Posts in the category "N73 in Use".

Improvements in 4.0735.3.0.2 vs. 2.0628.0.0.1

A couple of things I’ve noticed in my phone after the upgrade:

  • Multitasking/memory management is better: the music player no longer crashes if I want to use e.g. Widsets at the same time.
  • Music player works correctly with the headphone remote: previously when I hit pause, the music paused but didn’t restart when I hit play. If I hit stop, the player shut down. Now when I hit pause, the song pauses and restarts without a hitch. Also, stop button stops it and playing starts from the beginning. I would prefer the stop button to close the application, though, because I’m afraid it’ll start playing on its own if I forget to lock the remote.
  • The font seems bigger or clearer. Also, bold font has appeared in many applications — maybe now the phone obeys what the 3rd party programmers have intended.
  • [Added Feb 12] The email program no longer crashes when I want to remove an email from both the phone and the email servers.

The phone hasn’t rebooted accompanied with pretty coloured pixels — but it’s too early to tell if the upgrade fixed the problem I had.


I’m about to upgrade my phone’s firmware. Wish me luck!

It’s been acting up lately: rebooting suddenly. The screen pixelates and goes black, and after a while it reboots to the active idle screen without having to enter the PIN code. Odd and annoying. And today was the last drop — it started playing Nokia Tune when someone called me! Of course, there are many things that can cause this but then I had just had it. That’s it, you’re getting an upgrade.


Let’s see what happens…

@10:03 pm: At least it’s not bricked. The computer says the upgrade was successful.
So, I had done a backup of everything on the phone and now I restored it. It brought back my selected theme and even the very customised menu. It is missing some of the applications I’ve installed but I listed those (the important ones) before the upgrade.

So, now I’m at version 4! My old version was 2.0628.0.0.1. I hadn’t upgraded before because my operator either hadn’t approved of many of the previous versions or hadn’t bothered to approve them.

New firmware!

Unfortunately, now the music player doesn’t open directly to the playlist but in a completely useless menu. Now there’s one extra step between me and my lovely music. Getting it on full blast (ehm, 20% volume) quickly is sometimes crucial — after a long day at work and there’s a kid, or just other kind of noisy crowd, on the subway/train/bus.

N73 in Use: Mobile books

I try to read as much as I can and I like to carry a book with me wherever I go. When I’m close to finishing one book, I start carrying two books with me which sometimes makes my handbag quite heavy…

Luckily, I stumbled across eBook readers for mobile phones. I’m currently using Mobipocket Reader. At for example Manybooks you can download several different formats — one of which is the Mobipocket Reader format. It’s also really easy to convert text files, HTML files or Word documents into eBooks with Mobipocket Creator.

Let’s pick a book at Project Gutenberg and convert it to Mobipocket.

Pick a book at Project Gutenberg

I’ll pick the HTML format even though plain text would do. HTML format contains tagging for headers and things which can be used in formatting the text in eBook.

Let’s pick the HTML format

After opening Mobipocket Creator, I choose to create a new blank publication. This way it’s easy to pick the title and I can combine several files if I want.

Enter the title and browser for output folder

Now I need to choose the files to include in the publication. I drag and drop the HTML file I just downloaded from Project Gutenberg.

For demonstration’s sake I’ll pick up an image to be used as the cover image. I’ll drag and drop this image into the Cover Image window.

Drag and drop a cover image

As far as I know, the image doesn’t show in the mobile application. Instead, it’ll show up in the Mobipocket Reader’s library.

Finally, I click the build icon and the Build button.


Then I open the Mobipocket Reader and send my newly created eBook to my mobile.

Send to phone

The resulting eBook from this HTML looks like this:

The eBook on my mobile

In Mobipocket reader there are several settings. For example, if I read just before going to sleep, I change the background to black and the text to yellow. Last night I tried out teal text on black which was quite good. On the bus it’s usually best to read black on white. The font size and font type are also adjustable, as well as justified text or unjustified. There are options to add highlights, bookmarks and notes to the text as well as create hyperlinks.

What I miss is a way to check the total number of pages. There is a meter at the bottom of the screen to show how far you are in the book but it’s difficult to really make out how much there is left. Maybe it’s just me, I like to look at the number on the last page no matter how interesting the book is.

N73 in use: Themes and applications

Here’s some information on the applications I’ve installed as well as some theme places I stalk in order to find The Perfect Theme.


Most of these are freeware.

(Pre-installed) Lifeblog logs your messages and media (photos, videos, sound), and you can add your own notes, too. I don’t use the mobile application at the moment because I haven’t figured out how to moblog to WordPress with it, but Lifeblog is very handy in transferring the logged items to the computer.
A file explorer. The search seems to be working very swiftly.
Omat Lahdot
Timetables for the capital city area (Helsinki, that is). You can save a list of bus stops/stations and filter out all unnecessary lines.
Take a screenshot of a lovely theme or a horrible-looking user interface
Opera Mini
A browser that filters out the blingbling on sites for easier viewing on a small screen and smaller load to data transfer. I like the built-in browser better though.
Nokia Search (unofficially out)
Search messages, emails, calendar, to-do, contacts, notes, and other files. Available for download at Symbian Freak for example.
Simple calculator but it’s much easier and faster to use than the built-in calculator.
Trivial Pursuit Genus Edition
Not freeware. Bought this via the N73 Services on Download!.


I’m currently using Clarity by Submarine (Clarity Wine variation). It has some blue in popups but I can live with that. The colours are very clear and the red is wonderful.

Theme - Clarity Wine

I check the following theme places daily: Forum thread “Upload your 3rd Edition themes here!” themes
Mobile9 theme gallery

New site » Themes

Please note that for some reason some people want to look at naked women (etc.) on their phone screen, so those theme places may contain NSFW (not safe for work) images. They do censor some theme previews but not nearly enough.

Some of the uploaded themes, particularly at Mobile9 and MobileThemes’s general upload section (not the forum post), have been created using online resources which may add icons and other “advertisements”.

N73 in use: Silence of the Multimedia key

On the right side of the keypad there is a special key, the so-called Multimedia key where you can add four more shortcuts. Unfortunately it makes an awful noise when pressed which is why I never use it.

I’ve tried silencing it: I’ve looked for a sound file to delete (no luck), I’ve tried making the settings the same as in Beep or Silence mode where the Multimedia key is silent (no luck). Well, now I swapped my own profile with the Beep profile and I finally get a silent Multimedia key!

Is there really no other way to get the key to SHUT UP except for this “hack”?

[Edit Jan 20th] Boy, do I feel stupid now. :razz: Thanks to Antony for commenting and pointing out that there is a simple option for turning the sounds off:

Turn off Multimedia key sounds

Shh, can you hear that? Neither can I! Oh sweet silence. I go hide in my n00b hole now…

N73 in use: Active idle

I have been trying to figure out the logic behind the calendar on active idle screen.

The screen will fit 6 calendar items — Meetings, Memos, Anniversaries, and To-Do’s. To-Do has a separate, static place at the bottom of the screen. Other applications such as the radio and music player take up space on the active idle screen as well.

Six calendar entries 5 calendar items plus to-do list Music player on active idle screen

To-do functions as a separate item on the screen, that is you can scroll to the calendar entries and it’ll select all the Memos, Anniversaries and Meetings. If you click them, it’ll go to Calendar. You can also scroll to the To-do list and view all to-do items by clicking on the To-do list on active idle.

To-do is always visible if there are unfinished tasks. The priority or importance of the other calendar entries seems to be:

  1. Meetings
  2. Memos
  3. Anniversaries

That is, if there isn’t enough space for all items the Anniversaries will disappear first. If there are no anniversaries showing and there isn’t enough space for all Meetings, Memo items start disappearing.

Not enough space for two Anniversaries Not enough space for all Memos

There is no indication if there are calendar entries hiding, which is a shame.

Memos and Anniversaries aren’t shown on any other day than the day they are set to. Only one Meeting for the following days will show, but I don’t know how far in the future the meeting can be. I’ll have to try it out some day when I don’t have any Meetings for about a week (and when would that be?).

First I instinctively used To-Do lists for things I need to remember to do. Well, that doesn’t work so well because it only shows one To-Do item with text; 2+ items will show up as “n to-do notes not done”. After doing this little experiment, I realised Memo is the more logical way to write down things to remember. And, I noticed, it works the way it should because you see several Memos for one day.

N73 in use: Music player

After getting the 2 Gb memory card, I’ve put the N73’s music player to proper use. Here are some of my observations and thoughts.


I couldn’t even think about listening to radio on my old Nokia 6101 because I couldn’t find a way to turn the volume down. N73 is a bit better, but I am listening to the music at 10%-20% volume and it’s a bit too loud still! It shouldn’t be only because of the earphones I have (HS-20/HS-21) that go in the ear because I tried it on my normal Sony earphones and it was just as loud. The Sony earphones have so big earplugs that they are barely holding on. I haven’t yet tested it with headphones (with the speakers on the ear instead of in the ear canal).

Oddly, Eseries phones apparently suffer from a low volume.

Crash Boom Bang

I’m not sure if this is a feature or a bug, but when the player plays on background (that is, active idle) and I press stop (on AD-41’s “remote control”) the program closes. When I press pause, the track pauses normally but I can’t start playing it again (that is a bug).

The player works better on foreground (naturally) but if the screen has gone black (power saving mode), pause/play button pauses the track but won’t start playing it. Oddly, next track and previous track buttons work normally in power saving mode.

Music library

I love the music library! On my mp3 player the process of beginning to listen to a select album required skipping to a song on the preferred album (I had the songs in folders by album) and then setting the playback as “shuffle album”. On the phone I can go to Music Library > Albums > preferred album, and start playing any song there. All assuming that the ID3/M4A tags are in order. Luckily the program I use to convert my CDs, makes the tags automatically (I think).

Nokia N73 – My thoughts

Update on November 25. Added a bit about the game selection and joystick…

Today the package subscription finally started working and I can start using my phone for real. I’ve had a chance to play with it offline so this is what I think about it at the moment.

I think I should mention that this is my first S60 phone; my previous phones, Nokia 3210, 3330 and 6101 have been Series 40. (If that’s all gibberish, Forum Nokia has a nicely presented Device Specification section. Those two 3xxx phones I’ve had aren’t included, though.)

You navigate with a joystick that is located between the call start/end keys and the softkeys. It is quite easy to get used to the joystick even though at first it felt very weird. Pushing up is a little bit awkward still. Some have reported that the joystick has broken off — let’s hope that won’t happen to me. It does feel a bit flimsy, true, but I’m not planning on manhandling my phone.

I like the menu structure very much. It’s nice when there’s only a few options, the submenu pops on top of the main menu.

Screenshot of a submenu

(I’m using the default Nokia theme for the moment. I’ll have to look for a nicer, less blue, one.)

Also a nice feature is the tabbed menu. In many submenus e.g. Settings I can go to the next selection of settings by moving the joystick left or right.

Tabbed browsing

The Active standby screen is heaven-sent! It shows the calendar, to-do list, currently playing radio channel or music track and probably much more. On my old phone I used calendar and other memo features, but only way to be reminded of the events was an alarm which I never use. Now I see current (a week ahead?) calendar entries right away!

Active standby

(Yeah, I know there aren’t any calendar entries for this week. That doesn’t mean I don’t have any plans. Well, yeah it does, personally, but I have lots of work plans :) )

On the screen there is also a customisable list of six shortcuts.

Media key gives 4 more slots to customise shortcuts. I’ve chosen to have shortcuts to multimedia applications but it’s not restricted what you can have there. There is one grief with the Media key, though: it makes a sound when the view opens. I haven’t found any way to silence it except to use Silent profile.

Multimedia key

There is only one game pre-installed. In some nooks of the world people get also Sudoku in addition to the Snake that is installed on my phone. Whyyyyy oh whyyyy can’t we have Sudoku installed? I could do without the weird 3D Snake (nothing beats the Snake II that was on e.g. Nokia 3330) but I love Sudoku!

The world clock is also a fancy feature. I’m sure I wouldn’t find it useful if I didn’t have a trip to Australia to look forward to…

World clock

A great tip was given by Harri in a comment on Blogs » S60 User Experience. He told that he uses a camera (digital or phone cam) for taking notes of for example timetables. Well, I took a photo of the timetable for buses from work. Now I only have to remember that I have the timetable easily available.

A great shortcut is that by pressing # you can switch between silent and default profile.

On the N73 support page there is an SMS Accelerator application and “it is recommended that you install this application to prevent slowness in SMS sending.” I sent my first SMS today and it left very swiftly so I’ll just have to wait and see what this alleged slowness is.

I’ve had a bit of a ‘Scuse me? moment. There are “My Folders” for messages but I haven’t yet figured out how to move messages to them (or anywhere for that matter). Today I finally received SMSs in my inbox so I can try if it really is difficult or I just didn’t have any moveable messages. (I could only move old messages to drafts so I think I’ll leave them on my computer and not move them to my new phone at all.)

Today I went shopping and bought the Music Headset of HS-20+AD-41. The AD-41 audio adapter has a 3.5mm plug for headphones so I can use any pair I like, but the HS-20 earphones are pretty good too. It has 3 (pairs of) ear pieces in different sizes and the smallest is actually small unlike with Koss’s Plug. It fits in my unnaturally small ear (or ear canal) very nicely. Now I only need to get a 1 Gb or 2 Gb memory card to get some music on the road. Before that I can always listen to the radio.

I also ordered my preferred Robbie ringtone (I’m not going to say what it is because I don’t want to hear it from any other phone than Mine! ;) ) so I’d say this phone is all set.

Screenshot application: Screenshot for Symbian OS (S60)

Some nice links
Nokia Nseries
S60 Blogs
S60 Tips

All S60/Nokia website tips are welcomed :-)