Why SFOS still worst than Maemo on Nokia N900?

I think 5-6 years ago my N900 was been replaced by me for Indian Jolla phone. At this time I clearly saw - Maemo on previous phone better, but SFOS jung and will be better.
I wasn’t right… Why?
It was 5-6 years ago. I wait when all feature and settings from Maemo will move to SFOS.
I had list of features, what very-very-very important for phone, but SFOS hadn’t.
Now - all features, what I wait still in this list.
I want a lot of? No…

  1. Alarm volum in settings. (Not in patches from side developers, what need remove and install after each update.)
  2. Adjustable transparent of app menu. (Not in patches from side developers, what need remove and install after each update.)
  3. Scrolling app meny row by row instead of screen by screen. (Not in patches from side developers, what need remove and install after each update.)
    4*) Setuped lockscreen - positions, what info I need etc. (Not in patches from side developers, what need remove and install after each update.)

And SFOS know abot patchmanager, can see, what patches most downloaded. It means SFOS know, what people need for comfortable using.
Most downloadeable patch is adjusting volume for alarm, because in stock SFOS have 100% volum and it wake up 2-3 streets around.
And why SFOS can’t add this to configuration “from the box”???

Ok, company have a lot of impruvements for catching up Android. But still worst, than Maemo 10 years ago.
Ok, I like, when OS can be modified and setuped for me, but I don’t like the same actions after each update. I have OpenSuse, Debian OSes at home, but after each update I don’t require a lot af actions just continue working/playing games/surfing the Internet. Comfortable? Comfortable.

What about I: I about comfort. In first all people require comfort. But SFOS can’t give it to people((((
Hire 1 person, who one per week will be see in store manager what people most download and apply 1 feature per week. Perfect? Perfect?

Would SFOS be better then Maemo? Definitely yes. But we have to admit that SFOS is not doing exactly what is expected of it now. Yes, there are many expectations, but take the n900 and see how it is better. How many settings does it have?
To be honest, I got tired of editing the lipstick file for a year, in which you need to add the name of the chat application so that it can beep when a message is received. The next version of SFOS will require the installation of OS from 0, and therefore it will require a lot of actions to resume using the phone. Of course, you will ask if I want this headache for myself, when in the end I will get the same OS, which will still be worse than on the n900, but will support Android applications, even though gesture control is more convenient, but that’s it not worth it. As a result, it will be the same operating system, with the same shortcomings. It’s okay for a year, okay for 2, but when the OS after 5-6 years does not meet the same minimum requirements for a mobile OS, it makes sense to continue using it, and even with reinstalling the entire system, it’s a so-so idea.

Sad but true.


I am also coming from N900. Switched last december for XA2.

I agree with you that Maemo was more complete and finished.
Less closed system: e.g. cryptsetup at early boot stage with any alphanum key for /home and uSD. Without pass, my N900 was booting in a dummy empty system).
I also miss the spreadsheet (gnumeric),
RAW pictures
FM radio
FM radio transmitter to play my music on any (auto)radio + BT too.
Remote control of the device via SMS (trace, iirc wipe, listen)
Phone white/blacklist
Whwt was that…dbus editor? To catch events and assign tasks to events (buttons, sensors…)
More diversity in apps.

What I prefer in SFOS is:
-Faster, general reactivity with apps, videos and picture gallery
-Easy MMS with pics, in, out.
-Much better web surfing
-Faster email
-Android capacity (not yet used but…)
-Bigger screen
-Bigger keyboard (Fxtec Pro1, one day…)

But Jolla today can’t be compared to Nokia in another era.
And Nokia made the OS AND the hardware. Jolla has to deal, adapt, accept. Big challenge.
Nothing new, but I think Jolla has to face so many (tech + users whishes) challenges with maybe only few people. Nokia was a giant compared.
Maybe, Jolla should more explain its situation, difficulties, challenges?


Nokia could get on board as Jolla investor and restart building the best phones on the planet;-)


I wonder if there is a mobile optimized version about? I also miss my N900 sometimes. To this day the most fun pocket computer I’ve owned.

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Collabora have an android build of libreoffice that seems to work

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Actually, no one like Nokia excelled at killing off the best projects they had, using the lowest possible common denominator when it comes to hardware specs (thinking that just their logo can substitute for much weaker hardware than all the competitors), stubbornly rejecting features which could have kept them as market leader forever, and even within Symbian destroying its best branches and features and forcing the most inferior options.

With all their countless mistakes and bad business decisions, Nokia literally created space on the market for Android and iOS.

So for Jolla’s safety, I’d say keep Nokia (or what remained from it) as far as possible.


And there’s the next company that does everything wrong. They just don’t listen properly.

Apparently so, given how they ended up. It was no one else but themselves who caused it.

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Do you mean nowadays?
On the N900, I used gnumeric which was really cool, well working (simple offer/bill use).

Ok, thanks for the info.
I could avoid Android till now but it is always good to know.

Right They didn’t. Neither to customers, nor to what competitors were doing. Just a few examples:

  • always releasing heavily underpowered devices (including, or maybe first of all, flagships), thinking that just their brand/logo substitutes for good hardware. For example, the 9210 Communicator came out in 2001 with a 52 MHz ARM9 CPU, 4 MB RAM, no camera, no Bluetooth, and so on, while the first Sony Ericsson Symbian smartphone released at approximately the same time, the UIQ-based P800 had a 156 MHz ARM9 CPU (i.e. 3x faster!), camera, Bluetooth, twice more RAM, 8-times the storage space (16 MB rather than 9210’s 4 MB of which 2 MB were free) and so on. Even the 9300/9500 Communicators in 2004-2005 (i.e. whopping three years later!) still had slower CPUs (150 MHz) than the P800 three years earlier, and in 2005 Sony Ericsson’s Symbian phones were already at 208 MHz and beyond. When Nokia finally added some pathetic VGA camera to the 9500 Communicator (and still NONE in the 9300 Communicator) in 2004-2005, UIQ phones (e.g. the P990) had 2 MPixel cameras with AF. And they kept doing so until their sad end. GPRS, WiFi, GPS, (put yout favourite feature here), all of them added by Nokia to their flagship Symbian devices YEARS after competitors. Google out what a giant failure the N97 was (released as Symbian flagship in 2009) when it was the highest time to start REALLY competing with the rapidly growing popularity of the iPhone. Enough to say, that they equipped the N97 with so little RAM that opening the second tab in web browser was closing all other applications.

  • killing off projects. The Symbian based MX and CX series (fantastic designs with huge touch screens, based on Symbian Hildon, created in 2003), never saw the daylight, all of it just dumped. Hildon UI then re-done on Linux and used in Maemo tablets.

  • Hildon was a codename of Series 80 3.0. Series 80 was the fantastic platform used in Communicators, based on Symbian Crystal. Series 80 1.0 and 2.0 had large horizontal display, Hildon was adding touch support to it, including large UI elements for finger-control rather than inconvenient stylus. I.e. what then turned out to be the future of smartphones. Nokia management just killed it in 2003.

  • the Series 90 platform (derived from Hildon as yet another attempt of great Nokia engineers to do the right things against the company’s management decisions to always choose the lowest and cheapest common denominator) and devices based on it - the 7700, 7710. Huge wide touch screens, buttons for gaming. Never treated seriously. The 7700 never went into mass production, the 7710 produced only in small amounts, not promoted at all, and quickly killed, within less than a year. Then they reused that “gaming” design in the N-Gage series, but with a pathetically small screen and pitiful S60 (non-touch) UI. Which ended up how it ended up.

  • If they didn’t kill Hildon and then its successor Series 90, if those large touchscreen devices were treated seriously, promoted and cared for when they were ready, i.e. since late 2003/early 2004, there would have been no space on the market for any iPhones or Androids (as pathetic as they were in their initial versions)

  • Maemo tablets, again, never treated seriously as a commercial product but as a geek toy. Very low quantities, zero marketing, years wasted on stubbornly forced “tablet”-only concept, i.e. without the GSM radio. Then eventually the great N900, but only in 2009, i.e. too late (four years wasted since the N800), and still with ZERO promotion and still meant only as a geek device for Linux freaks.

  • The worst and most primitive S60 (Series 60) platform (Symbian Quartz) forced at the cost of destroying all the remaining Symbian branches. Nokia killed their own Series 80/Hildon/Series 90 Symbian branches and literally forced UIQ Technologies to kill the UIQ platform (Symbian Pearl). All of those killed platforms were WAY SUPERIOR to S60 and had native touch suppport. Nokia destroyed all platforms with touch and forced the only one WITHOUT TOUCH. Then, when the iPhone came out and they finally realized that touch UX is the future, it took them until 2009 (!!!) to add sluggish touch support to S60, i.e. get back to what they’ve had aready in 2001, and intentionally destroyed. Then it took them another year to bring that touch support on S60 to a usable and kind of enjoyable state (along with the introduction of Qt on Symbian).

  • How they killed the Symbian consortium, then the Symbian Foundation and the whole Symbian open source project, by brute forcing all the other participants to drop the other - way superior - Symbian platforms in favour of Nokia’s inferior and pathetic S60. Very soon everyone left and they remained the only Symbian vendor.

  • Finally, the MeeGo history - how they killed their partnership with Intel and the whole project. Intel did their part and the tablet and laptop UXes were really done and released. Nokia never did their part and never did anything about the MeeGo Phone UX that they were supposed to create. And then they just showed Intel their middle finger. OK, it was already under Elop, but still. And who let Elop in, if not them?

  • As one of their final breaths - they released Maemo Harmattan as “MeeGo” that it actually wasn’t (except for a few things ported from MeeGo). And again, the fantastic N950 with beatiful keyboard never made it into mass production, and the marvellous N9 was manufactured in small quantities and without any serious promotion. Killed off after merely 8 months of sales, despite (IIRC) > 1 million units sold and ongoing demand, which was really huge for a completely unpromoted project, introduced as “the last MeeGo device, not to be continued”. But they had to release it to fulfill the agreement with Intel, or Intel might sue them. So they did, but they underminded it as much as possible.

So yes, @WT.Sane, I dare to say that they screw*d up literally everything they could. Let’s keep Jolla as far away as possible from even those sad remnants of all those Nokia top managers, for the good of Jolla.


Seriously! I like Linux n900, behavior and controls SFOS - it’s more native for me than Android.
But updates… But necessity setup half OS after update… After this update need setup File Manager desktop file((( HOW? Just HOW? No one use it? If devs doesn’t use std File Manager - may be send in to trash and install something better in std image?
Ok, I know - need resolve a lot of problems for making compatibility SFOS with as more phones as they can, for raising sales. But usability most major for users, who already buy it.
Wasting day after each update - so-so usability, if be true.

Android more popular because it’s comfortable and have all what need for people.
Now SFOS need all what people need but in Patchmanager.
Make SFOS comfortable for users and OS become popular. If OS become popular - you can earn more money, hire more staff.
I think now Jolla choose wrong way for growth. Yes this strategy right, but for OS, that have all features, what need each user.
Import most important patches form Patchmanager in main system and after that you can resolve other problems, and OS can go to popular by himself.
I think now Jolla must make accent to features what really need to users, and resolve bugs.

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And a few threads further you also explain that whole espionage thingie.

As I said: the world’s leaders should listen to you more property. And read you walls of text.

Yeah, I used gnumeric on the N900, too. And still use it on the desktop. Much, much faster than working with libre calc. I was wondering if there was a mobile build of it. I’ll go hunt.

Nokia management really never understood software and how to develop it. Software was always just an after thought. Nokia made into it’s position by a few technological marvels and by managing their global infrastructure really well. Meego Harmattan only became a thing because the developers knew that it would get axed and they wanted to get it done so that it does not get thrown away before N9 release. Not sure how marketing was done in other countries, but N9 was quite well marketed in Finland (I still own my own and one from the old Nokia top executives).

Shame that with it all the manufacturing of consumer devices went to China. 2000s and early 2010s were really sad years for manufacturing in Europe. Now EU is panicing to bring some of it back.

However. Nokia would still be a good partner if used for right things. The patent portfolio on it’s own would be insane. Not sure what kind of assets Nokia still holds for the software after Microsoft and Digia sales, but I guess there could still be something. They still do insane amount of research which could be used to be industry leading in many aspects. Resources that company like Jolla would never have on their own.

Did you use ti through easy debian or directly in Maemo?
Wasn’t Gnumeric already a mobile build (made for maemo)? Excuse my miss of nuances.

That’s a good question. I think it was maemo and maemo extras + maemo.org - Downloads: Gnumeric Spreadsheet

The last person I saw to have published sources for maemo has since become a very good still life painter :wink: I did find a freemantle port from 2020 …

Painter? Hints :–) ? … Ah, you?

By mobile, you have something useable/portable to SFOS in mind?

It was really only usable on the N900 because of the keyboard. But I’d like to try to compile it. I think cell input to be usable would require a custom widget. So it’s probably more work than I have time for. Curiosity!

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Wow! Great light work, with (apparently) so few brush strokes. First time I notice vignetage on paintings.
For fun, I’d invite you to participate in the TMO Phone Camera Competition March 2022 The subject is “Reflection”. Perfectly fits. After all, a phone picture of a picture of a painting is still a phone picture :–)

Over my head regarding widget things but would be curious to try if one day you have a time exceedent to occupy.