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Ask Slashdot: Life After N900? 303

Rydia writes "Since it first released, I have been in love with my Nokia N900, and it has satisfied all my needs for a mobile with a high degree of control and utility. Sadly, the little guy is showing his age, both in battery life (even with the powersaving kernel options enabled), and performing in general has been left far, far in the dust by phones that are now considered quite old. The time has come to find its successor, but after a thorough search of smartphone options, I can't find any handset that offers everything for the power user that the N900 did (much less a hardware keyboard). I'd like to avoid supporting Google/Android, but there don't seem to be many options. Have any other techies found a replacement for their N900?"
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Ask Slashdot: Life After N900?

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  • Google and Android (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jones_supa ( 887896 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @03:55PM (#46074683)

    I'd like to avoid supporting Google/Android, but there don't seem to be many options.

    Why against Google and Android?

  • by Sowelu ( 713889 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @03:56PM (#46074695)

    Oh god yes please. Sometimes I have to do some amount of scripting on my phone, and a hardware keyboard is a complete necessity. On the Android side, I've gone from a Samsung Epic to a Motorola Photon, but I can't find a good next upgrade path. At this point I don't care about Android or iPhone or anything as long as I can get a slide-out keyboard with brackets on the keys.

  • by pijokela ( 462279 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @04:00PM (#46074719)

    I got one from preordering and I really like it a lot. If the thing you like in n900 is the community and the hackability, you will like Jolla too. Most importantly, I'm able to use it as my work phone already, so it's not just a plaything. So far there has been a steady stream of updates and apps. If you are in US, getting one is probably not very easy, but maybe you can get one from ebay or something? (Check the frequencies etc. first.) []

  • by pitchpipe ( 708843 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @04:02PM (#46074745)

    Why against Google and Android?

    Maybe because he doesn't like the idea of his private life being a product that is sold to the highest bidder? Just a guess.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 26, 2014 @04:10PM (#46074817)

    Nokia had destroyed themselves long before Microsoft turned up - largely thanks to things like the N900 which no one other then a very small number of geeks were interested in.

  • by Rob the Bold ( 788862 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @04:14PM (#46074847)

    It was shit. I didn't really realise quite how shit it was until I upgraded to an iPhone. Never looked back since.

    It's not a phone for the general population. The N900 was a phone for hackers, developers, etc.: people who needed a pocket computer with phone functionality. Sort of the "anti-iPhone" in its philosophy. You were clearly not in the (tiny) target demographic, and whoever sold you yours was not your friend, didn't know you very well, or didn't as the right questions. (I just described a salesman, didn't I?)

  • by opk ( 149665 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @04:27PM (#46074935) Journal

    Currently, they seem to be the best option If you want to avoid supporting google. Personally, I'm sticking with my N900. I wouldn't mind something newer but don't see a need to spend a lot of money when my N900 still works fine.

  • by pitchpipe ( 708843 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @04:30PM (#46074959)

    Google business model is to *NEVER* sell your data.

    Really?! One of my rules is to never say 'never', because it's a really long time. I also thought my government would 'never' spy on me. I thought all of those conspiracy theorists were crazy.

    Mark my words, one day your private life will be sold by Google, and I'm pretty sure it'll go to the highest bidder.

    Ironically a quick glance through your private posts, shows your continued subterfuge about Google *selling* your data.

    Also, two can play that game []. 'Subterfuge' doesn't mean what you think it means.

  • by Tom Brinkman ( 3513859 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @04:30PM (#46074961) Journal
    agreed to an extent. it was first gen phone, that needed a couple more generations to get it all right. However, the basic idea of the n900 was awesome, and still exceeds what I see on the market today.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 26, 2014 @04:55PM (#46075089)

    Your only other choice then is supporting Apple/iOS, and that is by far worse an outcome.

  • by Luckyo ( 1726890 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @05:18PM (#46075249)

    To be specific. The main part of the engineering and designer team that made Maemo on n900 moved on to make N9 and n950 (unpublished successor to the n900), and after Elop closed the development moved on to make the company called jolla.

    Their OS is evolution of the line which started with the Maemo tablets, culminating in n900 and N9/n950. The phone is in beta phase through you can buy one. One of their specialities is the special separate back panel system, which apparently has a digital connection to the main phone, allowing you to replace the standard back cover for one with keyboard eventually when one is developed.

    Overall, if you're looking for n900 successor today, jolla is about the only thing that comes to mind.

  • by Luckyo ( 1726890 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @05:20PM (#46075255)

    It's follow-up, N9 sold millions without ANY marketing whatsoever - Elop specifically forbid any kind of marketing for it, suggesting that you are utterly incorrect in your rather strange assumption.

  • by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @05:33PM (#46075345) Homepage

    Google will not sell your "life" as that is not their business model.

    LexisNexis does that. I can cheaply buy enough info about you to really scare the shit out of you. And they have far FAR more info on you than Google would ever dream of having.

  • Well Rydia... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Hsien-Ko ( 1090623 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @06:36PM (#46075741)
    Does your N900 cast Fire or summon Odin?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 26, 2014 @07:23PM (#46076057)

    I'd like to avoid supporting Google/Android

    Why? Is there something technical you're opposed to or is this simply a case of "I hate Big Corp X"? I'm not trolling, but frankly speaking I can't think of any reason to hate Google that doesn't lead one to also hate Apple or Microsoft, and that pretty much rules out your options for smartphones. If you simply dislike them then fine, but without telling us WHAT it is you dislike or WHY you're avoiding that company, we really can't make any adequate suggestions as to an alternative.

  • (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Threni ( 635302 ) on Sunday January 26, 2014 @08:01PM (#46076331)

    > It's a niche project, but looks like getting a good techie phone is niche these days.

    Define "techie phone". What's wrong with, say, a Nexus 5/Galaxy S3/4, for instance? What functionality do you believe is missing?

    And if you don't like Google, put Cyanogenmod (or any other AOSP based project) and forgo the Google Apps.

  • by LordLimecat ( 1103839 ) on Monday January 27, 2014 @04:50AM (#46078683)

    Scriptability. First and foremost. *I* want to be the one in control of the phone [], not some app developer vetted by The Place That Decides What You Can Do With Our --I Mean Your-- Phone (or "AppStore" for short). I want to write a bash script, or a python script, and tell me when my beloved has sent me a SMS containing the word "URGENT".

    You may want to check out Tasker, it does this sort of stuff.

    Freedom. Yes, I mean openness as in open source. Yes, I do know not everything in the N900 was open-sourced,

    Then whats the problem with Android?

  • by psmears ( 629712 ) on Monday January 27, 2014 @08:27AM (#46079383)

    The lazy assed "I don't want to do my own research" author.

    Of course he's going to have to make some choices. But when making such choices, it's helpful to have a feel for how well the devices work in practice, for the intended use: I've had plenty of devices in the past that, according to their specs at least, were perfect - but ended up being frustratingly deficient in some way. Reading online reviews can help with this to some extent, but they tend not to focus on (say) programming as a use case - so I can imagine that input from slashdotters would be very valuable here. (It's also really helpful for pointing out phones/other devices that the author may not have considered, that don't necessarily come up in a typical web search...)

Can anyone remember when the times were not hard, and money not scarce?