HTC Hero vs Nokia N97

After 6 months of frustration I have decided to bite the bullet and get rid of my Nokia N97 and replace it with the HTC Hero. Nokia’s flagship device of 2009 is a big failure and here are a few reasons why:

Setting Up

I wrote a post about 5 months ago detailing the problems I had trying to set up my N97 and get everything synced up with my mac, I wont go into all of that again you can read the post. To sync up the HTC I turned it on, entered my email address for a few accounts and that was it. My mail, calendar, bookmarks, feeds, twitter, facebook and contacts were all in my phone and ready to go.

Touch Screen

The resistive touch of the N97 just doesn’t make sense. Why a smart phone would require you to press hard to make stuff happen is beyond me. At first I liked this since it was my first touch screen, but now I think different. The HTC is quick, responsive and iphone like in every way. Furthermore, If you are not big on the whole touch screen there is even a wee track ball you can use, though I don’t find myself using it much at the moment.

Web browsing

The Web browsing experience is night and day. I think this is down to the touch screen of the HTC which makes the whole ease of browsing a much nicer experience. I find myself sitting on the phone at home browsing on my HTC instead of booting up the laptop now. Added to that I have installed Dolphin browser which allows swiping backwards and forwards between pages and tabbed browsing, all of which make if a more desktop browser like experience.

Apps

Both phones offer the ability to expand with loads of apps but the Ovi stores is a poor mans app store. Its clunky and difficult to navigate, whereas I have found android marketplace simple to use, with an overwhelming amount of choice with loads of free apps.

The N97 came with 32gb hard-drive but installed apps in the small RAM space. Now you can change this to save on the hard-drive but this RAM will still quickly run out as your cache builds from web browsing. This is not a problem if you are prepared to hard reset the phone every 2 months (please not sarcasm)

Reliability

The N97 would take it upon itself to turn off when it felt like it, for no reason and with no warning. The phone would crash when I put it into flight mode to listen to the music player at night and I would sometimes get a multi coloured screen and a line running down the middle every now and then.

After a bit of use the N97 stopped auto rotating when I opened the keyboard, I had to shake the phone to tell it to rotate. When it did rotate the phone didn’t recognise I was wanting to use the keyboard so when you pressed the keys the wrong text appeared.

So far the HTC has just worked. The battery life is poor but I can live with this.

Operating system

Symbian vs Android. In a nut shell Symbian feels like a fancy phones operating system whereas Android is a light desktop.

Music Player

The music player interface on the N97 is a poor user experience. Its pretty much just a list of artists whereas the HTC has a nice visually interface similar to the ipod.

N97 good things (sort of)

Now don’t get me wrong the N97 does offer a few advantages. I really liked the keyboard when it worked and it has an FM radio. The camera has a flash which is a big miss from the Hero, however the N97 flash comes with problems as it suffers from an issue called flash flood which you can fix by colouring in your phone with a permanent marker. £500 pound device + pernament marker = WTF

Summary

Don’t but an N97, life is to short.

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