Nokia 'gives' N70s to bloggers

, posted: 22-Dec-2006 15:04

Nokia N70The Al-Manazir blog entry First Look at the Nokia N70 is an interesting read for several reasons. First, here's a reviewer who really gives the camera component of a mobile phone a serious workout. Al-Manazir isn't fooling around and really puts the N70 through its paces. There are some useful methodology tips in the entry for measuring image quality, I think, but I'm not sure Nokia appreciates Al-Manazir's effort.

The other thing I noticed was that Nokia operates an "N70 Blogger Relations site". It looks like Nokia will lend N70s to bloggers - this according to Al-Manazir. If so, that's an interesting concept. There certainly seem to be plenty of N70 reviews floating around the blogosphere, and while they don't make a mention of the Nokia programme, they're not uniformly gushing and positive about the phone either.

Basically, this is cheap PR and advertising for Nokia. Expect other vendors to do more of this, to give their products exposure in the blogosphere and the Google index.
Nokia is otherwise curiously silent in this part of the world when it comes to PR. The company's a popular GSM mobile phone brand obviously, but they also have their fingers in other pies such as building cellular networks. Never hear anything from them though, but I've been promised an N93 for next year sometime so we'll see.

Speaking of camera phones, I was quite sceptical about their value until I tried out the Sharp 903SH. Sharp 903SH openThis 3G phone has a 3.2 megapixel camera with an aspherical glass lens that provides a modest 2X optical zoom and 10X digital one. Sharp 903SH camera
I wasn't all that impressed by the built-in media player - the sound quality was mediocre - and the aerial built into the top of the folding handset didn't seem good enough to stop the phone from constantly flitting between UMTS 3G and GPRS, making it impossible to stream video unless the signal was very good.

I did like the user interface though, and the phone had OK'ish integration with desktop software but... the camera quality was something else. Here's a sample picture of Larry the Bengal posing for me; click on the thumbnail for the full, 72dpi 2,048*1,538 pixel version that weighs in at 901kbytes.
Larry Thumb

The picture quality was far better than I expected, almost rivalling a similar resolution dedicated digital camera. Of course, you don't get all the settings with the 903SH as you do with a digital camera, and in low-light conditions the pictures didn't come out too well.

I wouldn't mind having a 3+ megapixel camphone though, because I don't carry a digital camera with me all the time, whereas the mobile tends accompany me wherever - and I've lost count of the amount of times I've seen something worth snapping and not had the camera to do so.

Other related posts:
Video: Kim Dotcom and Mathias Ortman at the IITP Mega breakfast
Two-factor authentication broken
The problem with naming and shaming

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