I feel that neophilia coming to get me again…
(picture from JKOntheRun)
A while ago, when I was testing out the Sansa Connect and realized it wasn’t for me, I thought about the Nokia N800 as a pricey, yet more feature-rich alternative. Yes, it’s not really fair to directly compare the N800 to the Sansa Connect, because the Connect is just an mp3 player, while the N800 is mobile Net access device and media player. However, I quickly talked myself out of this idea, mainly because I have a T-Mobile MDA, which could basically perform the same functionality as the N800 for me (and I even used it as my main podcast player for a while). But all of this talk about the N800 and how people are really loving its functionality is really getting my gadget lust going again. And I played with an N800 last weekend at a Nokia store in Woodfield Mall last weekend for a precious few minutes…big mistake. Now I’ve got N800 on the brain! *sigh*
The biggest draw for me would be a more functional mobile browser. I am quite sick of browsing sites on my MDA and finding that the page won’t load properly, or that some key functionality on the page (like drop-down menus, or the search form) won’t work because Pocket IE can’t handle it. Opera Mini is a nice alternative browser that I use, but even it gets bamboozled by some sites sometimes. I’ve heard time and time again that the N800’s browser is about as close as you can get to a desktop browser experience on a mobile device. Granted, the N800 is bigger than my phone, and I can’t even use it as a phone, so I’d have to carry it along with my MDA. But hey, that’s what purses or other bags are for. 🙂 I could get the N800 and buy a smaller phone as an option (an expensive option, but an option, nonetheless), if I don’t like the extra bulk of both devices together.
The fact that the N800 has cool bonuses like built-in RSS support and good media playback capabilities is icing on the cake. I have still been searching for my perfect mobile RSS/web device, and it seems like the N800 is a good candidate. It runs some version of Linux, which means that its functionality can be extended with 3rd-party apps. And now Kevin has mentioned some podcatcher apps for the N800 (none of which seem like the perfect app to me, but some seem promising), which has piqued my curiosity more. Despite having the potential to download podcasts directly to the device, I know that for me, it will not beat a dedicated device like an iPod or the Clix 2. Dedicated hardware playback buttons are a must, and it has to be easy to control in the car, which I’ve heard is not the case for the N800. But I am mainly interested in the N800’s web functionality more, anyway.
Hmmmm. I would really love to pick up the N800 straightaway, but with all of the other gear I’ve spent on lately (not just gadgets, but camera gear and film, too!), I must reign myself in for now. But if anyone’s got a spare N800 they could lend me for a couple weeks or so, I’d love to do a review. 🙂
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