When you've got VOIP you don't have to be original to be interesting.
They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, so clearly Nokia’s admiration for BlackBerrry is approaching stalker levels; but with a feature list to die for could the pupil be about to gazump the master?
The potential is certainly there, since the E61 Symbian 9.1 based smartphone has a vast array of features. Perhaps most prominent among them is its SIP compliant VOIP client which, when combined with its integrated wireless, allows the handset to link into PBX phone systems. Watch those phone bills drop…
Compatibility should be good too, since the E61 supports multiple mobile email clients including BlackBerry Connect, GoodLink, Nokia Business Centre, Seven Mobile Mail, Seven Always-On Mail and Visto Mobile. Full attachment handling (documents, spreadsheets, presentations, PDF viewer and ZIP manager) is provided and the first three can be edited directly from the handset. Like Sony Ericsson’s recently announced P990 the E61 can also multitask, allowing emails to be sent and received while in a call.
Internal memory isn’t huge at 75MB, but it swallows miniSD cards and the 320 x 240 display with 16 million colours looks promising. At 144g it isn’t as light as Motorola’s upcoming Q, but that doesn’t have wireless, while the Nokia’s dimensions of 117 x 69 x 14mm suggest smartphones are moving away from the coat pocket and towards the trouser. Arrival is loosely scheduled for Q1 next year and – as always – pricing will largely depend on network and contract.
I’ll give quick mention to the E60 and E70 models released alongside it. Despite being less eye catching than the E61, both also support VOIP and have wireless connectivity. The former has a typical candy bar design, while the latter mimics the styling of the 6822 which Lars reviewed recently and should get the well muscled fingers of text and email happy users twitching in excitement. Like the E61, we’re looking at debuts between January and March 2006 and prices remain a tightly guarded secret.