Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Nokia Spinning Featurephones as Smartphones

Unknown Lamer posted more than 2 years ago | from the the-thin-line dept.

Businesses 210

zacharye writes with an excerpt from BGR: "One reason for Nokia's surprisingly strong share price rebound over the past two weeks is the success of its new Asha feature phones in Asia. According to our sources in Delhi, the Asha 305 sold out in several stores soon after its debut even before the marketing campaign kicked in. Is it a coincidence that major Asian newspapers like The Philippine Star and Singapore's The Sun Daily describe Nokia's new Asha models as 'smartphones'? No. Nokia has done its very best to dress up its cheap new feature phones as something far more aspirational — to the extent that devices like Asha 305 are now widely depicted as smartphones across Asia and Africa. This is a critically important maneuver.." Of course, maybe they are smartphones; the Asha appears to be speced better than the HTC Dream (1Ghz processor, albeit with only 128M of RAM), and they've added a lot of new features to Series40. But then it's still Series40 with JavaME.

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

What is the difference to the end user? (5, Insightful)

siddesu (698447) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981723)

As long as the features the phones provide to the users are comparable, who cares what virtual machine runs the software?

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (3, Interesting)

JMonty42 (1961510) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981753)

I would say the defining feature of a smartphone would be the ability to install apps to expand its capabilities.

speaking of (not?) being able to install apps (1)

reiisi (1211052) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981763)

What is the OS?

Re:speaking of (not?) being able to install apps (1)

grouchomarxist (127479) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981917)

It looks like it is the Series 40 OS. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Series_40 [wikipedia.org]

Re:speaking of (not?) being able to install apps (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982733)

Nope. Asha's on the forty-five. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brimful_of_Asha. Unless that's only by the brimful ...

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981765)

I would say the defining feature of a smartphone would be the ability to install apps to expand its capabilities.

You can do that on Series 40, installing Java ME apps has been possible for a long time now.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981963)

The only garbage that should be collected in Java is the runtime itself. OK I lied, the language is garbage too.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (2)

ChunderDownunder (709234) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981977)

My previous phone was Symbian. There's a world of difference between what Nokia were selling as an app platform with Qt/S60 native applications and Java ME.

GetJar has 50,000 JavaME apps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982539)

Don't know if Nokia has downloaded that many of them to their own app store though.

http://www.getjar.com/

Re:GetJar has 70,000 JavaME apps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982565)

70,000 apparently.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (4, Interesting)

starworks5 (139327) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981787)

With that logic, you couldn't have any strongly secured android or IOS phones! Smart phones are about having multiple uses, as opposed to several features, or just being able to make a phonecall.

Here is an excerpt from nokia in the TFA

James from Nokia here. One thing this piece overlooks is the web-browsing tech that comes as standard on our Asha models, including the Asha 305 mentioned here. Every time you access FB or Twitter or whatever else, the webpages are rendered in the cloud to keep data traffic very small and browsing fast. This of course does wonders for your phone bill (the Nokia Browser uses up to 85% less data than a competitor’s phone) and tells a little bit more about our strategy with Asha: making the Internet more accessible for people.

I would consider this as being smart, especially given the region and infrastructure available there.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (4, Informative)

Clarious (1177725) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981871)

Opera mini does the same, that is why it is so lightweight and can render (albeit sometimes incorrectly) fairly complex webpages on very weak phones, it even re-encode images to webp format to reduce file size. Amazon Silk also does that too, so it is nothing new.
Back to the topic, for the same price for a Asha 303, you could get something like a Samsung Galaxy Pocket, which has GPS and double amount of RAM. In my country (Vietnam, a 3rd world one) Android is gaining market, even at the lower end segment while Nokia is losing out rapidly. I was surprised that if someone I know has proper web-browsing capability now, then it is most likely to be an Android phone or, sigh, iPhone.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

PeterKraus (1244558) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981937)

The thing with the Asha range (at least most of them) is the ease of use - typing a lot on a small touchscreen can be a pain to some people. I had a Wildfire S and I absolutely hated it for texting and emailing, and the Galaxy Pocket seems to be even smaller.

Also, Symbian 60 felt comparatively faster on a similar hardware to Android 2.3 (Nokia E5 vs HTC Wildfire S, both 600MHz ARMv11: http://www.gsmarena.com/compare.php3?idPhone1=3777&idPhone2=3198 [gsmarena.com] ).

YMMV.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (3, Insightful)

Clarious (1177725) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982019)

Us Asian all have small finger, that helps a bit with the typing, and there are some Android phones with qwerty keyboard too.
Regarding to speed, I agree that Symbian feels much faster, still I hate how they only includea minimal amount of RAM in their phone, my last phone (a Nokia 5230 with 128 Mb RAM, before I dropped it to death) could only open ~3 tabs with Opera Mobile before running out of memory. Nevertheless it was a good phone. But now Nokia has declared Symbian to be a burning ship, I see no reason to use it anymore. That, and with my personal hatred to Nokia for killing off Meego/Meltemi/Qt and then siding with Microsoft make that 5230 the last Nokia phone I buy.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981841)

This is one of those reasons why I'm always annoyed by the generally American idea that "smartphone" == iPhone and later devices. Nokia has essentially been producing "smartphones" for ages before the iPhone; installilng third-party applications onto phones has been possible since, what, the year 2000?

The only thing the iPhone brought into the picture was the touchscreen and the centralized application store.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981949)

> The only thing the iPhone brought into the picture

Another major factor is that Apple is an American company. Compare with Samsung, Nokia, Sony-Ericsson.

Yes, I know about Motorola. So does Lara Croft.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (2, Insightful)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981953)

Lots of phone makers were making phones that had Java apps on them before the iPhone. Most of those apps were garbage, though, and seemed mainly designed to provide the carrier with more cash.

So when it comes to smartphones - maybe "smart" refers not to the phone, but to the phone's owner. As in, they were smart enough not to buy a phone filled with those crappy Java apps.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982065)

Lots of phone makers were making phones that had Java apps on them before the iPhone. Most of those apps were garbage, though, and seemed mainly designed to provide the carrier with more cash.

And I suppose every single app in Apple's app store is a shining jewel of quality and innovation?

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982239)

There were quite a few useful J2ME apps, actually. Google had a GMail app for a while that was very handy (and old packages can still be found if you look around, and they still work). Bombus for GTalk and XMPP in general. Games like Angband.

The biggest problem there by far was no ability to run apps in background. And I don't even mean early iOS-style restrictions when app suspends while in background, but rather quite literally - you could run one app that was in the foreground, and you could only switch to another app (or make a call etc) by exiting that foreground app - no task switcher or anything like that, and no push of course. That rather limits their usefulness.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

CptPicard (680154) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982441)

I'm not talking about J2ME but native applications. I'm not completely sure how S40 is regards to this, but seems like the first S60 phone hit the US market in 2002.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

mirix (1649853) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982035)

Well, at least traditionally, Nokia had two OSes. S40 was the lightweight one that only did java apps, for dumbphones (which is what the phones from the TFA happen to run). S60 was the hotrod with native apps and so on, multitasking, etc. The 'smartphone'... Perhaps the quintessential smartphone until iphone and android rolled around.

That's the angle they're working on, at least - that S40 isn't smart, because it wasn't smart. But 1GHz sounds pretty smart to me... just why the fuck not run S60 or maemo, then? Because Elop hates anything better than windows phone? Wonder if they've added some multitasking and/or native apps to S40, if that's even possible without the thing being a completely different OS.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982481)

But 1GHz sounds pretty smart to me... just why the fuck not run S60 or maemo, then? Because Elop hates anything better than windows phone?

Because he's a smart guy who can see a lucrative niche.

The Nokia Asha phones sell for under 100 (EUR or even USD). What kind of smartphone would you get for that kind of money? A crappy one.

But there are still plenty of people around who like what an Asha is about:
* Cheap. Phones get dropped, stolen, wear down. But we're talking less than a hundred bucks so it's ok.
* Several days of battery life. Having to recharge your phone at least once a day sucks.
* Physical QWERTY keyboard.
* 3[.5]G and WiFi so you're covered either way when you need to connect.
* Cloud-rendering, one-page-at-a-time, simplified browsers is all they need.
* No need for multitasking. Some people only look to their phone for simple things and they do them one at a time. Mostly they talk on them. Occasionally they look something up on the net, send a message, or play a simple game to pass a couple of minutes. That's it.

Granted, the smartphone offers a while different level of capabilities. But there are still people that don't feel they need that.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982099)

Meh, I think "smartphone", while obviously not a strictly defined word, carries a connotation of laptop (or palmtop, for those that remember them), but packaged a phone.

Old phones had apps. Some even let you add them, with varied degrees of difficulty. But they were all garbage running on garbage. Modern smartphones are spec'd like laptops and very nearly behave like them, in the mind of the average consumer.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

biodata (1981610) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982311)

AFAIR these were the first smart phones http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nokia_8110 [wikipedia.org]

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

cbhacking (979169) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981865)

Generally, I agree with you ("smartphone" for me means a programmable mobile phone) but these days, almost any device has some programmable ability (as the summary points out, these phones can run Java ME code).

A more modern definition of "smartphone" might include things like a sensor suite (camera isn't enough anymore, a GPS at least is expected), a powerful processor (which it has, at least powerful enough to easily qualify), a touchscreen, and some kind of "app store" even if it's almost nothing compared to what Apple and Google offer.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982457)

>A more modern definition of "smartphone" might include things like a sensor suite (camera isn't enough anymore, a GPS at least is expected), a powerful processor (which it has, at least powerful enough to easily qualify), a touchscreen, and some kind of "app store" even if it's almost nothing compared to what Apple and Google offer.

Would three out of four do it for you?
Sensor suite: Well it doesn't have GPS, but it does have an accelerometer. (Side note: Can an accelerometer make do as a poor mans' GPS by keeping track of all movements from the factory?)

Powerful processor: 1Ghz processor

Touchscreen: Though less resolution than others at 240x400. 3" screen.

Appstore: Getjar.com, Ovi.com, and wherever else you want to get apps from.

Also these smart features not available in iPhones:
Use whatever carrier you want.
Use your hardware without getting permission from Cupertino or Mountain View.
Open file system, load whatever you want.
Install whatever app you want, from wherever.
Dual SIMs (multiple phone numbers, one for work, one for play)
Expandable storage.
Dual camera (not on original iPhone)
FM Radio (not on original iPhone, I believe)
Huge talktime
Replaceable battery (I believe)

By the way, the original iPhone did not feature apps (programs that run your phone). It only had "webapps". By that measure, this is definitely a smartphone.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982591)

> Appstore: Getjar.com, Ovi.com, and wherever else you want to get apps from.

IMHO this one is the deal-breaker for calling it a smartphone. Apps are an integeral part of a smartphone and must be easily accessible.
getjar.com etc. are a pain in the backside, to put it kindly. You need to know and select your device on your own, you need to install things manually, ...

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982751)

Can an accelerometer make do as a poor mans' GPS by keeping track of all movements from the factory?

Even assuming that somehow the phone never lost power, accelerometers are nowhere near as precise as to keep a decent position over more than a few meters.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981867)

...and on s40 you can extend more it's capabilities arguably than with windows phone 7.

so what's the beef?

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

Isaac-1 (233099) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981943)

I doubt that most smart phone users even know there is an OS under their applications, to them any phone with a fairly robust feature set, good web browser and downloadable applications (from angry birds to bar code scanners) is a smart phone. There are probably a few other assumptions like a touchscreen interface and a highly customizable experience.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982043)

Quick someone alert the phone naming standards committee, then we can send the police after these marketing execs!

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982273)

OK, and who says S40 Java-based phones cannot install apps?

http://www.getjar.com/ [getjar.com]

Install all the J2ME apps you want.

If you want to install the apps from your phone, just go to m.getjar.com.

Or any one of a number of other places. Or Nokia's own appstore.

Any other so-called differences between "smart" phones and "feature" phones?

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

Karlt1 (231423) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982453)

Does that mean every old phone that came out with the ability to run JavaME apps were smartphones?

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (1)

loranger (2707781) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981915)

The smarter the phone is, the more power it need to perform the same function.

Re:What is the difference to the end user? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981933)

The problem is that typical J2ME implementations are seriously crippled, resulting in crippled software. It wouldn't really have to be so but it's been delibarate policy or certain manufacturers for a number of years so that they could promote their "smartphones" instead.

What's the difference? (1)

mister2au (1707664) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981759)

Serious question not a troll, what is the difference between the 2 definitions? I honestly don't know.

Is it an API and third party applications for a smart phone versus locked-in phone feature in ROM for a feature phone? Or something else?

Re:What's the difference? (1, Insightful)

mjwx (966435) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981799)

Serious question not a troll, what is the difference between the 2 definitions? I honestly don't know.

Smart phones are more like general purpose computers, feature phones are just standard phones with a few non-standard features like web and email access.

But Nokia shouldn't have to worry, Apple has been passing off a feature phone as a smart phone for years now.

Re:What's the difference? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982083)

"Apple has been passing off a feature phone as a smart phone for years now."

Indeed. When the original iPhone showed up it had less features than a slightly aged SE flip phone.

Yet the press called it a smartphone, apparently because it had that touch screen.

Re:What's the difference? (4, Interesting)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982149)

That's one important difference between smart phones and feature phones that Nokia never seemed to understand: a smart phone is a pocket computer (call it an "organiser") which happens to have the ability to make calls too. A feature phone is a phone that has some extra apps bolted on. From a design perspective that is an important distinction, and it's the reason why so many Nokia smart phones sucked from a usability point of view, even though they had a decent hardware design.

As for the iPhone, I don't see why it shouldn't be classed as a smart phone, even though it's more locked down. A friend who enjoyed using an iPhone for some years before making the switch to Android joked: "The advantage of Android is that you can customize the whole phone to your liking, including the desktop, the keyboard, etc. The disadvantage is that you have to". Apple locks down the UI, but that default UI has proven to work well for many people. If it doesn't for you, get a 'Droid.

Re:What's the difference? (1)

CptPicard (680154) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982489)

Like the Communicators or the E-series business phones?

Re:What's the difference? (1)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982615)

I've used a Communicator 9110 and played around with an E90 for a bit. Both, but the 9110 in particular, suffer from the same problem: they are designed as phones instead of pocket computers with a GSM chip.

Re:What's the difference? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982261)

Genuine Apple iPhones here in China are extremely expensive, And by that I mean they cost even more than they do in the US without any kind of price adjustment for the typical cost of living. Consequently there's tons of room for local competition. Personally, I've got an extremely basic Nokia phone which I couldn't find an equivalent in the US. It has basically no features other than what could be done via firmware, I think the flashlight is the only gimmick on the phone. But it gets like a week between charges and has never caused me any trouble.

Re:What's the difference? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981807)

It's definitely not the API and apps. The iPhone was considered a smartphone even before it could use apps, and many featurephones allow app installation. I'd say the main difference is marketing and price.

Re:What's the difference? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981809)

Anything with a 3MP camera or more is a Smartphone, for carriers marketing at least.

Re:What's the difference? (1)

siddesu (698447) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981811)

With feature phones, you run end-user apps in a manner that is different from the "system" end-user applications, typically in some sandbox. For smartphones, you are using the same environment for both. This usually implies a different development environment and language.

Re:What's the difference? (1)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981853)

And with feature phones, the apps you can install are typically gated by your carrier, whereas with smartphones, they are not.

Re:What's the difference? (2)

bickerdyke (670000) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981875)

iPhone: Apps strictly gates by Apple
javaME: I can install any ME app I can find...

try again.

Re:What's the difference? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981877)

And with feature phones, the apps you can install are typically gated by your carrier, whereas with smartphones, they are not.

According to that criterion, the iPhone is a feature phone.

Re:What's the difference? (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981947)

ios, gated.
wp7, gated.
symbian, gated to a limit(signing).

android and s40, not gated..

Re:What's the difference? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982109)

Depends on where in the world one live. Aiming a featurephone browser at getjar.com or apps.opera.com may produce interesting results.

Re:What's the difference? (5, Insightful)

Vintermann (400722) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981861)

Applications are definitively sandboxed on Android and iOS too. It's probably possible to install non-java ME apps on these phones too, it's just that since the environments aren't standardized, no one bothers.

The distinction between feature phones and smartphones is largely a product of successful marketing. If Java ME hadn't been such a train wreck, we would just have viewed it as another smartphone platform, along with Android (which would probably have used it instead of Dalvik then), iOS and Blackberry's OS.

Re:What's the difference? (1)

siddesu (698447) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981887)

Yes, but both "system" and non-system apps run in the same virtual machine, whereas in a feature phone, the dialer app, the camera app and a couple of pre-selected other apps will be written in the native language for the platform, typically some C, and be totally distinct from the junk you can dump into your java or bree or whatever environment.

As for JavaME, it allowed some pretty decent apps when enforced across all phone models in a market and provided with a single repository to buy/download apps. One example of such a service was the Docomo i-appli marketplace.

So, technically there are some differences (which were in place back then because hardware wasn't powerful enough for general purpose computing), but from the user perspective it is mostly marketing and management.

Re:What's the difference? (1)

dwater (72834) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982029)

> Yes, but both "system" and non-system apps run in the same virtual machine

Not always.

Re:What's the difference? (1)

bickerdyke (670000) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981869)

And now say with a straight face that apps on android and iPhone aren't running sandboxed.

Re:What's the difference? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981897)

Okay... so that means there /isn't/ any difference to the typical end-user then?

Re:What's the difference? (1)

fa2k (881632) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982317)

Thank you! Finally a sensible definition.

Re:What's the difference? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981993)

The difference is 'smartphone' means the computer-like phones that led the industry and impressed your friends.

Except the cheap phones have caught up. A 'featurephone' is a 'smartphone' that didn't cost as much as yours so you need a way to make it sound inferior. It also helps inhouse and outhouse PR departments fill column inches.

Outhouse PR department: aka "technical" "'journalists".

So, can someone explain... (4, Interesting)

cupantae (1304123) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981773)

What's the difference between a feature phone and smartphone? For someone who uses strong words such as "trick" and "phony" about this, he certainly doesn't make the distinction clear.

Re:So, can someone explain... (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981907)

what it used to be? it used to be c/c++ native code programs.

that's how it was untill windows phone 7 / iphone1(with webapps) anyhow.

nowadays it's just price. even nokia switches phones between feature and smart devices segments on their earnings reports on whim.

Re:So, can someone explain... (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982077)

In the beginning, the main difference between a feature phone and smart phone was that one was also a bad PDA.
Increased screen size, cameras, web browsing, mp3 players, and touch screens came later.

Nowadays, there's no firm line that separates feature phones and smart phones.
Generally the difference is price, which reflects on the features.

I still carry around a feature phone, but the US market has mostly abandoned it.
Your choices nowadays are almost entirely basic phones or smart phones.

Windows Phone has its issues, but Featurephone? (5, Funny)

RanCossack (1138431) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981777)

That's too cruel, really.

(Just reading the headline and wildly assuming is fine, right?)

Re:Windows Phone has its issues, but Featurephone? (4, Insightful)

dbIII (701233) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981863)

It's not a Windows phone. You can tell because people are buying them.
At this point Windows phones are doomed no matter how good they are because the phone networks hate Microsoft with a passion. Microsoft now owns Skype which the networks see as robbing them of their birthright. Until that can be dealt with Windows phones will not be bundled with network deals and to this point they do not have enough features for people to want to buy them outright instead of on a plan.

Re:Windows Phone has its issues, but Featurephone? (1)

ozmanjusri (601766) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982021)

Windows phones will not be bundled with network deals and to this point they do not have enough features for people to want to buy them outright instead of on a plan.

That's only in the US.

You can get them on a plan here, but nobody does. They don't bring anything to the table except an odd kindergarten-corporate interface, and that's not a good enticement to waste money on.

Where does this bullshit keep coming from? (1)

21mhz (443080) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982523)

At this point Windows phones are doomed no matter how good they are because the phone networks hate Microsoft with a passion. Microsoft now owns Skype which the networks see as robbing them of their birthright. Until that can be dealt with Windows phones will not be bundled with network deals

Err, what?
There are operator-subsidized offers for Lumia phones on both sides of the pond. You don't think Nokia earns only $50 on each Lumia 900 sold by AT&T, do you?
Operators seem to have no problem offering deals for iPhone and Android phones where Skype is available as an installable application, either.

and to this point they do not have enough features for people to want to buy them outright instead of on a plan.

You may need to look out beyond your geeky circle of friends. Maybe you'll see enough to stop making statements about people in general based on your limited experience. I remember people like you saying that iPhone "does not have enough features" back in 2007 and boasting the overwhelming market share of their then-favorite manufacturer, which ironically was Nokia.

Re:Windows Phone has its issues, but Featurephone? (1)

grouchomarxist (127479) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981925)

This is a Series 40 phone.

Re:Windows Phone has its issues, but Featurephone? (2)

jbernardo (1014507) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982143)

I wouldn't say it is too cruel. There are many similarities between my lumia 800 and my old nokia 6600 (the small S40 slider one).

- I only use any of them to receive calls or sms with a SIM from countries where I used to live;

- 5MP, average camera

- dumbed down, but fast, interface

- some apps (including maps) but more expensive and less flexible than "smartphone" ones; also a lot less variety than Android or iOS;

- smaller resolution screens than the medium end smartphones, at their release

Differences:

- the old 6600 was actually fun to use, the lumia I am always fighting the artificial restraints;

- expandable memory on the 6600 slide, with standard uSD cards

- touch screen on the lumia, also much larger and higher resolution than the 6600 slide

- keyboard on the 6600 slide

- "social media integration" on the lumia - I never used it much, I rather use the facebook/linkedin/twitter clients or go to the sites directly;

So, what makes the lumia a smartphone instead of a featurephone, like the S40 ones?

"Featurephones as Smartphones" (4, Insightful)

l3v1 (787564) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981817)

"Featurephones as Smartphones"

I don't get it. It seems these days smarta**es want "smartphone" to mean only something with ios, android, wp, etc. on it. It's not the OS that makes a smartphone "smart". Granted, it doesn't have a GPS receiver, but otherwise it's not a bad phone [1] for the price, and I wouldn't blame Nokia for marketing it with the goal of selling it - you know, that's the point.

[1] http://www.gsmarena.com/nokia_asha_305-review-792.php [gsmarena.com]

Re:"Featurephones as Smartphones" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982145)

I don't get it. It seems these days smarta**es want "smartphone" to mean only something with ios, android, wp, etc. on it.

They're not smarta**es, they're feature a**es.

SAAS - smart as a service (5, Interesting)

twl (5820) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981829)

What Nokia are doing is moving the 'smart' into the cloud. Seems smart enough to me. Not everyone wants a $600 phone...

Re:SAAS - smart as a service (2)

bickerdyke (670000) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981885)

What makes the phone itself dumber, actually.

This just in (5, Funny)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | more than 2 years ago | (#40981851)

Company uses vague buzzwords to engage in nefarious tactic known as "marketing".

For the love of god... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981859)

Just take the N900 design, make the processor faster. Add a bit more RAM and fix that bloody usb connector and then sell it as a featurephone spun as a smartphone.
You'll still be a fucked company, but at least you'll have the best goddamn phone on the market.

(From a geek point of view).

Re:For the love of god... ^^^ this (1)

maroberts (15852) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982305)

Just take the N900 design, make the processor faster. Add a bit more RAM and fix that bloody usb connector and then sell it as a featurephone spun as a smartphone.
You'll still be a fucked company, but at least you'll have the best goddamn phone on the market.

(From a geek point of view).

.For your genius to be complete and for a phone that the Gods themselves would use, suggest they add the 41MP Pureview sensor in too.

Next time, post wisdom like this as a proper user - you'll have incredible Karma in no time!!

cheaters? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981909)

they are tricking people eager to get a status symbol phone into believing that this is a real smartphone. they should be sanctioned for this.

Re:cheaters? (1)

FishTankX (1539069) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982041)

People pay $600-800 in alot of countries to get an iPhone, that doesn't even have a file browser. (Which this phone has)

People can look at the phone, play with the phone, pay if they think it's worthit to them, and if they pay then good for them. They've got themselves a shiny new phone that looks attractive. If they don't pay, then can merely find another phone.

There's no ISO definition of what a 'smartphone' is. Upgradable by applications? This phone has it. (J2ME). Touch screen? this phone has it too. So I find it somewhat wrong to bash them for calling it a smartphone.

Re:cheaters? (1)

dwater (72834) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982389)

To me, it was key that the device does real multitasking (ie it works when the device is offline and no special programming is required). Not too many phone platforms qualify with that these days.

The Sun Daily belongs to Malaysia, not Singapore!! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40981981)

The Sun Daily belongs to Malaysia, not Singapore!! .my domain belongs to Malaysia, .sg domain belongs to Singapore.

Malaysia is the neighbour country of Singapore. As all neighbours do, we hurl insults at each other from time to time.... hate to be lump together.

Needless to say... (4, Insightful)

Tough Love (215404) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982001)

Needless to say, these are outselling Lumia/Windows phones by a fat country mile.

Re:Needless to say... (3, Insightful)

21mhz (443080) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982589)

Needless to say, these are outselling Lumia/Windows phones by a fat country mile.

Similarly, dirt-cheap Android phones outsell high-end Android models. Your point being?

Asha 305 w/ Nokia suite desktop == smartphone (2)

SpzToid (869795) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982017)

I am surprised not to have read this is prior comments, but Nokia gives away a (primarily Windows) desktop software environment called Nokia Suite, of which the Asha 305 seems to be a full-featured client device. I mean c'mon, when you can enter contact info into your PC and everything (appointments, etc.) sync with your tiny phone, that's like a smart phone, isn't?

https://www.nokia.com/ph-en/support/product/305 [nokia.com]
https://www.nokia.com/global/support/nokia-pc-suite-specifications/?view=detail [nokia.com]

The latest Nokia Suite beta supports the Linux Nokia N9 too, (known only because I pay attention since I am pleased to own an N9).

A more appropriate question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982053)

Are smartphones 'smart' or do they just have a load of features and 'smart' is a meaningless marketing term to satisfy the ego of those who purchase such devices. 'I've got a smartphone! I am so smart!'

Smartphone vs Feature phone (4, Insightful)

Dynamoo (527749) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982089)

What's the difference between a smartphone and a feature phone? Today we see feature phone with far more features than old smartphones have, for example: the Nokia Asha 311 has WiFi, 3G, a 1GHz CPU, capacitive touchscreen, media player, radio and Bluetooth. The only thing missing from a typical modern smartphone is GPS.

The difference is deeper down though, traditionally smartphones can run native applications to extend its capabilities. These applications will typically have full access to the entire device and treat it as a computer. Feature phones are limited to applications running in an environment such as Java, and they can only interact with the virtual machine that the environment presents. So typically feature phone applications are less capable than smartphone ones.. and on top of that Java, is a battery killer. Of course, some smartphones rely a LOT on Java applications too (such as BlackBerry devices) in addition to native applications.

One thing I can't understand though is why Nokia are even bothering with Series 40 at all when they could simply have used S60 (which is a proper smartphone OS) on these cheaper models. S60 is looking good at the moment.. just at the point it is being discontinued.

Re:Smartphone vs Feature phone (3, Informative)

ChunderDownunder (709234) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982159)

One thing I can't understand though is why Nokia are even bothering with Series 40 at all when they could simply have used S60 (which is a proper smartphone OS) on these cheaper models. S60 is looking good at the moment.. just at the point it is being discontinued.

They're skimping on the RAM (128MB) by running S40. That and the small screen size shared with a hardware keyboard, whereas their S60 machines evolved to a larger touchscreen and slider keyboard.

Re:Smartphone vs Feature phone (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982455)

... that, and they sacked all of the people who wrote Symbian/S60, and outsourced the rest to Accenture.

I know. I was made redundant too.

Re:Smartphone vs Feature phone (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982573)

Or perhaps they have a binding agreement with a major smartphone OS vendor; but we'd know about that...

Re:Smartphone vs Feature phone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982223)

The first and great Nokia problem in management, and because of that they always have done the wrong think wen they were in the right path (s90 is an example as they abandoned it), before the Symbian foundation there was a rumour about Nokia dropping Symbian, at least in name, in favor of a new and scalable from featurephones to smartphones OS, this OS was going to be basically a cleaned Symbian from legacy code and other things, with a easier development environment and api. Well that was the things that the Symbian Foundation where doing until the "Elop disaster", they didn't change the name of Symbian and it with a new name had possibilities for a successful relaunch of the OS.

Re:Smartphone vs Feature phone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982271)

In my pocket now I have a Sony Ericsson Elm J10i2 "featurephone"

It has a 5mp camera / video recorder, video calling, mp3 player, FM radio, web browser, 3G internet, mail client, loads of storage (with Micro-SD slot), bluetooth, Wifi, GPRS, media player... I can't think of anything it lacks compared to a "smart phone" except a big screen (that would be useful), touchscreen technology (meh, buttons is fine for me) and an "app store" (I can quite happily install .jar software, for example opera mini, anyremote, dweller. Sadly .jar software is becoming more and more rare these days.) It's 2 or 3 years old now and the battery will still last several days of normal use. I doubt the same could be said of even a new iphone or Android device.

As far as I'm concerned it's brilliant, it's easily the best phone I've ever owned (second best: Ericsson T39m). My only complaints are (a) it has the word "Sony" on it and (b) it has some annoying useless links to Facebook and Twitter built in to the interface that I can't get rid of.

Posted AC for obvious reasons.

Cool story bro.

The CEO killed Symbian (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982627)

They've dropped from 30 million shipments per quarter to 6 million inside 9 months... WITH NO VIABLE REPLACEMENT TO TRANSITION TO!!!!!

Nokia can't ship Symbian (S60) devices, nobody will take them. Except maybe the 808 Pureview.

So from their point of view the low end is going to have to be S40. Windows requires a dual core CPU, it's never, ever going to run on the current S40 scale hardware, which means the margins are going to be tight.

Re:Smartphone vs Feature phone (1)

21mhz (443080) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982659)

One thing I can't understand though is why Nokia are even bothering with Series 40 at all when they could simply have used S60 (which is a proper smartphone OS) on these cheaper models.

Because S60 is a barely maintainable mountain of mostly crappy code? S40 is probably much easier to maintain and develop, because it did not have the "opportunity" to accrete frameworks upon frameworks of useless abstractions needed to work around somebody else's bad design.

Hardly spin (4, Insightful)

DarkOx (621550) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982253)

1Ghz CPU and 128 megs of ram is really quite a bit of computer power, lets get some perspective people. Just a little over a decade ago that would have described the computer in the steel case under your desk!

These things also support 3rd party apps and browse the web. The line between feature phone and smart phone is pretty blurred here if you ask me. Feature phone used to mean its got a camera, can do MMS, and a calendar app, possibly pac-man or brick out to play with. These are lots more than. I don't think its unfair to market them as smart phones, just not top shelf. Frankly if these are not smart phones Blackberry's aint either. The only way they are not smart phones is you think being a smart phone means running Droid or iOS.

Re:Hardly spin (1)

maroberts (15852) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982325)

1Ghz CPU and 128 megs of ram is really quite a bit of computer power, lets get some perspective people. Just a little over a decade ago that would have described the computer in the steel case under your desk!

In 1991, I had a 33Mhz 486 and 8Megs of RAM, with 512K video card and thought I had a powerful system....

So, how well do they works? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982309)

Let's talk business then: I need my phone to sync contacts/calender/mail with the cloud, be able to do some light browsing (I dont need javescript) and a solid music player (an area where I have found Android to be lacking compared to iPhone and the N8 I briefly used). O, and a solid battery (light use 5days+).

Is the Asha suitable for such use?

Android phone producers started it first.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982343)

By redefining the "smartphone" as a phone with touchscreen and faster processor, in ordet to make Nokia's symbian phones look bad. So it's only fair for Nokia to borrow the trick of its opponents.

Re:Android phone producers started it first.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40982789)

The term "smartphone" is much older than Android. The VisorPhone was once a new entrant in the well-established field of smartphones [geek.com]

What's a smartphone? (4, Insightful)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982391)

The article has a lot of phrases like:

" widely depicted as smartphones"
"Nokia must mask its feature phones as smartphones"
"far from actually qualifying as smartphones"
"sheen of smartphoniness"
"trick the consumers into believing they are using a smartphone"
"Jurassic-era specs for Western smartphone fans"
"true smartphones"
"phony smartphone strategy"

But nowhere does it actually deign to define a "smartphone"!

Re:What's a smartphone? (1)

21mhz (443080) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982739)

That's the whole point. You can see it aplenty on Slashdot these days, too: people uncritically swallow bite-sized factoids if these are accompanied with a hearty dose of emotionally charged rhetoric and/or carefully doctored graphs that play to readers' sympathies. It's considered good form to get up and running with an idea suggested in the first half-sentence of the title, forget about the details buried in the summary. Don't worry about the moderators: they don't read it, either.

This is not new for Nokia (0)

LostMyBeaver (1226054) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982495)

Nokia has sold feature phones with Symbian Series 60 on them for ages and called the smart phones. The point was that they were theoretically running a smart phone operating system. Of course, the target market for the phones were generally markets such as elderly women (granny phones). In addition, they were generally phones which were given away for free with cheap contracts. So they weren't really selling them to consumers.

In fact, if you were to tell the people receiving those telephones that they were so "fancy" and had all these "smart phone features", they would in fact choose another telephone which was "simpler".

Those phones will continue to sell quite a lot so long as Nokia continues selling them with big numbers and screens which can be read when you hold them close to your face.

I have never met anyone who is even kinda cool that has a Nokia smart phone when you consider a smart phone to be something actually useful for more than using as a telephone and maybe listening to the radio or music files. The only people I've ever seen with the are people who wear ties as a status thing.

WTF is a 'Feature Phone' (2)

Martin S. (98249) | more than 2 years ago | (#40982517)

And who gets to define what is and is not a Smart Phone; the consumers that's who, this is just iPhone fanbozi attempt to remain the cool kids on the block by denigration the competition.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?