Good to see Charles going strong...
I wish him all the best with TomTom
One of Britain's top technologists is leaving Nokia. Charles Davies, Psion's first employee in 1981, became MD of Psion Computer before leaving to join Symbian as CTO in 2003. Since Nokia acquired the Symbian staff two years ago, he was heading up the strategy and architecture team for Nokia R&D. Charles Davies A plasma …
Basically S60 / Symbian is destined to be the new S40. Cheap bread and butter phones that sell millions, but hardly innovative.
Maemo / Meego isn't quite there yet -- sure, it might have some appeal for the geeks that want a Unix command line prompt on their phone -- but really, is that the phone your hip sister would buy? The N900 is just another large brick phone with an unclear upgrade path -- no clear sounds if it will be upgradable to Meego.
It doesn't help that they keep doing constant reorganisations that are no more than an advanced game of musical chairs. Then there's the unclear developer relations and the fact that internal developers aren't allowed to develop their own apps in their own time.
I'd leave tomorrow if I had an offer lined up.
I was in a few meetings where Charles was speaking. He really is a pioneer, pushing for the adoption of new technologies, and trying his best to get the world to listen. I wonder if his leaving is because Nokia have stopped listening?
It's a shame Nokia have slid as far as they have - they had (*had*) some good products. Is it Nokia's intention to destroy not only their own market share but also the Symbian ecosystem? Seems liek that's what they're doing.
The problem is that it's one of those industries where you need to ride the crest of a wave and constantly add to your patent armoury.
Everything that Psion was is a decade out of date, which means merely catching up would require licensing lots of other companies technologies or trying to navigate a patent minefield, with plenty of law suits along the way.
Realistically, Psion, or any inheritor of their once-great products, have no chance of picking up the baton at this stage. Just look at that 'Psi' PDA earlier this year. £500 for a heavy 90s-style PDA Running XP with all the battery life you'd expect. Who's going to buy that when you can get an iPhone for less? Not enough people to sustain a company as large as Psion once were.
If Psion continued, by now they'd have their own patented hardware for Wi-Fi, multitouch and god knows what else, all of which would allow them to continue competing with the other multinationals.
Psion, and all that it was, is gone forever. Tom Tom may have some old staff, but they're hardly a modern day Psion.
Also, all those involved are now 10 years older, and given that they'd already been doing this stuff since 1981, they're probably not up for trying to regroup and fight the good fight again. They probably want a quiet life, making good satnavs until retirement.
I've been working in Nokia since the takeover and I've never seen a single scrap of evidence that he ever worked here. To be honest I thought he'd gone somewhere else like the rest of Symbian's top level. Most of the other execs at that level make some pronouncement now and again, at least you know they're alive.