Buried under the hype of Nokia's handset announcements at Nokia World 2009 last week, the Finnish phone maker also announced it would be releasing a significant firmware update to its flagship handset, the N97.
(Credit: Symbian World)
The update, due to be released in October, includes a bevy of performance improvements, and the most notable being the introduction of kinetic scrolling. At present users access long lists, like contacts in the address book, by dragging the scroll bar on the right-hand side of the page. After installing the 2.0 firmware, this task will become similar to scrolling lists on Apple's iPhone, with lists responding to vertical finger gestures anywhere on the screen, and the speed of the movement dependant on the speed of the gesture. Kinetic scrolling will be used in all menus longer than a single page, like applications and media playlists.
The music player also receives a visual makeover. In the latest version, the menu now appears more dynamic with a music playlist featuring album art alongside the track and title of each song.
Also interesting in the update is the introduction of Nokia's Lifecasting Facebook widget enhancement. Not only does this newer version give you the ability to post your current status directly from the home screen, but it also allows you to post location-aware data with your status. So if you're enjoying the food at a new favourite restaurant you can post your thoughts alongside a map reference so your friends can find the same place.
Nokia will push the update out to users of the N97 as an over-the-air firmware update and can be found in the Nokia Software Update app when it's made publicly available in October.