This will show you how sad I am and how much free time I have over the weekend. Now and again over the past month I have had these strange longings to get the old 680 back out. I thought buying the TH55 Clie would stop these odd cravings but no, it appears not. Every couple of days I dig into the drawer, pull out the 680 and sort of turn it around in my hands for a minute or so, looking at it and just wondering…all rather odd and it's almost as if I expect it to have changed form factor since the last time I looked, to have become less chunky and miraciously acquired wifi/3g capability. A minute later it is back in the drawer, where daylight never shines, for another couple of days.
Anyway, I drew up a list in ListPro, as I am prone to do, of the best features of the Nokia E71 and the 680 and was surprised to see a theme developing whereby the E71 wins hands down on the hardware specs such as having wifi, 3g and the much nicer form factor whereas the Treo gave it a sound beating when it came to the software side of things with far better 3rd party and built in applications. Symbian is really lacking when it comes to this aspect, there is so much built in in terms of software yet most of it is pretty low quality, anyone who has had the misfortune of using drivel like the Nokia Gallery app will know what I mean here. For multimedia, it is poor as are the Notes apps, the Messaging app desperately needs an overhaul and it is hard to find decently priced and good 3rd party software. I think they should put on less stuff and make what goes on of a higher quality.
Keyboard wise too the E71 probably just edges it mainly thanks to having word completion ability built in but had the 680 had that then I would reverse my decision.
I can't help come to the conclusion that the E71 though is a nifty little device and it is okay for me now that I am back using a seperate palm pda as the latter fills the blatantly missing software gaps of the former. Thing is, the E71 is what the Palm Treo line should have evolved into down the years and had it done so, the Pre wouldn't have needed to be the saving-the-company device/vapourware that it is turning out to be. It also emphasises the old adeage about the perfetc smartphone needing to be a good marriage of hardware and software, the E71 is 3/4 of the way there but in its present guise is unable to make the final jump.