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October 16, 2008

Macs and Nokia: Can we just work together? Uh, we do.

ESPOO, Finland – Rita (aka dotsisx) wrote a great and pointed article (and got a ton of comments) about compatibility between Nokia and Apple products, specifically Nokia phones and Apple Macs. As is my way, when my comment ends up being longer than a post, I figure it deserves to be a post, so what follows is my reply to Rita.

This paragraph sums up what she’s getting at:

“For a company that is trying to push its software and services to the masses, this is absolute bullshit: neglecting the development of software for one platform is a self-imitating self-suicidal decision. It’s true that Macs are still niche products, but look around and you’ll see that a lot of N-series users and S60 users in general are Mac users.”

Hey Rita, great post!

Yeah, our Mac support is way lagging behind Windoze, but pieces are there. As you point out, we have the Nokia Media Transfer, which transfers non-iTunes store music from iTunes to your phone. Nokia Media Transfer also makes it easy to sync bookmarks with Safari, transfer photos and videos to iPhoto, and sync back photos and videos from iPhoto. It also can encode media for the phone during the transfer. Also, if you have iMovie, the videos from the phone can be edited without conversion. And we have been working with Apple creating plug-ins for iSync to get your contacts and calendar into Address Book and iCal.

Internal use

As for using them internally, in the past few years, the numbers have grown as IT has loosened the rules and the internal platforms became less Windoze-specific. I’ve been using Macs since 1984 and it was a tough 5 years to use Windoze here at Nokia. But, two years ago I got a PowerBook (with which I made the video you mentioned – in iMovie no less). Indeed, my whole team had Macs. And we were product people.

In my current team (in corporate communications), there are only two of us with Macs, and we’re the only ones in the whole department (that I know of). Sigh.

The effort shows, though

Yeah, sometimes it seems we don’t care. For example, didn’t work in Safari for a while (it’s fixed now). The irony being that the S60 browser uses the same engine as Safari so was messed up on them as well. But these things can happen if people aren’t big Mac users themselves.

Nonetheless, there are some great guys working on Mac software (these guys). I’ve been trying to corner them for an interview, because I know a ton of you (as shown with these comments) are passionate for both Apple and Nokia and have long wished for more compatibility. The good news is, that things just keep getting better.

I’ve sent your link to the Mac guys and some sympathetic product people. We hear you. All of you.

And we’re wanting these things, too.


News comes to us via MobileCrunch and Symbian-Guru about a new job posting for a Mac developer at Nokia. Now that’s a good sign!

Image of my own BlackBook and N85