Re:Perhaps it is. (1)

darjen (879890) | about 5 years ago | (#29323551)

If the economy is really that bad and you can't afford it, $60/month will hurt a lot more than $20/month. You'll will make up the subsidized difference in only a few months. Unless you expect to be solvent again in a few months, it's a pretty bad deal. Basic math, people.

I have a $20/month 3g data plan from ATT for my nokia e71 that I bought outright for $330. I asked them what the lowest possible cost was, which was some wierd thing they don't advertise. Then I went online and added the $15 media net plan on top of that.

Re:Perhaps it is. (1)

Savior_on_a_Stick (971781) | about 5 years ago | (#29323561)

It's better for business users - ie: anyone whose employer is providing the phone.

The cost of the hardware is a capital expense.

The monthly is an operating expense.

Operating expenses are preferable for tax purposes, which is why businesses lease equipment in situations where total cost is a wash compared to outright purchase.

Re:Perhaps it is. (1)

zbrewski (1458389) | about 5 years ago | (#29323293)

Ah basic math schmath... Who needs math when there is a flashy advertisement here, there, left right, shiny happy people with their 'buy one get one free' $99 port your number sign here no credit no problem if you breath you can have it ... plans...

And for us remaining geeks good luck finding prepaid data "plans" in year of two... Let me peek into my futur-o-scope ... I see no reasonable prepaid data rates, not now, not soon, and most likely not ever (in this land of the free, not sure about over there in socialist EU)... for that is evil... to have a prepaid data, payable by kb, on your unlocked or (gasp!) linux driven GSM device... to check your email or other minor data xfer- for you are no good if you want only that - for you have to stream, to download, to navigate, to upload movies, and for that my dear consumer, you need PLAN...

Re:Perhaps it is. (1)

bhtooefr (649901) | about 5 years ago | (#29323567)

Some prepaid carriers will give you data, but IIRC, they still double-dip on some carriers - data is charged by both the time the EvDO/1xRTT/EDGE (let's face it, there's not gonna be any 3G GSM prepaid phones) connection is active, AND data transferred (at an astronomical rate, too.)

Re:Perhaps it is. (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 5 years ago | (#29323569)

For some it may be. Why do you think you know what is best for everyone?

Damn straight! Paying more for the same thing is a choice, nay a right, of the consuming public! How dare these people claim that paying less is better for everyone?

I thought about getting a refurbished nokia... (0, Offtopic)

voss (52565) | about 5 years ago | (#29323153)

but wiping all the innocent iranian blood off the phone sort of turned me off that idea.

It was only a couple months ago this companys products were helping the Iranian government
  capture freedom protesters and censor the iranian internet.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124562668777335653.html [wsj.com]

Re:I thought about getting a refurbished nokia... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323199)

If it will get me a sweet phone cheap, I'd wipe baby seal blood off my phone. I don't care. I'm an American. We don't care about shit except reality television, pop music, fast food and huge gas guzzling cars

Re:I thought about getting a refurbished nokia... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323259)

It's spelled muhrikan ffs!

Re:I thought about getting a refurbished nokia... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323419)

i love how prejudice is tagged funny around here. maybe if we hang a black man or an infidel that will get the real laughs.

Re:I thought about getting a refurbished nokia... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323491)

Not again...

Nokia sold telephone gear to Iran, with the same surveillance features proud democracies like the UK and USA demand of their hardware.

Nokia did not sell internet censoring equipment to Iran.

It's a very odd thing for Nokia to say at launch (4, Interesting)

ribuck (943217) | about 5 years ago | (#29323203)

This is a very negative statement, and from a Nokia vice president no less. It seems a very strange thing to say at the time of launching a new device.

I hope Nokia is not buttering us up for DRM and lockdown in "Step 5 of 5"...

Meanwhile, the N900 will succeed wildly if Nokia's marketeers allow it to. We tech people like the device because of its specs, but where are the simple statements of the benefits for its other market sectors?

"Open source Linux with a root shell" is good enough for me, but what about "A phone with a real Mozilla-based browser", or "A music player with stereo speakers built-in", or even "N900 - comes with apps".

Re:It's a very odd thing for Nokia to say at launc (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 5 years ago | (#29323585)

Unfortunately, the existing Maemo devices come with a Mozilla-based browser. Fortunately, they are moving to WebKit soon, although possibly not before the N900 is released.

Re:It's a very odd thing for Nokia to say at launc (1)

Pax681 (1002592) | about 5 years ago | (#29323679)

feast yer eyes on these specs [nokia.com]

AND if you look HERE [nokia.com] you will find also a nice wee selection of speakers and such that you can use with it. it i was to use it to listen to stuff without headphones, i know i'd be using either those externals OR the FM transmitter for the car.Also for your infornmartion the N95,N95 8gb, N97,N97 and this comes with....[dumroll]...STEREO SPEAKERS BUILT IN

and what about this " * Maemo browser powered by Mozilla technology" as the browser... not mozilla enough for you?

and come with apps?


* Maemo Browser

* Phone

* Conversations

* Contacts

* Camera

* Photos

* Media player

* Email

* Calendar

* Ovi Maps

* Clock

* Notes

* Calculator

* PDF reader

* File manager

* RSS reader

* Sketch

* Games

* Widgets

* Application manager for downloads

or those not count as apps?also remember this puppy is most probably gonna get very much embraced by the open source community, they have built it "and they will come" and write some fucking wonderful apps

SO ..... apart from NOT actually reading the spec or knowing the spec of the latter part of the N series, what is your major malfunction?

Also ant reasonably minded person knows that a carrier "subsidy" isn't really a subsidy at all.... it's HIRE PURCHASE. the payments fr your phone are spread across the conbtract term. and thus buying your phone outright is always cheaper same as it is for buying anything upfront. i would even go sofar as to say like any other credit terms the purchase of the phone (not counting the line rental)generates a tidy profit in itself to the carriers.

not hard to understand really.... as is someone saying "yeah this new product if GREAT and our next product will be an improvement on that!"

it's not as if someone is gonna say "out stuff is shit and next up is even shittier"

Operators are scared (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323227)

I've been testing a N900 for a while, and let me tell you it is amazing. If this little device is a sign of what's to come, operators should be scared. This is exactly the type of development that will regulate them to the dump data pipes they should be.

Today I received a call from my friend while at home, only later did I realize he was using Skype to call me. Friends PC->Internet->Home wlan->N900 rings, indistinguishable from a normal cellular call, and most importantly my operator didn't make a cent. Same if I call him. Yes, this has of course been possible before in various ways. But now the whole integration is just seamless. There's no Skype app, no Gtalk app, Yahoo app, there's just my contact list. SMS messages, instant messages, it's all one single continuous conversation in the UI. If I was an operator I'd start worrying about my nickel-and-dime business model too.

Re:Operators are scared (1)

bemymonkey (1244086) | about 5 years ago | (#29323479)

Elaborate, please.

Verizon Says: (5, Insightful)

Nautical Insanity (1190003) | about 5 years ago | (#29323231)

"exclusivity arrangements promote competition and innovation."

The foul stench creeping through your nose right now is the smell of total bare-faced bullshit.

Verizon "competion and innovation" (2, Insightful)

Jim Efaw (3484) | about 5 years ago | (#29323391)

The foul stench creeping through your nose right now is the smell of total bare-faced bullshit.

What, you don't believe it's "competition and innovation" to blow identical Verizon interface firmware into every model of every brand and castrate Bluetooth transfers so all Verizon customers have to pay network charges to get their own multimedia to and from the phone, no matter what the manufacturer's specs say? (Those of you who didn't know everyone else could transfer pictures and sounds directly between phones without paying for MMS: That's right. You must be a Verizon or Sprint customer.)

Re:Verizon "competion and innovation" (1)

bhtooefr (649901) | about 5 years ago | (#29323607)

All of my phones with Bluetooth have been smartphones and allow transfers of whatever you want (a Sprint Palm Centro and a Sprint HTC Touch Pro,) but I didn't think Sprint crippled Bluetooth-equipped dumbphones quite that badly.

Verizon, OTOH, does everything you say, though. IIRC, their official policy is that Bluetooth is for headsets and headsets only. If you're lucky, you'll get some contacts transferred.

Hell, I had to use a Motorola hacking tool just to get pictures out of Verizon phones at my former employer. (No data plan, so they couldn't be uploaded to Verizon's site, and no texting plan, so no e-mailing them to a PC that way.)

Re:Verizon "competion and innovation" (1)

Delwin (599872) | about 5 years ago | (#29323717)

You can use a data cable to get pics off a verizon phone to a PC.

Re:Verizon Says: (1)

Ant P. (974313) | about 5 years ago | (#29323639)

That's a funny way for them to admit how much they fucked up...

AT&T got the iPhone exclusively because Verizon didn't want to compete or innovate.

You can buy unlocked phones from Nokia today (3, Interesting)

MaraDNS (1629201) | about 5 years ago | (#29323281)

With GSM phones and SIM cards, there is nothing forcing you to buy a phone that is locked or crippled by your phone carrier.

You can, for example, buy an unlocked Nokia cell phone [google.com] from any of several places, and then put in, if you are in the US, a T-Mobile or AT&T SIM card. If you're outside of the US, use your local carrier--CDMA cell phones seem to only exist in the US.

And, of course, if you do end up with a locked phone, there are services on the internet that can unlock the cell phone for you, and reflash the OS on the phone to one that doesn't have whatever features your carrier decided to disable.

I think the only people who will have a problem are people who are in an area of the US without GSM towers and have to use Verizon.

Re:You can buy unlocked phones from Nokia today (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29323385)

I think the only people who will have a problem are people who are in an area of the US without GSM towers and have to use Verizon.

This.

:(

Re:You can buy unlocked phones from Nokia today (1)

Delwin (599872) | about 5 years ago | (#29323727)

Only for another year or two. Verizon's moving to LTE along with everyone else.

Re:You can buy unlocked phones from Nokia today (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 5 years ago | (#29323589)

You can buy a phone from Nokia... if you like paying a lot of money. Or you can buy from a reseller for about half the price. I never understood why Nokia insists on charging so much more for direct sales than they appear to charge wholesale.

Re:You can buy unlocked phones from Nokia today (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 5 years ago | (#29323777)

Probably because that's not what their supply channels are geared for - vast majority of Nokia phones get sold through carriers or some local distribution in "3rd world" countries.

Re:You can buy unlocked phones from Nokia today (1)

influenza (138942) | about 5 years ago | (#29323673)

Except that you'll be paying the same monthly rates as customers who did get a subsidized phone from their carrier. That's not fair. Those of us who buy their own phones should get lower rates. When I brought my Openmoko Neo Freerunner to Fido (in Canada), it was actually cheaper to get a Nokia feature phone than to just get a SIM card.

Re:You can buy unlocked phones from Nokia today (1)

bhtooefr (649901) | about 5 years ago | (#29323703)

CDMA phones also exist in Japan and, IIRC, China. (Oh, and the Canadian market is like ours, same shit, different companies. Including both CDMA and GSM carriers.)

(However, both countries use R-UIMs, which are like SIMs, but are for CDMA. An R-UIM device doesn't even have an MEID (the CDMA equivalent of an IMEI,) it's in the R-UIM - necessary due to how CDMA authentication works, the ESN/MEID is tied to the account, so it'll reject the call if you change MEIDs without requesting the change from your carrier.)

But, there is also the fact that the GSM carriers suck. (So does every cell carrier, but it's finding the ones that suck ever so slightly less.)

AT&T lies out their ass and has a shitty network, and T-Mobile's coverage isn't that great and they're expensive (and, IIRC, they're just now rolling out 3G.) Verizon cripples their phones. That, for the big four, leaves Sprint. Their customer service department is a bunch of morons that couldn't find their assholes if there were a giant sign saying where they were, but at least their retentions department gave you everything you wanted, up until recently, when the customer service department almost bricked your phone.

Now if only we could get R-UIMs in US phones, and carriers weren't paranoid about devices they didn't authorize appearing on their network... (As it is now, to get a non-Sprint phone on Sprint, I have to MEID hack it, which IIRC is a felony good for 15 years in prison. At least so far, of the phones I've wanted, they've all been Sprint models. (In the case of my Touch Pro, there's two CDMA versions in the US. One is used by Sprint and Alltel, the other by Verizon, and the Verizon one has a much worse keyboard and half the RAM. (And I regularly push over 50% RAM usage on my TP in normal use.) The only phone that would've met my needs better was the SE Xperia X1, and that's GSM, and even if it weren't, it's Sony, which I'm still boycotting over the whole rootkit thing.)

And this post got way too long and went off on a bit of a tangent.

Codebreaking in 3, 2, 1 ... (3, Insightful)

NickFortune (613926) | about 5 years ago | (#29323333)

'exclusivity arrangements promote competition and innovation.'

I'm coming to the conclusion that "competition and innovation" can only mean for "keeps the board in cocaine and blowjobs". From the number of times we see anti-competitive and anti-innovative measures hailed as promoting those same qualities, it seems clear that they can't mean it literally.

By this stage, I think "cocaine and blowjobs" is about the only credible interpretation remaining.

"keeps the board in cocaine and blowjobs" (1)

da5idnetlimit.com (410908) | about 5 years ago | (#29323549)

Dear sir,

Please find hereby enclosed my resume...

On what planet is it only $20/month (3, Informative)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 5 years ago | (#29323467)

I gave up fighting against bundled plans, because (at least in the U.S.) the un-bundled stuff really isn't cheaper. Witness the "Mi-Fi", a device I'd really love to have and would consider using in place of a phone even - but the plan for that is not that much different than a phone plan, in the U.S. So you are really better off going with a two-year plan and a subsidized device, since you are likely to keep a phone for around two years anyway...

mistype? (1)

Kloplop321 (1610287) | about 5 years ago | (#29323475)

600-20? I think you got a mistype there

Let them know they don't need to worry (5, Interesting)

gpuk (712102) | about 5 years ago | (#29323723)

If you're considering getting one of these (and I certainly am), why not go to the N900 mini-site and submit your email address to get an alert when the phone goes on general sale. If nothing else it will show Nokia that there is legitimate, widespread interest in this phone and hopefully help them keep their resolve against the evil telcos!

N900 site is here: http://maemo.nokia.com/n900/ [nokia.com] (scroll all the way to the bottom for the form that lets you submit your email addy).

Also, to whet your appetite of what's likely to come, check out this forum post over on the maemo boards: http://talk.maemo.org/showthread.php?t=24272 [maemo.org]

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