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14 April 2024

The smart way to be mobile

By David Tusing

Ever since Val Kilmer famously used the Nokia 9000 Communicator to fight his devils in the 1997 spy flick The Saint, the Communicator has come a long way. But so have we, and the technology around us.

It comes as no surprise then that the Nokia E90, the fifth offering in the series, does justice to the needs of its faithfuls. Coming three years after the Nokia 9500, this mobile phone packs it like it should – and does not disappoint.

While the design philosophy remains true to tradition, the E90 has taken one giant leap in terms of technology and compatibility, and is a few grams lighter and slimmer than its predecessor.

Let us get a little technical here. Most Nokia phones with multimedia capabilities work on the Symbian operating system, a platform designed for mobile devices (Nokia owns 47 per cent stake in the company). While the E90 features a higher version of the operating system, it now uses just one edition of the version for both the outer and inner displays. Earlier Communicators used separate editions for both displays making it quite a drain to move from the smaller outer window to the inner, larger display. Now it syncs seamlessly. Images are richer too, while a vibrator has also been introduced in this Communicator upgrade.

But one of the greatest innovations in the series has to be the new funky metal hinge design. So if you are prone to clumsy moments, you can rest assured your E90 is made of tough stuff.

According to my trusted experts at Cellucom, while communication devices are flooding the market, manufacturers will have to try really hard to steal previous Communicator users, especially with the E90 reinforcing its supremacy in the segment.

But the sleek, feature–loaded HTC TyTN II is also making waves in the business phones’ arena. As Ron, the mobile specialist from Cellucom will tell you, this small wonder has enough spunk to stand tall. At 20mm shorter than the E90 Communicator, the offering from HTC is a force to reckon with and is for those who want it all.

Having made handheld devices for ages, HTC, a Taiwan-based portable devices manufacturer has recently begun to market them under its own name.

The TyTN II, an improved version of the HTC TyTN, manages to pack a lot in its frame – and is always ready for both business and pleasure. But where it predominantly leads is in the operating systems. HTC phones use the Windows mobile platform, and the TyTN II features the latest 6.0 Professional version.

Windows mobile offers unhindered downloading of additional third-party applications, while it is sometimes restricted on Symbian-run systems (Think the difference between Mac and Windows operating systems for your laptops). Although the E90 has just about eased the use of other applications, previous versions, for instance, did not have editing features on documents.

Working on a Windows platform also offers you access to Outlook e-mail, which means you do not need features like Push Email, a service-provider enabled feature to access your e-mails that comes with a subscription price.

The communication capabilities of both these phones allow you to use them in almost every out-of-the-office scenario, so being out of the office will no longer mean you are out of the loop.

If a power-packed communication device is what you are looking for and size does not really matter, the Nokia E90 is what you need, and no other. However, for a smaller, feature-loaded device that’s got what it takes to go with you as you move up the corporate ladder, look no further than the HTC TyTN II. (All devices available at Cellucom outlets)

Dynamic duo

Nokia E90

Weight: 210 grams

Size: 132 x 57 x 20 mm

Resolution: 3.15 megapixels

Player: MP3/WMA (Windows Media Audio)

Battery talk time: up to five hours

Document viewer and Push Email

Infrared port

Cons: No touchscreen

Price: Dh3,329


Weight: 190 grams

Size: 112 x 59 x 19 mm

Resolution: 3.15 megapixels

Player: Windows Media Player 10

Battery talk time: up to six hours

Pocket office (Word, Excel, Outlook)

Touchscreen (with stylus)

Cons: No infrared port

Price: Dh3,199

Best of the rest

Sony Ericsson P1i

This offer from the Sony Ericsson stable is a feature-rich device, compact in design and coupled with responsive applications. This latest ‘i’ innovation is bound to impress the brand loyal. Shame about the keyboard though. In an attempt to save space and size, the P1i seems to have not taken into account user-friendliness. Dh2,195

Nokia E61i

The Nokia E61 with an ‘i’ now features a camera, an outstanding battery life, a slimmer design and new navigation options compared to its predecessor. Despite its rather wide design, this smartphone has its loyal fan base. With a 60MB internal memory and an additional memory slot, this one has got it all to take care of your business needs. Dh1,589

Blackberry Curve 8300

This device really does bring sexy back. With its slim design, improved keyboard functions and a spiffy media player, it is quite a player in its own right. Add to that call volume control and a keyboard that is a joy to work on. Dh2,450 or Dh1,949 with etisalat