Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Nokia 7710 Annoyances

I have been using the 7710 for over 2 months now, and am generally happy with it. However time after time, there are several annoyances keep popping up and really needs Nokia's attention to fix. Here are some of them:
  1. Response is slow between windows.
    Clicking between windows, Opening SMSs, Documents and File Browsing, it just takes time. like 5-10seconds. Which is really annoying, especially when you just want to reply a quick one word sms.
    More of this in subsequent points!
  2. SMS app (Messaging) is underfeatured
    Perhaps its because SMS or Text Messaging as they call it in the West is not popular, but here we use it alot. And Nokia needs to work on their SMS app, because its just too plain.

    • Replying SMSs - It lists the SMSs, time and the sender, but on the fast keys it just has 'New text message', 'New E-mail' and 'Delete'.
      I find that I use 'Reply' a whole lot more than 'New E-mail' or even 'Delete'. Yes, you can actually customize the side buttons, but 'Reply' is not an option. Duh.
      So now Ive to either call the menu, click 'Message' then click 'Reply' or Double click the message, wait 5 secs for the message to appear, then click 'Reply'.
    • To: - The default key input for the SMS To: field is set to number input. That is correct, if we were using this like 10 years ago. Now we dont need to know about numbers, most of our contacts are in the SIM already. I would like it to be alphabet input by default.
    • Slow slow slow - As in the first point, after entering the text, sending, where the phone resolves the numbers is slow... about 3 seconds for each contact.
    • No threaded view - I saw someone using the Treo 650, and was impressed at the way it handles messages: it threads the conversation ala an Instant Message app. This means meaningful conversations can be stored in context and threaded away. So nice. I wish Nokia can do the same.

    What I like about it is that its easy to chain up multiple recipients to the SMS. Also the Delete is good: just multiselect and clear the trash.
  3. Needs a reboot once in a while
    Its true. To make sure that this phone works, it needs to be rebooted in like once every other week. Not just a Power Down and Up again... nooooo, you will have to remove the back cover, take out the battery, pray to the Norwegian Gods and replace the components. It doesnt help that the plastic pieces are manufactured to such high precision that its impossible not to cringe at the creaking sounds as I pry open the parts. Its a scary thing.

    Things which recover after a hard cold reboot are:
    • No ring tone when someone calls. Yes, a day went by when all my calls were missed because the ringer didnt work! No, its not because I put the Profile to Silent or something, I made sure that it was set to 'General' and even tested the music which played OK (with vibration)! Bizarre.
    • Images refused to load. After a while, especially when you are showing off some pictures you took, the Image Viewer app will refuse to load up the JPEGS. It will say something useful like 'Image Format not supported'. WTF? It worked before! You want this to work? Reboooot!

  4. Alarm Clock Interface
    The Alarm Clock is really nice. Ive chosen a nice tune which is melodic, and gets louder if you dont turn it off. The problem is that to turn of the alarm, you will need to press 'Off' on the touch screen. And guess what, overnight, the screensaver will be enabled, and you will need to disable it by pressing a two key combo which can only be done with two hands.
    This sux especially when you are groggy and bleary eyed. Who came up with this UI Design?
    Heres what Nokia can do: Disable the screensaver. In large buttons, have 'Snooze' taking up 50% of the screen, then 'Stop' (40%) and finally the smallest button of them all 'Mute' (10%)

    (That being said about the screensaver, SOMETIMES it gets disabled. Other times the it doesnt, and thats when things gets frustrating)
  5. Laggy Picture Taking
    It takes ages to take a picture. The time between pressing the 'Capture' button and the actual picture taking is very variable, sometimes 1second, other times 10 seconds! So dont think of using this camera to take action shots. Frustration!
  6. fullstops Always become backspaces
    The Handwriting recognition applet is cool, it works for me 90% of the time, but the other 10% is pure hell. The worst is when I need to write a fullstop: '.' This is done by tapping the screen to draw the dot. However if you dash it out, it will be a space. Thats fine. But in my efforts to write a dot, the stylus tends to go backwards, and that signifies a 'backspace' which deletes the previous character! argh.
    Something like Palms multi alpha-numeric-case-symbol input pad would be great.
  7. No Wifi
    This was the single most reason why I didnt get this device earlier. If it wasnt for the great deal, I would have waited out another year or so. Yes, I wish Nokia would have a wifi module for this phone.
  8. Size
    Yes, of course.. its big. Slightly thinner would make this perfect.

The Firmware can be retrieved by sending '*#0000#' to the dialer, and mine is "V.03.26.0 15-02-05 RM-12 (c)Nokia"
I just hope there is a new firmware out there soon, cos this is driving me bananas.

Otherwise its a darn good phone! Seriously:
  1. The Pictures are really clear (for still pics),
  2. the sound is great, especially when playing back MP3s via the loudspeaker,
  3. the internet browser (Opera) is great at scaling the fonts,
  4. picodrive works OK! (NBA Jam woohoo!)
  5. Fullhand casino. the blackjack is good.

Here's a blog just on the 7710: French Fanblog on 7710 (translated)

6 lewsers:

Yoon Kit said...

I got a link from Rodrigo the french guy here:
Great review of the 7710 from Malaysia

Share the wealth!

Felix Leong said...

Ugh... Just reading the annoyances would really drive me up the wall. I mean, Nokia is well known for their good designs of their phones, physically, software and UI, I just couldn't imagine that these major annoyances shouldn't appear in 7710 in the first place.

Yoon Kit said...

Well, Ive seen worse. Laggy UI is the worst thing that can happen with these smart phones... Its crazy that its still an issue considering that the processors are as powerful as desktops 5 years ago. Otherwise all other annoyances will dissapear given some tweaking...

Anonymous said...

Hey, did you upgrade to firmware 4.01 and does it feel better now ? Thanks !

Yoon Kit said...

> Hey, did you upgrade to firmware 4.01
> and does it feel better now ?
> Thanks !

No I havent. I dont think its out here in Msia yet.

Ive done a google, and found this, so Id better check the Phone shops around KL soon:

ATTENTION to Nokia 7710 owners.

I have been getting e-mails, asking how to upgrade the firmware, not like im getting tired of it; im glad I can help, but YOU CAN NOT UPGRADE the firmware yourself, there are tactics and different methods on how to, but the best thing to do is go to your nearest Nokia Care Center. And Im sorry for the people located in the United States(like me), no current support for this phone is available, contact me if you live in the US and you want to upgrade.

But the best thing to do is go to your nearest Nokia Care Center. Bring your warranty card/proof of purchase or reciept, if you don't have one of these, Nokia will run your IMEI in the Nokia Server, and check out if you are backed by the 12-month warranty.

Current version is 4.01
This has no major difference but the data in the phone was just altered and compressed to run more effeciently, and the firmware unlocks 1.3MP.


Anonymous said...

Get the 4.10 firmware update. Also there are apps that can help you reboot the phone without having to pull the battery out, I think it is called "restart".

4.10 will not address all our woes; but it is a little faster and a bunch of new features.