We just got our hands on Nokia's sexy new N78, which it's bringing to us previously Nokia-starved North Americans in full-fledged, unlocked 3.5G. The phone boasts Nokia's new maps 2.0 app, along with photo geotagging, and of course all those N-series trimmings like WiFi and dual cameras. There's no N-Gage support yet, but a firmware update is forthcoming. Unfortunately for us, we had trouble getting geotagging or even online photo uploads in general to work at all -- we didn't stoop so low as to look at the manual, but Nokia certainly has some interface kinks to work out here. Maps 2.0 is all it's cracked up to be, and the phone tracked our walk down the block with accuracy bordering on creepiness. The keypad is a bit of a departure for Nokia, with ridges instead of full keys, but it didn't take us long to get comfortable with. We're less impressed with the touch sensitive "Navi wheel" on the d-pad, given Nokia's sporadic software support and its generally janky nature. The overall build of the device is classic Nokia, light but not too light, certainly not too thin but quite comfortable to use and pocket. We had no problem reading the screen in direct sunlight, and it's bright indoors as well. Though we can't recommend this unit without reservation, it's certainly one of the hottest phones for its form factor going, and once Nokia spruces up the new software a bit -- S60 3.2's new transitions are nice but aren't quite enough to make up for the shortcomings -- our gripes will be pretty much non-existent.
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Nokia N78 for North America hands-on