N800 OS2008

Last week I upgraded my N800 to OS2008. This is the most visible update yet – thereś a completely different colour scheme and all the menus have been redone to always be at finger rather than stylus size. The latter is very useful, king it much easier to use the device without the stylus, As for the look and fel, the first thing that came to mind was the Fisher Priceification of Windows XP, which was something I liked.

The other update (not immediately visible unless you look) Is the replacement of Opera with a Mozilla derived browser. For the most part this is very good – it has resolved all the problems I was aware of with web compatibility. The down side is that when using the new browser it really does feel like the battery runs down a lot more rapidly. I have no idea if this is the case but it certainly feels that way. It could just be that the usability improvements mean that I am using the device more and therefore running the battery down in less wall clock time.

The only real disappointment for me is that the mail client is still the original rather awful one, not yet replaced by a Tinymail derived one. Given the beta that looks like it will appear in the next release.

Overall a worthwhile upgrade, assuming that the battery life issue isn’t a software thing.

I am still trying to decide if I want to splash out on the N810. The keyboard would be nice but I already have an external bluetooth keyboard for the N800 (support for which has improved a bit – there’s now a dedicated control panel and the keyboard causes itself to become activated more easily) but a built in one would be nicer I think and I have been hankering after a GPS. Perhaps if the price comes down.

Update: It turns out that the additional power consumption is due to the update resetting the brightness of the screen to maximum.

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