And I'm not talking about vodka this time, but instead about the latest internet tablet from Nokia, the N810. I've now had the device for some weeks, and it has really started to replace the laptop in many situations.
The idea of an universal communicator is a mobile device that can be used to connect with various communication networks including telephone, instant messaging and social networks. After the latest Internet Communications Software Update, the N810 fits the description quite well:
- Small and portable, fits a jacket pocket
- Keyboard for reasonably fast text messaging
- Skype for voice calls and keeping in touch with friends and family abroad
- Support for various instant messaging networks like Jabber / Google Talk, MSN, AIM, ...
- SIP voice-over-IP calling support
- Mauku for staying in touch with my Jaiku contacts
- Modest, a really neat mobile email client
- Mozilla-based web browser for the rest
- Multi-colour LED for alerting me when new messages arrive
- MaemoPlazer updates my location to the blog automatically
And did I mention it looks really nice?
The latest software releases mean that I've been able to remove Adium and Skype from my MacBook, and Pidgin from the device, and just use the tablet's native communications tools. This means a lot fewer interruptions when I'm working and easy mobile access to all my instant messaging and email conversations.
Of course, things could be improved even further. Here are my wish list items for future software updates:
- More consistent scrolling (preferably inertial and with thumb-friendly scrollbar) in different apps (#2564)
- SMS support for the instant messaging application through the bluetooth-tethered mobile phone (#2725)
- Ability to act as bluetooth headset for the tethered mobile phone (see ITT)
- A2DP support for wireless stereo headsets (#667)
- GeoClue so position-aware apps can also work indoors (when GPS is not available) (#2037)
- ZeroConf support so Mac (and other) computers discoverable as ".local" become available (#73)
- Video calls with Skype would make the device much more personal
Anyway, this is a big step from the OS2007 and N800 days!
Updated 2008-01-12: Added notes on MaemoPlazer and need for Skype cam calls.