The sun may be setting on the Symbian empire, but what cannot be denied is that the OS still powers some of the best cameraphones in the world (the PureView 808 and the N8, to name just a couple). Combine that with a photography guide from arguably the best photography publication in the world, and you have something that gets into the must download category. And National Geographic Photo Tips is definitely that.

Mention “photography” and “magazine” in the same sentence and it is a fair chance that someone will utter the words “National Geographic” (or its corruption “NatGeo”). Similarly, utter the words “camera” and “phone” and it will be only a matter of time before someone talks of the Nokia N8 or the 808 PureView. Now, put those two together. Well, at least that’s what the folks at National Geographic have tried to do – the result is the National Geographic Photo Tips app for Symbian devices.


National Geographic Photo Tips for Symbian

The app, as its name indicates, is a series of tips for budding photographers from National Geographic photographers. Simple enough. But what makes it worthy of a rave is the fact that it is in the form of a flippable magazine (yes, on Symbian!). It works only in landscape mode, and comes stacked with dozens of tips spread across eight subjects:

  • Camera Phone
  • Cities
  • Places
  • Landscapes
  • Palette
  • Moment
  • Light
  • Composition

Each tip is accompanied by a large photograph that literally illustrates it. Some of it might seem like common sense (“use sealable plastic bags to keep your equipment dry” is so duh!) but then there are lots of gems that compensate – “stick with the bride and groom before and after the ceremony. Watch for the unguarded moments that are bound to happen on such an emotional day,” is one that we wish the Wedding Photographer crowd would follow. Ditto “bad weather makes great pictures. It can also make the familiar completely new.”

And of course, there are the pictures. We downloaded the app on both the N8 and the 808 PureView and were frankly delighted to have such an amazing collection of photographs on our devices, be it that of a lion cub clinging on to its idling mother’s neck, a bride and a groom putting their heads together on a road, or a rider affectionately sinking her face into the mane of her horse. Yes, we found the pop-up ads irritating, but then, no one is perfect. Do brace yourself for the odd lag as well – hey, this is Symbian.

Great pictures, tips from National Geographic, arranged in a easily flippable format. Not a bad deal for Rs 10 – yes, that’s all this app costs. Grab it if you have a compatible Symbian device. Read the tips, gawk at the pics…whatever you do, the chances are you will emerge knowing a lot more about photography by the time you are through. All for less than the price of a cup of tea.

Download from Nokia Store.

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Nimish Dubey has been writing for more than a decade now (well, Windows 3.1 was around and Apple was on the verge of being finished when he started). He has been published in a number of publications including The Times of India, Mint, The Economic Times, Mid-Day and Femina on subjects that vary from tech write -ups to book reviews to music album round ups. He managed to interview Michael Schumacher once and write two books for young adults along the way.