By Carlos Rebato
Nokia is not dead (yet?), but their phones are. The company's latest attempt to be popular again is the Nokia N1, an new Android tablet announced a few months back. The good news is Nokia delivered a very good tablet at a very competitive price – $250 is the US (likely to be somewhere between £160-£200 at market if it comes to the UK).
There's really only two things you need to know about the N1. The first one: it's a shameless copy of the iPad mini. The kind of rip off we haven't seen since Samsung's old copycat days. Or Xiaomi's current copycat days. The second: it runs Nokia's own modified launcher by default. It's called Z Launcher (you can download it on your own Android phone), and you may actually want to use it.
The Z Launcher's main feature is that you can write any letter on the screen, and the launcher will pull up a variety of results beginning with that letter. Kind of a like a handwritten Spotlight. Besides that, it automatically reorganises your main screen with the apps you use the most. Even though the Z launcher is on by default, you can turn it off and use Android's regular launcher, no problem.
Will you like it? Should you buy it? There's a very simple rule to help answer those questions. If you like the the look, feel, and size of the iPad mini but prefer your tablet running Android, you'll love the Nokia N1. It's a little sturdier, and the materials aren't quite luxury status like on an iPad, but the general feeling when holding it is pretty much the same. And for price, that isn't too bad at all.