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Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

Yesterday Marko brought me a Nokia 8800. I wrote about this phone when it came out. It has special meaning for me because the sounds were designed by my friend Ryuichi Sakamoto. I'm also proud to have introduced Marko and Nokia to Ryuichi. I had read the reviews, but after playing with the phone I'm extremely excited by how cool it is.

The design is beautiful and the attention to detail is stunning. Everything from the black box with the steel clasp that it comes in to the pulsating blue light at the base of the charging dock to the extra battery and extra battery charger on the dock to the polished steel makes it feel very special. I think it has something to do with the steel, but it doesn't have that cheap plastic feel that most mobile phones have. When you slide the phone open, it is a metal on metal sound/feel, which is a "real" version of the metallic "schwing" sound that some of the Sony phones play when you open them. It's also just the right weight and size for my taste.

Ryuichi did a great job with the sounds and makes this the first phone where I actually enjoy listening to the various ring tones. Congratulations to everyone involved. Excellent job. The only problem is that it doesn't sync with my Mac and doesn't have UMTS so I can't use it in Japan... but when I'm in any country where I can use GSM I'll be using this phone.


The ultimate phone for the petit bourgeois. Wow, pulsating lights and brushed steel for only a thousand bucks. I'll rush right out and get one now.

Pardon me for not being impressed until Nokia figures out how to bring cool designs to real people. Or Ryuichi his great sounds to them.

Are you selling your old phone?

put the old phone on e-bay!

Ryuichi ringtones - that is truly sweet and of high finesse - for the fashionista amongst us - although knowing his music is it audible in a busy environment! How many calls will you miss?

- so when is Thomas Dolby coming out with a phone? - ooooh a kraftwerk phone would be so cool!

so.. how many phones do yu own now joi? :)

regarding this model.. im somehow intrigued about the fingerprints and dust the metal could get

I really like my new Nokia 9300. It actually isn't even out in the US yet. The only problem with it is that for some reason there isn't a vibrate mode. Fortunately there is some pretty advanced ringtone profile settings, so you can set it to just beep softly a couple times which is almost as good. Even still, my old phone almost never got taken out of vibrate mode.

Congratulations! I've got the same. The 8800 features a slide mechanism, which IMHO, is one of the best I have used. The phone slides in and out smoothly with a solid thud, giving you the feeling that it will not fail in the near future.

Looks like a cool phone, but that Nokia movie with hands shaking on boot up kind of bugs me. I think it's time to get rid of that.

Marko was in SF yesterday, I am in Berkeley, are you saying you're in SF and I don't know that ???? :-)

You're in Berkeley Loic?

Joi--you never told us how Ryuichi Sakamoto's concert was! I am a fan of his newish album, Chasm, and I also like Cornelius and Fennesz quite a bit. It must have been a great show, wish I could have seen it.

Yes. It was a great show. ;-) I was too busy listening and didn't blog it I guess.

It looks like the keypad is up around the base of your fingertips, vs where they normally are around the middle of your palm.

Is that true? I sure hope that's a trend to stay. I've dropped my phone too many times trying to press the '*', '0' or '#'.

Motorola is coming out with some interesting designs too - seen their new PEBL?

I saw the Motorola PEBL commercials before public release a few months ago on a flight from Amsterdam to London - the Creative Director at 180 (Motorola's agency) was reviewing the TV ads on his G4 - unbeknown that sitting next to him was the Interactive Creative Director (me) from a rival agency with Samsung as a client! Client condidentiality - what's that 180? BTW the ads and the phone look sexy indeed!

Are these devices v6 enabled ?

The 8800 is a very stylish phone. Engadget shows us the new Nokia 8800, one sexy little phone. It’s stainless steel and pops open so that the keypad is in the middle (easier for one-handed dialing). Other details include signature ringtones composed by Ryuchi Sakamoto, scratch-resistant glass on the front, and a pop-up camera that is revealed when the phone is slid open. The magic question is how much? The 8800 is a very stylish phone.

You know the sound a Benz door makes? This phone feels just as solid and well build...

I just had a chance to play with this phone. It's very cool and fills the huge void in the market for high end quality devices. I gotta have this one.

I love my new 8800 too!
I bought it much out of the fact that the sounds where excellent and by Mr. Sakamoto. Listening to the music in the commercial finally convinced me.
To bad it's impossible to download them to my computer (Nokia set the file-permissions so that you can't) so I could play them on my stereo system at home:)

There are some drawbacks though: The small battery limits your talktime to roundabout 1-1,5 hours and more or less a day on stand by. The keypad is a bit hard to use and slippery.

I sync the 8800 & Mac using a program called Phonedirector

Aaargh! Joi! Another gadget!

phone changes settings when you take out battery ,hard to use buttons too small ,battery dosent last long, if you put on bluetooth you can forget about battery time ,headset very basic for phone ,,for 850 EUROS its dissapointing

But, it feels so good to hold.

I'm sad to hear that the battery life is so poor. Is that estimate of 1-1.5 hours of talktime in standby mode, with or with-out the bluetooth on?

Looks like you're a step (and a couple of months) ahead of me. Probably the difference between a developed and developing country. I just got the 6680. The 8800 looked very attractive, but was way over my budget.

Am haveing this 8800 for up to 2 weeks now, I have not notice that it have this problem with the softwers. The prblem is that it gos off when it feel like the prblem have to be solved only by nokia itself the serial number to the phone is 356216003595834.

Does anyone know how to adjust the volume on the earpiece? I can barely hear the person on the other line. Also, can the backlight time be adjusted on the phone?

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