Goodbye Best Phone I've Ever Owned

I've just sent the best phone I ever had off to be reused or recycled.

It's time had come, and whilst it was still serving very well, a free upgrade when renewing my contract sealed its fate.

But in an age of Android and iPhones, the fact that the best phone I've ever owned was a Nokia will probably surprise many.

To be specific, it was the Nokia E90 - the last of the venerable Communicator line.

It had its faults, and I'll address those first:

  1. It was huge. And I do mean massive. Not as big as its brick-like predecessors in the Communicator range, but it was not small.
  2. No touch screen. It had a bright and decent screen when unfolded, but most of the time you had a fairly small screen above a keypad to use.
  3. Although it was a smartphone, there wasn't much software for it.
  4. Out of the box, it's wi-fi handling was woeful.

But for me, all that was outweighed by the positives...

  1. It was built superbly. After nearly four years of daily use, and one total immersion incident, it was still going strong - and showing few signs of wear and tear.
  2. The battery life was measured in days, not hours. And that's days of usage.
  3. The software I did find was great. From ProfiMail to Gravity to Handy Profiles. The software was well designed, stable and reliable.
  4. It did everything I needed to, quickly and efficiently.

Of course, as a geek, I had the phone tricked out. It's important to realise that a stock E90 couldn't have been my best phone, just like an empty Android or iPhone couldn't for many people either. These days, the software maketh the phone, and that's why we have App Stores...

My E90 was improved immeasurably with Psiloc Connect handling the network connections. In many ways, Psiloc Connect was the single best improvement I ever made to the phone, because the default wi-fi handling was so bad! Profimail replaced the mail client, and Gravity was my Twitter/Facebook client - and was so good many clients on other platforms could learn from it! Handy Profiles, Handy Calendar and Handy Taskman kept my life in order.

That whole arrangement of software was very quickly settled on, and served well for almost four years.

Four years. Which means that more than once, I could have upgraded, but felt no need to. Quite a compliment, I'd say.

But Symbian is dead, the world has moved on, and as this upgrade window approached, I felt it wise to have a look around.

I've settled on an HTC Desire Z.

Why isn't the Desire Z the best phone I've ever owned?

It just might be. I'm certainly finding it excellent so far.

But I think it would be premature to declare it so when I've barely begun to live with it...