A little history
So the latest device I have picked up is the Nokia N8, Nokias flagship from 2010, the N8 was released on the 30th September 2010 via Nokias own online stores and on the 1st of October in retail stores.
The N8 was replacing the Nokia N97 as flagship device and the N97 has did had a steady road to glory as it was criticised for its software failings, something Nokia intended to fix with the N8 which would launch with Symbian 3, upgradeable to Nokia Belle.
The device sold very well with numbers for Q4 in 2010 estimated to be at 4 million, a record for pre-orders for Nokia at the time.
The design at least in my own opinion went on to inspire the future Lumia devices with the complete shell encompassing the display. The body/case/shell itself is an Anodised aluminium monocoque case, a long word for metal body.. such a shame this would be swapped out in the future for plastic.
The N8 was available in silver white, dark grey, orange, blue, green, pink and brown, yep brown.
- Size: 113.5 mm × 59 mm × 12.9 mm
- Weight: 135g
- Camera with Carl Zeiss optics and 12.1-megapixel resolution
- 3.5" AMOLED screen with capacitive touch
- 640 × 360 pixels nHD (16:9 aspect ratio)
- 16M Colors
- Gorilla glass protective layer
- 680 MHz ARM11 processor
- 256 MB RAM
- Broadcom BCM2727 GPU VideoCore III Multimedia Engine with dedicated 3D Graphics HW Accelerator with OpenGL-ES 1.1/2.0 support. 32 Mtriangles/sec
- 16 GB internal memory
- MicroSD memory card slot, hot swappable, up to 32 GB
BL-4D 1200 mAh Lithium-ion battery
According to the manual the device could also be charged via a traditional pin port and its Micro-USB port, something that I'm sure many of us would appreciate in the modern concept of devices.. or just yank USB-C everywhere (Apple!)
The device was ordered on the 15th of february 2022 for the cost of around $30 USD, per usual it's coming from China, which is fine although one thing I'm aware to look out for is the shell being swapped out for something cheaper as this has been known to happen.
The sellers listing says I'll get the following
- N8 mobile phone
- 1 charger
The listing shows no photos of the device in hand and all the photos appear to be stock images, it includes a screenshot of specifications but that's taken from GSMArena... so time will tell I guess!
Post the order the device had no real issues it was a little slow in the packing process but it was shipped out the day after being packed and began it's journey to me arriving on the 1st of March 2022 meaning it took 2 weeks to get here, which isn't bad at all considering it came with the N9.
Packaging I personally thought was kind of crap, brown box with a little bubble wrap at one end of the box, the devices themselves also were bubbled wrapped within the boxes they were contained in.
So within the brown box we had bubble wrap and then two Nokia boxes - both boxes are weird generic reprints of Nokia boxes - I'm sure most will be aware these are not the original boxes and as such should head directly to your recycling bin.
What's in the box, in the box!
The Nokia N8 bos was a bit stingy compared to previous orders, normally I would have expected some knock off headphones as well as a charger that has no weight what so ever to it, it'd be nice to think this is a legit charger but its very probably not.
Aside from the fake charger, the fake box and no fake headphones was a usual manual, in (according to google lens) Mandarin oddly, the N9 also contained the same manual, in the same language - weird considering these two devices pretty much only share the manufacturer in common.
So on the left side here we have the memory card and sim sard slots under covers, both covers are in quite good shape and if you put your cards in on day one with the device and never removed them you will probably never encounter any issues
I do see for those that like to swap sims, change SD cards a nightmare scenario where the flaps are eventually worn away and drop off, for the quality of devices Nokia was pushing out at this time it's so weird to see them use a rather dumb way of going about this.
A little further down we have the micro-usb port which can be used for data and slower charging - this device did offering charging via Nokias old barrel/pin connector and micro-usb and THANK GOD they dropped mini-usb for micro-usb
Finally just above this is a mic, one of many on the device.
The top of the device is split into 3 areas, on the left side of the top you will find the headphone jack, this is followed by another flap! which houses the mini-HDMI port and finally on the right side the power button. The N series devices I have owned prior to the N8 were always weird about the power button but it was usually upfront and central on the top of the device - the button is also quite recessed and requires a firm push to active it, I can only assume this was to prevent pocket pushes.
The mini HDMI seems like something I would expect blackberry to do, if I recall my Blackberry Z1 and Playbook tabley both have micro or mini HDMI ports - The N series was meant to flex the best of what Nokia had to offer and in that regard the ports existence makes sense but given the amount of connectivity this thing had I'm not convinced it needed it.
I somehow forgot to take photos of the right side of the device - but this is where you'll find the volume rocket, followed by a spring lock and then the two stage camera shooter
The volume rocket is slightly recessed and have two little buttons up top and below to active them, they feel quite good and tactile even after all this time, the spring unlock thing i really don't get this seems in the modern scope - weird and odd - half the time i just press the home/task switch button then unlock on the screen as it's just as quick
The Camera button is a let down but this could be due to it's age and usage, I have read a few article online suggesting that some of the buttons with usage tended to go deeper and flatter against the frame as such loosing that ' factory new click' they once had.
My N8's two stage camera button feels initial click (focus) is good but that second click just does not feel as good as - I pulled out my N73 and N95 8GB and they have the opposite feel to them where the initial stage offers a kind of mush to it and the final stage - to the take photo aka the click is snappy and feels good .. little shallow on the second stage with the N8
The bottom contains the old barrel pin charging connector - you can charge this device via USB (little slower) but Nokia clearly were not ready to commit to one charger vs another just yet.
The screen is still in excellent condition and I couldn't spot a single scratch on it, although it did come with a new plastic screen protector pre-applied ... this had clearly been on the device for some time as pulling the tab for the plastic on top of the plastic screen protector removed both - not an issue for myself as I don't intend to use this device as f daily driver... purely for the collection!
I almost forgot to mention the home button which also acts as a notification LED - get a notification and depending ons settings it does blinky stuff, press once to go home and press and hold to get into the task switched.
The Rear or back of the device is where the device has taken most of its minor damage, in the photo you may be able to make out a small indent on the bottom of the camera housing as well as a fair amount of scratched off paint on the camera housing itself mostly on the edges - all in all though the device is in good condition and I'm more than happy with it physically - although I'm sure I ordered black but ended up getting green but it's a nice green so no complaints!
The Camera Test
So the below photos are posted in the order they were taken, I set the rear camera to 12MP and face tracking is on, the facial tracking worked great provided i was close enough but getting a good photo was not easy - sometimes it was decent other times utter trash
I'm not sure if it's a focus issue, a sensor issue, an issue with age or the camera just was not that good - it could also simply be human error but I will say this, the flash and focus assist light are fantastic items I miss. While the focus light has been replaced by the far superior lasers and sonars, radars and lots of fancy modern stuff .. it still works really well, the flash is a must on a modern device, modern LED flashes kinda suck by comparison.
Being from China, mine comes with a lot of bloatware that means nothing to myself, it's all really easily uninstalled so all good - although deleting apps tends to make the device hang to the point you wonder
It's also painfully slow to go from off to on
- 27 seconds for off to nokia hards logo
- 56 seconds for off to fully loaded and ready to use
not a long time in real world terms but in the modern scope of devices, its a long, long time - the device is clearly under powered but i honestly don't hate the software which is Nokia Belle
it does feel very natural to use and it's fairly obvious how things are used press and hold to delete stuff, create folders, activate task manager - settings in a cog in the right usually .. again all easy and really configurable - but things like profiles while hugely configurable allowing for even time activated profiles.. the configuring of them is a task in it's own right and setting this device up exactly as you like it is a whole day or two task with tweaks along the way
The always on display is a joke - a joke they have it when others still to this day do not....
All in all it's an ok device, a must for those that collect but for everyday usage - probably not worth it unless you're willing to invest a ton of time and suffer some short comings of it being a fairly old and unsupported device.