The Problems with Symbian

by Bruce Stewart

Slashdot points today to this collection of gripes about the state of the Symbian smartphone OS from developers and mobile executives, including some very negative comments attributed to higher-ups within Nokia. There's also an interesting discussion about the Symbian variations being put into play by NTT DoCoMo, Nokia and Sony Ericsson, who are all developing their own proprietary and incompatible middleware packages to run on top of the mobile OS, and one developer makes the point that Symbian is really more like an OS kernel than an OS today, and there isn't actually a stable Symbian OS that is compatible across the vendor platforms.

One developer writes, “In most regards, Symbian's reputation as a modern, robust, stable and advanced OS for smartphones is not well deserved. Sure, Symbian works, it has a very long feature list, and it's probably even the best smartphone OS available today. But it's mostly because the competition is pathetic than anything else.


This post with all of its colorful reader comments about Symbian is a follow-up to an earlier roughlydrafted.com article on Why the iPhone is ARM, and isn't Symbian, which is also worth a read.