Twenty-four hours after teasing us with news of a major product announcement, Nokia officially took the wraps off its mystery smartphone on Tuesday at the Nokia World 2008 conference in Barcelona, Spain. And despite some close guesses, no one got it quite right, so without further ado, let us introduce you to the Nokia N97.
Part of the company's high-end N series of multimedia computers, the N97 trumps all previous models with a slide-out full QWERTY keyboard and a tilting 3.5-inch touch screen (anyone else reminded of the AT&T Tilt or Sony Ericsson Xperia X1?). Yes, there's the Nokia N810 Internet Tablet, but the N97 includes phone capabilities and is designed for the "needs of Internet-savvy consumers."
For example, the smartphone provides easy access to a number of social-networking sites, and the Web browser supports streaming Flash videos. The N97 also introduces something Nokia calls "social location," which uses the capabilities of the integrated A-GPS sensors and electronic compass to automatically update users' social networks, or let them share their location via photos or videos with friends.
The Home screen can be personalized with widgets of favorite Web and social-networking sites. Finally, the N97 is fully compatible with Nokia's Ovi Internet services, which include the Nokia Music Store, Nokia Maps, and the N-Gage gaming platform--though these services have yet to fully launch in the United States.
The Symbian-based smartphone also features a music and video player, a 5-megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics, and a whopping 32GB of onboard memory that can be expanded with a 16GB microSD card.
The quad-band (GSM 850/900/1800/1900) world phone is HSDPA-capable handset, but it currently supports only the 900/1900/2100MHz bands (AT&T's 3G network runs on 850/1900MHz, while T-Mobile runs on 1700/2100MHz). There is integrated Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, however. … Read more