How Could You Screw This Up So Badly, Nokia?

Illustration for article titled How Could You Screw This Up So Badly, Nokia?

You know, Nokia, I was all excited about your new PureView camera after watching your fake demo video. So excited that I wrote a piece on how this camera will make me dump the iPhone and get a Lumia 920.


Now I just want to slap you.

Sure, I know that our own hands-on on the camera was mighty impressive. That camera is indeed very good... so why did you have to go and screw your flagship launch with a fake video? And what about this dumb note you quickly added to your post about PureView to try to avoid the rage of the internets:

Note: The Lumia 920 pictures in this post were taken using prototype hardware and software, and then reduced dramatically in size. In addition, the OIS video, above, was not shot using the Lumia 920.

Really Nokia? I know you are not the first to post simulations; lots of companies do, except they say so up front. You hid it. And I know that what's in the vid is probably very close to—or perhaps even exactly—what you have showed. That's why this was just stupid.

Look, all I need to give up my iPhone is a camera that doesn't make my low-light photos look like pudding—unless it's pudding. Then I want the best pudding ever. The fact is that, right now, only a huge quality improvement like the one you pretended PureView was would make the upgrade worth its inconvenience and cost.

Why? Because I love my iPhone dearly. I got the first generation the day it came out because, just like every other old school Apple user, I waited and waited and waited for a Newton replacement for years. And because all the other phones were made of plastic and pain back then.


It was a real joy, even without third-party apps. We were so excited that I made the official Gizmodo t-shirts to celebrate its introduction (a collector's item!). I even created some of the iPhone's first wallpapers, which went viral shortly after publication.


I have been happily upgrading ever since, always staying in Apple land. I got the 3G because I wanted the connection speed. Later, a friend gave me a 3GS, so I used that.

The iPhone 4 is my current phone, months after toying with the idea of switching to the first generation of Windows Phone devices—just because I think they have a far superior interface and architecture (and no, I didn't consider Androids because they are as elegant as white socks and leather sandals). I customized my iPhone 4 with an etched wooden back replacement. It's like a personal extension of myself.


But ultimately I kept the iPhone because your current Lumia isn't that great, and the software still had rough edges. More importantly, the fact is that I like the iPhone too much. I think it's still the best smartphone out there, because of its pure industrial design, operating system and overall feature balance—but I skipped out on the iPhone 4S because it wasn't enough of an upgrade for me.


But your PureView camera is enough of a change. It can change everything, actually. If it actually works.

Like millions of people, I spend most of my days using my iPhone for two things: internet stuff—mail, Twitter, Facebook, weather, some apps. And TAKING PHOTOS. Photos and sometimes videos, too. The iPhone 4's camera is great. The iPhone 4S is even better. The photos have been so good that I stopped carrying a dedicated point-and-shoot camera in the name of convenience. But, compared to the purported light and motion performance of the PureView, the iPhone's photos seem to have been taken with a Soviet camera.


I know that many other people feel the same about their smartphones. Not surprisingly, the number one camera in the world—measured by Facebook or Flickr or wherever uploads—is the iPhone. Everyone I know uses their phones, Apple or Android, to take photos and videos. Even people who hate taking pictures. For all their capabilities, the killer app for all smartphones is the camera.

And while this PureView camera may not be as insane as the one in the Nokia 808, you told us that the results are still pretty crazy, especially in motion and in low light conditions. So very good, in fact, that I was itching to switch, Instagram be dammed. If the PureView camera in the Lumia 920 is as good as you have shown it to be, I was going to definitely jumping ship.


But after this? After this you will have to work a lot harder to convince me. Because if you are "simulating" something that could have been easily demonstrated—even if the simulation ends up being more or less the same as the real thing—who knows what else you're exaggerating?


Trust, Nokia, is the most precious asset you can hope for in a brand. Today you just lost mine.



So let me get this straight - you guys tested it, you saw the results first hand, you can see that they are far superior to iPhone, but now you suddenly think less of the capabilities of the phone because of a commercial?