If there is an OS that no one thought would see two major upgrades in six months it would be Symbian. The dying-dead-gone OS is being slowly replaced by Windows Phone 7 in Nokia’s high-end devices, while S40 will continue to thrive in their entry-level fare.
But due to the relative late arrival of Symbian Anna (my E7 only got the update to Anna in late October) the next version appears to be arriving quite quickly. Devices like the Nokia 603, 700 and 701 shipped with Belle, which brings an Android-like notification bar and smoother overall performance, but legacy devices such as the E7, N8, X7, E6, C6 and Nokia 500 are due to be improved in “early 2012” according to Nokia.
The official statement states:
“Nokia Belle is the latest Symbian software release with all-new user interface, improved user experience, and dozens of improved and new features. We have already shipped Nokia 603, 700 and 701 with Belle software this year, and have received great feedback on the new user experience.
We will make Nokia Belle available to consumers globally by rolling out the Belle software for the existing Nokia range of smartphones such as N8, E7, X7, C6-01, C7, Oro, E6, and Nokia 500 in early 2012. With that, millions of consumers around the world will get a totally fresh experience on their Symbian smartphone.”
The Anna update started rolling out in Europe months before it was ever greenlit in North America, so we wouldn’t surprised if our E7’s and N8’s take a few more months than the rest of the world to get Belle. Either way, it’s nice that these older but still-beautiful Symbian devices have not been completely forgotten in the run-up to Windows Phone. Not by a long shot.