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May 01, 2007

Whats The Story With Nokia Maps?

by Darla Mack

A few weeks ago I received an email concerning the IMEI lockdown with the Nokia Maps licensing.  Ricky @ Symbian-Guru had received the same email and created a specific post on the issue. (sorry I didn't get back to you ASAP Phat Trance)

Recently, I received another email regarding the same topic.

First, let me say this... if Nokia doesn't know by now that the majority of its users change handsets every 3-6 months, then of course we are going to have a bit of a problem.  I don't think the method of locking a license into an IMEI is the best way for users such as this, which includes people like Ricky, myself and many others out there.  BUT, in defense of the method, how easy would it be IF it weren't locked to the IMEI and people tending to share?  Not assuming that all people do this.  Since using Smart2Go requires that you enter your mobile number, why not just use that instead? 

We've all witnessed what this can do with the change of Agile Messenger.  Having a program or application locked into  the IMEI number of a device can be hectic and thus make the application unpopular.   And as a consumer, if you've paid for it once... it shouldn't matter how many devices I own... I still initially paid for it!

What gets me, as well as other Howard Forums members, is if Smart2Go is still in beta.... why are they charging for the navigation in the first place? 

I feel compelled to post the response that was given by Smart2Go:

Dear xxxxxx,

thank you for your request and your interest in our product.

We are sorry, but we do not allow transfers of licenses due to phone changes
as we cannot guarantee backwards compatibility.

That means that we cannot guarantee that older navigation licenses are
compatible with newer software versions. Since on a new device there might be
a new client, this case may emerge and the old license might not be valid any

To avoid cases like yours, we offer the navigation function also for one year,
so if you change your device every year, you do not pay for a time in which
you will not be able to use the navigation.

If you have any further questions do not hesitate to contact us.

Kind regards

name removed
smart2go™ customer support


While I don't agree with the tone of the response, I do have to say one thing... and I know I'll probably get heckled for saying it.  Has anyone read the EUSA?  Articles 2. and 5. clearly explain that the purchased license is to be used on 1 device at a single time.  I don't agree with it, but it is there for consumers to see. 

Another reader has been getting the run-around from ClubNokia regarding the same issue.  In his case, it was for licensing for a replacement device.  Again, this would be where the mobile number instead of the IMEI number should come into play.

In my discussions with my Symbian-Guru I've found that there might be a more feasible solution down the road... but until then... what is the solution?



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It's good to see we're no singled out on this issue. Last week I bought N95 (yes.. I did pay a full price for it). I purchased a 30 day license (thank GOD for me.. I was tempted for a full year option). Not even a week went by and i've noticed that the slider was loose and sounded like a morse code when I was pressing the buttons... I went back to Nokia store (I'm in Chicago) and replaced it. I asked the rep (let's skip the names..just read my blog to read my story) and was told that I'll be able to transfer the license as it's based on the sim card and not IMEI... This obviously was a bologna... When I tried to enter the CD license via e-mail after paying for it i received a response "invalid license" or something like that. I was told that all I need to do is to e-mail smarts2go and that would do the transfer... Mind you that i have a receipt confirming replacement of the handset but still have not received any reply from Smarts2Go. I was talking to a friend who's a genius of marketing (college professor) and we both concluded the pricing plans are VERY good but if S2G will not allow for license transfer based on sim then I doubt anyone will buy a 1 or 3 year license for that matter. Since you can pull some strings maybe Nokia will listen to you as they obviously don't care about a small pin such as myself (who also happens to be the #1 customer in North America.. Last year I was at the grand opening of their store in Chicago. 5 minutes after they opened the door, my plastic was in motion and I had pics taken and was congratulated as a #1 customer and a proud owner of N80...for the rest of the N80 story check out my blog http://gadgeek.blogspot.com/ )


Ordxpres - Maciek


To follow up o license codes it seems like Smart2Go is not the only application out there that you get screwed over by purchasing. As soon as I got my N95 I also purchased the ThreadSMS. Two days later I received code from Nick. Next steps were similar to Smart2Go... My phone was returned to Nokia so I contacted Nick of threadSMS and received a similar reply...one license per IMEI but he's willing to offer me a 30% discount. I refused the offer. I offered to supply the exchange receipt from Nokia showing my old device was returned and exchanged for the new one but it seems that once some people get your money then the rest is a history. No support or help at all. I did not pay $15.00 to enjoy ThreadSMS for three days so I'll see what Nick will do as a solution as the one he offered (30% off of the new license) is not good for me. I'd hate to have to do it through paypal as a charge dispute but if it will get to it - I will have to. It's unfortunate that due to no fault of mine (faulty N95 returned and exchanged for a new one) I got screwed. It's true it's a small amount I paid for those applications but that's not the point. The point is that if a John Doe can prove that for some legit reason his device went kaput - he should be entitled to an even exchange. After all Nokia did not tell me "We'll not take your phone back but can give you 50% off of the new handset".


P.S. I'm starting my own blog - www.symbiosis60.com - Everyone is invited

Eric Brodeur

I was one of the people who commented S2G shouldn't be charging for Navigation since the entire product is in "beta."

As for "Symbian users exchanging phones every 3-6 months" I have no sympathy for someone who can afford a $300-$900 every few months. Regardless, S2G is not handling licensing very well because phones do break and need replacement and people do upgrade.


Ah, but that is where you're wrong, Darla.

A majority of Nokia's market keeps their handsets a lot longer than 3-6 months. The small niche of cell phone enthusiasts that browse your site, HoFo, and the like is the minority of users when it comes to the numbers of handsets Nokia sells.

Nonetheless, you're absolutely right. IMEI locked applications, particularly one directly from Nokia, is a big no-no. I haven't purchased a license yet, (haven't decided if it's even worth it) but if I do, it won't be for a 1-3 year term.


3-6 Months??

In Australia the standard contract length is 2 years...for all networks.


As much as I sympathize with Phat Trance and think that there ought to be a way to be able to transfer a license from one device to another (within rhyme and reason) I doubt that "the majority of its users change handsets every 3-6 months"

Jim Lee

Your SIM number is not visible to S60 software. It is simply not safe for any software to see your number. So the only way to lock it is to have the IMEI number.

And let's face it, for those people who can change their hi-end phones every 3-6 months, is that really a big deal to buy a new license for your new phone?

Ordxpres - Maciek


It's not an issue...it is a piddly amount but it's the idea. Place yourself in my shoes for example... I bought N95 last week. Immediately I upgraded to a 30 days maps license and bought Thread SMS. Two days later I had to return my N95 back to the store as the screen was shaky. Because of that I got screwed with both applications...each one locked to device. Nokia gave me a cold shoulder (we do not transfer short term licenses) while Nick from ThreadSMS offered another solution (at first a discount on a new license) but today I received an e-mail and I may be getting a free license replacement after all. Imagine if you'll buy QuickOffice 4.0. I believe this application is also locked to a device (although I'm not a 100% sure).... You'll spend $30 or $40 (whatever it costs) and then you'll get screwed if for some reason your phone goes dead in a short time. Not your fault...right? Then wouldn't you expect to transfer that license to the new device??? After all the old one is a paper weight and the application can not be used on it so why not being able to move it over to the new device. As an example Microsoft Office clearly states that the application can be installed on one device only. If your PC will go "kaput" - you can legally install it on the new machine provided it will not be used on the original one so I'd assume that the same rule would apply to mobile devices.



hi there,

i wondered if you would help me with the navigation on the n95, heres my q's

about navigation what do i pay for and what dont i pay for
is it possible to download the maps on my pc and then load them onto my phone
and lastly would you be able to give me some power saving tips on the n95

thanks Darla
kind regards,

Jimmy Stocks

Sorry to say, but these companies wonder why people hack and crack their applications???

I for one, if and when my N95 breaks, is lost or stolen, wont be paying for another license!

ElectroPig™ Von FökkenGrüüven

I got an N95 recently, specifically the N95-1, and I was SO PISSED that they want you to pay extra for navigation that instead of getting another N95 for my Dad (which WAS the plan!) I ended up doing specific research on GPS units...you know...the ones that do NOT ask you to pay extra for navigation...and snagged him a Garmin Nuvi 680 instead of the original plan of the N95.

While trying to show him how Bluetooth/VoiceCommand dialling worked (as I'd tested it earlier in the day on my "old" N80), as soon as the voice command was issued via the Nuvi, the N95 crashed and burned...after the phone rebooted itself, I tried again, but now the N95 didn't have any bluetooth connectivity at all, and the voice command obviously wouldn't work. No big deal, right?

I then shut off bluetooth on the Nuvi and tried VoiceCommand on the N95 directly...no go...but that's no big deal, as I could still synchroniez data between the N95 and the N80...right?! Nope...no Buetooth AT ALL on the N95.

After more than 2 hours of talking to Nokia tech support, during which they instructed me to reset to factory defaults (no fix) and reformat the phone (no fix here, either), they suggested that I reflash the N95 via the Nokia Software Updater...which would have been nice to have been able to have tried, but it simply refused to take a flash.

Now you might wonder if it was a computer error, as did I, so I tried it on the laptop...then on another desktop...and still it refused to flash...although after all of the above (about 30 hours total testing time) I did get the GPS into some form of debug mode, where every time any action was required, a debug message would appear in the top-right corner of the screen...

In any case, up until the (Bluetooth/VoiceCommand/GPS Debug) occurred, the ONLY real complaint was that they ask you to pay such a large figure for the phone because it's got a GPS unit inside it, but then they demand that you pay them to access the software installed within it. That's just plain dirty, as far as I'm concerned, and as far as other purveyors of GPS equipment are concerned, Nokia has become the laughingstock of the GPS industry for those "negative option marketing" tactics.

It's kind of like Ferrari selling you an Enzo, but once you take delivery, they want you to pay them a fee to use the tires...now if Ferrari can't get away with charging you extra to use "a significant part of the product you paid for", why should Nokia?

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