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Returning the E60

I went back to the shop today to return the Nokia E60 I had previously sought out. There were just too many gripes with the phone, and even though I could have possibly worked around (some of) them, I was looking for a phone that works, not one that I could tweak to work.

Among the most prominent problems were:

Other than that, the phone seems to have the usual features you expect from an advanced phone that tries to also be a PIM. Believe it or not, I could make phone calls, but there was weird crackling noises to be heard; I am not sure whether the phone's at fault, I do have crazy power lines around my place.

One thing that did drive me up the walls was the configuration. To set up VoIP, I had to first configure a WLAN connection (which you cannot do in the "Connection Manager" -- that one seems to be only used to kill connections and associate with unencrypted WLANs) in the system settings (which are to be found under Menu/Tools), then set up a SIP profile, then set up a VoIP connection, and then make sure it's active. If you change WLANs, you have to modify the VoIP connection, it cannot use an existing WLAN connection, or the current best default. I want a VoIP/GSM combo not because I want to spend two minutes to configure VoIP in a foreign network.

Also, while we're on a topic related to WLAN: the device does not allow you to connect to a WLAN without starting an application that uses it. Sure, it's power-optimised, but still. Also, neither ESSID nor encryption status are shown anywhere when you're connected, and I did not find out a way to display the phone's IP address.

Another beef was with the general device speed. There's a quick access button to write SMS. If you press that, it takes 5-6 seconds until you can type the SMS. I don't need to say more...

The display of the E60 (and E70), however, do warrant their own paragraphs: it's gorgeous! Simply gorgeous. Unfortunately, that's not a selling factor for me.

So I decided to wait for the next generation of WLAN/VoIP/GSM combos (or at least firmware updates to the E60), and especially the Motorola A910, which runs Linux. I am grateful to the shop manager for being so patient, making sure that I am satisfied rather than trying to make money, and generally just giving me a pleasant shopping experience the way it really should be these days -- given that there are shops out there that won't let you try electronic devices before you buy them. So, if you're ever in Zurich and in need of mobile communication devices or paraphernalia, visit the mobilezone shop in Oerlikon (Einkaufszentrum Neumarkt) and ask for Andreas Iseli! Apart from being next door to my flat, I'm definitely going to go back there next time I need something.

PS: to all those who have been toying with the idea of buying (or otherwise drooling over) the E70, do note that the two run the same software, so most of these issues will apply to the E70 as well. However, it's always best to make up your own mind, so find a shop as professional and fair as mine and get your hands on it.