Nokia N950 - Slide-out QWERTY MeeGo Harmattan developer device

Published by David Gilson at 12:59 UTC, June 21st 2011

Alongside the high profile release of the Nokia N9, limited details have emerged about another MeeGo Harmattan device. The N950, which was not talked about at the Nokia Connection event, has been created for developers who will target the N9 and general MeeGo handset UI applications. The Nokia Developer website published a list detailing the hardware differences between both devices. Read on to find out about the N950's software stack and how to obtain one.

Below is a summary of how the N950 differs from the N9. You can download the orignal document (as a text file) here.

Hardware differences

  • N950 is physically larger and is made out of Aluminium, whereas N9 has a polycarbonate unibody.

  • N950 has a physical slide-out QWERTY keyboard. The N9 is a touchscreen-only device.

  • N950 has a 4" TFT LCD display whereas N9 has 3.9" AMOLED display. Display resolution is same on both devices (854x480).

  • N950 has a different physical camera module than N9. Both camera modules have very similar image quality (Carl Zeiss branding in N9) and both modules support 8Mpix image mode.

  • In the N950 the front facing camera is in top right corner and on N9 it is in the bottom right corner. The actual camera module is same.

  • N950 supports Bluetooth version 2.1+EDR, whereas N9 supports version 4.0

  • N950 does not have support for NFC

  • N9 has slightly more sensitive magnetometer and ALS

  • N950 has 1320mAh battery, the N9 has 1450mAh battery


Given the hardware description, it is clear that this is the device which some speculated as being an N9 prototype after a photograph was leaked. See the image below for a reminder.

Nokia N950

The N950, photographed last year.

Software notes

The N950's software is described as being in a “beta stage”. The summarised notes below, make it clear that the N950 is in an unfinished state. The notes also warn that an over-the-air firmware update may not be available for the N950. As of yet there's no suggested schedule for any kind of firmware update.

  • If the device becomes unresponsive you can to perform a hardware reset. Press the power key on top of the device and keep it pressed down for 8 or more seconds

  • Across the UI there are still logical IDs shown in some languages, icons may not be finalized and animations with opening windows are missing.

  • Gallery application may sometimes display "no items"

  • Help (Info buttons) is disabled from this release

  • There are many applications and services which are not available inthis beta release.

  • Performance of all use cases has not been optimized yet

  • Echo may be heard during some voice calls. This can be eliminated by turning speaker phone on and off during the call.

  • Chinese input method is not supported in this Beta release

 

Availability

The N950 is not intended for sale. Nokia are offering this as an ambassador device to developers to aid in development of applications for the platform. The MeeGo Community Device Program, currently has 250 N950s available for loan to MeeGo community members.

Nokia N9 DevKit details

Nokia N9 DevKit loan terms.

Please share your questions and opinions about the N950 in the comments.

 

David Gilson for All About MeeGo, 21st June 2011.

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