Looking under the hood – the Symbian OS

I have been given an opportunity to chat to David Rivas, Nokia’s Vice President Product & Technology Management about the Symbian operating system. There has been quite a lot of talk about how shoddy the series 60 user interface is and it got me wondering about the operating system itself, under the UI, so I asked Tania Steenkamp at Nokia SA if I could chat to someone about that and she kindly arranged for me to speak to David.

I thought I’d use FriendFeed to make notes as I chat to David and possibly wrap up with a few thoughts afterwards (experimenting a little, so please bear with me). I’ll publish the FriendFeed channel here.

My discussion with David was fascinating. He called me on a regular landline so I don’t have a recording of the call (which would probably be very interesting to developers and consumers alike). I was typing as we talked so any comments which don’t make sense or misrepresent what David told me is really my fault. David is clearly very knowledgeable and passionate about Symbian and at the same time recognises where Nokia and the Symbian Foundation have work to do to improve users’ perceptions of Symbian as an operating system.

Symbian’s main challenge seems to be more about perceptions of the underlying operating system based on its dated UI rather than anything to do with the operating system’s capabilities. My take on what David was telling me is that Symbian is a robust, powerful and effective operating system that was designed to work well on a wide range of devices from basic models to the N97.



  1. Hey N97, let’s be friend avatar

    […] of this emphasis on the UI did get me wondering about the underlying Symbian operating system and from what I was told, it remains a robust and effective mobile operating system […]

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