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Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

Sage
GeminiPhoenix
Posts: 116

Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

I accept that I'm probably in the minority here, as a lot of you seem to be banging on about how great Belle is, but I personally dislike it! In fact, I would go as far as saying I HATE Symbian Belle, after coming from Symbian Anna!

 

First of all, I'd like to point out that I do appreciate the good points of Belle. I like the fact that they finally sorted out a few issues which plagued earlier Symbian^3 versions. However, some of the major issues seem to have been left unchecked, whilst I feel other aspects have been changed unnecessarily.

 

After 15 months of owning a Nokia N8, I kind of expected all of the bugs to have been worked out by now, but it seems that 15 months later we are still complaining about many of the issues which we complained about on day one!

 

I could also live with some of the minor annoyances I have found with Belle, but some are just so frustrating that I often wonder why the hell they decided to change it, especially when it didn't need to be changed in the first place! The clock and the music player homescreen widget are two such features I feel didn't need to be altered, yet they did so anyway just for the sake of it...

 

After just 24 hours of updating to Belle, I've decided that if I can't find a way back to Anna (I hear that a Nokia service centre can perform the downgrade), then I'm getting rid of my N8. As much as I love my N8 to bits, I cannot live with it with an interface that I am unhappy with, especially when Anna felt like second nature to me! My beloved handset has been altered, and this is no longer the phone I sent the last 15 months using

 

 

Here's what I like about Belle:

 

* Extra homescreens - For me, three was always plenty, but I can see why other people would prefer to have more. However, it would be nice to have three as the default, rather than four, as I am left with an unused screen which is unnecessary for my use

 

* The ability to rearrange homescreen widgets more freely - I like this feature, and it's something I initially thought was going to be a feature of Symbian^3 when the N8 was first released. Being able to finally place shortcuts anywhere on the screen is very useful, and more intuitive than having to have rows of four

 

* The dropdown menu - This is a nice touch, and puts all of the most important on / off features in one place (such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth etc). However, I wish that this was a one-touch operation, rather than a touch & flick gesture

 

* Speed - General transitions and navigation are so much more faster now! As it should have been to begin with...

 

 

Anything else which I like (like the faster browser and vertical QWERTY keyboard) are throwbacks from Anna, so I won't mention them here as they don't relate directly to Belle

 

 

Here's a list of the things I dislike about Belle:

 

* Redesigned homescreen widgets - Was there really any need to redesign the primary homescreen widgets, such as the clock / calendar / profile menu group, and music player? On Anna, these were nice neat little widgets which occupied two rows between them - Now the music player widget takes up half the screen, and the clock / calendar / profile group has been disbanded into separate widgets which all take up extra space! Why was this necessary?

 

* Redesigned digital clock - I don't like the new-look digital clock on the homescreen, and I especially don't like the new screensaver digital clock! At least give us a choice of Anna / Belle designs, so we can choose which one we prefer! I much prefer the original screensaver clock design, and I would rather have the original clock / calendar / profile menu group back in place of separate widgets for each!

 

* The new text messaging interface - More specifically, the text messaging menu. For some reason, Nokia have assumed that everybody texts using the Conversations feature, and has relegated everything else to a secondary menu option to show the various text message folders. To me this is a big no-no! I like to be organised, but I don't want to keep having to switch to folder view whenever I want to manage my texts, especially when this used to be the default view when I hit the text messaging button!

 

* New navigation icons and icon locations - Using Belle has become a cryptic guessing game! Navigation icons seem to have been moved around, and the icons changed. More time is spent deciphering what the icons are and what they do, rather than being quick and easy. For a Symbian newcomer, I'm sure they'll pick it up easily, but for a Symbian veteran coming from Symbian^3 / Anna to Belle, they just cause confusion! I'm scared to touch a new icon in case it does something undesired!

 

* Lack of default application folders - I know, I know, there's the ability to create folders, but who the hell decided that removing default application folders was a good idea in the first place? All of my nicely organised applications have been scattered into one main group! Again, for what logistical reason?

 

* Headphones no longer work - Like many people, I prefer to use my own choice of headphones, rather than those basic ones that come bundled with the N8. However, after updating to Belle, I find that my headphones no longer work! The sound is not diverted to the 3.5mm jack, and music just plays through the device speaker rather than the headphones which are plugged in. I tried them out on other devices, and they work fine, and they worked fine before I updated to Belle, so this is obviousy an issue which needs to be addressed

 

* Homescreen wallpaper pictures obscured by navigation bar - Previously, the pictures I use as my homescreen wallpapers fit nicely between the navigation bar along the bottom, and the info bar along the top. With Belle this is no longer the case, where the picture is extended, and these two bars obscure the image below (the navigation bar happens to be semi-transparent, but that's beside the point)

 

* Application screen button right above the physical button - I honestly don't see the point in having a button in the bottom left corner which does the exact same thing as the physical button on the N8 which is situated directly below it.

 

* Profile ordering - On previous Symbian handsets, and also previously with Symbian^3 / Anna, it was possible to order your profiles however you wanted. There was also more than four default profiles. However, with Belle it seems that if you rename any of those first four, they retain their position, regardless of alphabetisation. For example, if you created a fifth profile called "Silent (Office)", it would appear in fifth place, rather than directly beneath "Silent" as you would expect

 

* Renaming the default "Silent" profile conflicts with the dropdown menu function - If you rename the default "Silent" profile to something else (Ie, "Loud"), and also change the profile settings (such as turning the volume right up), then this renders the silence feature in the dropdown menu redundant! You can still select the "Silent" function from the dropdown menu, but it will activate / deactivate whatever profile occupies that second slot, regardless of whether you have it set as silent or something else

 

* The camera interface - Once again, an example of moving icons when they didn't need to be moved! I used to find that the location of the various camera settings was perfect with Anna, but now they're all along the bottom. Why did they need to be moved? This is perhaps just nitpicking, and doesn't really bother me as much as other changes, but I see no reason why some things need to be changed for the sake of changing things!

 

 

 

Things that needed to be fixed, and still haven't:

 

* Calculator - In this day and age a smartphone should have an advanced calculator, similar to many hi-end scientific calculators. At the very least, a basic calculator shoud have a "clear screen" button! We shouldn't have to exit the application and relaunch it in order to do a new calculation!

 

* The music player - Artists and Albums should be separate. End of! If youre choosing a new ringtone, you can browse by either Song, Artist, or Album, so why isn't this the same for the music player? This has annoyed me ever since I first got my N8, but seems like something Nokia are reluctant to fix, despite complaints from the majority of users. Also, why is there still no user-definable equaliser?

 

 

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Sage
bumblebirra
Posts: 295

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

If you were so happy with Anna, why did you bother upgrading?
I had a very rough idea what Belle was going to be like, and I was happy to accept that there would be changes that I might not like and would need to get used to, but overall there is no question to me that Belle is a leap forward.

Most of your complaints relate to widgets and these are very likely to be addressed by Nokia eventually.

And most of your complainst can be dealt with, such as having too many homescreens - they can be deleted so that you only have 3
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New Member
zaus
Posts: 3

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

Well Said bumblebirra..!!!
But people always complain and complain no matter what...!!!
They just never get satisfied..!!!
I simply love Nokia Belle..!!!
Its lovely running Nokia Belle on C7-00
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New Member
DaveProudlock
Posts: 3

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

Have to admit I don't like Belle either, it looked nice in the screenshots but I'd have Anna back anytime, the new status bar is horrible, why's there a gap between the battery and the clock which just wastes the little space there is and those tiny little signal bars are terrible and look nothing like the screenshots of Belle on the N8 and widgets are awfull, Nokia really should allow a firmware downgrade option for those of us who want to go back.
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Mobile Guru
rayhipkiss
Posts: 3,912

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

 

 I think GeminiPhoenix has given some very valid points and has wriiten a clear and detailed post to help others in deciding whether Belle is for them or not.

 

 Fanboys shouldn't get upset when other people criticise Nokia or a Nokia product they happen to dislike.

 

All the best.

 

Ray. 

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New Member
okasn8
Posts: 1

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

For me everythings ok,

but the software updater on device is not working after belle update,
and need more skins & sizes for clock,music player,calender,email widgets.
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Counsellor
n8paul
Posts: 88

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

 

I think belle is 200% beter than Anna   so much faster slicker and so far seems a lot more robust.

 

Use there is a few widgets changed or missing  but thats an easy fix for Nokia (or 3rd parties)

 

you can have 3 home screens just delete the wones you dont want.  

 

Im very happy with Belle  it has restored my faith back in Nokia

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Advisor
Posts: 18

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

GeminiPhoenix, you are right, I totally agree with everything you said. Hopefuly Nokia will pay attention to these matters.
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Advisor
Posts: 18

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

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Sage
GeminiPhoenix
Posts: 116

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

I just want to add another thing to my "cons" list.

 

* eMail widget - Previously, I could have upto five separate eMail accounts on my homescreen. Now one single account takes up half the screen! **bleep**? How is this an improvement? I commended Nokia on this feature when I first received my N8, but now all I have are complaints because someone thought it was a good idea to change it...

 

Day to day I rely on having several eMail accounts accessable, and whilst I like how the eMail client has been improved with every iteration of Symbian, I dislike how the eMail widget has been changed so that it takes up half a homescreen! Who honestly demanded this when we had a perfect widget to start with?

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Sage
metal_might
Posts: 307

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

perfectly agree with geminiphoenix. belle is a bigger screw-up than anna.

 

like i said in another post, i purchased myself a PR1.0 E7 and am back to my kingdom. everything works super perfectly and i am one happy man in this world and will certainly be happier in other worlds too.

 

showroom spiel about E7 is that it is a failure model. motherboards having to be changed and all that. 7 of 10 E7 owners have paid visit to care point and have had painful waits for repair-time.

 

nokia is gone. that is what the showroom people say.

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Sage
GeminiPhoenix
Posts: 116

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons


bumblebirra wrote:
If you were so happy with Anna, why did you bother upgrading?
I had a very rough idea what Belle was going to be like, and I was happy to accept that there would be changes that I might not like and would need to get used to, but overall there is no question to me that Belle is a leap forward.

Most of your complaints relate to widgets and these are very likely to be addressed by Nokia eventually.

And most of your complainst can be dealt with, such as having too many homescreens - they can be deleted so that you only have 3

First of all, I didn't have a choice in the matter. I needed to update in order to fix a problem that Nokia still refuse to acknowledge is a flaw in their software. The only solution is to flash the handset with the newest software available. Besides, who wouldn't want the latest and fastest software for their device? Usually newer equals better, but in this case it doesn't...

 

I generally assume that updates are going to be the same as the previous version, but fixing a few of the things that are broken. In the past, that has generally been the case (except for when Anna decided to change the icon designs). However, I didn't expect for the widgets to be changed so drastically!

 

It's not just the widgets I have a problem with, but they seem to be the most prominent, as they're usually the aspects of the software we use the most. If I were designing the operating system, I would want to give users the most customisable experience I could, and that does not seem to be the case where Symbian is concerned. For example, if they change the clock, then they should offer us the option to have the old style as well as the new style, instead of just changing it and making it the only option. They give us an option to have a digital or analogue clock, so why not the option between different styles?

 

 

Second of all, why does everything have to be so hidden and cryptic with Belle? If there's a way to delete unwanted homescreens, then I have yet to find it! At the very least I expect to be able to find options and settings for things, but everything seems to be hidden away - As if they don't want us to customise. They seem to give with one hand, and take away with the other...

 

 

I previously stated that I accept all the positive aspects of Belle, and I like many of the new features which have been implemented. I like the new and improved speed (even if it does tend to hang a lot more than Anna), but as far as a user experience goes after coming from Anna, it's horrible, especially when you've been used to doing things a specific way for the best part of 15 months and have come to rely on doing things quickly and efficiently

 

Belle is great, provided you aren't too attached to your homescreen layout or organised applications. <sarcasm> I really enjoy having to reorganise and re-download everything after an update! </sarcasm>

 

Given the choice though, I would rather go back to the familiarity of Anna than suffer every day with the abomination that is Belle. I can live with Anna's flaws in return for a satisfactory user experience, but I can't live with Belle - At least, not in its current state! Perhaps if aspects of Anna could be transplanted into Belle, then I would be happy, but I doubt that Nokia care that much about whether we're happy with the software. It exists, so therefore we have to accept it for what it is, and we have no say in the matter...

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Sage
GeminiPhoenix
Posts: 116

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons


DaveProudlock wrote:
Have to admit I don't like Belle either, it looked nice in the screenshots but I'd have Anna back anytime, the new status bar is horrible, why's there a gap between the battery and the clock which just wastes the little space there is and those tiny little signal bars are terrible and look nothing like the screenshots of Belle on the N8 and widgets are awfull, Nokia really should allow a firmware downgrade option for those of us who want to go back.

I totally agree, and we should at least have the ability to flash our devices back to Anna if we so wish, rather than have to endure software we're uncomfortable with!

 

There's no such thing as "try before you buy" here. Once you've tried it, it's very difficult to go back! Yet there's no way to know whether Belle is for you until you've upgraded, so it's a Catch 22 situation...

 

If it wasn't for the fact that I had to fix an age-old problem, I wouldn't have had cause to upgrade. I was happy with Anna, and would have gladly settled for that until my next handset upgrade

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Sage
GeminiPhoenix
Posts: 116

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons


n8paul wrote:

 

I think belle is 200% beter than Anna   so much faster slicker and so far seems a lot more robust.

 

Use there is a few widgets changed or missing  but thats an easy fix for Nokia (or 3rd parties)

 

you can have 3 home screens just delete the wones you dont want.  

 

Im very happy with Belle  it has restored my faith back in Nokia


Easy to fix, yes. If they can be bothered, that is!

 

If they were that bothered about it, then they would have offered these things to us already. Clearly they don't care, otherwise they wouldn't have changed these things in the first place!

 

Like I have said, I have no problem with the Belle operating system itself - In fact I think it's a fantastic leap forward in terms of processing and speed - But the way it is presented compared to former iterations of Symbian (Ie, Symbian^3 and Anna) is not appealing. A step forward in one respect, but two steps backwards where usability is concerned...

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Counsellor
aadilh1
Posts: 56

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

The calculator does have a clear screen when the screen has data, it's in options but no button, the c button works for normal errors.

Other better music players exist from back in s60 v5, I find it nice to play folders instead.

Agreed someone forgot artist in music player.

Agreed clock calendar profiles from old clock widget much more functional. we need it back but better Belle than Anna I think, we can manage.

As with all things new right.
Remember, Questions and Answers are required by this Nokia support board. It's very strict, don't complain, criticise or express opinions which does not answer question or your post could be deleted. My friendly warning.
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Sage
bumblebirra
Posts: 295

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

GeminiPhoenix, you make plenty of valid points, but I think you need to try to give Belle a chance and then you might start noticing small things like the ability to simply delete any unwanted homescreens, and then it might begin to grow on you. I can understand your frustration at what you feel have been unnecessary changes (to Belle itself) but... well, I guess it must have been a MAJORLY serious age-old problem that forced you to risk the upgrade.

Your complaints about the Belle widgets are all justified and hopefully Nokia are listening and will do something about them in due course.

Even though I'd like more widgets, and more implementations of various settings into widgets, I find Belle to be be intuitive enough to make it an enjoyable experience - no less than Anna anyway.

I agree, Nokia should give the option to revert back to previous operating systems.

If I loved Anna so much, I wouldn't have cared less for latest and fastest software for my device. It would have taken a very serious problem to make me take the risk of changing it.

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Sage
GeminiPhoenix
Posts: 116

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons


bumblebirra wrote:
GeminiPhoenix, you make plenty of valid points, but I think you need to try to give Belle a chance and then you might start noticing small things like the ability to simply delete any unwanted homescreens, and then it might begin to grow on you. I can understand your frustration at what you feel have been unnecessary changes (to Belle itself) but... well, I guess it must have been a MAJORLY serious age-old problem that forced you to risk the upgrade.

Your complaints about the Belle widgets are all justified and hopefully Nokia are listening and will do something about them in due course.

Even though I'd like more widgets, and more implementations of various settings into widgets, I find Belle to be be intuitive enough to make it an enjoyable experience - no less than Anna anyway.

I agree, Nokia should give the option to revert back to previous operating systems.

If I loved Anna so much, I wouldn't have cared less for latest and fastest software for my device. It would have taken a very serious problem to make me take the risk of changing it.


I admit I may have jumped the gun on one or two issues, and I have since discovered how to delete unwanted homescreens. However, this just proves that the option is well hidden away in a very specific place, where I would have probably not looked had someone not directed me to it. Therefore I formerly retract that issue from my list, but I will add that I feel such options should be more visible, especially as we don't have a user manual to flick through and we're expected to just figure this stuff out on our own!

 

I have also discovered that the Wi-Fi needs to be prioritised in order to automatically connect when in range of my home network. Again, this is not made clear, and the required settings are hidden away in an obscure folder where most normal people wouldn't think to look... I also retract this from my list

 

 

As for the "age-old problem" - This thread should answer everything:

 

/t5/Messaging-Email-Browsing-and/Urgent-help-required-N8-refuses-to-send-text-messages-after-6/td-p/...

 

It was indeed a serious problem, and the only way to fix it was to update to the newest software version. No doubt the problem will occur again in a few months time, and I'll have to do the same again...

 

However, where I initially aimed to fix one problem, Belle has posed several new ones, such as the headphones no longer working, and the text messaging interface being rearranged based on the assumption that everyone texts using the Conversations feature. Two things I use every single day, and pretty much everywhere I go.

 

 

I am also glad that you support my complaints about the widgets, so thank you. I know they're only minor issues, but they're the most used, and I fail to understand why they decided to change certain ones. The whole widget system overhaul is great, but it's ruined by the larger widgets which formerly used to be much more compact. For example, the music player and eMail widgets are the largest and most waste of space, whereas the clock / calendar / profile cluster was perfect, so why separate them so that they take up twice as much space on the homescreen?

 

I too hope they're paying attention, and I have openly shared my thoughts with the Nokia team via Twitter. I would suggest everyone else does the same if they feel the same way

 

 

I liked Anna. Whlist I did miss the old PR 1.2 icons, and disliked the coloured blobs, I could live with it. I thought Belle would be more of the same, with just a few tweaks here and there to things that needed fixing, but it seems like something entirely different. At the very least, I expected certain things to stay the same, with the improvements being under-the-hood so to speak

 

As I have said before, certain aspects didn't need touching. They were perfectly fine as they were. Belle would function just as well if they had've left the widgets as they were. I appreciate that they've done a lot of work making certain aspects run faster, but some things weren't broken, so why try to fix them? Even more frustrating is the fact that other issues have yet again been ignored, such as the terrible music player interface, which almost everybody wants changing back to something similar to the S60 v5.0 era

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Contributor
vgmimi
Posts: 7

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

nokia must make back anna, i m bored with belle. I love nokias phon, but this upgrade to belle is big mistake, i don like anymore this n8, wrong to active the email, wrong with facebook app. Camera bad. Music player too big. Why the icon phon below. Why the names of apps? My cell is new just for errorr upgrading to belle and i dont like at all.... I see tnat iphon is now i little better that this upgradong phon, Nokia must give us again the option to use anna,.... I lost my contact when upgraded. I lost lots of greats wallpapers of nokia. This issue is a **bleep**
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Advisor
Hherrmmann
Posts: 17

Why has the subfolders function been removed in the mailer?

After updating from Anna to Belle, the subfolders (or maps) are not accessible anymore in my emailer. It only shows the default folders (inbox, drafts, sent and outbox) and not the folders I had created in my (POP3) email account.

 

Nokia Support Desk did confirm that this function is not supported anymore, which is very inconvenient as I organize 95% of my emails into folders.

Please Nokia, enable again the option to browse through own-created mailfolders!

 

PS for my Hotmail account is does recognize my custom folders, so I wonder why a different choice has been made for different types of mailers.

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Advisor
Frank_C7_00
Posts: 13

Re: Disappointed with Symbian Belle! Pros vs Cons

While lot of statements of GemoniPhoenix are valid, a workaround can be found in some cases, even if it is time-consuming... Now, I found a bug in Belle:

 

I am using my C7-00 with speakerphone HF-210 in my car. The voice dialing became now unreliable, because the device is no longer triggering the short audio signal, indicating that -speak now-. 

 

I hope, Nokia will correct soon...

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