Counterclockwise: Nokia E72, E6, iPhone 3GS and 4, N9

22 June, 2014

Welcome to this week's edition of Counterclockwise our weekly article that looks back in time at what happened in the last few years. We revisit some interesting milestones in the mobile industry iPhones go on sale, Nokia pushes its last great QWERTY phones and later down the road undergoes massive layoffs and spins off Vertu.


2008 proved to be a strong year for Nokia QWERTY smartphones. The Finns unveiled the Nokia E66 and E71, which business users were drooling for.

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Nokia E71 White Steel and Nokia E71 Grey Steel

The Nokia E66 is the same business-grade device as the Nokia E71, however without the QWERTY keyboard. It comes as a successor of the Nokia E65 and is equipped with a large 2.4-inch TFT display of QVGA resolution. Infrared port (are they serious?), microUSB port, and Bluetooth (A2DP and EDR) are also on board.

Nokia E66 also sported a built-in accelerometer, which would allow auto screen rotation, as well as silencing of incoming calls when the device is turned over.

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Nokia E66 White Steel and Nokia E66 Grey Steel

Three years later, in June 2011, the Nokia E6 launched in the USA and Amazon put it up for pre-order for $446.

But it wasn't only Nokia that rode the QWERTY wave. In June 2009 LG introduced its QWERTY smartphone GW550 running Windows Mobile 6.1.

LG GW550

LG's efforts in the QWERTY sector also got weird in 2011. The company unveiled the dual-screen DoublePlay Android smartphone which sported a touchscreen in between its two QWERTY pads. It was an awkward sight to behold and T-Mobile customers were the lucky ones to get the chance to buy it.

The mysterious LG dual-screen smartphone

Over at the Samsung camp, the company unveiled the Omnia Pro 4 and Omnia Pro 5 in 2010. Running Windows Mobile 6.5, the duo tried to compete with the Nokia's QWERTY rivals, but didn't really manage to dethrone them. The reason for this was their deprecated OS, which at the time didn't offer much for the money Samsung asked for.

Samsung Omnia Pro 4 Samsung Omnia Pro 5

In June a year earlier, Samsung outed the B7320 OmniaPRO, while in 2011 the company gave the Ch@t 222 the heavy burden of representing one of the last efforts of the company in the QWERTY space. With Android and full touch smartphones becoming the norm back then, you can imagine the amount of success the Ch@t 222 got (hint: it wasn't much).

Finally, the Palm Pre made its way to Europe at the steep price of 400. The phone was a major hit in the US and its arrival at Europe shores meant a lot for the company. Too bad, it wasn't enough for it to stay afloat and when it sunk later on, HP acquired it, mainly for its strong patent portfolio in June 2010.

You'd think that QWERTY is a thing of the past, but really, it's not. QWERTY is still alive today as BlackBerry today showed off its latest Passport and Classic smarthpones.

iPhones go on sale

In June 2009 Apple skyrocketed into the domain of smartphone makers as a strong and visionary competitor which was hard to match. The company's iPhone 3G S saved a lot of Apple customers the hassle to join a large queue at the Apple Stores as the company introduced advanced home deliveries. Vodafone sold the smartphone for the hefty 619 / 719 for the 16GB and 32GB version, respectively.

The iPhone 4 was a great breath of fresh air for Apple and customers were all over it. However, it took Apple a whole year to start offering the phone SIM-free from its own stores. The price for the 16GB model was $649.

Nokia sheds weight

Nokia's position wasn't a very favorable one in 2012 as the company had to lay off 10,000 employees and sack three key executives. That year, the Finns also chopped off its Meltemi OS, destined for budget handsets.

And if those two events weren't bad enough, Nokia had to say goodbye to its premium brand Vertu. In June 2012 Nokia sold it to EQT VI for an undisclosed amount.

Happy Birthday!

Last but not least, in 2010 we turned 10 years old. That's right, blew ten candles on the cake four years ago. Back then we said we are looking forward to the next decade of mobile tech coverage and we couldn't be more excited for what is coming in the next couple of years. The older we are, the wiser we get.


Reader comments

  • Vish

The worst decision made by nokia is to adandon N9 & MEEGO. Its the burning platform that can give nokia a big leap. I can say it because I have it & love it.

  • Nigon

Nokia build excellent phones and hardware. It's a shame that nokia only run windows on their phones. Nokia should run a proper full Android phone, and will be back on the biz. My previous phones, before the "Android age" was Nokia and al...

  • Nick

After almost 6 years I still use my old Nokia E71. When will that Linux phone be ready ? Such as Ubuntu phones or alike.