Fancy some turn-by-turn voice-guided navigation, cloud based music or sports highlights on your brand new Nokia smartphone? You don't need an app for that: the Lumia 800 is now the only Windows Phone with full navigation built-in. Nokia announced its Drive navigation, which has a look and feel that should be comfortable with users of its former Ovi Maps suite. It also looks to have similar functionality, enabling the download of maps so that you can find your way into offline areas (see gallery, below).
There's also exclusive Music and ESPN Sports Hub apps. The former features Mix Radio, a service that streams "locally relevant music" across hundreds of channels. The latter, meanwhile, allows sports fans to check up on stats, scores and news, and to pin their favorite teams or leagues to the start screen. All told, the company is promising a "uniquely Nokia" experience -- guess their slick hardware won't be the only way they break out of the WP7 pack. Check out a video demo of the navigation embedded after the break.
Amar Toor and James Trew contributed to this report.
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ESPN and Nokia Introduce the ESPN Hub for Nokia Windows Phone Users
Today at Nokia World in London, ESPN and Nokia announced the introduction of a special product offering specifically for sports fans who are users of the new Nokia Windows Phone. The ESPN Hub will provide Nokia users around the world with a unique and innovative mobile sports experience.
Launching in early 2012, the ESPN Hub app has been developed distinctly for Nokia and takes advantage of the Windows Phone platform and Metro user interface featured on the new line of Nokia Windows Phone devices. It will offer a differentiated look and feel, which will make navigation of content smooth and intuitive. The ESPN Hub will be pre-loaded on millions of Nokia Windows Phone handsets reaching up to 190 countries and will provide scores, stats, news, analysis and video highlights for more than a dozen sports.
"Sport is one of the true global passions," said Marco Argenti, SVP, Developer Experience & Marketplace, said. "The ESPN Sports Hub really shows the essence of the new Nokia Lumia experience – fast, beautiful, people-centric, and with all the information you need, right in front of you. We're really excited to bring this to sports fans everywhere."
Added Russell Wolff, Executive Vice President and Managing Director, ESPN International, "This unique collaboration between our two companies on the ESPN Hub has been a truly global effort that will see us continue to work closely together in the months ahead. Nokia not only provides a great distribution platform, but they're also a driver of innovation, which allows us to create an experience that enables ESPN to better serve sports fans around the world."
The app will deliver intelligently localized content to handsets in markets around the world, delivering the most locally relevant sports content to the user. Additionally, users will be able to fully personalize the ESPN Hub if they choose, so that it features the sports content most relevant to their specific passions.
The unique news and sport-specific panorama screens within the app, pull together all the relevant content on a single screen that the user can navigate with the simple swipe of a finger. The product also will integrate social media content from ESPN talent and fans, as it relates to a particular sport.
The companies developed the product in tandem as part of a joint innovation initiative.
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