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LG Renoir KC910 in the Philippines will retail for P25,500


The new LG Renoir is impressive. It may not be an Apple iPhone or a Nokia, but it represents a lot of hope into the future of LG as a phone manufacturer. The KC910 is a full touch screen phone with no keypad whatsoever. It resembles much of an iPhone front, more so with the haptic touch feel. It isn’t quite at par with the iPhone’s because of the noticeable lag, but if you’ve held a Samsung Pixon before, the experience is similar.

Full feature after the jump.

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Nokia 5800 XpressMusic as a touch screen device


Hi folks. You probably read my first hands on with the Nokia 5800 last year. My first impressions still are basically the same, now that I finally have the unit with me and I’d like to supplemement that review with this post. I’ve been pondering how to go about reviewing this phone and opted out from a specs perspective, and will talk about the experience of using a touch screen Nokia device. Thus this review is oriented for Nokia users who are wondering how well the touch screen technology has been implemented on the 5800.

Before I continue, note that this is not Nokia’s first take on the touch screen. They had two devices in the past that did this, and their “N” web browser tablets also do the same. But this is the first time Nokia has put out so much marketing for an XpressMusic phone that seems to be more like an Nseries device because of the way it’s implemented.

The photo above shows you how to get around to the different “hot areas” of the phone’s main menu. Because of the touch screen, you can find other ways to access the clock, alarm, connectivity, and profiles without creating shortcuts. With the XpressMusic menu button on top, you also don’t need to use the custom shortcut buttons for the multimedia functions. Thus, I use the 4 shortcut keys for putting in other things such as messaging, calculator and the camera.

Size Comparisons

Below are comparisons with the Nokia E71, the Apple iPod Touch (Generation II), and the HTC TyTn II. The 5800 is handy and light to the hand, similar to the Nokia N82.



Home Screen

You can customize the phone’s home screen to use the traditional S60 menu of calendars and updates or you can use the “RSS friend” tracker that updates you with the information of 4 of your chosen friends. I personally don’t find the latter function to be as useful (it does sound cool but I prefer to have my dates and to do’s on the menu).


Nokia 5800 Virtual Keypad

How well can you text with it?

It’s been four days and I don’t use the QWERTY or mini QWERTY mode of input. I stick to the good ‘ol fashioned numerical keypad that works almost as well as real keys. There have been mixed feedback on how sensitive the keys are compared to real hardware buttons but I sincerely think that you can get used to it.


A small reservation I have is the method for finding names, as it can get rather confusing when you have the entire A-Z displayed, and as you type in a name, some letters go odd man out on you to see what’s left. It can be confusing at first but come to think of it, it’s the most efficient way save for offering multitouch on the keypad.

Browsing through names using the scroll bar can be a chore. I’m glad that the keypad senses your entire thumb even if you’re not directly touching the scroll node. To scroll up and down, it’s most comfy to put your thumb above or below the node and let the phone scroll itself up and down the contacts list.

iSync Compatibility with OS X


If you are a Mac user, as of late there is still no sync tool for iSync. But guess what? I was able to find a workaround to getting a flawless sync to work with Apple’s iSync. You can download the plugin from that link. Keep checking the official iSync plugin page for an official driver.

Things that need to be improved:

There seems to be something up with the signal. The screen flickers on and off at times when I’m on a call and I tend to lose the person I’m talking to on the other line. It doesn’t happen often but it needs to be addressed.

Battery life is another issue. It’s not as bad as when the first N95 came out. You will get a day of full charge on this thing if you use the multimedia and WiFi sparingly but you may need to carry around a spare charger for a really long day.

So, I know a lot of guys lined up the for the huge pre-sell discount. How goes your Nokia 5800 experience so far? Leave a comment and let’s figure things out!

Mostly Everything

Samsung Pixon M8800 Photos and Review

This review begins with a short story involving a small, nonchalant “reunion” of myself, Lorraine Javalera from Samsung Mobile and MJ Cordova who does their PR. After the media was toured through the new features and specs of the M8800 Pixon camera phone, I was able to do some catching up with both girls — Lorraine, whom I see at these events and MJ whom I’ve known since college.

Raine had a working Pixon on her and I wanted to take some photos. After she handed it to me, she got a phone call and had to run off to do, well … some product manager stuff so I was left alone with the unit. “Keep this first, I’ll catch up with you later!” were her parting words.

So there I was, probably the only guest at the event with a working Pixon. I had two choices – run out the event door, change my name and start a new life with the new Samsung M8800 … or take product shots. I chose the latter. Click. Click. Click. Initial photos after the jump.

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Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Review in the Philippines

UPDATE 3: I have a review up of the new Nokia N97 — following the successful touch screen experience of the 5800.

UPDATE 2: More hands on with me playing with the phone. I talk about the touch screen in particular.

UPDATE: From Nikka Abes of Nokia Philippines:

The Nokia 5800 XpressMusic phone is selling at a preorder price of P20,000.00. To place a preorder please sign up at the Nokia Philippines website. This goes to the first 58 sign ups.

The price of the 5800 XpressMusic is pegged at about P18,000 without tax so we can estimate this to be at the early P20,000 mark when it comes out officially (nota bene: this is only speculation, btu it gives you a rough estimate how much of your Christmas money to save).

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A bit of history: the XpressMusic line is Nokia’s flagship brand for anything and everything music. If the Nseries concentrates on multimedia (video mostly), the E series on corporate use, the XpressMusic line is distinct because it has two things – a separate high quality audio hardware (loud and crisp speakers) and a 3.5mm speaker jack. This is consistent throughout all the Nokia phones branded as XpressMusic.

The Nokia 5800 XpressMusic phone is Nokia’s first Nseries touch screen device as well. Nokia has had two other semi popular touch screen phones in the past – the Nokia 6708 and the Nokia 7710, released back in 2006. Here is a walk through of the various features. My first impressions were very positive as the touch screen integrates well into the device. Unlike the iPhone which is an SMS composing nightmare, the 5800 slightly vibrates each time you press a button. There are three text input modes available – full QWERTY keyboard, mini QWERTY keyboard and the traditional numerical keypad.

Photos and full feature after the jump.

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Nokia to launch “Comes with Music” soon?

Phones come cheap because the price of the unit is subsidized by the telco (they make up with the monthly plans). In the same light, digital music will now come free (hopefully!) because the cost will be subsidized by the price of the phone.

Reuters has an interestingly new article on the Nokia’s new Comes with Music offering (apart from their new touch screen phone):

I heard about Nokia’s Comes with Music plans during a dinner meet up with some of the online tech media a few months ago. Not a lot of details were released but the plan to go for a subscription-based model isn’t new. It just hasn’t been implemented on a wide scale yet (the only guys I know doing this is the Microsoft Zune online community for a price of a CD a month – unlimited song downloads!).

Nokia’s package will differ from others on the market as users can keep all the music they have downloaded during the 12 month subscription period. There are no charges for tracks downloaded, since the cost is bundled to the phone price.

“‘Comes with Music’ could potentially bring free music to millions of consumers, radically changing the music industry, and offering a significant threat to Apple’s dominance,” Strategy Analytics’ David MacQueen said in a research report.

“In a market where price and selection are so much more important than brand to consumers, Apple cannot count on retaining users when competing with an offering which seems free to the end user,” MacQueen said.

I think it’s come to that point where everyone in the market already has a phone, and changing mobiles every 3 months is turning to be a logistical nightmare. So even if Nokia has still been steady with the phones, entering these new avenues (games, music, maps, photo sharing) via Ovi will definitely peak interest.

What I really want to say is filled with irony: The key to keeping your customers is to not make anything exclusive. This isn’t the 1970’s anymore. Great job to Nokia for going pro-consumer!