Nokia Previews Faster, Prettier Symbian User Interface for 2010

We were surprised yesterday to hear that Nokia is moving ahead with both Symbian and Maemo phones, but reassured by their admission that the Symbian UI kinda blows. Well, now we have juicy screenshots of improvements they've got in mind.

Nokia's device top dog, Kai Öistämö, reiterated that they don't see the Symbian OS as the problem—just the interface. Accordingly, they're planning two big interface milestones for 2010, the first of which will arrive by mid-year. They plan to:

"Use a new optimized graphic architecture with a focus on graphics and responsiveness, showcased beautifully on a large capacitive screen. Later in the year, a completely new visual architecture re-working of the UI will drastically reduce the complexity throughout and bring fresh appeal. We will execute here." Big screens hey? That concept tablet in the slides sure looks interesting...

View gallery »

Beyond reduced clutter, Nokia also plans to improve input methods (including multi-touch and single tap controls). "Two taps to get to music and video instead of 8, and email access in two steps instead of four….There will also be a significantly improved browser experience."

"The interface will be over three times faster than our current high-end devices in many areas…Scrolling will move up to over 60fps compared to 15fps on our current high-end devices."

If they deliver, it may help Symbian phones (both smartphone and dumb) level off out of their nosedive into irrelevance. And interestingly, Nokia also plans to release its first Maemo 6-powered "mobile computer" late next year, too. FYI: The screens are from yesterday's webcast of Nokia's Capital Market Day for investors: [Nokia]