"Once the unequalled leader among mobile phone manufacturers,
Nokia still returns impressive sales, but ceded its dominance of
the smartphone market with the arrival of the iPhone. It's been
playing catch-up ever since, sticking rigidly to a Symbian OS that
only seemed to grow older looking with each new device.
"Now, with the N900, Nokia is trying something new, with a brand
new OS in Maemo 5 – a slimmed down version of Debian Linux
– plus a host of top-end features, including a sizeable 3.5in
touch screen, slide-out Qwerty keyboard, 5Mp camera with Carl Zeiss
optics, Wi-Fi, A-GPS, quad-band and much more besides.
"We were torn on the appearance of the N900. We like its glossy
black minimalism, with no hard buttons on the face to break up its
smooth lines. But it's a chunky chappy and a very solid pocketful
at 111x60x20mm and 181g – svelte it is not.
"Around the sides are a volume rocker, power key, shutter button
and a rare example of an infrared port. Top and bottom features a
brace of stereo speakers, micro USB power/sync port, a lock switch,
3.5mm headphone jack and a plastic stylus. The back hides the
camera lens behind a sturdy sliding cover, which is surrounded by a
fold-down kickstand for viewing video.