Opinion: We're expecting too much of the Nokia Tube

Nokia Tube
Can Nokia make a success of touch?

There is an awful lot of fuss about the Nokia Tube. And with good reason – a lot of people are waiting for a decent touch handset that can truly compete with the iPhone. Trouble is, it won't be this one.

When we sat at the front of Nokia's Mobile World Congress press conference this year, Nokia was cagey about the inevitable 'iPhone killer' questions. However, it did say it aimed to bring out touch, but that it would complement what the company already had.

"We have said we are platformising touch," Niklas Savander, head of Nokia's Services and Software division said at the launch in February, when the company also trailed the launch of the N96.

"We have said we will bring out touch products. However, we don't want gimmicky touch products. That means Nokia will plan to incorporate touch into a range of phones, rather than a single model. "As a user I don't want to see our heritage [in terms of existing apps] wasted."

What can Nokia do to buoy up Series 60

The writing was on the wall then – Nokia wanted touch for Series 60, but didn't want us to kill ourselves over waiting for an iPhone killer (so to speak).

Nokia will most likely roll out the fifth iteration of Series 60 alongside the new touch handset, so the potential is that touch could find its way into many of Nokia's high end handsets after that – the XpressMusic 5800 (the Tube's real and dull name) certainly isn't the end of the story.

However, questions remain over how Series 60 will perform with touch. It isn't the quickest interface as it is. The fifth version might change this, but the N78 we currently have in the office is still blighted by the same slow operation we've seen in many of Nokia's high end handsets recently, such as the N81 and N82. We'd love to know how Nokia will solve that problem – it really needs to.


Dan (Twitter, Google+) is TechRadar's Former Deputy Editor and is now in charge at our sister site T3.com. Covering all things computing, internet and mobile he's a seasoned regular at major tech shows such as CES, IFA and Mobile World Congress. Dan has also been a tech expert for many outlets including BBC Radio 4, 5Live and the World Service, The Sun and ITV News.